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View Full Version : Star Wars: We got 10 extra years of our childhood back



Tycho
12-01-2005, 03:20 PM
A lot of us are around the threshold of our 30's now.

In 1977 (1978 when the first toys were released) we'd just become "children," having graduated from "toddler state."

Star Wars became a huge influence upon us like no other generation has experienced. It lasted about 8 years.

In 1995, almost 10 years after the first "death" of Star Wars, most of us were about 18 years old and it started again.

We got another chance to regress back to our childhood and have been doing so for another DECADE!

Today we have figures we only dreamt of getting 20 years ago - like Herme Odel (rumored as on-the-way) and Ephant Mon (Hasbro's master-achievement), plus we have variant Imperial Officers (with Jerjerrod and Veers coming up) and Rebel Troopers from '97's to the latest Yavin Base Security. Plus we have 3 new movies to draw upon as sources for more (though man was Episode 3 milked dry! - save for possible Padmes and a few more Clones).

Star Wars hunting is continuing, though its form looks to be changing:

-online exclusives like the Lucas Collection
-Sideshow taking over 12" at a 125% price increase.
-Master Replicas, Gentle Giant, and Code3 offering cool stuff we hadn't even hoped for

Some of us will be taking a step back. 10 extra years as a child was a great ride!

I'll still be there to pick up Veers, Herme Odel, and a lot of the SSG's Top 50 List from Hasbro. There's some forthcoming stuff from Master Replicas that I'm buying (or hoping for), and Darth Tater / Spudtroops / Galactic Heroes / Jedi Force, Force Battlers etc. proved hard to resist.

I'm not endorsing the size change with Unleashed from my wallet.

I never got into Attacktix as I don't want to invest the time to learn a new game - I'm not even a video gamer.

I'll get Sideshow 12" occasionally - like a Bespin Leia that I don't have a Hasbro version of.

But I can safely say I can "grow up" now and save some room as well as cherry-pick my way through the continuation for this hobby.

I wonder what it will be like when the TV shows start up? I already plan to watch. Will there be stuff to collect and will I have desire to do so?

I don't care that much anymore. I like sleeping in (not waiting outside before Wal-Mart opens, etc.) and having the opportunity to invest and play in other areas of my life.

It's been a great ride.

decadentdave
12-01-2005, 08:12 PM
I echo your sentiments, Tycho. It has been a great ride these last 10 years but it has taken it's toll financially. The market is so over-saturated now that it is impossible to have everything. Hard to believe after the "Great Drought" from 1985-1995 where there was practically no merchandise to be found save for the random Garage Sales and Antique Shops.

It will be interesting to see where all of this goes from here. Hasbro's 2006 lineup is a mixed bag. Mostly repacks, repaints and resculpts. I'll pick up a few key figs but I can finally "get over" my completism sickness and start "growing up" in other areas of my life. I think I have gotten my fill of Star Wars to last me the rest of my life. Thanks, George. It's been fun.

bobafrett
12-01-2005, 11:12 PM
I echo your sentiments, Tycho. It has been a great ride these last 10 years but it has taken it's toll financially. The market is so over-saturated now that it is impossible to have everything. Hard to believe after the "Great Drought" from 1985-1995 where there was practically no merchandise to be found save for the random Garage Sales and Antique Shops.

It will be interesting to see where all of this goes from here. Hasbro's 2006 lineup is a mixed bag. Mostly repacks, repaints and resculpts. I'll pick up a few key figs but I can finally "get over" my completism sickness and start "growing up" in other areas of my life. I think I have gotten my fill of Star Wars to last me the rest of my life. Thanks, George. It's been fun.

Talk about being over-saturated, I have seen an inflatable Jedi starship bed, tents, a bathroom basketball set, and so many other SW related merchandise, that it is impossible for most collectors to get "everything". Like Tycho, I have chosen to be a little more selective, maybe not for the same reasons, mine are more tied to my finances, and also trying to build a more "mature" collection. Today I made my last payment on my $200 Darth Vader scupture from GG. I am seriously considering not buying anymore of the next series of 3 3/4 inch collection, though it may be a tough task as my morning routine involves walking through the toy department in my Wal-Mart to see what new goodies came in on the previous nights truck. I have spent enough on SW related mecrchandise that I could have made a really nice down payment on a house. I don't know that I will ever bring myself to a point where I can comforatably separate myself from my toys that I have collected to this point, but in time that too could change.

decadentdave
12-01-2005, 11:46 PM
When I look at all of the storage totes and boxes stacked to the ceiling in my attic and all of the boxes and figures lying around the house, I find myself feeling like Mark Hamill in that episode of Amazing Stories where he's living out of his car for the sake of his collectibles!

LTBasker
12-02-2005, 12:39 AM
Somewhat ironic, Tycho. Alot of people got 10 more years to their childhood, instead I got a sendoff to my childhood with Episode 3 as I turned 18 a few months before it came out.

timmae
12-02-2005, 01:53 AM
i have to agree with you all. to make the sickness/ addiction worse... i order hundreds of dollars of plastic starcases. only to pack them back into boxes. i need to get way more selective next year. problem beeing i search for a figure so long and hard, when i see it i buy an extra or 2 for future trades. then case them too. time to move forward:(

Kidhuman
12-02-2005, 02:32 AM
I am also planning on cutting down, no more buying Vaders, Anakins, Obi-wans and such. There are way too many already. Cutting down is a must. I will still be collecting, just a bit more choosy this time round.

Tycho
12-02-2005, 03:51 AM
I have to admit something: I was in Wal-Mart this evening for non-Star Wars purchases and I bought a lamp - it's Darth Vader's head. Sad but true. They make Batman, Spider-Man, The Little Mermaid, Snow White, whatever. But there was only 1 Vader left. Dude, I'm such a sucker. It's a lamp - and I did need more lighting in my new place. But seriously - I couldn't resist? And I actually thought how cute it would be for there to be a Darth TATER lamp companion piece? I still have a problem.

Anyway, I recommend the Vader lamp. It's pretty cool. Heh-heh-heh. Sucker.

Blue2th
12-02-2005, 08:42 AM
I started moving on to other Star Wars collectibles. Have a Sideshow Vader on pre-order. Have all the animated Clone Wars Maquettes, except for Padme of course. Have every Unleashed (I am boycotting the new Unleashed) I really like the looks of the Kotobukiya clones etc. so I will probably buy one and see how it looks. I think as we get older our tastes for Star Wars is getting more discriminating and we want more detail. Sure I have all the newest ROTC 3.75 figures, ships, etc. but even those are better sculpts than alot of the stuff we bought in earlier days. I will not buy the Galactic Heroes, Attactix, Darth Taters etc. I will continue to buy at least one of every Saga 2006 3.75. At least 2 of new sculpts for my loose collection (can't wait to see General Veers) From the looks of it Hasbro is realizing after the Hype is gone, all they have is us collectors. That of course could change when the TV shows start.

trandoshan666
12-02-2005, 05:16 PM
This is kind of odd because I'm headed a bit in the opposite direction I've amped up my collecting as of late, and am planning a huge 2006. That said, I've traditionally skipped a lot of stuff that many collectors snatch up I collect only selective 12 inch figures, vehicles other stuff, etc. Basically, I've stuck to the 3 3/4 inch figures, and have discriminated heavily. Recently though, I decided to fill in all of the holes in my basic figure collection (and believe me, there are many), and plan on owning every figure made, including carded vintage stuff.
I'm really only collecting the figures, though, so my POV on increased collecting is probably significantly different from many people's. In short, I'm sure that what I consider "more collecting" would be average or less than other people's definitions.

Mr. JabbaJohnL
12-02-2005, 08:43 PM
I didn't get 10 years of my childhood "back" - for me, these last several years have been part of my "childhood" (I'm 16 now). It's going to be extremely sad when it's all over, but hopefully that won't be for a long time. I certainly don't plan on slowing down anytime soon - that is to say, I'm buying all the new figures and only whichever repacks/repaints I like (which is what I've always been doing).

decadentdave
12-02-2005, 08:56 PM
That's interesting, Jabbajohn. I assume you have a job to buy all of your stuff, yes? See, when I was a kid, my parents bought me all of my Star Wars toys and I usually had to wait until Christmas to get all of the ships and vehicles. Fortunately, the Great Drought from 85-95 was during my adolescent years so I didn't have to buy anything until after I had graduated college and got a "real" job and could afford to buy my collectibles. I imagine that collecting must be even more of a challenge for you young kids, especially competing with us "seasoned" collectors and all.

Tycho
12-02-2005, 10:01 PM
No doubt. The kids had to be in school (or on their way) when the stores opened and while I was in college and free to stand outside of Wal-Mart at 6:45 am (most of our stores open at 7am) I groaned at people 10 or 20 years older than me who did this (mostly for stuff they sold to dealers and / or scalped on their own at Swap Meets). I thought I was "entitled to the figures" because I was the youngest. (LOL)

I started again because of Playmates Star TREK figures. There were only 10 of them or so in 1992 or so (for The Next Generation) and so I bought them never expecting that collection to get so large.

At Star TREK conventions I used to walk the dealers' rooms to see the new stuff before retail stores got them (usually Target in those days). I heard rumors about the new Star WARS figures coming in 1995 - as the books had started again with T. Zahn in 1991 and Dark Empire comics shortly following.

Star Wars was just 9 figures. Easy enough. But I decided I'd finally get all the stormtroopers I wanted. That turned into 100 and scouring the stores as I learned how those jerks at Swap Meets got their stuff in the first place. Then I decided I'd do scenes with all these figures and I needed extra Solos, Chewies, Lukes, Bens, Vaders, Droids, and Princesses - and more.

Solo to shoot Greedo
Solo to shoot several stormtroopers
Solo to pilot the Falcon

And so on. It got really out of control. And that wasn't even a HTF figure.

I got a college student's credit card and pushed the limits upwards for years after that.

I quickly formed a collector's alliance in my area to defeat the scalpers and we've been a team for almost 10 years! We got 90-100 SA Clones from the Clone Wars line when it was rare and HTF and I went to the SW Celebrations and Comic Cons with my team. We wiped the stores out down here and used to laugh at the limited selection the scalpers (when we had them) DID seem to get (at the Swap Meet) when they'd have ridiculous $30 prices on rare figures because they couldn't get them (but they probably would've charged that much anyway).

But I digress. I think it would be really hard to be a kid in this hobby, JABBAJOHNL. By your age, I guess you drive now. But you still have to be on your way to school in the AM and can't be scouring stores when you start class at 8am or so. My college classes didn't start until usually 10am and on somedays 1pm. I usually went to campus after hunting, but I didn't have to be there immediately (I'd shower and often have breakfast at home AFTER hunting and before going to school).

When I graduated and started working I was employing myself. Besides avoiding rush hour traffic, I didn't go to the office before 10am, so I had the same freedom to hunt, and changed into a suit after I'd return home from Target (etc) and cleaned up.

I don't think kids ever got a fair chance - at least not up front.

I bought out the racks bare until I'd finished mine and my friends' lists.

Now 10 years ago I adopted a Little Brother. He was like 11 when I was 21. I met him at a dealer's where his mom took him with his paper route check to pay $30 to a dealer for a Lando figure and said he'd be able to get Yoda, Han, and the TIE Pilot the next month. He reminded me of me with my mom, "back in the day" and I said "no way!" and started buying his figures for him. This dealer didn't need to rip off a kid. Years later he is still my brother and one of my best friends. (He quit to run his own e-business and has matured beyond me! LOL). But I justified my clearing of the racks by my buying for Bob along the way to my own drowning in action figures. At least I was making sure 1 kid got SW Figures. Oh - and he wanted a Stormtrooper army too. I must have been a menace to others looking for those figures.

Our collector team we have here - we all started as rivals fighting for troop builders especially. Today they are some of my best friends who I went to Indy with, Denver, etc. - as well as the prequel movies and 97's re-release, etc. along with Spider-Man, Terminator 3, etc.

It's been a great ride.

bobafrett
12-03-2005, 12:30 AM
I was just 12 when the original Star Wars came out in 1977. I remember my dad taking us to the stores, and I'd go look at the 12" Vader as well as any other Star Wars merchandise they had out. By the time I got a job, I was still in school, worked evenings, and took public transportation to get to and from my job. It stunk, because you couldn't just ask the bus driver to drop you off at the store while you ran in to check what figures were in, not to mention by the time I got there, all the good figures were usually gone. My father was against my collecting anything Star Wars, and my mom believed that Star Wars gave a bad message. I doubt either one of them had watched it at that time.

Then came the dry years as Tycho mentioned. It was a dark time, but I pursued other interests, like women and eventually had a son of my own in 1991. I still remember my first apartment after his mother and I called it quits in '93. I didn't have much in the way of a collection then, just a basic apartment, few pieces of furniture, the few items I was able to hold onto from my early childhood years which amounted to a 12" Vader that my brother gave me, and some figures from ROTJ, and not a whole lot more. In 95 the figures and interest in SW was on the rise, toys were being produced, and I was on my own, and had a job, and no one to tell me to box up my collection. Over the past ten years, I have amassed a nice size collection, but I look to the years after my son graduates from high school. What will my plans be then? Will I still be renting the house I am now? Will I have enough money together in four years (providing I stop or slow down my habit now) to put down on a house of my own?

It has been a great ride, and all my good friends always let me know what they have seen out there in SW's merchandise.

Mr. JabbaJohnL
12-04-2005, 03:03 PM
That's interesting, Jabbajohn. I assume you have a job to buy all of your stuff, yes? See, when I was a kid, my parents bought me all of my Star Wars toys and I usually had to wait until Christmas to get all of the ships and vehicles. Fortunately, the Great Drought from 85-95 was during my adolescent years so I didn't have to buy anything until after I had graduated college and got a "real" job and could afford to buy my collectibles. I imagine that collecting must be even more of a challenge for you young kids, especially competing with us "seasoned" collectors and all.
Unfortunately I don't have a job yet, but I think I'll get one next summer. I buy the stuff I get now from allowance, which is $10 a week, so it's not too hard to get all the stuff. When I find something in the stores that I need but I don't have any money, my parents buy it and keep it until I can pay them for it or until my birthday/Christmas. This works quite well.

I'm missing quite a few vehicles from nearly every line, since I tend to focus on the figures first. I hope to someday fill in all the holes of my collection, when I can.

I once delivered papers on Wednesdays, and that was pretty sweet in getting more cash. I don't have that job anymore since the idiots at the paper company thought it would be better to have fewer kids that delivered 600 papers instead of more kids that delivered 100. They made us bid for the job, or something, but I didn't do it since it wasn't worth it.