The Apple Collection Was Everything That Was Wrong With Late 80s Apple [Gallery]

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In 1985, after a power struggle developed between Steve Jobs and John Sculley, Apple Computer’s charismatic co-founder was forced out of the company his vision had created. For the next twelve years, the company foundered, lost marketshare hand over fist and almost went bankrupt before Jobs returned to the company in 1997 to put things right.

We all know that story. Still, it’s amazing how just one item from the dark years can hilariously put the disconnect between pre- and post-Jobs Apple in sharp relief. Could anything better exemplify the now-amusing differences in vision between Apple under Jobs and Apple under Sculley than this 1987 relic, The Apple Catalogue?

Let’s put it this way. Under Jobs, Apple sold great computers. Under Sculley, Apple released an entire catalogue of Apple-branded sweaters, watches, coffee mugs, beach umbrellas, towels, backpacks, scarves, hats, wind surfing equipment…

Right here, in these yellowed pages, is the difference between John Sculley and Steve Jobs. John Sculley internalized all of the lessons he learned at Pepsi making fizzy sugar water: he tried to turn Apple into a whored-out brand for the Pepsi Generation, where the logo was the product. Steve Jobs’s vision was very different: he was out to change the world.

Here’s the complete catalog. As egregious as this shilled out tat is, there’s more than a few products here I wouldn’t mind getting for Christmas. That beer stein and watch are pretty swank, but my vote would be for the leather computer bag on page 1. What’s your favorite?

[via Retronaut.co, Reddit]

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24 responses to “The Apple Collection Was Everything That Was Wrong With Late 80s Apple [Gallery]”

  1. Dan Bennett says:

    Rose lenses on page 15. Brilliant.

  2. Robert Daniels says:

    I think I just threw up in my mouth a little.. :|

  3. Oli Newman says:

    i want every single one of these products…

  4. Blake Beavers says:

    I would pay at least $100 for most of these things…

  5. david bogie says:

    Compared to the junk every company throws a logo onto these days, some of this stuff is golden. I had one of these catalogs and even owned a few of the trinkets under $25. 

  6. prof_peabody says:

    I still like the rainbow logo better than the new white one.  Some of those keychains are seriously desirable. 

  7. Derek Poore says:

    I want one of the Nylon Mac bags. A few other things are appealing, but this mostly makes me have a big sad.

  8. Evan Benford says:

    I don’t know about you guys but some of those bags on page 8 look really nice. I buy one

  9. Sydney Nichols says:

    “After a rough day windsurfing, the Apple sweatshirt is just the thing.”

    Amazing.

  10. firesign says:

    Say what you want, but I want that Apple truck.

  11. stickam says:

    The Apple branded Braun products are kinda cool.   They even have the Braun calculator that the first iteration of the iPhone used a an inspiration for the Calculator app!

  12. Camerongerardy says:

    i want that truck, the watches, the towels, the army knife,…..just give me the whole freak’n catalog

  13. TechUser says:

    I had the Apple handblown glass mug with the etched logo on the bottom for over 10 years… Until my uncle dropped and broke it!

  14. JT_CHITOWN says:

    Seriously, what is up with the kid on the left on page 31?  Could he look more bitter?

    I’m having a flashback now to my extensive Jams collection back in ’86.  *shudder*

  15. MoistPup says:

    Horrible garbage. 

  16. ImTrollButHonest says:

    This stuff has value as collectibles, but it’s garbage.

  17. Grahas says:

    I think I want to vomit.

  18. diego gonzález says:

    Mother of god…

  19. diego gonzález says:

    Mother of god…

  20. HerbalEd says:

    Skully and his adults board never got it.

  21. Alcofrybas Nasier says:

    I see a white Apple logo on the watch!

  22. Rothgarr says:

    I miss the 80s…

  23. FenTiger says:

    bag o’ shite. I say we take off and nuke the 80’s from orbit…

  24. Guest says:

    I’ll take the black sunglasses and the money clip FTW! HA! This is awesome, better than the stupid clock that they gave me when I worked there. 

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