MMM Three-Dimensional Postcards

During the 60's there was a lot of interest in the Space Race and companies that produced paper items were quick to jump on the bandwagon. Note that in the examples below, there's quite a few variations in size and some appeared to have been sold framed.

W. C. Jones Publishing Co.

In 1966 the W. C. Jones Publishing Co produced some 3-D lenticular postcards that are often referred to as the Major Matt Mason postcards. Although there is an uncanny resemblance and the timing was right, these postcards were never licensed, nor does the name MMM or Mattel appear anywhere on them. I believe the similarity is coincidental.  I believe there were four different scenes produced but only two of them have figures with MMM-style suits.

There were two cards in particular offered by W.C. Jones that are often called MMM cards:

Walk in Space Postcard

This postcard features a space-suited figure with a "3" on the helmet space walking while holding a "ray gun." The suit is similar to the Major's - also seems many MMM kid-owners had the card so easy to explain why this one is associated.


Plant that Flag Postcard

This postcard shows a space-suited figure planting the Stars and Stripes on the moon's surface while a LEM watches on from the background.


W.C. Jones Small Card Back

The smaller, postcard-sized images have this on the back - the larger images have the address info at the bottom of one corner.

Other Card-Producing Companies

Listed in no particular order are various 3D cards produced by a variety of companies. Note that most of these use figures that aren't MMM, mostly GI Joes in Space Suits with small modifications, or the Mercury "Walk in Space" model kit produced by Revell.

Funoptics 3-D Puzzle featuring Sgt. Storm

This item is basically a 3-D card that's been cut into puzzle pieces. Sgt. Storm is riding a Space Sled and wearing a Jet Propulsion Pak in the foreground. Neat, huh? Image sent to me by long time MMM fan and collector Larry Chinn.


Australian GI Joe & MMM Card

This postcard from Australia was posted to the old MMM Listserv by Alec Peters (for another member). Notice that the foreground figure is a GI Joe in a two-zippered astronaut suit holding a flame thrower as a weapon. He's also wearing a Captain Action Flash Gordon belt/holster and gun. Major Matt Mason is in the background waving from the LM.

Other Cards

The remainder of these cards utilize images created with GI Joes or the Revell Mercury Astronaut kit. I've included them as they're often found in vintage card collections from the same era - they are also often called Major Matt Mason cards - age does that to people.

GI Joes

All of these 3D postcards use GI Joes, often with modified suits to make them more realistic - they also often have interesting backdrops or accessories.

GI Joe Filming on the Moon

This card was produced in Japan and distributed by Asahi Trading Co., NY during the late 60's. Once again, GI Joes in astronaut suits were used. Notice the black painted straps, the repainted helmets/visors, the air tanks and the movie camera (it looks like it's made of cardboard!). Somewhat interesting scene - I'm not sure if the movie camera was made using a modified GI Joe accessory for the tripod? In any case from the closeup you can tell it's GI Joe. Image sent to me by long time MMM fan and collector Larry Chinn.

GI Joe Planting a Flag on the Moon

Another card produced in Japan and distributed by Asahi Trading Co., NY during the late 60's. Part of the same series as the card above. Notice the weird Ascent Module on the LM. Sent to me by Larry Chinn.

Revell Model Kits

These 3D postcards feature Revell kits from the era, especially the Mercury Walk In Space Astronaut.

Revell Walk in Space above the Moon

Pretty much the stock kit missing the partial Mercury Capsule used as the base - the Mmoon and a blurry Earth in the background


Gemini Astronauts on the Moon Button

This button was produced by Pictorial Productions Inc. using Vari-View processing. Upon closer examination, the two astronauts are actually Revel Gemini Astronaut kits holding a flag, standing against a moon/earth backdrop. The propulsion units are moulded in so I guess they left them in for the shot. Funny that the flag is "waving" in that terrific lunar wind! Here's a detailed shot.

Let's Separate those modules!

This card's image was sent to me by Jim Lancaster who writes:

"Just wanted to let you know that I have three such 3-D postcards I bought when I went on a field trip to NASA at the Cape as a boy of 7th grade.

One card was like the one you had of the floating space man. One was of the separation of the Lunar Module from the Command Module. One was of two astronauts walking in a lunar hill scene with the Lunar Module in the background."

This card is the second that he mentions. The other two are above. Thanks Jim!

All Mattel images and captions are copyright Mattel and used without permission. All other content, including images and editorial, is Copyright © 1997-2024 John Eaton and/or contributors unless otherwise stated. If there are any comments or objections, please contact John Eaton

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