In my quest to organize and clear out some of the accumulated clutter in my home office I been stumbling on a lot of fun stuff that I bought years ago but then tucked away and completely forgot I owned. There were a lot of stickers in that to-sort pile, so I spent some time this past weekend scanning them in so that I can eventually get to sharing them here at Branded. So today as a part of that clear out, I’m going to spend a few minutes taking a look at a set of 1987 Hallmark Valentine’s Day G.I. Joe sticker cards. Quarantine rules apply here, it doesn’t matter that it I’m over a month and half late for Valentine’s day content. G.I. Joe always loves us, no matter what day it is.
If memory serves, I was really shocked to find these because they seemed way more modern than 1987. I remember most kid-centric Valentine’s Day cards in the 80s coming in little paper trays covered in a flimsy plastic wrap with absolutely nothing in the container except two to three pages of cards that had six to eight cards on each page, perforated for easy tearing. I feel like cards with gimmicks were more of a late 90s, or 21st century development, but apparently I just wasn’t looking for the cooler sets like these G.I. Joe sticker cards.
This set included 16 background location cards and two identical sheets of die-cut stickers printed on clear plastic. The idea was to decorate the location cards with the stickers to make a battle scene, much like the Presto Magix or Colorforms Rub and Play sets of the earlier 80s. This was, no two Valentine’s cards would ever be exactly alike.
For the most part, I really dug the sticker designs. The artwork was a mix of copies of some of the character’s card art, and honestly, it features some of my favorite 1986 wave 5 figures like Mainframe, Dial Tone, Iceberg, Roadblock and Beachhead. They threw in General Hawk as well, but I won’t hold that against them. They also included some vehicle stickers, names the A.W.E. Striker and the Conquest X-30 jet. I think they also added a weird 1-roter version of the Tomahawk helicopter and a bunch of explosions. Honestly, my main gripe with the stickers is that for some reason they chose to change Iceberg from an African American soldier to a Caucasian one. Not cool Hallmark.
Each character has two identical, yet vertically flipped stickers in two sizes so you can play around with the layout and design of your Valentines, including adding a bit of depth with the smaller stickers. All in all it’s kind of an interesting effect, even if the final Valentines look like a three year old put them together. All in all though, a nice little oddity from the Branded flat file.