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.
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.
PRINCESS LEIA ORGANA
(HOTH BATTLE GEAR)
(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!
(SKIFF GUARD OUTFIT)
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...