Film & TV


1950s Vintage Era PEZ

These dispensers speak for themselves. Be sure to visit  Anatomy Circus for more about stem variations and early character heads. Shown at top are a vintage regular and full-body Santa that predate the character heads, followed by classic late 1950s holiday dispensers, the first licensed characters, and the Cocoa Marsh drink mix premium.

1960s Classic Dispensers

Most of these are easily recognizable. The top row features four of the five die-cut dispensers that were made. Notice the various hand-painted features on some, and the simplicity of die-cut faces on others. Frankenstein is part of a trio of Universal Monsters I hope to one day own. Zorro was a promotional piece for the Walt Disney production of the same name.


My vintage dispensers are listed by the year they were first produced, though some may have been issued over a period of years. For example, Donald Duck (A-E) and Fat-Eared Bunny variations were produced well into the 1980s. My Donalds include a rare DBP (Deutsches Bundes Patent), and a translucent blue stem variation. Also of note is Mickey Mouse with a DBP "Made in Yugoslavia" stem.

1970s Era Vintage

As you can see by the number of dispensers, the 1970s was a banner decade for new releases and updates - and my collection is just a portion of the many different sets that were released.


From holiday dispensers, to licensed characters, to Pezpals, there is a lot to be found, and a lot of variations as well. Many of the well-known characters shown here will be featured in upcoming galleries with their later releases, including many of the superheroes shown. Some of my favorites are the Circus and other animal variations that were made during this decade.


As you browse the 1970s galleries - and the variations photos in particular - note the use of small parts on some dispensers, as well as the hand-painted details that were applied by homeworkers. The term "removable" refers to any part that could be removed with a little effort, and of course these would eventually be replaced by dispensers with solid molded or painted details. Needless to say, finding an older dispenser with all its small parts still intact can be part of the challenge of collecting.

1980s Vintage PEZ

As detailed on the Anatomy Circus page, the late 1980s marks the end of the vintage era with the introduction of "footed" dispensers.


Hence, it's not uncommon to find both non-footed and footed releases of the same character. Still, collectors regard the non-footed counter-part as definitively "vintage," though clearly there are also collectible dispensers with feet,  including the 1980s and well into the next two decades.


One interesting footnote is that the 1980s also showed a significant slow down in the number of releases, compared to the previous decade.


The Merry Music Makers - or whistles - show here on the third row, will be featured in an upcoming gallery of that series that includes several more "footed" releases.

All images, graphics, and photos copyright ©2012 by Gregory S Paxton. PEZ ® is a registered trademark of PEZ Candy Inc. This site and its contents are not affiliated with PEZ candy Inc.