ABOVE: Based on Robby the Robot from Forbidden Planet, the family of toys in the KO Yoshia Planet Robot were produced from the late 1950s into the 1970s. A variety of detail changes over the years helps collectors today distinguish when the robots were produced. Many of these nuances can be pinpointed from vintage printed materials such as retail and manufacturers catalogs. The T. Eaton Company of Canada in particular was huge fan of these now iconic robots and featured several versions of the Planet Robot in their Christmas Catalogs.

ABOVE LEFT: KO Yoshia Remote Control Planet Robot was featured in Eaton's 1958 Christmas Catalog priced sharply at $1.95. Note metal claws. ABOVE RIGHT: This version of Battery Operated Remote Control Planet Robot by KO Yoshia was featured by Eaton's in their 1958 Christmas Catalog. Robot features include walking action, a spinning light inside the dome, and a beautiful metallic blue finish.

ABOVE: Sophisticated enough to be mistaken for movie set miniatures, this elaborate scene is one of Eaton's 1958 Christmas window displays showcasing military rockets and space toys. Eaton's stores, particularly the downtown Toronto location, were legendary for their elaborate, often mechanized, Christmas windows and displays

ABOVE: This 1950s publicity photo shows a happy family entering Eaton's Toyland in the downtown Toronto store. Punkinhead, Eaton's Christmastime mascot is featured prominently in signage and displays.

ABOVE CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: Charming cover Art from Eaton's 1960 Christmas Parade Coloring book. Riding along with Santa is Punkinhead, the sad little bear, who became a part of Eaton's Christmas scene in 1948. Eaton's famed Christmas Parade in downtown Toronto was one of the largest annual holiday events held in all of North America. RIGHT: The rubber hand mechanical version of the KO Yoshia Planet Robot was smartly priced at $1.29 in the 1960 Eaton's Christmas catalog. LOWER RIGHT: Cover of Eaton's 1960 Christmas Catalog.

ABOVE CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: Modestly priced at $17.74 this soft velveteen dress in choice of red, black, or Cocomos Green meant setting a colorful mood for the holidays had never been easier. Despite the ever increasing emphasis on casual living popularized throughout the 1950s, proper etiquette still often dictated long or short white gloves in 1961. TOP LEFT : Cover of Eaton's 1961 Christmas Catalog .By 1961 the T. Eaton Co had grown from a single Toronto store founded almost a century earlier by immigrant Timothy Eaton to Canada's largest department store group. With over 115 stores and catalog offices located across Canada and the Yukon Territories, Eaton's massive volumes dictated the creation of a network of buying offices located all over the world. Inclusion in the catalog was a recipe for success for any manufacturer as Eaton's catalogs were as omnipresent and heavily relied upon in Canada as Sears catalogs were in the US. CENTER: Metal claw version of the KO Yoshia Planet Robot sold for just $1.28 and was billed as 'Sparky' the Mechanical Robot. Copy hopes to win Mom over with the mention of floor and table friendly rubber rollers. Bottom of feet close up shown at right shows the all-red multi-part assembly and Japan imprint unique to 1960s Planet Robots. For more Planet Robot identification tips see the Spotter's Guide below. Later 1960s through ST vintage toys will have an identical design except with a bright bottom. Any robots with smooth flat red foot bottoms are modern reproductions. LOWER RIGHT: Eaton's promoted using the telephone as the newest trend in modern shopping in the 1961 Christmas Catalog. LOWER LEFT: A metal claw version of the KO Yoshia Action Planet Robot just like this one was featured in Eaton's 1961 Christmas Catalog.

ABOVE: Extreme close up of the ST version of the KO Yoshia Planet Robot shows the High-Wheel Robot style hands introduced in 1964 as well as the distinctive plastic dome only found in late production examples. Handsome and allowing for extra detail not possible with earlier toys, these versions are the easiest to spot as non-repros as no reproduction Planet Robot has ever been issued with a plastic head. TOP RIGHT : ST vintage box features identical artwork to the original robots that had been released over a decade earlier but is printed on glossier stock as opposed to the matte finish texture of early boxes. JTA ST logo on the lower right corner of the box stands for Japanese Toy Association Safety Toy. ABOVE: The Safety Toy Logo. Why does ROBOTapedia mention ST so often? Because knowing about ST can literally save a collector hundreds of dollars! Planet Robots from the 1970s are frequently misrepresented and sold as 1950s and 1960s toys. Knowing that the ST logo and standard went into effect in 1971 can prevent you from substantially overpaying for a vintage Planet Robot. Conversely knowing the details of the ST version, particularly that these robots have a plastic dome, can also prevent you from mistakenly passing up on a fine vintage robot by mistakenly assuming these are repros as many new collectors often tend to assume. Click on the large ST logo above to visit the Japan Toy Association website to learn more.

A: The top view of original KO Yoshia Planet Robots can be identified by the overall smooth surface with no visible tab openings and a stamped in outer ridge around the base. All robots from the very first to the last produced will have this same upper foot design. B: Bottom view of an original KO Yoshia Planet Robot. The bright metal bottom indicates a late 1960s or ST (Safety Toy) production date. Note raised center section, tab arrangement, and recessed spaces for the outer tabs. C: In contrast inexpensive modern reproductions have eliminated the rich texture detail present on the originals. Note the missing outer ridge and the numerous unsightly visible tab openings.  D: The bottom view of a modern reproduction has eliminated nearly all the detail found on the original and has a smooth bottom. E: Early production Planet Robots will have a foot bottom identical to the ST versions except with a painted instead of bright bottom. Again note the raised center section, recessed areas behind the outer tabs, and the JAPAN imprint in the center of the foot.