i was asked a question again at gumbyland about how to identify an original lakeside gumby bendy toy, so i thought i'd answer here so people who search can refer to it in the future ~
first of all, if you want to be certain you're getting an original lakeside gumby or pokey bendy from the 60's, you can look for one 'on card' (still in the original package) but i've seen these go on ebay for $75+, so be prepared to battle other bidders.. these are nos: a new old stock superflex bendy fresh out of an old unopened lakeside case ~
here's pokey, you can click on the photos to see the larger size ~
these 2 had some real wear so i was able to snag them for under $20 each ~
an original gumby or pokey bendy feels different than the more modern ones, the rubber is.. well, rubbery-er.. lol, less smooth, & pokey is a dark red. pokey gets orangier & they get more plastic feeling in the later versions. gumby's eyes are smaller, his headbump is pointier & his thumbs are prominent. there's a 60's date on the back and usually 'lakeside ind. inc. made in hong kong'..
this pokey has a lakeside ind inc. 1965 marking ~
then there are the jesco versions that came in the 70's & 80's ~ also made in hong kong..
jesco bittys ~
slightly smaller than most bendys is the applause version, he is a different shade of green & looks off to his left ~
prema/applause ~ identifying mark is on gumby's right foot ~ made in china..
same with the bitty version ~
from 1989, he's a tad taller than other bitties at 3 1/2" tall ~
i've found the applause toys to be less common ~
50th anniversary bendys ~
60th anniversary collector's edition gumby ~
2016 pokey looks a shade redder ~
playskool bittys ~
there are lookalikes that are often keychains, kid's meal prizes or game pieces, sometimes by 'sher stuff', 'applause'' or 'art clokey' ~
i call these my mystery gumbys, i don't know whether they are originals or counterfeit or what, but they are super-rubbery & have no identifying markings, almost like they're homemade. the bittys may have been coin-machine prizes?
update ~ check out the comments here! as it turns out, these unmarked bendies may actually be the rare 1964/1965 original clokey productions released early superflex bendies? ~ thanks, gumboflexo!
another one ~
he's a little beat up ~
saving possibly the best for last ~
here are some great examples of gumby rares ~
this is a nice vintage rubbery gumby that looks like the first lakeside superflex toys but has no marking at all ~
& rarest is this pre-lakeside gumby from 1964 ~
he was made by the gumby toy company by art clokey before all the others, found in the la area ~
as you can see by the tiny gtc mark on the back of his left foot ~
g.t.c. & a copyright c in circle above ~
this is not even going into all the side characters that are available ~
visit gumbyland for more photos!
disclaimer ~ these are just my best observations as someone who has been collecting gumby stuff for a long time, so if you note any mistakes or can add anything to this guide, feel free to let me know. for now, i hope this helps..
have a gumby day!
ghost & toxic
UPDATE!! Clarification from Joe Clokey ~
Great Blog Bren!
Here's the different bendables over the years:
1964-1968 60's shape Gumby. First a Run by Gumby Toy Company, and then all the rest by Lakeside toy Co. licensed by Clokey Productions. This, and all bendables were designed by Art.
1976 - A special "Super-Flex". This had a unique shape were Art combined the 60's design of the body and made Gumby's bump and face more like the '57 gumby. This is the most rare bendable, except for the run before Lakeside.
mid 70s - Jesco makes a run, the first of which look like the 60's gumby's, I think they used the old lakeside molds, then by the late 70's the new more modern design was produced and sold through the early 80's.
80's - I have to do some checking on this, but I think Playschool made some bendables, then by the mid 80's NJ Croce started making them. The modern shaped gumby is what these are like.
90s - Trendmasters makes the bendables.
Late 90's to present - NJ Croce makes the bendables.
2005/6 - Prema Toy (Clokey Productions) designs a 50th anniversary retro Gumby Bendable with a shape like the 60's Gumby character and a blister card with that period in ode to.
Soon to come a new 60th anniversary bendable made from the '57 Gumby mold. The first time ever!