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View Full Version : Good Memories - A history of collecting: 1978 and beyond



Tycho
11-25-2001, 07:19 PM
1978 - the first year Kenner released toys. Chewbacca was my favorite character, and I had to have him! R2D2 was my first figure though. Then I got the stormtrooper and Chewie.

Luke I got loose, from a friend, for a birthday (not even wrapped, just in a brown paper bag with a ribbon - but I didn't care).

I got Han, Leia, and the Death Squad Commander all together, but I think I got the rest of them before then. I can't recall.

I liked the Die-Cast vehicles then too - the X-wing and Vader's TIE were my first. I couldn't wait until I got the regular TIE Fighter, because even then I knew Darth Vader couldn't lose. Once I had that white die-cast fighter, adventure started to explode. But I wanted the (die cast) Millennium Falcon more than anything!

I think I had the landspeeder that year too (for the regular figures). It was more than fun to make it haul-butt over the tile floor!

Tycho
11-25-2001, 07:25 PM
My uncle helped me get the Death Star Playset and the Millennium Falcon for the regular sized figures.

These were always in the top 3 of my all-time favorite toys.

The droid factory provided hours of amusement, while finally, at long last, new colorful figures like Greedo, a favorite character, saw entry into my collection. The cantina aliens and droids like R5D4 made my day! The catalogs started coming with the vehicles and playsets, so I would rush into them as soon as the box was open, to see what else was new.

I got the mail-away figure stand that rotated and displayed my collection, too. I also got the cantina playset with the plastic and cardboard, and that saw a lot of use too.

12" interest came as soon as they made Chewbacca. I had to have him. Soon I had C-3PO and Han Solo as well. Han eventually became my favorite, as he was so detailed.

Tycho
11-25-2001, 07:32 PM
Every day I was checking the mail for that send-away Boba Fett.

The Hoth Ice Battle playset really blew because I so much wanted a plastic AT-AT and not more cardboard.

I wasn't old enough to read, so I didn't believe my Mom when she told me "the lady in red" was Princess Leia. I told her Leia always wore white, and I didn't know what to make of Lando (these came out before I saw the movie).

Bossk was really cool. As was getting Luke that could hold things in both hands and not always have a lightsaber (Bespin - my early favorite Luke figure). Han Hoth rocked because he had a holster. I was into TaunTauns more than any previous Star Wars creature, so that was awesome.

The Imperial Attack Base playset, which really was supposed to be the Hoth Rebel Trenches upped the bar on playsets (though it didn't out-do the Death Star).

Slave-One was interesting, but once I saw the movie, I was really afraid of Boba Fett and fear led to anger...etc. So I just couldn't take to bounty hunter products like others could.

Finally Han Solo Bespin became my favorite Han figure for all the vintage years.

Tycho
11-25-2001, 07:39 PM
In the face of getting the AT-AT, everything else pales. This toy rounds out my top 3 of all Star Wars vehicles and I nearly slept with the thing, I loved it so!

The AT-ST was pretty innovative, and I can't recall if I got it this year or not. But it proved to be a lot of fun, and I really liked my AT-AT Driver figure.

Getting a C-3PO I could take apart was really cool, also. The Cloud Car didn't do too much for me, but I obsessed with having two pilots for it, but Mom didn't understand.

Leia Hoth and the Imperial Commander were also cool. How I still wanted General Veers... (and I thought they should do a proper Piett back then too).

I think the Dagobah playset came out then as well, and I really liked making Luke levitate stuff, and having lightsaber duels.

I was very practiced in talking like Yoda.

Tycho
11-25-2001, 07:44 PM
I can't recall what came out this year, versus the other one, save that Luke Hoth was a very good figure, I finally got General Veers (though they've never called him that save for the Canadian Cardback) and I loved the periscope R2.

The Turret and Probot Playset might have been from the year before, but it was cool nevertheless.

I sent away for Admiral Ackbar - but he was no surprise. He looked too friendly to be anything but a Rebel.

Oh, I also remember getting Yoda as a mail-away. It is not widely recalled or known, but he definitely was. By this time, my Mom was telling me these could be valuable, and I think she still has a Yoda she sent away for - and save for the white box, it's sealed. I remember this because I'm not certain, but I think it was a brown snake and I was constantly begging her to open that Yoda, but she took it away and said "when you're older..." I had the orange snake that looked fake, and had to live with it.

Tycho
11-25-2001, 07:49 PM
Getting Luke Jedi, my favorite Luke, with a cloth cape, was so cool! I loved his gun, too.

All the cloth they used this year was exciting, as were many of the disguised figures, some of the best "Kenner" ever did.

Gamorrean, Leia Boussh, Lando Skiff, Klaatu, Weequay, Bikerscout, Bib Fortuna, Royal Guard! Wow! You name it.

I mailed away for the Emperor, got a Y-wing fighter (which I loved the toy, though it never did anything for me in the movies...)

And I think my favorite thing was the Ewok Village. I was really into Ewoks as a small kid that year. OK, so Endor Rebel Soldier grew on me, and I appreciate "my old AT-ST" even more.

The speederbike was darn fun. I wished my Mom would buy me more. I had to settle for only one.

Tycho
11-25-2001, 07:56 PM
I had an accident and was in the hospital when my mom brought me Han Endor (with that cloth cape again, rivaling my favorite Han Bespin), and I also got Wicket and the B-wing pilot then, too.

I got better quickly, so I could go home and fill my Ewok Village for new adventures. Leia Endor was also a superior figure with all her accessories and removeable helmet. The skiff guards kept getting better and better, too. That got me into Jabba, and I had to get him and Salacious also.

I started seeing the shuttle Tyderium in Toys R Us, but Mom said no. It was around $50 then, I think. Maybe more. It was too expensive, but way too cool.

I never was able to get the B-wing either, back then, and my friend had it - of which I was most envious. I'm not sure how, but I think I had a Rancor. Easily the ultimate of the beast collection!

Yes I did have him, and the monster and Malakali its keeper used to have their own adventures, eating my Jawas and Sandpeople!
The Dewback proved too large of meal...

[and it was great fun, when the Rancor went to Cloud City - that's how I bent my cardboard....]

Tycho
11-25-2001, 08:02 PM
It was almost time for me to be heavily into Voltron and Transformers (others were already started)

But Luke Stormtrooper was so sweet! I longed for my then and still-at-present favorite, Han Solo, in his shiny, white armor.

Lando with a cloth cape rocked, for The General. Amanaman was fun, too. He used to have adventures eating people! The Dignitary was fun, because I made him the new Emperor so the battles could continue. I got Anakin's ghost from a mail-away offer.

I never saw the skiff or A-wing in stores. I collected all the Droids and Ewoks stuff that were available, but I yearned for more 'adult Star Wars.'

I also thought the gun size the A-wing pilot and Death Star Gunner etc. were coming with was more realistic, and though I was constantly paranoid about losing the tiny pieces, I loved 'em all. Luke Endor was again a great figure. Why he never had a removeable helmet like Leia, I'll always wonder. By this time, Speederbikes were gone, or I would have really gotten another.

Tycho
11-25-2001, 08:06 PM
Does this year count? I think so.

Timothy Zahn's novels hit the store, and Dark Horse was rumored to follow with Dark Empire. I was so much back into Star Wars (and my VCR tapes had never collected dust anyway - from so much use during 'The Dark Years'). I almost went out and collected those Bend'ums figures.

Star Trek the Next Generation came out with figures the following year, and because I so much had loved collecting Star Wars, I started getting 'just 10 Trek figures,' and that got me in the toy stores.

bigbarada
11-25-2001, 08:17 PM
I remember hearing about Star Wars figures on the news and my dad took my brother and I out to buy some. This was the first time I was ever allowed to choose my own toy and I stared at the figures on the pegs for a while before finally settling on Artoo, his shiny dome caught my eye (Threepio kept selling out so he wasn't there). I'll always remember using him as a mobile cannon since he was never given a gun.

My brother chose Chewbacca, and we always called him the Wolfman.

bigbarada
11-25-2001, 08:18 PM
My Artoo figure long since lost, my interest in Star Wars was pretty much non-existant this year.:(

bigbarada
11-25-2001, 08:25 PM
Our first real Star Wars motherlode! For the Christmas of 1980 our church did a toy drive in which needy families were given donated toys. My family easily qualified for needy status so my brother and I ended up with this gigantic box next to our Christmas tree. When we opened it on Christmas morning we found the Death Star Playset, an X-Wing, a TIE Fighter and 11 of the original 12 figures (no Han Solo, just a second Stormie)!!! We also got the original Escape from the Death Star board game.

Needless to say we were very happy campers that year.

bigbarada
11-25-2001, 08:28 PM
Most of our figures lost or destroyed by jealous friends :mad: the Death Star soon became a base for loads of those little green army men. In fact my DS playset was so prominent in our room that when I had to draw a picture of my bedroom for a school art assignment the DS pretty much became the center of the whole drawing.

My TIE fighter had been broken by an aforementioned jealous friend, in which he somehow found a way to jam the wings in upsidedown.:mad: :mad: I wished he was:dead:

Tycho
11-25-2001, 08:32 PM
All those toys at Once? Wow! That would have made the richest kid's Christmas, let alone the nicest donations!

This could have been your best childhood Christmas, eh Barada?

bigbarada
11-25-2001, 08:33 PM
This was the year I first saw the AT-AT toy on TV, needless to say it changed my life. That toy soon became my single minded obsession. The only toy I really had this entire year was a Bossk figure who I absolutely HATED!!!! He was so ugly, and my brother having Boba Fett wasn't helping matters either.

bigbarada
11-25-2001, 08:38 PM
I managed to score a grand total of three figures this year! A Gamorrean Guard (who I traded my Bossk for) an AT-AT Driver with a missing foot and a Threepio with a missing hand. I have no idea how the figures got their injuries since they were given to me by friends who were planning on throwing them away.

At this point I still hadn't seen any of the movies. The ROTJ commercial grossed my mother out (Jabba's sliminess) and thus started my parents' hatred of anything and everything Star Wars (which was only broken by Ep1's release in 1999, the only Star Wars film my parents' actually like).

Our collecting went underground from here as anything Star Wars related my parents would find got thrown away.

bigbarada
11-25-2001, 08:41 PM
I think this was the year that ANH premiered on TV. My parents begrudgingly allowed us to watch it after enough begging and it was pure magic.

No new toys this year, but we did get the three movie storybooks from various sources (anybody remember the old Reading Is Fundamental program? That's how I got the ANH storybook).:happy:

bigbarada
11-25-2001, 08:46 PM
This year was the second Star Wars motherlode. My dad had managed to make-up with his sister (who he hadn't spoken to in over twenty years) and she came over for a visit during the summer vacation after sixth grade. Her and her daughter bought my brother and I a whole bunch of figures (Imperials and Ewoks for me and Rebels and Jabba's henchmen for my brother). My dad, who usually objected at Star Wars stuff didn't say anything for fear of opening up the family rift that had so recently been mended.

My grandparents on my mother's side showed up a week later and, not to be outdone by my dad's side of the family, bought us even more figures! The summer of 1985 remains one of the happiest times of my life.:happy:

I had no knowledge of POTF yet, which I didn't discover until visiting my aunt in California in 1986. By then though I had moved on to GI Joe.

bigbarada
11-25-2001, 08:51 PM
I graduated High School in 1991 and went straight into the Army. I saw Heir to the Empire while in training. I bought it but have never read it to this day. I was obsessed with Spider-Man and X-Men comics this year. (McFarlane was doing Spider-Man and Jim Lee was doing X-Men can you blame me?)

Tycho
11-25-2001, 09:26 PM
Wow. You had a rough childhood there, Barada.

My dad started getting sick of it and I started having to mow the lawn, wash the cars, and work for the neighbors to pay for my own toys. As a result, they became "worth a lot to me," and I took extremely good care of my vintage collection.

Mom still drove me to the toy store and sneaked around and bought me stuff though. She was always kind about that sort of thing (and still is - that's how I got my first 12" Darth Maul)

bigbarada
11-25-2001, 09:27 PM
Yes, getting all of those toys on Christmas day in 1980, is one of those wonderful memories that keeps me collecting to this day!!

Tycho
11-25-2001, 09:27 PM
So did you ever get a vintage AT-AT when you were a kid?

I bet you have 3 or 5 now, LOL.

Tycho
11-25-2001, 09:30 PM
I'm glad for you. That sounds like you had a more memorable year with Star Wars in 1985 than did a lot of fans.

That's good and your fond memories of it are even fresher.

Don't suppose you remember which figures you got when, and who were your favorites?

bigbarada
11-25-2001, 09:33 PM
I managed to buy an AT-AT from a friend of mine when I was 16. It was a little worse for wear but I still loved it! This was around 1988 when all of my high school buddies were "growing up" and getting rid of all their toys. I managed to build quited a collection in those years.

In one last act of contempt for my Star Wars collection, my dad sold off all of our vintage toys when I was stationed in Ft Hood. So I had to buy a new vintage AT-AT to go along with my POTF2 one, when comparing the two I still like the vintage one better.

As for my parents, ever since he realized that I don't have to visit them if I don't want to, he's become a lot more cooperative when it comes to storing my SW stuff.:evil:

bigbarada
11-25-2001, 09:40 PM
I got, in order:

Wicket
Han Trenchcoat
AT-ST Driver
Logray
Chirpa
Paploo
Lumat
Ackbar
Madine
Chewie
Vader
Teebo
Ewok Glider

My brother got:
Luke Jedi
Bib Fortuna
Ree-Yees
Nikto
Squidhead
Klaatu Skiff Guard
Leia Boushh
Rancor Keeper
8D8
another Nikto
Leia Endor (he loved Leia more than me)
Sail Skiff mini-rig

We actually tried to collect only factions of figures (Imperial, Rebels, Jabba's men, Ewoks) but soon just split ROTJ down the middle and collected from our respective halves (except for the Endor Leia which my brother bugged me about until I relented and traded for Chewie).

These lists might seem small compared to the huge collections that some had amassed by this time but it was the most Star Wars figures my brother and I had ever owned.

My favorite was Wicket until I got Vader, who is actually the only figure I still have from those days. I remember hating that flimsy little lightsaber tip and clipping it off with toenail clippers. Other than that I have kept him in very good shape.

Tycho
11-25-2001, 09:42 PM
You and Luke Skywalker have a lot in common, don't you? ; )

Tycho
11-25-2001, 09:46 PM
It sounds like you still had a lot of fun and though your "Star Wars family life" was difficult, you were very close to your brother and had a good time.

I always thought it would be cool if some friends had to do an economy collection, where one kid did 'good guys' and the other did the baddies. Imagine the day the one kid comes home with the AT-AT! (that rope on the snowspeeder just isn't long enough son...)

GNT
11-26-2001, 02:04 AM
And thats what collecting is all about,giving to those who dont have :) Nice thing to do!

Tycho
11-26-2001, 04:26 AM
This thread makes a lot of sense now that it has been condensed and mixed up from probably 9 threads, all interwoven. It's still a great discussion guys. Keep it up, but take one year at a time please.

You can tell which discussion applies to what by the title of the post.

bigbarada
11-26-2001, 09:42 AM
I went in and edited most of my posts to hopefully clear up any confusion.

Bel-Cam Jos
11-26-2001, 08:02 PM
I was wondering how a thread got so many posts in a day (without being a SSG Story-type one!). That answers that.


1978
Easy. Only one item: cloth caped Jawa. This was my first Christmas in California (coming from the Buckeye State of Ohio), and I thought this was a neato toy. I ripped it open, not even realizing there was a gun taped to the bubble (ah, loose and un-mint all at once :D ).

P.S. This is an easy way to post pad. You could combine years in the same post, you know. :p

:Pirate: Arr.

Tycho
11-30-2001, 06:15 PM
Go on Bel-Cam Jos. Tell us the rest of your vintage years!

If I get real industrious, I'll edit my responses to Barada so it makes sense for other readers. Barada knows which replies went to what, before the merge. But I think I can only edit within 24 hours (as this is not the forum I moderate).

Bel-Cam Jos
11-30-2001, 07:14 PM
You know, for my semi-photographic memory, I really don't have many specific memories related to years and SW toys. One sI do recall:

1980
Got the Snowspeeder for my 10th birthday. I remember ignoring my friend who came over so I could play with it. (Sorry, that's not a good memory, I suppose :( ). I think I also received some early ESB figures on a trip back to Ohio; Lando, Rebel Soldier, Bespin Guard, etc. I recall getting htem only if I did something good, and having to temporarily return them to mom when I did bad stuff (dang! more bad memories! :cry: ).

1979
I remember losing Walrusman at school (not supposed to bring toys to school; gotta learn the hard way! :rolleyes: ) and lying to my parents that he was lost at home in order to get a new one.

Uh, Tycho. You want me to continue? My "good memories" seem to be a bit negative. ;)

Bel-Cam Jos
12-01-2001, 11:35 PM
1987
This was the watermark year. On a trip back to Ohio, I stopped at a swap meet. I saw a dealer who had SW figures, and I knew I did not have the blue Snaggletooth but had seen other friends who had. It was $8 (?!??!), but I talked him down to $4 without the gun. Yes, that's right. I began to look to complete the SW figure collection (no "vintage" name, since there was only one line) after this.

1985
Out of order, but no matter. I found POTF Lando at Thrifty Drugs (now Rite-Aid) for $4.99 (?!??!) I wasn't allowed to get more than 1 figure (sorry, more bad memories :( ), so I had to pass on Barada, or a couple others. I saw Barada several months later, with an open blister, no staff, and bent card, and passed on him. In 1986, I looked frantically for it, but no dice.

bigbarada
12-01-2001, 11:48 PM
1986

It's not a release year but it is when I discovered all of the POTF figures on clearance at TRU for $0.75 each! I never even knew that there was a POTF line until that moment. I looked for the two new ewoks, Amanaman, Han Carbonite but all they had were Barada, Imperial Dignitary and a crapload of ROTJ re-issues. I wanted the Imperial Dignitary but didn't have the Emperor or anyone to go with him so I passed and picked up Barada. I've always just liked the way he looked. However, when I saw the GI Joe section packed with tons of new stuff I went nuts. I set the Barada down, grabbed the biggest Joe vehicle I could find (the Havoc) and ran out of the aisle. I was so excited that I could actually afford this thing (I was reaping the rewards of my first summer job at my aunt's ranch in CA) that I totally forgot about the Barada figure I set down. Ahhh, what a stupid kid I was!;)

This memory came back with a vengeance when I decided to fork over $45 to get a loose Barada figure from Brian's Toys.:mad:

Tycho
12-02-2001, 03:31 AM
It's just really cool to hear everyone's experiences. Good and even bad memories, Bel-Cam Jos.

There are 2 more threads like this in the POTJ and the POTF2 Forums. Everyone's welcome to participate.

It's interesting how sometimes, in 'the Dark Years' for Star Wars (1986-1990) some people really had good times and the Force was still going strong. My memories pale in comparison to some of yours for that time. I watched the videos in the dead of night on many weekends, usually after dates-gone-wrong, and just dreamt of being somewhere else. Then I'd shoot those green Rodians....!

DarthQuack
01-29-2008, 10:13 PM
Summer 2007 I got into collecting vintage figures, so far I've picked up 11 figures sealed in various card condition, my goal being to get all 96, not all on card, just all complete. I think I remember back in 1985 getting the Rancor Keeper at some point, then we got our cousins SW stuff, but I think my mom threw them out a few years later...grrrrrr

tagmac
01-30-2008, 01:19 PM
Wow...can't believe I missed this thread.

1982

While I always liked the movies, I was too young to really get into the toys in the late 70's. By this time, I was turning 6, and had seen kids bring SW figs into Kindergarten for show and tell the year before. Seeing the cool "Hoth Wampa" commercial really sealed it for me, and so I asked for, and got, a whole bunch of figs from my aunt for my b-day: Hoth Han, R2 w/ Sensorscope, Darth Vader, Ben Kenobi, Tatooine Luke, Yoda, Death Star Droid, and Chewbacca, along with the Wampa. A week later, my parents took me shopping for the figures I wanted but didn't get, although at this point I had to share with my brother, so we gottwo each. He got ANH Leia and Hoth Luke, I got C-3PO w/ removable limbs, and another figure whom I can't remember.

tagmac
01-30-2008, 01:26 PM
1983 - Part I

Over the course of the year before Jedi came out, my brother and I would get 1-2 figures at a time, either for Christmas/B-days, or for having good grades, or just because my parents were in a good mood. The toughest finds at the time were R5-D4 and the Jawa, which my father was able to find eventually. He only went after work, but it was at a point in time where he would actually pick them up when he saw them, rather than say "ok, there it is, we'll come back later" (my mother did that once with a TMNT Shredder fig, and of course it was gone when she returned - how naive parents are to think toys just stay on the shelves like that). Anyway, my father allowed us to collect one of each figure, which culminated with the elusive Power Droid figure which I got only a short time before Jedi would come out with all new figures.

On a side (and somewhat humorous, if not pathetic, note), I almost never had the Ugnaught figure. As little kids minds work, I remember being totally frightened by the teeth on this figure, and believed that, if I had this figure, he would somehow become real in the night, come out of the closet, and bite me. Needless to say, I cried when "Santa" brought one for my younger brother - apparently my parents thought I didn't want it for me. They didn't realize I was terrified to have it in the house. I ended up relenting about a year later after my friends would hound me with "it's just a toy," and my brother had to have minor surgery, thus wanting it back, so it finally came out of my father's desk at work and into the house. That completed the set up to that point.

tagmac
01-30-2008, 01:36 PM
1983- Part II

With ROTJ coming out, of course came the new figures. Again, my brother and I would get figures just for being good at the store, and for our B-days. Aside from the Admiral Ackbar mail-away, the first figs we got were General Madine, Biker Scout, Emperor's Royal Guard, and Bib Fortuna. I saw and also wanted Squid Head, but my father said no.

When the figures initially came out, the Ewoks were hard to find. I saw one once, but my parents refused, claiming it was "too expensive" (I don't rememebr the store, but it may have been one of those dept. store/Service Merch. types that have been long gone since the 80's). My aunt said she would get it after also seeing it once, but it was gone, and she ended up getting my brother Squid Head instead. Boy was I ticked at that. We finally managed to get Chief Chirpa by accident. On line in TRU, the lady in front of us w/her son had two of them. We asked where she got them, and she siad she had asked the worker, who brought them out for them. My mother got off the line, then found and asked a worker who nicely brought out two of these from the back. This was the first (and last) time a TRU employee ever did this for us, but I guess scalping was a problem with the ewok figs, and so TRU actually found a way to combat it and help kids, unlike how it's worked since the mid-'90's.

For my b-day later that year, I got the Max Rebo Band, and my brother got the Rancor. We managed to find the remaining pre-POTF figures, with the mail-away Emperor coming shortly before finding the "final four" in bradlees one night - Jedi Luke, Lando Skiff guard, Gamorrean Guard, and Logray. Funnily enough, I was playing with figures with an ex-friend at the time, and a friend of his showed up with a Jedi Luke w/ blue saber and buttoning cape - years later I found out it was a variant, but at the time I wondered what was going on.

tagmac
01-30-2008, 01:41 PM
1984

With the new year came some new figures, and over the course of the year I slowly got my hands on them, although it took a little begging in some cases. Endor Leia was a tough one, but I managed to find one. The Ewoks weren't nearly as hard to find, and I manged to get all of them through several trips to Bradlees, TRU, and K-Mart. For Christmas that year, I also got Jabba, Jabba's Dungeon w/ Klaatu skiff/Nikto/8D8, as well as the Ewok Village and Speeder Bike. Unfortunately, as the summer and the new year came, my parents all but killed my hopes of completing the collection.

tagmac
01-30-2008, 02:07 PM
1984-1985

It's funny how things happen, but one day we went into TRU, and I see these new SW figures with coins. I've had dreams where I found crazy figures that didn't really exist, or were simply hard to find, and here it felt like I was living one of those dreams. My mother rushed us out, so I could barely look at the backs of the new figs to see what was coming out, hoping Slave Leia was one of them (on a later trip, I finally had more than 5 seconds to look, and found out it wasn't). Having not see nany commercials for these made the scene even more surreal for me at the age of 8. Eventually, we went back and I was able to buy some figures, although only four at the time - Endor Luke, Warok, Endor Han, and A-Wing Pilot. Also lucked out completely and found the Skiff, a vehicle I treasured the most, considering that scene was my absolute favorite to watch (and act out) for years as a kid.

In those days, I would spend a week at my grandparents' over the summer, and my parents would give me money to spend. This time, however, my father said that I was not allowed to buy SW figs. Needless to say, my grandmother took me to TRU and there's Barada hanging on the pegs, and I had to settle for buying anything but what I really wanted. Making matters worse, when my parents picked me up that weekend, my brother rold me how they had spotted in KB the one I wanted most, Han in Carbonite! Of course, they didn't buy it, and when we wenbt back, it was gone, and I was upset. They did have R2 w/ lightsaber, but my parents wouldn't let us get it, saying "you already have R2 (although my brother did get it eventually).

This did have a happy ending though, as a return trip to the TRU by my grandmother's found Barada amazingly still there, and a trip to the TRU by me a month later found a lone Carbonite Han on the top peg, and my mother was nice enough to get it for me even though I didn't have enough money. I had found my "Holy Grail" of the vintage collection!

In the end, I completed the set with the mail away Anakin, Amanaman (my second "Grasil figure," just because it looked cool and was the one figure I had not seen at retail before) and General Lando, but not without seeing them in KB, and having to say "I know" when my father said "you know you can't buy any more SW," :upset: then a week later having my mother say "Star Wars?" before relenting for the last time.

To this day, it still bugs me that I never got Stormtrooper Luke, Romba, EV-9D9, Imperial Gunner, and Imperial Dignitary, at retail, having seen every one of them in those days (although I did drop $400 for a Stormie Luke and a Blue Snaggletooth at a comic shop about 6 years ago - I know, what was I thinking?!). Never was upset about Yak Face, since it wasn't available here, but with the prices the other four go for loose these days, I resigned myself long ago that I would never have the full set of Vintage figs, although I came oh so close. It was that feeling that led me to be a near completists since '95, but in recent years common sense has set in, and it doesn't bug me to be missing some of the newer figures, but it would still be nice to say "I have all of the vintage ones."

vader121
01-31-2008, 03:51 PM
My collecting started when I was 4 or 5 I guess. My first figure was R2. Then sometime afterwards I got the Landspeeder, Chewie, and a few other figures but I don't remember who. Ithink it was from my grandparents for Valentines Day or something. Then I would get figures here and there for Xmas, birthdays, and at stores when I was "good." This was through to the ESB years. I remember the year I got the At At for Xmas. I thought it was the coolest toy ever and played with it for a long time. Got some of the mini rigs and the Wampa at that time too.

I do remember getting figures here and there at the store from my parents or grandparents. Once memory is getting the Twin Pod Cloud Car Pilot from Kmart from my Dad. I remember their toy dept was always kinda dirty and flea-market-like (kinda it is now) but did see the figure and my Dad was in a good mood I guess that day.

The real memories for me are around when ROTJ came out. My first memory of getting ROTJ figures though was for my 10th bday I think (I was born in '73). I got several figures like Rebel Commando, Biker Scout, and some others. Then again got some stuff for Xmas, etc.

By the time POTF came out I was 12 or 13 so toys weren't relaly the main thing anymore but I still did pick up one at KB (Barada). I remember about this time the stores were starting to clearance the ROTJ figures as the popularity was fading. I paid $4.99 at KB for Barada though as it was still pretty new. The ROTJ figures wre marked down to $1.29. I grabbed several Wequay's, Klaatu's, and maybe a few other figures. I do remember seeing other POTF figures there like Luke Stormie, Han Carbonite, and Amanaman. Heck, they may have had them all at that time. I was so into the Jabba thing that I wanted to build an army of Weeuay's and stuff. That's why I got the Barada figure. I remember also picking up the Jabba playset that day.

The next week TRU opened in my area and we went to check it out. Low and behold they had mountains of ROTJ figures for sale for $.99 each. If I would have known I could have bought another figure or two for what I paid at KB (doh!). By this time I had no money so all I could do was look. I do remember seeing the Skiff and Ewok Battle Wagon that day but don't recall seeing the POTF figures. From what I remember I only saw the POTF figures in a store once and that was at KB.

Neuroleptic
01-31-2008, 04:37 PM
I remember what I THINK was christmas of 1983.

We woke up christmas morning and went into the livingroom like all kids do. since I was turning 4 in two days, I was now considered old enough to play with action figures. Needless to say, I asked for everything and anything star wars.

Rather than wrap my presents that year, my parents opened everything up and set it up as if it where the toys on the back of the box.

The only figure that was officaly mine was R2-D2 with the telescoping sensor thing, and my brother got C-3po with removable limbs, and our sister got Bespin Leia, though my parents took the accessories away from it since she was 3.

The rest where equaly shaired by the three of us.

We got the ewok village and what had to be every ewok out at the time, two stormtroopers, two scout troopers, two snow troopers, darth vader, luke, han, two speeder bikes, chewbacca, the ewok village, lando, wiccet (I list good ol' warick seperately from the other ewoks because I remember him so much), the emperor, one rebel soldier, and spirit aniken.

I have a memory of going out to look for a new R2 when my sister broke the legs off that one. I remember seeing what looked to me to be thousands of figures in return of the jedi packages in the store, but we couldn't find the one I was looking for at the time.

The last figures I got where christmas of 1985. I got the R2-D2 with lightsaber and my brother got C-3po with removable limbs (again since my sister lost his arms and legs)

Sadly, all those figures where thrown away when my mother remarried since the guy she married decided I was too old to play with toys. Keep in mind, I was 5 at the time. The happy memory for me was we didn't stay with him long.

I was able to hide R2 and most of my brothers 3PO from him, so I called it a win, though my sister eventualy found them both and broke them both after the jerk had left.

The last time I saw the original star wars figures in a store was 1988 a few weeks after my mom died since my grandparents took us out to get us some new things since we had almost nothing to our name. Unfortunately by that time all we could find was a row of the B-wing pilot (wich I'm told can STILL be found at some stores in the discount bin :D) and an imperial officer.

Not to make it sound like I hold a grudge but for YEARS I brought my sister's destructive tendencies up nearly every time we got in an argument. So in 1997, my sister got ahold of the new large R2-D2 and gave it to me as an appology for all the R2's she broke. I hadn't brought it up for a few years at the time, so it never occored to me she still rememberd it, let alone felt giulty about it. So it became a bit of a running joke between the two of us after that.

Till I bought R2 with the lightsaber loose off Ebay for a recard project I was working on and sent my sister the invoice :D

Ok . . . so I may hold a slight grudge!

Neuroleptic
01-31-2008, 05:03 PM
I also remember seeing a han solo with three different symbols for return of the jedi (I later learned that he was a trilogo figure). I didn't know they sold those in america. The same day I remember seeing Darth Vader and Chewbacca in some kind of two pack that for years I thought was something I was remembering that wasn't real. Turns out at one point they actualy did sell return of the jedi figures in two packs without weapons around the time Return of the Jedi figures where being taken off the shelves as a way to try to get rid of some of the overstock that was getting sent back to kenner.

Neuroleptic
01-31-2008, 05:06 PM
In 2000 I was also able to get a trilogo R2-D2. He is in nearly perfect shape aside for a corner on his blister being dented to the point it can't be pushed out. It's a tiny dent. He isn't punched or anything. I have been thinking about sending him to AFA to get graded, but since I have a hatred of AFA I havn't done it. He is perfectly safe in his star case anyway. I got him for about 30 dollars on Ebay. I havn't seen him sell for anywear near that low in years, and none of the ones I'v seen are in as good of shape, so I'm happy with mine. Granted this last memmory is years after the figures where made, but it's a happy one since he is the only vintage figure I have paied for that is in his original package. The rest I have are all reproduced packages I have made over the last few years.

Neuroleptic
01-31-2008, 05:31 PM
You know, this thread brings back a ton of memories now that I went through and re read some of the other posts. I forgot to mention one other figure I got that Xmass.

Leia in her little bounty hunter disguise. I didn't know that was what the figure was, and since we had been given them all out of the package, I never saw that the mask came off. So when I somehow accidentaly got the helmet off months later, I thought I had broken the head off of one of my precious star wars figures. I was a little disapointed, but then I noticed this little tan face looking up at me. I remember that I always used her as an imperial spy until I realized who she was. I didn't want my sister to have that one though since I kinda liked it, so I put the helmet back on and never told her!

I also remember that the figure I wanted most when I was a kid but never got was '6D5'. 6D5 was my name for R5-D4. Gotta remember, this was so long ago I couldn't read. I finaly got one last year.

jjreason
01-31-2008, 09:13 PM
1978. I believe this was the year I first saw ANH and got my first toys - Luke was my first figure (and he's still in my collection - the only SW toy from my childhood still intact and in my possession). My brother quickly got Darth Vader after that, our third figure was Chewbacca - I can still see them all standing on my dresser, Chewie's arm raised firing his blaster into the air of my room!

Skip ahead to that Christmas - I got Han & Leia in my stocking, a Landspeeder and an X-Wing under the tree. I was giddy. My Dad then blew my mind but good, telling me I'd forgotten a present - behind his lounger was the (then HUMONGOUS) Millenium Falcon - still in the box and not even wrapped. I nearly carped my drawers - to this day my biggest Christmas surprise ever.

1979. I remember vaguely getting Obi Wan one lunch time, he was simply laid on my bed. Very cool. On my birthday cake were Greedo and R2-D2, up to their ankles in brown icing. I remember the first time I saw figures from the 2nd wave, my brother got Hammerhead and I got Luke X-Wing Pilot. We had just gotten haircuts, as those were the only times we went to that particular shopping mall.

1980. I have little to no recollection of getting ESB toys other than a very few. The Twin Pod Cloud Car being one, and my brother's AT-AT and my Hoth Snow Base with the cardboard AT-AT being a couple of others. I do remember being teased for falling asleep muttering "Lando Calrissian" over and over again however.... :pleased:

1983. The rest of my vintage memories are more of hanging out with my friend Tim during the very initial releases of the ROTJ line - we found them at both a local drug store and a small toy store at a mall his mom worked at. The Rebel Commando was my first ROTJ figure.

I remember being REALLY pumped up on Star Wars toys by the TV ads. We would watch cartoon after cartoon on Saturday mornings yearning for these damned commercials to come on - Superfriends, schmuperfriends, someone tell me how to get my free Bossk figure for the 300th time!!! :)

Like Big-B, my interest switched to GIJoe right around the time the 2nd wave of ROTJ figures came out. I only ever got AT-ST driver, The Emperor (through the mail, of course), Wicket, Teebo and Han in Endor Gear from that batch - and that was the end back then.

bigbarada
01-31-2008, 10:01 PM
1983. The rest of my vintage memories are more of hanging out with my friend Tim during the very initial releases of the ROTJ line - we found them at both a local drug store and a small toy store at a mall his mom worked at. The Rebel Commando was my first ROTJ figure.


I remember those days. Star Wars was so popular that ANY store you walked into would potentially have action figures for sale. It didn't matter if it was a womens' clothing store, a drug store, a grocery store or a gas station. It seemed like Star Wars figures (plus GI Joe and Transformers) were everywhere. Good times.:pleased:

vader121
02-01-2008, 11:07 AM
Now you did it! Readin these posts has conjured up all kinds of memories. I will only share a few

Millenium Falcon (ANH) - I don't remember the year although it was probably '78 or '79 but I wanted this so bad. Like in the worst way. I remember asking Santa for it. Well, low and behold on Xmas morning there it was. However I don't remember openning it which is odd to me. You'd think I would.

Twin Pod Cloud Car & Snowspeeder (ESB) - When I was 7 I was hit by a car when crossing a very busy street. Why? I don't know as I don't remember it. Anyway, when I was in the hospital my parents gave these to me I guess to cheer me up. I was given my last rites so maybe they wanted to before I kicked the bucket but they won't admit that. I think they gave me some figures too but am not 100% sure.

Ewok Village (ROTJ) - I remember getting this in '83 from my grandparents. I remember liking it but wasn't too enthused as it looked like something a girl would play with.
Tie Interceptor (ROTJ) - on the one year when I didn't get hardly any sleep on Xmas eve I remember getting this the next morning. I think it was one of the last toys I got and it was in '84 or '85. By then GiJoe was becoming the toy to get for me. I liked it though and still have it to this day in my collection.

Most of the figures etc. I got I don't remember how or when though. The above is pretty much it except for what I said in my previous post.

Now if we ever wanted to change gears and start talking about GiJoe memories I could offer a big ole list.

jjreason
02-01-2008, 12:29 PM
Me too - I remember my brother getting the USS Flagg for Christmas one year, and I got - amongst some other things, mind you - rechargeable batteries!!!! :cry:

:D:D:D

Needless to say, they were a great present and kept my VHS Tape sized-Walkman in business for hours and hours.... but I didn't appreciate them so much at the time. lol

vader121
02-01-2008, 12:35 PM
Wow, USS Flagg vs rechargeable batteries as a gift. I don't know how old you were but somehow, even to this day, I would prefer the USS Flagg. I actually never got that. Had a friend who had and it seemed it took up his whole basement floor.

jjreason
02-01-2008, 01:27 PM
Yeah, it was at the back-end of my toy era - I must have been 15? Still, the green-eyed monster called jealously was out in full-force that morning!!!

It was huge - 7 feet long for sure - and like your friend, it took up our whole basement floor. The scaffolding underneath was so intricate, it took HOURS to construct.

Strangely, it didn't take nearly so long for my skateboard to deconstruct....

Deoxyribonucleic
02-01-2008, 02:18 PM
My vintage collection has always been my most favorite part of anything Star Wars I own and since my Mom passed away, it has literally become THE most important "anything" I own because if it weren't for her, I would have none of it and there are SO many awesome and fun memories attached to it, it truly is priceless to me.

So on with the good memories

1977 my Mom and Uncle took me to see star wars, I was 5 but a very mature 5 year old because I lived on a farm and already at that age I was shoveling horse and pig poop, breaking ice with a hand ax in the water troughs, learning to chop small wood into kindling with a small hand ax, changing the over large sprinkler pipes on our 3 acre land, riding and steering tractors, all kinds of stuff so anyway, I totally remember everything about going to see STar WArs and when it was done, I was hooked.

The first time to get the figures was 1978, Me and Mom went to K-Mart and I got a see-threepio and stormtrooper (both characters were my fav from the film) My next two figs were Vader and R2 from Sears along with the x-wing. I used to put vader in the xwing, that was his ship alright :) For Xmas 78 I got the falcon and xmas 79 the death star. In between, like for birthdays I'd get smaller vehicles and more figures.

My Mom did LOTS of shopping at Sears so I got the Creature Cantina with Blue Snaggletooth and all kinds of odd 3-4 packaged figures. I literally remember almost everything I got through Star Wars, Empire and ROTJ. The very last figure I got was Endor Rebel Trooper and then sadly, puberty hit and other stuff became priority.

I still have EVERYTHING from the vintage collection my Mom got me which is 3/4 of the way finished with vehicles/playsets and 7/8's finished with figs, just need a few more of the POTF85 and that's what I've been concentrating on alot lately is updating and finishing my vintage collection.

Little did my Mom know what she was going to start :thumbsup: Love ya

jjreason
02-01-2008, 05:38 PM
We're the exact same age.... :love:

Dex's post reminded me of getting the tall Death Star playset at my granma's one Christmas, that Dianoga was one of my most cherished items for some time after that. I'm quite sure it was the year after the Falcon. I never did have any Cantina set, but we got the Droid Factory second-hand, along with a remote controlled Sandcrawler - which I was proud to use alongside my cardboard Sandcrawler playset (though I can't recall exactly when I got that).

I only just recently got my first Dagobah playset with Yoda's hut (in horrible shape, but hey - it was free). Looking at it, I can't believe Hasbro hasn't put that back out again.

It's awesome how reading someone else's memories can trigger your own, ain't it? :cool: :thumbsup:

El Chuxter
02-01-2008, 05:45 PM
In 1978, I was 22 years old and working at a gas station in Kenosha, WI. I died in a fiery explosion in 1979, when some dummy was smoking while I was pumping gas.

It wasn't until 1993 that I was reanimated using parts from a 1984 Dodge Charger and various kitchen gadgets. For eight years, my sole mission was as a government-controlled assassin, sent into the slimiest hellholes on earth to rip terrorists' arms off and beat them to death. I was decomissioned in early 2001, and only then began to collect Star Wars toys. So I didn't do much vintage collecting at all.

jjreason
02-01-2008, 08:37 PM
Likely story, Bub. Charger parts from that era would have given out YEARS ago... no way you'd have nearly this many posts. :mad:

mabudonicus
02-01-2008, 08:55 PM
HAHA fun stuff- while speaking with jjreason a while ago on telephone, I was prompted to check out this thread (you were right Jim, it's just plain awesome to read, totally hit the spot Bro)

MAN I could prolly post a whole page...

JJ- I dunno if I told ya but the Falcon was also a "forgotten gift" for me- hiding behind the tree, totally clicked when I read that again

Dunno if I posted this anywheres else, but my funniest SW memory (I'll post more sporadically as I recall them) is my small-head Han from ANH.
One day I opened my carefully organized case and was HPRRIFIED to see that for SOME reason, my prized (and AWESOMELY inacurate) small-head, bent-elbow Han Solo was now "no head" Han

I was SO ticked but there seemed to be no explanation, my, mom, dad, sister, NOBODY had a clue what might have happened

Never got solved, and I got the crappier "big football head not-the-SAME Han" to replace him.

I think almost 20 years later me and my sister were drinkin some margaritas (a LOT of margaritas) and it came up, and she told me her Barbies head came off, so she took Han and ripped his head off to replace the one Barbie lost- how WEIRD is that?
:beard: Iso & Baws
And that's only one story- next, the destruction of vintage boba fett on lunch break- and maybe the final flight of General Veers/ AT AT Commander

jjreason
02-01-2008, 09:22 PM
Bloody hell! My brother decapitated my Small-head Han with pliers, right in front of me! I TOO got the goofy big headed version as a (none-too welcome, let me say) replacement!!! :eek:

If we had never met, Mabs, I'd be thinking there was some weird-*** Tyler Durden BS going on here.....

Anakin Palpatine
02-01-2008, 10:22 PM
In 1978, I was 22 years old and working at a gas station in Kenosha, WI. I died in a fiery explosion in 1979, when some dummy was smoking while I was pumping gas.

It wasn't until 1993 that I was reanimated using parts from a 1984 Dodge Charger and various kitchen gadgets. For eight years, my sole mission was as a government-controlled assassin, sent into the slimiest hellholes on earth to rip terrorists' arms off and beat them to death. I was decomissioned in early 2001, and only then began to collect Star Wars toys. So I didn't do much vintage collecting at all.

That's awesome!

I had a mom who wrote down everything I ever was given for my Birthday or the holidays. It's kinda fun to look back and see what I got and when, and when it went from Star Wars to G.I. Joe to Transformers and back to G.I. Joe.

My favorite memories:

1980: My first Figures of Luke, Han Chewie and Darth

1981: Throwing my Han Solo around in the backyard and getting him stuck on the roof. I tried everything to get him down and never saw him again.

1983: Pleading with my father in TRU to let me get Yoda's house as I called it, but he wanted to get me an AT-ST. I should've listened! I'm still cleaning that stuff from the quicksand off of my old Tie Fighter.

1988: Selling some of my figures at a garage sale. Not a good time but vivid memory because I didn't want to and my mom made me.

1993: Finding Nein Numb while moving a couch causing me to locate my other figures. Later selling my figures to June Moon Collectibles for $180.00, that was a lot for me, since I was in High School and had just started driving.

1993: After selling out, I decided to start flea Market and Garage sale shopping for old figures, back then you could always find them. This was when I decided to not just buy and sell but collect again.

1995: Walking in to Toys R Us, looking for new Marvel Figures, only to find a very buff Luke Skywalker surrounded by the new line of Star Wars figures all in a cart getting ready to go on the shelves

1996: Selling a ton of Luke Brown vests, Han Carbonites, and Orange carded Luke Stormies, Jawas, Greedos, and Sandtroopers to a Japanese guy at a Toy Show at the Chevy Chase country Club for way more than I ever should have.

1997: Getting into a fist fight with a dealer at a TRU over how many 2-1B, Luke Hoth & Bossks I was buying right when the new line came out. He was banned from the store and I got all my figs. and a black eye.

1997 or 1998: Getting into a fist fight over the 12 Han w/Tauntaun. I was trying to buy 3 when a guy came over to me and pulled one out of my hands. I was actually just buying one for me and the other two for my friends. Who I would later charge a premium for them. This time I was the victor on both ends.

1999: Midnight presell of new figs at TRU for the Phantom Menace. That was a fun night

2000: Realizing I spend to much being a completist and limiting my self to just 3 3/4 inch figs wit an occasional vehicle or playset, if the ever made any.

2006: Limiting myself again due to the way over priced figures. No one should have to pay $6.50 to $7.00 a figure

2008: Getting suckered back in by the upcoming Force Unleashed and Clone Wars cartoon!

Deoxyribonucleic
02-02-2008, 12:40 AM
We're the exact same age.... :love:

*SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEL :love: Isn't it scary sometimes though, being this age *bites nails I don't want to grow up anymore!


Dex's post reminded me of getting the tall Death Star playset at my granma's one Christmas, that Dianoga was one of my most cherished items for some time after that. I'm quite sure it was the year after the Falcon. I never did have any Cantina set, but we got the Droid Factory second-hand, along with a remote controlled Sandcrawler - which I was proud to use alongside my cardboard Sandcrawler playset (though I can't recall exactly when I got that).

I only just recently got my first Dagobah playset with Yoda's hut (in horrible shape, but hey - it was free). Looking at it, I can't believe Hasbro hasn't put that back out again.

It's awesome how reading someone else's memories can trigger your own, ain't it? :cool: :thumbsup:

It's funny, I never got the droid factory or the remote sand crawler. I wonder if there was distribution problems back then? lol j/k

I had/still have my small head Han Solo, Man o man, my Mom knew what she was doin'! Anyhoo, he was my all time favorite figure. I got my stuff out to play one day and I couldn't find him. I got so upset and worried and Mom tried to find me another at the stores but couldn't and one day I pulled out the death star to play with it and he was sittin' there in the elevator. I was so happy.

This next one is kinda odd but I remember doing it like it was yesterday...I think subconsciously I didn't want to grow up to be an icky girl so that meant I didn't want to have boobs (BOY do I feel different about that now lol) so I used to poke press pins into leia's boobs to see if they would deflate. The holes are still there ROFL!

jjreason
02-02-2008, 07:23 AM
Ha! Imagine the ebay description if you were ever down on your luck:

Star Wars Princess Leia figure, loose, near-mint & complete. Bright white, cape intact. Paint perfect, figure however is showing a few minor boob-pricks (please see photo). Buyer to pay all shipping costs.

lollollollol

Bel-Cam Jos
02-02-2008, 04:59 PM
Like sands though the hourglass...

Random remembrances:

1991 or 1992
I had dreams, unlike that whatever-induced one Chuxter had :p , where I was standing in front of glass cases full of SW figs. Then I found an area collectibles/antique mall that had not only a large case eerily similar to my dream, but a "Sci Fi Room" of just Star Wars, Star Trek, Buck Rogers, Planet of the Apes, etc. stuff, wall-to-wall. Awesome! I spend many a weekend, and many a personal check or paycheck there, until I finished my non-Droids and Ewoks collection in '93 with Carbonite Han.

1987
A good friend of mine, after a sleepover when we watched Star Wars on VHS (as if there was another way :lipsrsealed: ) in the days when you only used "A New Hope" as a trivia answer, not an episode title, realized that I still kept my figures, vehicles, and playsets. We divided up the characters (he got Han :( which meant the Falcon, Chewie, Leia, Boba Fett since we also connected villains and vehicles to that one) and played IN THE BACK YARD of my house (couldn't be caught playing with TOYS in junior high :pleased: ).

I always loved getting figures from Toys R Us because the displays were the biggest and their price tags looked cool on the card (that was back in the days of their bright orange ones, and back when stores actually stuck the price on the package :eek: :notMIB: ).