Mars Attacks!

Perhaps you know this from the Ti m Burton film of that name, but I grew up with the cards. I first encountered them in my Halloween stash (which is why I bring it up now). I don’t recall the year, but they started putting these out in 1962. My first one was #23, The FRost Ray. I no longer have that one, but I still have about half the set. Now you can see them all in their glory:

Blood and guts and charred bodies with the bones sticking through. No sex, though! (Card #65 wasn’t even painted until 1988, and not released until 1994)

The movie:

I remember the cards. I never bought them, but a friend had pretty much the entire set, and he showed them to me one day. Gave me some nightmares. :slight_smile:

I never saw the card set, but one of my favorite throwaway gags in the movie was;

<scenes of carnage in Las Vegas, three Martians walk down the strip, one carrying the “Universal” translator machine, another firing his ray gun
AckAck Ack, Ack ACK ACK!
<Translator> Don’t…run…we…are…your…freinds!

I recently posted a link to the cards in the giant bug movies thread ( )

  1. Ok, so our cities are ruins, the seaboards devasted, our population decimated and in hiding, the Martian saucers are invulnerable and can wipe out anything they care to. So how the heck does Earth mount an interplanetary armada?

  2. What’s going on back on Earth while we’re attacking Mars? How does attacking them save us?

  3. Mars was going to blow up anyway. Why did we need to destroy them first?

Ok, that gets logic out of the way, back to our thread.

How about that? This is my first time seeing those cards. I didn’t know that Tim Burton’s Martians were based that closely on a prior source.

Strictly speaking, the card set is Mars Attacks. The film has the slightly more sensational title Mars Attacks!
And my favourite movie bit was the saucer going out of its way to collapse the Washington Monument onto a troop of Boy Scouts.

My favorite images:
The flaming skeleton in the wheelchair racing down the hall kills me.

That and Jack Black’s surrender with the American flag being shown on a magazine cover as a heroic moment of resistance.

Same for me.

Of course, I was only one year old when they were released . . .


Grr… I had a post. But the Martians deleted it.
It was mainly to say yeah- the cards were pretty cool, I learned about them after I picked up two Mars Attack Novels that came out around the time of the movie- and I remember those novels were AWESOMELY violent and filled with tons of sex and violence (nothing that you wouldn’t expect to see in an R rated movie, but still to a kid back then- it was GREAT!).

One of the stories was a group of motorists that band together in a giant mansion to fend off the martian invaders- involving giant mosquitoes, college students, biker babes, and submachine guns.
The other story was apparently about the Martian’s finding the long lost descendant of Genghis Khan in Mongolia and arming him with weapons so that he could conquer mongolia with a new army behind him using ancient weapons mixed with martian technology… And in the end, the New Genghis Khan realizes he no longer wants to be a pawn in the martian’s side and so he takes his giant army (and many courtisans! Can’t forget about the prostitutes!) and decided to try to attack the Martian Invaders who are holed out on the great wall of China in one final glorious “sticking it to the martian overlord” sorta moment.

Man… those books were GREAT fun to read. I kinda wish I could find the rest of them, just see what other crazy plots they came up with to top that (Genghis Khan vs. the Martians on the Great wall of China was pretty damn creative i’ll admit).

Thanks for that. I’ve seen the original run cards before, but not the extras. Not sure I like them as much, the art style is a little off. Although the open-heart surgery one was cool. And the little girl with the ice-cream…

Your links seem to be missing the new style cards from the 1994 re-release.

AS a comic fan, I’ve been aware of Mars Attacks for a long time. I finally got a set back in high school. I also have the quarter size comics. Those were great ‘Brave men, made into human cold cuts!’ and ‘Die Earthans! Die for Mars!’.

For those who don’t know, a homage project called Dinosaurs Attack was made IIRC in the early eighties. In it, an experimental time viewer accidentally brings dinosaurs to present day earth. I have a complete DA set and am very proud.

Geez. I’m with a couple people here - I had no idea these existed!

The movie actually makes some SENSE now.

My brother and I got some for Halloween - maybe 1962, and liked them so much that we haunted the local candy store that sold them until we got the whole set. We had them neatly stored in a card holder you could get from Bazooka gum - until our mother threw them out. :eek:

That’s fine by me – I didn’t like them (and they weren’t part of my childhood memories). I don’t know why the site doesn’t have them – maybe they hated them, too.

I’m sure you can find them if you look.

A quick search of Amazon shows those were the only two books in the series. There weren’t any more.

But now I want to read them!

CalMeacham, thanks for sharing those. I’m another one that didn’t know they existed.

You’re welcome.
I kinda like card #13Watching from Mars. The Martian High Command watches their invasion on their interplanetary HDTV while enjoying a cocktail.

I never had this card.

I collected the cards, until my nun teacher confiscated them. Killjoy.

One of my favorite “I love the internet!” moments was seeing them again online, in all their flaming skeletal glory, after 40 years.

Here’s a similar series from 1988, that I missed out on, being a grownup and all, the Dinosaurs Attack cards:

And here’s a predecessor of the Mars Attacks cards from 1960 – the Civil War News cards. I think I only ever saw one of these. It’s interesting that they have a card for the submarine “Hunley”