MMM Knock-offs

Leadworks Astronauts

Whether through coincidence or circumstance, there are many items that look like part of the Major Matt Mason toy line. This includes printed materials, toys and collateral items that were either copied ("Knock-offs) or actually inspired Mattel into producing our favorite space toy. You'll find below a listing of items as they become available. Many of the images were scabbed from eBay ads, so the image quality may be sub-par. I've indicated contributors of the information where appropriate.

Note that I believe there's a difference between a Knock-off and a Fake. Knock-offs tend to resemble something but otherwise the producer doesn't market the items as being made by the original producer. Fakes are typically intentional reproductions that are created to fool the consumer into paying collector prices. There's also room for Reproductions that are sold as such, usually to fill holes in parts availability - I think those are worthwhile as long as they are identified as reproduction and not original.

Life Magazine, April 27, 1962

The cover of this issue of Life features the bell-like moon suit that Mattel copied for the MMM Moon Suit accessory. The cover story is "Man's Journey to the Moon" and some of the interior stories follow this theme. For more information, I've got much more information on my Moonsuit page.


Matt on Sled Cake Topper

This knock-off appeared sometime in the 70's. You'll usually find it with "Galactic Warrior" glued to the front. Packaged variants can include a moon rocket and a couple of astronauts.


Major Matt Mason "Micro-Machines"

There were several variations of the "micro" astronaut set released during the 60s and 70s. Included is the Imperial Apollo Exploration Set that borrowed several MMM equipment designs for a "micro" line of toys.


Space Mobile 27 from the 1968 Sears Christmas Wishbook

I remember coveting this toy because I thought it was a Matt Mason accessory when I was a kid. The Space Mobile was on the same page with Matt and his cohorts and the driver looked a lot like he belonged to the group.


Asakusa Space Scooters

There are several plastic toys produced by Asakusa of Japan that feature a MMM-like figure.


Operation Astronaut

Who wouldn't want a larger MMM figure that allowed it to play with your GI Joes? Complete with Jet Propulsion Pak and Space Sled!


Mini Reconojet

Quite a bit of controversy when this thing was discovered in the old MMM LISTSERV. This Reconojet is about 75% of the size of the Mattel version and has wheels.


Marx Colonel 'Hap' Hazard

You'll often see this figure included with a lot of vintage MMM figures. It's a bit primitive, made of PET with limited articulation, but does include several accessories.


Mexico Callisto

Based on the same Hap Hazard mold (above) only with a Callisto head, molded as a single piece of plastic. Several variations exist, some come with helmets!


Leadworks Astronauts

These Major Matt Mason knock-offs began appearing late in 2000. There was quite a stir as to the origin of these obvious MMM rip-offs. On casual inspection, they appear to have been struck from the same mold. Close inspection reveals that the hands are a new mold, and that small injection holes have been added. Also, the wire armature seems to be completely different. 

Four Astronauts by LP

An odd example of appropriation, this time from Mattel packaging.



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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