The Great Divide: Did Your Parents Buy You A Mr Frosty Machine?

We've got a lot of issues when it comes to the Argos catalogue...

Mr Frosty

by Rhiannon Evans |
Updated on

It’s a big shout, I know, but this article could change your life.

Until this day on earth, July 30, 2020 I believed that Father Christmas (ok, my parents) had wronged me for many years by repeatedly refusing my politely worded letters asking, nay, BEGGING, for a Mr Frosty machine. I don’t remember a lot of things from my childhood (who are those people who can remember things from when they were four?) but this I remember. And it burns deep.

From a shout-out on social media that has almost crashed my Twitter, I know a lot of you out there feel this way too. And I'm so sorry.

Mr Frosty came up because today Argos has stopped producing the Argos catalogue. The 80s and 90s bible for children eagerly awaiting birthdays and Christmas. And when you think about that Argos catalogue, there’s only one guy who springs to mind: Mr Frosty.

The next conversation is usually a shared wail that you NEVER GOT ONE EVEN THOUGH YOU ASKED A MILLION TIMES. Everyone has been searching for the reason millennials are so messed up! Could THIS be the thing? Our early abandonment by Father Christmas and his cronies, mum and dad?

‘Oh god I wanted one so much!’ said Jane, one of many who replied to my Twitter shout-out about Mr Frosty. ‘Asked for one every Christmas and birthday. But my dad told me it was a waste of money and it would be cheaper to get ice out of the freezer and put syrup on it. He didn’t do this either.’ JANE! That is SUCH an 80/90s Dad thing to say. My heart goes out to you.

‘I used to circle it in the Argos catalogue for xmas’, says Trina, who is all of us.

‘I always used to ask for that AND an ear piercing gun AND a horse,’ says Laura. ‘No luck with any of those.’ I’m so sorry Laura.

Mr Frosty is the Fyre Festival of kids' toys and this is the hill I will die on.

Well, if you too are in that position, then I am here to free you of angst. Because, having now done extensive research on Mr Frosty, I’m hearing he ain’t all he was cracked up to be.

Here comes your resolution, after all these years.

‘I was desperate for a Mr Frosty, but then my friend Annette got one and I went to her house & tried it and it was just gloopy sugar water. Mr Frosty is the Fyre Festival of kids' toys and this is the hill I will die on,’ says Gina.

Dispatches from the other side of childhood, a childhood with a Mr Frosty, say the same. ‘My main memory is it not working whatsoever and my Mum spending Xmas morning smashing ice with a hammer,’ says Jaz.

‘I was absolutely desperate for one and got one for Christmas when I was just starting to recover from measles. It broke straight away, making me even more pathetic and sad that day.’ Sorry to hear that Lauren, but it DOES make me feel better.

‘I had one but it was so hard to turn his middle to grind the ice! The plastic handle was rubbish!! You couldn't force it for fear of breaking it! I now have a slush puppy machine and it's electric!’ thank you Layla. If only Amazon reviews existed in 1991, we might’ve all felt better. ‘Honestly it’s much churning effort for the tiniest bit of ice,’ says Deborah. It's kind of you to try and make us feel better, Deborah.

‘Got 1 a few times (they broke easily)’ says Susan, who is just humble-bragging off now tbh. ‘They were cheaply made, what we made In blender looked more like what Mr Frosty was supposed to make.’

Lots of people told me they also got them as adults, because YES, YOU CAN BUY THEM, PRETTY CHEAPLY. We can resolve this problem ourselves! Though as Stuart told me: ‘This year will be my 42nd Christmas & I’m still waiting for a Mr Frosty. Yes I’m an adult now and could afford my own, but that’s not the same as unwrapping it from under the tree, is it?’ No, Stuart. It’s not.

BUT, even now I’ve heard all these stories, I still want one! It’s the dream I can’t quite let go of. Especially now I’ve got it in my head that they would be excellent to make cocktails with...

Anyway, I hope some of you feel better now. As long as you don’t ALSO still hanker after some of the Argos catalogues finer items that you were DENIED. Like the Big Yellow Tea Pot, Barbie Ski Lodge with hot chocolate, Dairy Milk dispensers, Baby All Gone or Dreamphone. Sorry if I’ve reopened some wounds there.

It’s my birthday next month. I can only hope again.

READ MORE: Since 2020 Has Cancelled The Argos Catalogue, Here Are 13 Things We Still Want From The 1999 Edition


Debrief Argos 1999 Catalogue

Argos 1999 Catalogue1 of 14
CREDIT: RetroMash

1. Easy Bake Oven

What says a young girl constrained by the gendering of their sex than a desperate desire to be the sole proprietor of a kitchen tool.

Argos 1999 Catalogue2 of 14
CREDIT: RetroMash

2. Discman

SO high-tech for 1999.

Argos 1999 Catalogue3 of 14
CREDIT: RetroMash

3. The Way Things Worked

You knew you were a cool kid when you had this series before the school library did.

Argos 1999 Catalogue4 of 14
CREDIT: RetroMash

4. Pocahontas Costume

In the woke light of 2017, it's likely that this would be perceived as cultural appropriation :/

Argos 1999 Catalogue5 of 14
CREDIT: RetroMash

5. Mr Frosty Ice Cream Factory

Never trust a child that makes their own ice.

Argos 1999 Catalogue6 of 14
CREDIT: RetroMash

6. Baby Born

On reflection, what was possibly fun about having a doll that constantly needed feeding and then and weed everywhere?

Argos 1999 Catalogue7 of 14
CREDIT: RetroMash

7. CD Stereo

On reflection, it makes sense why our parents wouldn't buy us a portable radio, because really what self-respecting adult can listen to B*Witched blaring at top volume all hours of the day?

Argos 1999 Catalogue8 of 14
CREDIT: RetroMash

6. Themed Bedsheets

Making sleepovers better since 1999.

Argos 1999 Catalogue9 of 14
CREDIT: RetroMash

8. Polly Pocket Mansion

Fact: Polly Pocket had a nicer house than anything available on Help To Buy

Argos 1999 Catalogue10 of 14
CREDIT: RetroMash

9. GameBoy

More advanced than an electronic Disney game, less hardcore than a PlayStation. Otherwise, known as the dream.

Argos 1999 Catalogue11 of 14
CREDIT: RetroMash

10. Cosmetics Collection

It's super creepy for a child to have a bigger make-up collection than me, a 28-year-old beauty editor.

Argos 1999 Catalogue12 of 14
CREDIT: RetroMash

11. Play Till

Who else learnt basic arithmetic on one of these fake tills?

Argos 1999 Catalogue13 of 14

12. Spinning Sindy

Seriously, what was more fun than a doll that could also be used as a weapon?

Argos 1999 Catalogue14 of 14
CREDIT: RetroMash

13. Educational Electronics

When we were young enough to be fooled into thinking that learning could be fun as long as it came with an electronic accessory.

READ MORE: The Argos Garden Furniture Sale Is Our Current Online Shopping Obsession

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