The Toys That Built America

Watch The Toys That Built America

  • 2021
  • 1 Season
  • 7.9  (73)

Against the backdrop of major events in American history like the Civil War and the Great Depression, The Toys That Built America shares a different story ? one that brings new products and nostalgic toys to the forefront as driving forces behind untold cultural and economic shifts. The four-part docuseries showcases visionaries such as the Parker Brothers, Milton Bradley and Ruth Handler who transformed a small toy company into the billion-dollar empire now known as Mattel. It reveals the little-known stories behind ground-breaking innovations like the Frisbee, and accidental discoveries like how the Slinky was created. Additionally, the docuseries unveils competitive rivalries between iconic brands that changed the fabric of our nation forever. Blending dramatic reenactments and archival footage with interviews from experts, biographers, and others, The Toys That Built America brings to life the surprising tales of the men and women who created some of America's most beloved and enduring toys including Silly Putty, Monopoly, Barbie, G.I. Joe, and other famous classics.

The Toys That Built America
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Seasons
Board Game Empires
4. Board Game Empires
December 19, 2021
After failing to make a living selling lithographs, Milton Bradley creates one of America's first board games, which will go on to become one of the biggest of all time. But the Parker brothers threaten Bradley's reign. But it's a game about Monopoly that will upend the business. And in its earliest days, it might have been pirated from its true creator, who has been largely lost to history--until now.
Toy Car Wars
3. Toy Car Wars
December 12, 2021
As car culture cranks up in the early 1950s, a young machinist in England invents one of the world's most successful toys when he creates a toy car small enough to fit inside a matchbox for his daughter to take to school. In Los Angeles, Elliot Handler creates one of the biggest toy rivalries in history when he brings on a former missile designer to make a toy car behemoth of his own.
Clash of the Toy Titans
2. Clash of the Toy Titans
December 5, 2021
As the post-war baby boom creates unprecedented demand for toys, Ruth Handler turns her greatest gamble into the most recognizable toy in the world. Meanwhile, rival Merrill Hassenfeld, at the reigns of a company that will one day be one the most famous brands in the world, tries to capitalize on Handler's success to launch a military doll for boys--which is brilliantly rebranded as the world's first "action figure," and eventually spawns a tv series and a movie franchise. For decades, these two companies battle each other to dominate the toy industry. But when the cultural landscape shifts, they are forced to make desperate choices that ultimately earn their toys immortal status.
Masters of Invention
1. Masters of Invention
November 28, 2021
The incredible creations of some of the most iconic toys in history happened by chance. During World War II, a naval engineer accidentally creates an iconic spiral toy that walks down stairs, when he's trying to come up with a way to protect ship equipment from damage. At the same time, an engineer is trying to invent a synthetic rubber for the war effort and instead creates a strange putty that becomes another world-famous toy. It's the origin stories of these toys and more, and the genius entrepreneurs who brought them to the world
Description

Against the backdrop of major events in American history like the Civil War and the Great Depression, The Toys That Built America shares a different story ? one that brings new products and nostalgic toys to the forefront as driving forces behind untold cultural and economic shifts. The four-part docuseries showcases visionaries such as the Parker Brothers, Milton Bradley and Ruth Handler who transformed a small toy company into the billion-dollar empire now known as Mattel. It reveals the little-known stories behind ground-breaking innovations like the Frisbee, and accidental discoveries like how the Slinky was created. Additionally, the docuseries unveils competitive rivalries between iconic brands that changed the fabric of our nation forever. Blending dramatic reenactments and archival footage with interviews from experts, biographers, and others, The Toys That Built America brings to life the surprising tales of the men and women who created some of America's most beloved and enduring toys including Silly Putty, Monopoly, Barbie, G.I. Joe, and other famous classics.

The Toys That Built America is a series that is currently running and has 1 seasons (4 episodes). The series first aired on November 28, 2021.

Where to Watch The Toys That Built America

The Toys That Built America is available for streaming on the History website, both individual episodes and full seasons. You can also watch The Toys That Built America on demand at Philo, History, Vudu and Apple TV.

  • Premiere Date
    November 28, 2021
  • IMDB Rating
    7.9  (73)