Friday, September 3, 2021

How I ruined my shot at getting a Sewer Lair in 1989!

Recently while scrolling through my Twitter feed, I came across an old toy ad similar to the one above. The post asked "Which Toy Would You Want From This Ad?" and my immediate reaction was the Sewer Lair! We all know how AWESOME the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Sewer Playset was when it was released in 1989 by Playmates toys. It was on the wishlist of every turtle fan that year and for many years beyond that. I mean, who could resist this beautifully crafted playset that featured a High-Voltage Battle Swing, Real Working Elevator, Fire Hydrant Sewerscope and Realistic Sewer Pipe Passageways? I know it was on my list and my Mom knew this and that's where our story begins.
In 1989 I was about 8 years old and I don't like to admit it, but I had a thumb sucking problem! My Mom tried everything to get me to stop, but I kept on going. I would snuggle up with the Smurfs blanket my Mom made me and suck my thumb quite often. It was a real comfort thing for me and no matter what my Mom tried, I would not stop.
After exhausting all other possibilities, my Mom made a deal with me. If I could go one month without sucking my thumb, she would buy me the TMNT Sewer Lair! I was excited and totally determined to do this. I wanted that Sewer Lair so bad! Myself and my brother were and still are, huge Turtle fans and had all the figures and some of the vehicles, but we never in our wildest dreams thought we would have the opportunity to add this grail item to our collection!
For a while I was doing pretty godd, but then the draw of the thumb crept in and I would sneak around the house and find some hiding spots where my Mom wouldn't see me and suck my thumb. I thought I was brilliant and would never get caught. I vividly remember being 1 day away from the end of the month and my Mom caught me hiding behind the couch with my thumb in my mouth! I lost the deal and never received the playset of my dreams! I was so angry about this that it actually encouraged me to stop sucking my thumb. I no longer partake in that past time and I also have never owned a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Sewer Lair Playset. I see that they go for around $250 out of box on ebay. Maybe someday I'll be able to drop the cash and get one, but for now it remains "the one that got away"! Remember folks, no matter how sneaky or secretive you think you may be...momma always knows!


  1. Have a cousin who sucked his thumb till he was twelve. Don't think he wanted a sewer toy, though.

  2. Hope you get to purchase it some day. It is a neat looking set.

    1. It is on my grail list, but unless I see it at a yard sale for $20 it will be out of my reach!