I’ve spoken previously about my love for Slush Puppie, the fruity flavoured crushed ice drink, so it will come as no surprise that as a child I desperately wanted a Mr. Frosty machine all of my own. Sadly I never did get one, although now I’m older and wiser I can see this was probably a good thing. I’ll explain why in a moment, but first, let me explain what Mr. Frosty was.
Mr. Frosty was a snowman shaped piece of plastic whose sole purpose was to take ice cubes and crunch them up to make slushy ice. The ice cubes were placed into his head, and his hat acted as a plunger to keep the cubes firmly pushed against the ice grating surface inside. Turning a handle on the back of the toy produced the slush, which you could then scoop out of a hole in Mr. Frosty’s stomach.
The set came with some little cup like bowls, some ice lolly moulds, and a little penguin shaped plastic bottle (Percy Penguin, as the TV ad dubbed him) which you put fruit juice into and could then squeeze onto the crushed ice.
So why was this not a Good Thing? It sounds perfect for a Slush Puppie fan, but the catch is it didn’t actually work all that well. Of course, on the TV advert a few ice cubes made enough slush to fill two cups for the kids playing with the toy, but in reality crushing the ice was nearly impossible, even for an adult.
Mr. Frosty is still available today, manufactured by Hasbro, although it seems like he has had a couple of face lifts over the years, as whilst searching for an image to accompany this post I came across at least two alternative designs for the toy. I also came across an alternative branded with Snoopy and Charlie Brown but this seems to share the same ice crushing problem it would appear.