Little known fact about me: I grew up as a little boy. What this generally meant is that Barbies weren’t typically in my play-cycle and Hot Wheels dominated most of my free time in between Ninja Turtles. I’m happy to say that even though I’ve taken a long hiatus from the small die-cast cars of my youth, they’ve been waiting around should I ever choose to get back into the habit. It’s always great to know that my kids will someday have the chance to play with my favorite toys.
Simple Fun Without Limits
So what made and still make Hot Wheels so great? Not to sound too crass, but they’re extremely cheap. You can get a pack of 10 for under $15, and a lot of stores will sell them individually for 99 cents. Even better is the sheer amount of models to choose from. You and your friend could each own three-dozen cars and only have two that look identical. This means that every kid has a chance to have a unique set of cars best suited for his or her personality (sure, girls like Hot Wheels, too).
What did I have? I had a few cars that I absolutely loved, but my favorite for some reason was a beat up old Jeep that had a hood that could open. I had entire plotlines that involved this Jeep fighting other cars, just because it was my favorite and clearly the hero among my other cars. It had a posse of several other, “cooler” cars, but nothing could outclass my Jeep, not even the Mach 5 from Speed Racer or a car shaped like a dragon. Nope, the Jeep was my favorite.
There is also a lot to be said for simplicity. While Hot Wheels likes it when you buy new playsets, I always enjoyed a simple play rug. I had a city-themed one the size of my room laid out for me to drive around in. I’d dump out all my Hot Wheels and place them in the city as I figured real cars would be placed in parking lots and at stop signs and such. And then the Jeep would show up and fight all of them just because. Oh yes, life was good. I should go back and buy some new Hot Wheels. Maybe you should, too.