If you can believe it, the holiday season kicks off in earnest this week! Wednesday night is Hanukkah! Thursday is Thanksgiving! Friday is Black Friday! Christmas is coming! So, we’ve asked some of our fave creators to tell us their fave comics-related holiday memories! Break out the hot chocolate and start a fire. Or in this case, spin a dreidel, because I’m gonna share my own epic Mego Hanukkah Memory … when I lied to Mom …
When I was 8, it was all Megos, all the time. So after school, I’m watching TV and this comes on:
And the skies opened and the Lord spake and He said, “Young Daniel, you must have this for Hanukkah.”
And it was good.
We were not a family of means. My folks had split and my Mom did the best she could but Dad was a shmuck. So asking for a Batcave was no guarantee. But ask I did. Over and over again.
Anyway, late some Saturday afternoon, with the skies dark and Hanukkah right around the corner, I found that I just couldn’t take the suspense any longer. I had to know: Did I get the Batcave or not?
So while Mom was downstairs ironing in our Old Bridge, N.J., garden apartment, I crept into her bedroom and went into her closet, where I knew she hid the presents. I burrowed to the back and saw the piles of swag still in shopping bags. I poked and prodded as quietly as I could. And there, in shadow, was a box that looked just like this:
Oh, my Lord, there it was. It may have been the most exciting moment of my young life. It was a moment rivaled only by the first time the skies opened and I saw Mego Batman and Robin for the first time, standing on my friend Phillip Tagliaferri’s dresser.
Also there? Mego Batgirl. And, if memory serves, that clog with a propeller they called the Batcopter.
Then dread. And guilt. I got what I wanted, sure. But I found out in such a sleazy fashion. I cheated!
But I wasn’t stupid enough to confess.
I went back downstairs, and hey, guess what Mom asked me: “So, Daniel, what do you want for Hanukkah?”
Think fast! Think fast! Does she know? Think fast!
“Oh, um, I dunno, a Batcopter, I guess…” — and, in order to throw her off the scent, I made up some other things that I didn’t really want that I knew she hadn’t gotten me.
But I also knew if I didn’t mention the Batcave, my response wouldn’t be realistic. And I also found that I wanted her to know that she did right by me. She’d been through enough shit even an 8-year-old could see it.
So, I added: ” … and, of course, I really want a Batcave.”
She betrayed nothing as she continued to iron.
So Hanukkah came and I opened the presents and life, it was good.
Years later, when I mistakenly thought I was over comics, that Batcave and all the Mego figures and vehicles that went with it, made their way to the curb.
Well, I’ve managed to rebuild that collection, in a fashion. Plus, now with companies like Figures Toy Company building their Wayback Machine, everything old is new again. Below are a few pieces of my latter-day collection, pix courtesy of my cool-as-beans teenage son, Mom’s first grandchild.
As an adult, I finally ‘fessed up and told my mother this story and she said she’d had no idea. She thought it was amusing, though.
But you know what?
I never snooped again.