Founded in the early 1950s, Burger King would become a strong adversary against the mighty McDonald’s. Despite the new health craze, Burger King remains a popular choice. Nowadays, the fast food restaurant has over 15,000 locations worldwide. The company is worth in the billions with over 34,000 employees. Yeah, fast food might not be as popular, but Burger King continues to bring home the big bucks.
In order to engage a younger demographic, Burger King launched the Kids Meals. Today, it is now referred to as King Junior Meals. The menu items are pretty basic consisting of a regular hamburger, cheeseburger, nuggets, some sweets and some fun drinks. However, food aside, the real kicker is the toys that come with the meal.
Over the years, we’ve seen the good and the bad. In this article that’s exactly what we’ll do, featuring examples of toys that clearly outshined the Happy Meal toys and those that clearly didn’t... not even close. It is interesting to note that on the bad side of things, the ideas weren’t all that bad and in fact, really intelligent. It was the execution that made these toys into forgettable items.
Enjoy the article folks as we take a look at some of the most iconic Burger King toys along with those that failed to hit the mark. Enjoy the article and like always be sure to share it with a friend. Let’s get started!
20 Great - Pokemon 23k Gold Playing Cards
Back in the 90s, Pokemon became a sensation. To this day, it continues on with lots of success, grossing in over $70 billion. Although the games and toys were a big hit, it was the cards that had the children abuzz. To date, Pokemon has sold over 25 billion playing cards!
McDonald’s was all about hopping on board when it came to trends. However, in this particular case Burger King beat them to it. The gold playing cards became one of the most popular Kids Meal items of all-time. Not only that, but they still hold a decent value.
19 Bad - WWE Soft Toys
Putting WWE toys as a part of the Kids Meal isn’t a bad idea. WWE has a strong fan base with hardcore fans of all ages. The only elephant in the room was the way the plush toys looked. The set came with three WWE characters, John Cena, The Undertaker and Triple H. Each looked worse than the other in terms of actual resemblance. Wrestling fans scoffed at these toys and for that reason, they didn’t do well at all.
Perhaps had the product came out with a better look, maybe it could have sold. Giving The Undertaker the look of a trailer park character just doesn’t cut it!
18 Great - NFL Miniature Jerseys
Wisely, Burger King also partnered with the NFL. Unlike other fast food locations that usually resort to playing cards, Burger King took a wise route issuing mini jerseys. The outcome was a strong one with 30 collectible team jerseys.
These days, they have a really good resale value. On eBay, the entire set can be purchased for over $100, which is a pretty good profit for these items. Surprisingly, Burger King was limited when it came to sports related items despite the success of the mini NFL jerseys.
17 Great - The Simpsons Movie Toy Set
Wisely, Burger King went The Simpsons route a couple of times in their history. It first started with a couple of Kids Meal toys back in the early 90s. Due to the growing fame and the move coming out, Burger King re-launched a new release with over 15 Simpsons characters.
The set was a massive success. Consumers ate these toys up. Nowadays, they also have a decent worth of $50 for the set. Once the show finally comes to an end, we can expect the value to skyrocket that much higher, likely doubling.
16 Bad - Backstreet Boys Crusaders Toys
We’re not entirely sure what the thought process was here. However, Burger King figured it might be a good idea to feature a set of Backstreet Boys toys. As if that wasn’t bad enough, the fast food restaurant put a spin on the toys giving the band members their own super hero costumes. McDonald’s might laugh at that but they’re no better either, releasing Idol toys in the past.
Needless to say, both the Idol toys from McDonald’s and Backstreet Boys toys from Burger King never returned - meaning not only did they look bad but they sold worse.
15 Great - Toy Story Toy Set
Similar to McDonald’s, Burger King partnered with multiple movies for its Kids Meal toys. One of the great success stories has to be Toy Story. Back in 1995 when the film released, it gathered in some huge numbers bringing in $373 million. Back then, it was the highest grossing film opening.
Burger King capitalized on the success. So much so that they issued new toys just a year later once again in 1996. The toys have a great value of over $50 per collection. With the new movie set for a release soon, the value might increase.
14 Great - Universal Monsters Toy Set
When it comes to Halloween themed toys, fast food restaurants are usually a hit or miss. McDonald’s definitely missed the mark a couple of times. A Ronald McDonald mask along with a lame Halloween bucket isn’t necessarily every kid’s dream.
Burger King might have done it better with the introduction of their Universal Monsters toys, promoting the Universal film. With characters like Frankenstein and various others, the spooky toys became a big hit. They also have a decent worth on platform such as eBay, valued at $50 for the set.
13 Bad - Twilight Eclipse
It wasn’t that going after the Twilight crowd was a bad idea. It's just that the items Burger King released really didn’t have much appeal. Instead of issuing toys of the film, Burger King went another route, releasing wrist bands, key chains, rings, bracelets, wallets and trading cards.
The gifts were truly bizarre and in truth, we wouldn’t take a lot of those for free. The items are hardly resalable today. A complete set usually hovers under $10, which isn’t very good in the slightest.
12 Great - Beauty & The Beast 4-Toy Collectables
Even in 2017, Beauty and the Beast continued to trend as the film was released with real-life characters. The film brought in over $1.2 billion which speaks volumes to its popularity after all these years.
Way back in 1991, Burger King was ahead of the game making these collector’s items. The set came with four of the main characters. The collection was a popular one – enthusiasts call these toys among the top ever created. It also helped Burger King finally rival McDonald’s in terms of toy quality.
11 Bad - Pokemon Toys
Adding to the Pokemon collection, Burger King wisely decided to issue out toys. Now you might be wondering given the success of the toys, why do they land on this side of the article?
Well, for those that might recall, thanks to the Consumer Safety Commission, a huge recall was placed on the toys - they were deemed as dangerous, mainly because of suffocation hazards. It resulted in a hazardous product and one of the biggest and most expensive recalls in history. Ouch!
10 Great - Scooby-Doo Glow-In-The-Dark Set
Scooby-Doo also had lots of success. Burger King decided to put a cool glow in the dark spin to the toys back in 2000. A set of six, these toys became quite popular and among the very best given the unique glow in the dark aspect.
The success shows in the resale value as the set of six has a worth over $50. That’s really good given the simplicity of the toy. It was a wise decision for Burger King to partner with another popular animated franchise.
9 Great - Star Wars Toy Set
Both McDonald’s and Burger King took a shot with the Star Wars franchise. Results varied between the two. McDonald’s issued Clone Wars toys that weren’t well received at all. In fact, they’re often featured on the wrong side of the list. These toys have no resale value and are poorly made.
Burger King on the other hand had some significant success with the Episode III set. The collection was a fun one with 31 collectables in all. The set has a decent value of over $30 according to Ranker.
8 Bad - Furby
We’ve seen examples of this time and time again. One company tries to copy the success of another, rival company. Furby toys became a huge hit and McDonald’s expanded on that by releasing their own toys. It became one of the most popular Happy Meal toys of all time, arguably just behind the Beanie Babies.
Given the success, Burger King tried to follow that path by releasing their very own Furby collection in 2005. The only problem was, the Furby craze had ended and the design wasn’t as good compared to what McDonald’s released. It turned to be a major flop with a lackluster resale value.
7 Great - SpongeBob Collection
The highest rated series ever on Nickelodeon, the franchise has made a couple of bucks since its existence, netting over $13 billion.
Burger King decided to join in on the fun at the right time for this one, unlike the Furby toys we recently mentioned. With the launch of the SpongeBob movie, Burger King released a set of toys that became highly successful. So much so, that in 2018 they’re still remaking the toys. They were included in the Kids Meals just a couple of months back. The movie set has a value of over $50.
6 Bad - Spider-Man 3 Toys
You know the toys are bad when YouTubers refer to the collection released a decade prior superior to the new release.
That was the case with these lackluster Spider-Man III toys. Although the idea of a Spider-Man collection isn’t a bad one, the toys certainly were. They were not only limited but they also kind of resembled bobble heads. What kind of kid wants a bobble head Spider-Man toy? That just proves that no matter how good the concept is, the toy must deliver in terms of design. Burger King learned that the hard way with this toy.
5 Great - Rugrats Tree House Toy Set
Rugrats became a major hit during the mid-90s. The cartoon series had a great run of 13 years putting out 170 episodes. The show’s success is still felt to this day. Just this last summer, it was announced that the show is set to make a return for 26 more episodes along with a film release in November of 2020.
It was a wise move by Burger King to release these toys with a special tree house theme. A set of eight toys, Burger King had great success with these Kids Meal collectables.
4 Bad - Teletubbies
The Teletubbies franchise started in 1997. By October of 2000, the television series had already generated over $1 billion in merchandise. For that reason, how can anyone blame Burger King for launching these toys back in 1999, at that point, this was the peek height of the Teletubbies heat.
Unfortunately for Burger King, despite the entertaining commercials, the toy really didn’t sell all that well and instead it is remembered as a total dud. The set of six came with all the different colored characters along with two other toys.
3 Great - Beetlejuice Toys
Back in the late 80s, Bettlejuice was quite the hit and it is now forever regarded as one of the best comedy/horror films of all-time.
Burger King tried to capitalize on the success by launching some pretty cool Beetlejuice toys in the early 90s. For fans of the film, this set is an absolute must. Despite the fact that the toys were made in the early 90s, they still look pretty darn good. We’d take this item over some of McDonald’s Halloween toys....
2 Bad - Mr. Potato Head Toys
Let’s give Burger King some credit, they definitely one upped McDonald’s in terms of the design of these toys. Happy Meal released the toys for the first time in 1990. Burger King would do the same almost a decade later.
Even the commercial in the late 90s was pretty darn clever. Nonetheless, the toys land on the dud list – released in 1998 as a set of five, these toys just missed the mark in terms of interest. Not even the witty commercial could have helped the sales. Not much of a surprise, Burger King wouldn’t release these toys again.
1 Great Toy - Little Mermaid Collector Series Glass
Who would have thought that a collector series glass would be one of the most valuable Kids Meal toys of all-time? Back in 1994, Burger King issued a Disney glass collection. To this day, the complete set of eight can still be purchased.
It might be worth it for the Little Mermaid glass alone. According to Ranker, the glass has a worth of over $110. The commemorative glass along with the other glasses in the set are selling for a little lower than that online. It might be worth the purchase!