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I came across this rather puzzling piece of Star Trek merchandise:

enter image description here

It is described on the packaging both as an "Official Star Trek Helmet" and as a "space fun helmet".

Its features include a "flashing light emitter", a "pulsing sonic sound", a "strap-on chinstrap", "telescoping antennas", and a visor.

It is emblazoned with "SPOCK" across the front and has the Starfleet insignia on its sides.

It doesn't seem to correspond to anything I have ever seen in any Star Trek series or film.

What is the origin of this "Spock helmet"? What is its connection to Spock?

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+1 for making me actually laugh out loud. – jpmc26 Feb 2 at 4:13
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This just made my day. – ApproachingDarknessFish Feb 2 at 10:16
    
@randal'thor : So ... it's a comment on the kind of person who would buy one, ..., or a comment by that person about the kind of person they give it to? – Eric Towers Feb 3 at 13:51
    
Attention K-Mart shoppers, there's an orange light special in aisle 5... – Brian Rogers Feb 3 at 22:18
up vote 97 down vote accepted
+100

Where did it come from?

The spiders that live in the brain of Azrak-Hamway Incorporated.

StarTrek.com has a hilarious article talking about some of the insane licensed toys produced by AHI and Remco Toys (who AHI bought in 1974); the helmet came from them (emphasis theirs):

[T]he Enco Company must have drawn inspiration from the 1969 Remco Star Trek Astro-Helmet when they released their Official Star Trek Helmet in 1976. Enco took the ridiculous concept to all new heights of absurdity, however, by adding a movable visor, pull-out antennae and a large red "flashing light emitter with pulsing sonic sound."

The Astro-helmet, pictured below, also appears to have nothing to do with Star Trek, but is (slightly) less hilariously insane:

Bug-eyed monsters

Okay, differently hilariously insane

I've not been able to find any logical reason why AHI decided this was an appropriate use of the Star Trek license, nor am I totally convinced any exist.

What does it have to do with Spock?

Nothing whatsoever. According to the StarTrek.com article I mentioned before, the helmet came with multiple stickers, so the unfortunate lucky child could personalize their helmet with the name of their favourite character:

Perhaps the coolest feature of all, though, was the inclusion of a large sticker sheet, allowing the owner to customize the helmet with their favorite Star Trek character's name!

The article includes another picture of the helmet, this time with Kirk's name:

Can't. Stop. Laughing.

The decision to use Spock's name sticker on the box appears to have been a marketing decision, motivated by whatever drugs market research AHI did whilst crafting this magnificent specimen.

An old auction site has several more pictures of this madness, with no name to be found:

What is even?

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Bah! Posted at the same time, but yours has better pictures and more hilarity :) +1 to you! – K-H-W Feb 2 at 2:44
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The Astro-helmet looks like they acquired the injection molds from some unrelated Japanese sci-fi toy and decided not to let them go to waste. – Kevin Krumwiede Feb 2 at 7:17
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I would wear it, no matter what you say. – fredsbend Feb 2 at 7:57
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Say what you want, but that little kid with the full Kirk getup makes the helmet look legit. – iamnotmaynard Feb 2 at 15:43
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Personally, I find the astro-helmet to be the more insane of the two of them. Not sure why. Maybe the other one at least looks vaguely like some kind of federation technology, while the astro-helmet looks alien. – Todd Wilcox Feb 2 at 20:32

As best that I recall (yes; I'm old enough that I remember these actually being sold and worn) -- Marketing; that's it.

Spock did wear headgear a number of times (Perhaps best remembered from when his brain was stolen; picture below, but he also wore a well-remembered headband in The Voyage Home, as well as a Hood, a bucket type hat, a fedora, a Nazi helmet and a knit cap, in various episodes, usually to hide his ears,), but this POS came about from a company going out of business, and another company acquiring their leftovers, including Star Trek Toys rights.

To quote the Weird Retro site:

Trekkie or not, surely there was no kid on the planet or in the federation that would have been seen dead wearing this monstrosity. Produced in 1976, by the Azrak-Hamway Incorporated (AHI). The company acquired the Remco toy company in 1974, after Remco filed for bankruptcy in 1971. As part of the acquisition AHI got the licensing rights to Star Trek. So in the 1970s they churned out a number of Star Trek tie-in toys. Some better than others, and some closer to replicas of items found on the TV series than others. The one item they brought out that bore no relation to Star Trek, was the "Official Star Trek Helmet", that has since become known as the Spock Helmet.


Something he actually wore would have looked better; here's what he wore when minus a brain.
Spock's real helmet

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Anyone who's ever parented a toddler knows that this would have been perfect for a 3 or 4 year old who loved Star Trek. Hats/helmets are always great fun and don't really have to be remotely realistic or reasonable - the more garish the better. – Joe Feb 2 at 19:10
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@Joe: Times have changed. Today's 4 year old will ask exactly this question when given something like this – slebetman Feb 3 at 9:41

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