Garbage Pail Kids

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Typical Garbage Pail Kids sticker card.
“They're in poor taste and have no redeeming value.”

Garbage Pail Kids is a series of sticker trading cards produced by the Topps Company, originally released in 1985 and designed to parody the Cabbage Patch Kid dolls which were popular at the time. Each sticker card features a child exhibiting some form of abnormality, deformity, and/or suffering a lulzy fate. To maximize profit two versions of each card were produced, with variations featuring the same artwork but a different character name denoted by an A or B lettered number. Many of the card backs feature puzzle pieces that form giant murals while other flip-side subjects vary greatly among the series, from licenses and awards to comic strips and, in more recent releases, Facebook profiles.

I think humor—especially satire—generally makes gatekeeper-type adults very, very nervous


Mark Newgarden, Co-creator Of GPK

The series was devised by Topps consultant / Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Art Spiegelman and Mark Newgarden who worked together as the editors & art directors of the project, Len Brown acted as manager, and the first run of the cards was drawn exclusively by artist John Pound. Following the initial success of the cards, several additional artists and writers were brought in to contribute, including Jay Lynch, Tom Bunk, and James Warhola, among others.


During the height of the card series' popularity, Garbage Pail Kids were IRL banned by many academic establishments, with some even gaining the support of local retailers who opted not to stock the product in support of the draconian faculty edict. One of the main reasons for this prohibition was educators citing them [citation needed] as persistent distractions during class... still, at least they weren't coming through the door throwing smoke and trying to shoot everybody in the room with an AR-15 on a bump-trigger every few months, amirite teach?

lol b&
Some of the pictures on the front of the cards are objectionable but it's the licenses on the back which have me concerned...


— Principal Dr. Charles Gersna

The company is doing nothing illegal but it is certainly immoral. I believe these cards have overstepped the line of decency.


— Elaine Smith, teacher

When we heard the company was coming out with a third edition we decided to take a stand and are not selling them. We decided we did not want to do anything that would undermine what the teachers were trying to teach the children.


— Barbara Brinsky, pharmacy store clerk

Cheater's License Stupid Student Award Juvenile Delinquency Award
Know-It-All License Right To Be Nasty Award Bad Taste Award

Licensed to Ill?

A selection of the offending licenses & awards.

CBS News Report • 1986

TIL • Trademark Infringement Lolsuits

Cabbage Patch Kids
Original GPK branding, pre-lolsuit.

Topps were jewed by the makers of Cabbage Patch Kids for trademark infringement. As part of the out-of-court settlement Topps modified the appearance of the Garbage Pail Kids to remove the resemblance between brands & tweaked their logo. Production of the cards themselves continued, but by 1988 sales had bottomed out and a planned 16th series was never produced.

Newspaper reports on the court case.

Fast-forward a few years to October 2017 and Topps took it upon themself to sue some sneaky beaner named Luis Diaz, a former employee and GPK artist, after he quit over licensing issues and had the audacity to knock-off their knock-off with a line of “Gravage Parody Kids”. Mr Diaz subsequently proceeded to utilize his aforementioned native Hispanic cunning and responded by issuing counterclaims alleging:

  1. Topps' intellectual property (IP) for Garbage Pail Kids is not enforceable and
  2. that certain Garbage Pail Kids cards infringe Diaz's own copyrights.

Holy coincidence Batman!

Diaz obviously needs to be able to clearly show that;

  1. Topps had access to his works,
  2. that Topps copied protectable elements of his works, and
  3. that his works are registered at the Copyright Office.

His filed counterclaims reportedly state that he can. The case continues...

GPK • The Movie

In 1987, a live-action film based on the card characters was released. Its shitty production made it both a critical and commercial flop, opening poorly in 374 theaters with initial receipts of $661,512 and total gross receipts of $1,576,615, barely making back its 1 million dollar budget. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds a 0% critic rating and 35% 27% audience rating. It is widely considered to be one of the worst films ever made.

The Garbage Pail Kids Movie (1987) • Trailer
The Garbage Pail Kids Movie (1987) • Opening Credits
The GPK Movie Soundtrack • “You Can Be a Garbage Pail Kid”
Nostalgia Critic's review of the movie

GPK IRL B& 2: Electric Boogaloo

Typical GPK Movie review.

The American television-network CBS commissioned an entire season of GPK cartoons, and heavily promoted it in the run-up to their 1987-88 season. However, it was abruptly pulled a few days before its debut, and was replaced with an extra half hour of Muppet Babies, which was expanded to 90 minutes in order to fill the slot after Garbage Pail Kids was pulled from the schedule.

CBS removed the series from their schedule, following protests from Action for Children's Television, the National Coalition on Television Violence, and the Christian Leaders for Responsible Television (a part of the American Family Association). The reasons given were that the series ridiculed the handicapped and glorified violence, along with the common issue eventually rectified by the Children's Television Act that the program was effectively program-length ads for the toys and cards of the Garbage Pail Kids franchise.

Some advertisers, such as Nabisco, McDonald's and Crayola also pulled out, either due to pressure from interest groups, or because they were unable to pre-screen the series from advanced tapes.

Despite never airing in the United States, it did air in several other countries, including Spain, Brazil, Portugal, Trinidad and Tobago, the United Kingdom, Iceland, Israel, Italy and the Philippines.

Garbage Pail Kids Cartoon • Episode #1
Garbage Pail Kids Cartoon • Episode #2

30 Years Of Garbage: The Garbage Pail Kids Story

30 Years Of Garbage is a documentary detailing the rise and fall of the GPK line in the 1980s but more amusingly it's two hours of the creators whining about the protracted legal aggravation they and Topps were forced to go through because their product resembled, just a smidgen too closely, a shitty little mongoloid-looking kid's doll.

The fans of the series are also featured; some preaching a little too left handedly that GPK were embraced by children because they were the first product that showed them the true idiocy of major corporations and attempted to take them down a peg — others more au fait with juvenile cognitive processes go on to explain that they were popular with kids because they were funny and gross.

The documentary serves as a stark warning that if children love something but parents hate it enough, parents will utilise any and all means at their disposal to have it banned.

30 Years of Garbage: The Garbage Pail Kids Story • Trailer

GPK R34?

Of course, it goes without saying that only a sick fuck like John K or Tom Wysom would want to see actual Garbage Pail Kids getting diddled; happily for any onanistically inclined fans of the product not looking to open themselves up to a period of extended penal servitude, Powersville Inc. have released a series of GPK themed spank tapes that are 100% street-legal... albeit pretty fucking weak.

Garbage Pail Girls • Selections from the Trashy Trilogy

Garbage Pail Girls 1 - Scene 2 • Dirty Harry & Patricia Petite ⚤ - Pornhub
Garbage Pail Girls #2 - Scene 1 • Rick Masters & Tory Lane ⚤ - Pornhub
Garbage Pail Girls #3 - Scene 4 • Jay Ashley & Naudia Nyce ⚤ - Pornhub

Meet the Kids

Garbage Pail Pics About missing Pics
[Collapse GalleryExpand Gallery]

See also

Adam Bomb

External links

IMDB-favicon.png The Garbage Pail Kids Movie
IMDB-favicon.png Garbage Pail Kids (TV Series)


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Featured article August 24 & 25, 2018
Preceded by
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