Name of Toy Line: Space Creatures
Production Company: Diener Industries, Inc. a division of WinCraft Inc.
Distributor: McDonalds | Diener Industries, Inc.
Years of Production: 1979/80 - Present?
Countries/Regions Available: U.S.
Figure Trade Markings: (C) DIENER IND
Approximate # of Figures: 40+
Details: Somewhere in around 1979-1980, McDonalds teamed up with Diener Industries to release a series of Diener toy figures with their Happy Meals.
There were Jungle Creatures,
But most importantly, there were SPACE CREATURES!
According to this insightful and fetching entry at the Neato Coolville blog, there were eight unique sculpts included in the McDonalds Happy Meal Space Creatures release; They came in five original colors: brown, blue, yellow, green, and orange. Furthermore, after the McDonalds Happy Meal release, there was a retail release of the same 8 Space Creatures sculpts which saw them sold on blister cards in pairs -- each pair of figures was apparently a "series." They were marketed as erasers and thus were made of soft eraser material.
The retail eraser figures also seem to have been released in new colors, as the light purple figure featured above image is an example of one of these eraser-version figures. (An example of carded Space Creatures can be seen at the Neato Coolville entry.)
As you can see, Diener Industries really had the creative juices flowing when they named these characters... (Crickets Chirping) Each of the 8 characters was based on a creature from pop culture.
These sculpts can now be found in a number of different colors and at least 3 types of plastic, comparatively soft (retail release), medium (Happy Meal release), and hard (more recent incarnations).
Here's a look at images of Happy Meal boxes and figures "borrowed" from an eBay auction. The seller identified the boxes as those sold with the Space Creatures.
A special thanks goes to Neato Coolville for information and images of the Space Creatures card that were used in this entry!
Tree Trunk Monster by Scumdogg
Related Web Sites:
Diener Space Creatures @ Neato Coolville
Diener erasers @ WinCraft School