McDonalds launched their Happy Meals in June 1979. The first toys were simple amusements such as stencils, puzzle books, wallets, ID bracelets, and erasers of the McDonaldland characters. As time went on, the toys not only became more sophisticated, they evolved into bona fide collectors’ items. McDonalds was quick to incorporate movie tie-ins with their Happy Meals. In December 1979, Star Trek The Motion Picture became the first film promotion. In addition to films, McDonalds formed partnerships with manufacturers of popular toy lines. Cherished Madame Alexander dolls have been miniaturized for Happy Meals since 2002. For the second year in a row, the yellow brick road leads to the golden arches. One can only assume last year’s promotion was hugely successful.
For 2008, new characters have joined the line and returning favorites have undergone makeovers. Early reports from collectors imply this year’s set could be hotter than 2007s. The Wizard of Oz premiums are scheduled to end on October 9th, but many stores sold out their supply of dolls early last year so don’t wait too long to purchase your toys. These dolls are a wonderful introduction to Madame Alexander and would make a perfect first Wizard of Oz doll collection for budding Oz enthusiasts.