Friday, 26 July 2013

Power of the Force

There are a few toylines that I consider my "main lines".  I'll buy any figure if it's cool enough, but of course there are some lines that I actively collect.  Masters of the Universe and G.I. Joe would be two lines that I regularly go back to.  But Star Wars, as a whole, would be the one line that I consider my MAIN line.  Star Wars is so huge for me, I didn't even bother coming up with a clever title!  Who needs a silly joke title when we're talking about Star Wars?  No one.  That's who.

I've been thinking about which way to go about covering Star Wars on the blog here, because it's massive.  I've decided to go through the line series by series, starting with the vintage stuff and working up to modern times.  Obviously I won't be covering every figure, but I'll try to show off enough from each series to really show how the line has changed over the years.

The vintage series was called "Power of the Force", and it went from 1978 (before I was even born!) to 1985 (after I was even born!).  One thing I've always loved about Kenner's (and now Hasbro's) Star Wars toys is that they represent everyone.  Core characters to background extras all receive figures (eventually), which is great because a lot of my favorite figures from the line are obscure background characters.


I won't even talk about every figure I post in my Star Wars spotlights, but certain ones deserve special attention.  Like the Dark Lord of the Sith himself, Darth Vader.  This figure was released all the back in the 70's, which makes him older than I am!  Back then no one knew the story of Anakin Skywalker, and everyone thought he was First-Name-Darth, Last-Name-Vader.  As a sickly little asthmatic kid hooked up to a nebulizer in the 80's, he was someone I could look up to and admire (well, look up to in the sense that no one messed with him... but he did some bad things).  My wife got this figure for me as a gift (for Christmas or my birthday, I can't remember) and he's in great shape.  None of my vintage figures are mint, in fact most are paint worn, or missing capes or other accessories, but Vader here looks good.  His lightsaber even still has that little... tip... what is that, a fuse?  Which is why he's one of my few figures that I keep in an individual protective case.


All of the figures in this series are pretty basic when it comes to articulation, but it's what you'd expect from 80's toys.  Sure, G.I. Joe came and revolutionized what small toys could do, but Power of the Force was a product of it's time and it gave us what we needed.



(Ponda Baba)

(Momaw Nadon)

Back in those days, no one needed fancy "real names" to identify their characters.  Walrus Man, Hammerhead, and Squid Head were good enough.  Now we know them as Ponda Baba, Momaw Nadon, and Tessek, but there will always be a quaint nostalgia tied to the original place-holder names.




(with snake)


(Palpatine, Darth Sidious)



Teebo is special to me because he's one of my original Star Wars figures.  Most of the figures in the post were bought either from garage sales, specialty stores, or eBay, but Teebo here has been with me since childhood.  Aside from some wear to his nose, he's still in pretty decent shape!





(Pagetti Rook)

Pretty much anything I ever played as a kid utilized Star Wars figures to some degree or another, and you can see from this selection of figures how my lifelong love of weirdo characters could have started to take shape (hello Hammerhead!).  This series got the the ball rolling for me, but Star Wars didn't become my MAIN line for another 10 years, with the introduction of Power of the Force 2 in 1995.

But hold on, hold on!  We're not done yet!  I'm going to do a small spotlight-within-a-spotlight, since these next figures are obviously old and I don't know where else to show them.

I got these two ewoks from a garage sale years ago.  I don't really know what the story is behind them, other than they're hard plastic, unarticulated figures.  And they are apparently firefighters.  I'm assuming the first figure is Wicket, but it could be any firefighting ewok.  The second figure is obviously Princess Kneesa from the old Ewoks animated series in the 80's.  She was my default Kneesa for LONG time, but thankfully a proper Kneesa figure recently came out as part of a Toys R Us exclusive Ewoks Battle Pack.

I don't know if any other characters exist in this style, but it would be nice if they had some support.  Judging from their paint wear, they've seen their fair share of fires...


  1. Man...just...what were they thinking with the original lightsabers? I seriously wana sit down with the original sculptors and find out just what the heck that was supposed to be.

    Anyway, I believe I've told you this story, but here is it for your blog: I never had the originals (save for a Yoda my Grandpa found in a parking lot) but my cousin (with my exact same first and last name) had a GIGANTIC BOX of them. I would play with them whenever I went to my Uncle's house for holiday stuff. Vader was headless, so I used a Tie Fighter pilot as Vader...and lightsabers? Well, the colored sticks were missing...because my aunt apparently thought her son would hurt himself? Guess what the replacement was...

    ...Toothpicks! Yes, decidedly more dangerous, if you're getting a little too heated with your jedi battles. Ah, good times. Thing I remember the most, however, was his MASSIVE amount of Storm Troopers. Seriously, there were so many I could set up rows and rows of them to cut through with the toothpicksaber. It was awesome.

  2. I'm not against the gimmick of those old lightsabers, just the look. What's with that stringy tail thing? Then again, that Bespin Fatigues Luke came with a yellow lightsaber, so who knows what they were thinking? That "arm sliding" gimmick has actually come back a few times lately, and I don't know if most people care for it, but I think it's neat. There are plenty of other versions of core characters already, so there's room to do things like that. Same goes for the new light-up lightsabers with some of the figures.