Classic Robots: Bend It Like C-3PO

Vintage robots, -not the modern 'C-3PO' variety but how we envisioned them from decades past is interesting and nostalgic.

Robots: Doing It C-3PO'ld School

I was looking at sites that show robots of today and tomorrow and was shocked to see more than a passing similarity to the Terminator, C-3PO and even the Cybermen of the (new) Doctor Who series. What ever happened to the design attributes of “classic” robots of long ago?

Propaganda Robot

post art

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Album art cover. The poster looks very propaganda-ish like the posters of Communist nations of the 50s, 60s and even a bit later perhaps. Image author cites “…based on Kraftwerk’s song “The Robots.”

I like the simplicity of design of the robot as depicted here.

Old Style Robots

old-style classic robot poster art

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Thist ‘faux cult classic’ poster creation is apparently a gimmick ad for a real company that does internet and online communications for businesses, advocacy organizations, charities, environment & climate change interests, international development, high profile individuals and more. I like the poster for its ‘50s look’ when cult classic comic books were all drawn this way.

It’s Not My Fault. It’s Not Your Fault. –It’s the Asphalt!

a robot toy has been buried in hot asphalt and is not part of a parking lot pavement

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I have heard of ‘gremlins in the works’ and ‘ghosts in the machine’ but can’t say that I’ve ever heard of robots in the roadwork. What is it called when you kill a robot? Cybercide, perhaps?

Graffiti Robot

graffiti robot art on cement brick wall

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Advertencia: Se ha visto a un robot armado y peligroso por las calles. (Warning: We have seen a robot armed and dangerous on the streets.) Always popular and they lend themselves to art since a robot does not have to appear any specific way. It can be depicted ‘humanoid’ or ‘trashcan-like’ and everything in between. And no, -they’re not evil. They’re just programmed that way!


robot images painted on a brick wall

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This graffiti reminds me of a cartoon series from the late 1960s, called “Roger Ramjet.” He was a moral superhero but not too bright. There were frequent references to popular culture of the era, allowing the cartoon to have an appeal to viewers of various age group. The cartoon was not really ‘ha-ha funny’ but more of a commentary on current events, in a ‘space age’ format.

But to the point, there were these recurring ‘evil robot’ things that look an awful lot like these guys. They had a monopole trunk with a single wheel, chassis body over top and antenna and when they spoke they would end each sentence with ‘mm, -buzz-click!’

The voice of Roger Ramjet was none other than Gary Owen, the voice actor of many TV commercials in the 60’s and 70s and probably best known for his role as the announcer in ”Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In,” which ran on NBC from January 22, 1968 to May 22, 1973.

Robby the Robot as Art Nouveau

Robby the Robot modern wind-up toy

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Robby the Robot has to be my favorite subject. Ever since I first saw him in the 1956 science fiction movie “Forbidden Planet” I was hooked. Despite the general humanoid appearance, the dimensions were inconsistent with “people’ which made sense, as Robbie was created from blueprints of an extinct alien race on the planet that Dr. Morbius inhabited. Presumably therefore, he was designed to their particular body attributes.

I have seen these particular neo-classic wind-up toys in specialty shops here in the city. I could become a collector of such things if I ever started.

Architectural Automatica

house with windows that look like a robot face…and… house with air ducts positoned that resemble a sad robot face

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A house in Berlin (left,) and the on the right, not identified but I think it is in Italy from the comments posted on Flickr. Facial recognition still occurs, even if the face recognized is that of a mechanical construct, of a robot.

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M 5446
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Posted on Apr 26, 2010