Wednesday, 25 July 2007

MONOPOLY COMMISSION


One man's monopoly is another man's bargain and this one awaits you and your AmEx Platinum card in London's Burlington Arcade...

Mind you, that is a snip compared with a Monopoly set made by Alfred Dunhill - with gold houses and silver hotels - that sold for $25,000.

Anyway, if your old Monopoly set is looking a bit tired (the money and cards getting dog-eared, the boot lost and the top hat tarnished) but you just don't happen to have £775 to spare, well there are alternatives...

The Disney Monopoly Set: make money with Mickey...


The Spiderman 3 Monopoly set: spend, spend, spend with Spidey...


And for the very young 'uns: the SpongBob Square Pants edition...


Er... Maybe somebody at Monopoly Inc ought to go straight to JAIL!


Monopoly Michael Caineisms
("Not a Lot of People Know That"):


* General Mills in the USA marketed a Limited Edition Monopoly Cereal featuring, "crispy, sweetened whole wheat and rice cereal pieces imprinted with the Monopoly game's famed game pieces along with marshmallow bits resembling Monopoly property cards." Yuck!

According to Steve Vekich (Marketing Manager for Promotional Cereals at General Mills): "The game Monopoly is synonymous with family fun. We knew Monopoly cereal was a winning idea in our continuing effort to bring new and exciting limited edition products to the cereal aisle." Crikey!

* The top-hatted gent on the Monopoly logo is known as Mr Monopoly but this is a name he only acquired in 1999 (apparently "in honour of the [upcoming] new millenium"); prior to that he was called Rich Uncle Pennybags, a name he went under on a companion game marketed in 1946.

According to the Monopoly Companion (1988) his full name is Millburn Pennybags. The same volume revealed that the policeman is named Officer Edgar Mallory and the crook behind bars goes by the moniker Jake the Jailbird!

12 comments:

Boll Weavil said...

We always used to play a game called Careers which was, in many ways, very similar to Monopoly, although it featured a chance to visit the Moon and go to university whilst going round the board. Unlike the original though, the object was not merely to accumulate money and property but collect a unique blend of fame,happiness and fortune - the recipe for success determined by each player at the games commencement.Another derivation was 'Totopoly' which involved the acquisition of a stable of horses on a board that flipped over and became a racecourse.Ah, the good old days !

Suzanne said...

Synonomous with family fun? When was the last time you played Monopoly, Brian? In my experience, it brings out the mercantile, calculating, mean side of people. They gloat when they pick up their rent on a hotel on Park Lane and guffaw when you pick up your rent on one of the Utilities or whatever. There's no fun in that!

Brian Sibley said...

BOLL WEAVIL - There are games of this kind dating back to the Victorian era such as 'The Mansion of Happiness' (1843) in which players were enjoined to follow the path of "Honesty" and "Temperance", surviving the Trials and Temptations of "Poverty" and "Penury"; or 'The Game of Life'(1860), an up-dated version of which is still manufactured today.

SUZANNE - Personally, I was never any good at Monopoly - being incapable of adding up properly! - but maybe the "morality" of Monopoly (or lack of it) is simply the WORLDLY 20th/21st century equivalent of the OTHER-WORLDLY ethos of those games played by our 19th century ancestors...

Elliot said...

I have spent most of the last 10 years living in Tasmania, which is mostly rural.
Because of this you will find many places selling tractors and sheep pellets and cow licks and a chain of shops called Horseland.
Horseland sells, as you can imagine, all the tackle you need for riding and feeding horses.
Clothes and all that crap.
Out the front of my local Horseland there was a very large promotional Blundstone Boot (about the size of a small car).
A Blundstone is a type of laceless boot familiar to anyone who's played Monopoly.
One afternoon I was driving past this particular Horseland with the giant boot and my girlfriend saw it, "Look at that giant boot" she said.
And I sad "Well that's from the giant Monopoly board they're making out the back. They've got a giant hat and they're nearly finished the giant puppy dog".
Lauren (the gf) was thrilled.
"Wow! That's really amazing!".
Off we drove down the highway.
10 minutes later Lauren says "They don't really have a giant Monopoly board at Horseland do they?".
I said "No, Lauren. They don't".

Brian Sibley said...

I love that story! But how mean of you to shatter Lauren's illusions!

Elliot said...

This was the same girl who once asked me which state of the US KENTUCKY Fried Chicken was supposed to be from and the same person who once took an hour to explain about a marvelous new device she had seen for keeping garden waste contained in the back of the ute.
It was called a "net" apparently...

Brian Sibley said...

GILL writes...

Monopoly = Monotony

'Nuff said!

LisaH said...

It's amazing how things have changed since the arrival of the computer.
We used to love playing board games with family and friends - Monopoly, Totopoly, Risk, Cluedo were just a few examples of the types of games that kept us amused for hours on end.

Good Dog said...

I miss the games we used to play, as Lisah says, with friends and family. Apart from Monopoly there was one called Buccaneer, which I've never seen since.

Phil said...

£25,000 for a Monopoly game? That's far more than any of the properties cost (in the tradtional version at least).

Qenny said...

I love a good game of Monopoly, although it does sometimes lead to marital disharmony - although not nearly as much as Risk!

My mother celebrates her 60th birthday this year, and to commemorate the event, I bought a DIY customised Monopoly set called "Make-Your-Own-Opoly", where you get the chance to rename everything, even the currency. Marvellous.

Diva of Deception said...

Thanks to you commenters for reminding me of both Careers and Buccaneer!

I had a friend who lived around the corner from my grandparents and she and I spent hours playing both those games. I particularly loved the latter - it had all those wonderful jewels and pearls and precious stones as well as beautiful treasure chests. I met up with said friend after x years apart and she was amazed I remember those games.

I didn't get big board games - was eleven before I convinced someone to buy me Monopoly. Instead I got upteen versions of Compendia of games - snakes and ladders, ludo, solitaire, drafts and/or chess! All in one box - made of cheap cardboard (even the draft pieces).. did't make up for the lack of Cluedo!

So it's no surprise to learn that I bought Trivial Pursuit very early on - and no surprise that I have no one to play board games with nowadays as no one likes them!