The Upsy Downsy Land of the Upsy Downsys

It was 1969, and all across the country a counterculture revolution was in full swing; hippie culture had gone mainstream, the East Coast had Woodstock and the West Coast the Altamont Free Concert, and it seemed that people everywhere were heeding the words of Timothy Leary – “turn on, tune in, drop out” – even the people at the Mattel toy company.

This was the year of Upsy Downsy, one of the more bizarre toy concepts I have ever heard of.  Upsys and Downsys were races of strange beings that lived in harmony together, only the former lived rightstide-up, and the latter upside-down.  A few weird references there, but just wait …

… let’s look a little deeper into this one.  According to Welcome to Upsy Downsy Land, the book that explains the “Happidiculous World” of these two races, the Upsys and Downsys were once just flowers living in a fuzzy dandelions world.  But one day a sentient wind called The Great Huff passed by.  When his nose was tickled by all of the pesky flowers he blew them away in a fit of annoyance.  However, as the dandelions fell back to earth, some of them fell through a rainbow which magically transformed them into rightside-up beings known as Upsys; others passed through a storm cloud, and became upside-down creatures called Downsys. Luckily, though, despite each race being the others’ polar opposite, they all got along famously and developed their own little civilization, “Upsy Downsy Land.” While there were many inhabitants of the great land, some of my favorite are Pudgy Fudgy, the Upsy eat-too-mucher with her Piggybus, and Tickle Pinkle, the Upsy beauty who drove a Bugabout Car was her Upsy neighbor; and also Mother What Now, the Downsy frazzled mom with her Go-Getter Car, and Miss Information, the Downsy opposite directions teller and her Miss Information Booth. Hmmmmmm … doesn’t seem quite right, does it?!

The Upsy Downsys revolution included toys, playsets, storybooks, and even coloring books, but Upsy Downsy Land only lasted for a year.  Can you ever imagine why?!

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6 thoughts on “The Upsy Downsy Land of the Upsy Downsys

  1. I have an original copy of the storybook Welcome to Upsy Downsy Land. Could you give me an approximate dollar value on it? Thanks Maggie

    • Hi Maggie, lucky you! Those books look pretty amazing. I’m not really sure what the value would be, I’m more of an appreciator than buyer. But maybe someone else will chime into the conversation with more info.

  2. I had the whole collection of these dolls and one day I came home from school and my mom had given them away to the Salvation Army. I have been searching for these for years. Where can I buy them? Are there collectors selling them?

    • I honestly have no idea, but I would be forever bummed if my mom had gotten rid of my collection too! Good luck tracking some down. They’ve got to come up on eBay every now and then!

    • I still have all my “dolls” the boards, connector bridges & accessories. Just moved and they are in storage. Also have some of the boxes, not in best shape, but still.

  3. Hi Maggie,

    Wondering if you would be interested ing selling your copy of Welcome to Upsy Downsy Land? What would be your asking price. It is just for me, not for re sale : )

    Thanks,
    Janet

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