The Tyco Tantrum is a radio controlled toy released onto the American market and other markets across the globe in 1997.
Who is to blame for this?
The concept for the Tantrum was created by an independent designer by the name of Jonathan A. Jaffe of Voorhees, New Jersey who had worked for Tyco previously on several popular models including:
In the case of the Tantrum it was solely his fault, I mean it was entirely his design, it was’nt shared with other inventors, or maybe the others just did’nt want their names on the patent.
So Jonathan approached Tyco with the concept, who promptly did what Tyco always would do in the 80s/90s – farmed off the design and manufacture to Taiyo RC in Japan.
We can only imagine the faces of the Japanese team when they opened their mailbox and pulled out the design brief for this demented gimmick.
Can you imagine how EPIC that collective Japanese ‘WTF!?’ would have been? I can hear it now…
Features and Performance
Initially released in Japan as the Taiyo Spin Tornado, the idea was to have the whole front axle connected to a motor like a propeller which would spin around so long as you held down the button on the remote.
This would have the ingenious effect of doing absolutely nothing except making you immediately lose control. The marketing department called this “Cyclone Steering”. Brilliant!
So long as you consider a toy repeatedly smashing itself into the ground in a vain attempt to end the pain, while making horrible rattling crackling plasticy-breaky noises a “stunt” then I guess it all makes sense.
I’d love to hear from anyone who actually had one. Was it a total mess, or was it fun to drive? Just checkout this YouTube video of it in action, and it seems like total chaos.
Still – there are SO MANY of these for sale right now, 25 years later, that they must have sold buckets of these things back in 1997-98. Why??
Advertising. That’s why. Tyco was exceptional at it.
There must be some people out there with a certain nostalgia for the Tantrum – or maybe just the bitter taste of disappointment burned into their memory from Christmas morning- if you are one of those people, we’d love to hear from you!
Leave a comment below, and tell us why you love the Tantrum, or what good/bad memories you have of this absurdity.
And if you wish to buy one – well, that won’t be a problem. There’s dozens of the things.