Click, Click, Dark: View-Master Nixes Travel Series

First off, View-Master, that click-click, see-the-world 3-D viewer, is not going away. All vintage toy fans and people who collect the everyone-had-one plaything can rest easy about that. Fisher-Price, the division behind View-Master, will continue making the tiny, slide-filled wheels, those icons of childhood. That said, the reels now will be devoted to characters and properties like Shrek, rather than the traditional scenic panoramas, something for which the View-Master reels became famous for, especially in the middle of the last century as greater numbers of families hit the road.

So, no more sweeping looks at the Pacific Ocean at dawn. The Death Valley dunes are done. And all of those natural site-packed reels we've come to expect at tourist-y stops will be off the shelves one day soon. Sales for the scenics have not been strong, and the company has to move on.

While we're nostalgic at heart, we understand the dilemma (we remember, as kids, favoring cartoon characters over the natural wonders series). But now we suddenly feel the urge to dig out our reels celebrating the Grand Canyon, and Yosemite, and the redwoods, and spend a few moments enjoying that little, click-click slice of Americana.

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