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  1. #1

    Collecting....dust?

    I just had an interesting conversation with a co-worker in the past week regarding collecting. He's a bit older and when I told him that I collect Star Wars Toys he got a rather thoughtful look on his face.

    Perhaps it was his age that led him to his opinion, but it actually made a bit of sense. He said that he never really collected anything, at least to the extent that I am with the toys, however there was one or two items in his past that he "just had to have." One of them was a rather rare type of television. I won't go into the details, suffice it to say that he said that in all the time he had it, he turned it on only twice...the day he bought it and the day he sold it. The thrill, it seems, was not in the owning of it, rather in the desire to have it. He took that as a lesson to himself that perhaps collecting for him just didn't make a whole lot of sense. Ultimately, what's the point?

    So, as far as Star Wars toys go, I got to wondering about my own collection. I've noticed two things lately. The first is that I've been caught up in the trappings of life. Work, the kids, other things. There just isn't time to "enjoy" the "collection." It sits silently, day after day, in the closet. Which brings me to the second observation. I have a lot of stuff. My first Star Wars item was the novelization. I remember sitting under the Christmas Tree back in 1977 and opening that gift up. I still have it. It sits in a drawer...in the closet...along with several thousand dollars worth of other toys and collectables. For the moment, it has to remain there. My current dwelling won't accomodate display, much less more storage. I'm running out of space and quick. I look forward to the Gunship arriving from KEBco, but really have no place to put it.

    I like the toys. It's neat seeing tiny little versions of the things we see on the big screen. It's almost creepy actually if you think about it in the wrong way. But what are they for? They sit silently in the closet for most of the year. On occasion, my son and I will pull some of them out and play with them. Even his interests pull his attention away so his playtime with them is self-limited. If I had the room for diorama's, that would be cool too. But for how long? Is there a statutue of limitations on when to take apart a carefully set up display? When you get tired of dusting perhaps? Then what? Set up another one?

    I used to actively really enjoy this hobby of collecting, but lately I've been wondering why? I look at my stuff, and it is cool. I've got some really neat stuff! I'm glad I have it. But aside from playing around with it for a few minutes when I get it, then looking at some of it every now and again, I ask myself, what is the point? What will I do when I have the room for display? Create a mini museum? Throw them in a box for the kids and grandkids to play with?

    So, my question to you is, what is the point for you? Why do you do it? What will you do with your stuff later in life? All those "mint" "variations" and such...will they mean that much to your grandchildren? Will you die of a heartattack when your grandson rips open the bubble on that .001 FF Weequay or the hard to find Jorg Sacul? What is the point for you?

  2. #2
    I collect loose figures and have only recently started. Relative to most of you guys who I assume have been collecting since the vintage days (or at least 1997 when the line restarted for the special editions). I've been a fan all my life (i'm 30) but didn't really start buying the toys seriously until 1999 when E1 came out. My collection is small, but I really do enjoy having the stuff, even if it just sits on the shelf for months or inthe fisshing tackle boxes I use for storage.

    The point for me is reliving that little piece of my childhood that found escape in the wonderful world that George and Co. created. I really love what George Lucas has done with teh prequels. They are not perfect mind you, but they are awesome.

    When I come home from a long day at work and crash out on my bed, it's nice to see my little Battle Droid army staring at me helping to alleviate the sense of tedium that sets in occasionally.

    Maybe i am digging inot this too deep. Collecting for me is just a fun diversion, although one that I still have never mentioned to my coworkers.

    I prefer to keep my collection small though, so I am very picky and selective about what I buy.

    Is that the kind of answer you were looking for?
    Ohh, maxi-big da Force.
    Well, dat smells stinkawiff.

  3. #3
    Originally posted by roger roger
    Is that the kind of answer you were looking for?
    That was perfect, Roger Roger. Thank you.

  4. #4
    I'm an opener, I always have been. My personal intersts in collecting is to be able to display and of course play with my toys. Lately of course i've been playing with the Gunship (which is my latest awsome toy!) I don't have a huge amount of time to play with them of course, because real life obligations usually get in the way. But when energy permits, I will often play with my collection. I have my main display items out on some shelves. I actually dust all these items regularly (about once every 1 to 2 weeks). And the rest of my collection I keep in storage in different areas. But I recently bought a plastic cabinet type thing so I can keep some of my older collection in an easily accesable area.

    I really do enjoy not only displaying and looking at my collection each day, but I love playing with all the figures and vehicles as well. It really makes me feel like a kid again, and helps me to remeber the good old days of the classic trilogy and the original figures and toys.

    I do hope to pass my collection on to my kids some day. Currently I am married, but I don't have kids. But my wife and I plan to have kids of our own in the future. I can imagine that if I have a son, we will be able to enjoy the collection together. And perhaps if his interests are the same as mine I'll pass the collection on to him.
    I don't really have to think to much about what the point to collecting star wars is. It's really simple. Like the Star Wars movies, it makes me feel like a child at heart, and personally thats something I enjoy.

  5. #5
    Here's something I posted in a different thread when a similar issue popped up:

    As some wise man or woman once said: "To each, his own." For you, collecting SW stuff may be some sort of re-living of your childhood in that you get to play with cool toys that you didn't have access to back then. Or, perhaps, it's just that playing with toys never stopped amazing you and, therefore, you still do it. Or, maybe you're a diorama builder and like the way they look all "action posed".

    In all honesty, I do not understand any of those, save the latter. There are tons of figures/ships that I have opened for the sake of opening or for the sake of placing them in my office in an all "action posed" scene. And, that's cool.

    However, I, personally, do not collect SW for any reason other than I am a fan of the movies, comics, and universe. I do not have to open anything; as evidenced by the over 400 unopened figures/ships that I have. Not a huge collection, but it's mine.

    And, if I do open something, I buy another to keep unopened. I am happy just possessing the given figure/ship and surrounding myself with my goodies. I enjoy arranging my office space at home to suit my particular preference and style of collecting. As, I'm sure, is why you openers open yours.

    I am happy with the Republic Gunship sitting in its box on a top shelf with Jango's Slave I on top of it and next to AT-T with Vader's TIE on top of it. (Just as I'm content with the TIE Bomber I just got yesterday being on the shelf underneath it with other vehicles next to it.)

    I've previously posted pics of my little nerd area at home. I think it looks very cool and, and this is the kicker, it pleases me - regardless of what anyone else thinks.

    http://www.sirstevesguide.com/forum...&threadid=10154

    We each collect for our own purposes. I admit that in '95, I opened everything and enjoyed laying my hands on the figures. There was just something about that "feeling". However, that "feeling" is gone for me as a collector and I'm content the way it is. Perhaps that will change; perhaps it won't. Perhaps some of you openers will find the day come to where you say to yourself: "Hmmmm. Those unopened 16 background figures would look sweet on a shelf together." Perhaps you won't. Enjoy your hobby and I'll enjoy mine.

    I, for one, could care less as to if these things are worth millions or worthless in the future. After all, I collect for ME and the odds of me selling these things to, well, ME are rather slim.

    J

  6. #6
    I want to set up a "museum of sorts" with my Star Wars toys all in permanent dioramas.

    I'm in my mid-20's and unmarried. Barring a change in plans with a special girl I wish would come along in my life, I plan to buy my own moderately large house (for a single guy living by himself) and set up every room with a "light touch" of Star Wars. Spread out, I can appreciate my dioramas better, than if they were all crammed together. To me, it can be sensory overload. The only problem: there's too many cool scenes I want to set up.

    I like opening and playing with the new toys as much as I can. I can't "act out adventures with them" as I could when I was a kid. However, I do like shooting the missles and examining the cool action features - most recently 12" Electronic Obi-Wan's lightsaber effects and fighting actions, etc. I can imagine how much more fun I'd have had as a kid, spending all that time playing with these. However, I too have to work to afford this house for my collection. A catch-22 almost.

    But I love opening them and stand amazed at some of the creativity and thoght that went into some toys' action features!

    That being said, I too also very much understand what ROGER ROGER said. I like looking into my dioramas and imagining I was in there - and that it was real. I could be a hero and make decisions to win the situation. Or I could be a villain and strategize to gain absolute power! As I add characters to the diorama, what does each one want? How would they try and get at it? How come?

    Thinking about this is a great distraction. There's an escapist element in it for me. I work in politics and economic redevelopment. Every move results in others in my community making counter-moves, all for different reasons and motives. Some in support, some in opposition. How do they view right and wrong? What is worth fighting for? How far do you take it? Do you pick up a lightsaber or a Death Star? What could I accomplish in the real world with absolute power? Since it's a fantasy question, what could I accomplish in a fictional world like Star Wars'?

    I look into my dioramas and decide who I'd recruit and who I'd kill off, depending upon their occupations and motivations that George or the Expanded Universe gave to them.

    My stuff is not going to be valuable. Nor do I care. It means a lot to me. Perhaps that when I leave this world, my diorama museum I'd lived in would be so impressive and well done, that somebody somewhere will want to fund it becoming a permanent exhibit in some appropriate, and non-residential location. I'm not going to worry about it. When I'm passed on, it's not going to be the most important thing I think of that I'm leaving behind. At least I hope...
    BAD Pts Need: R5-C7 lf leg (x2), , R4-P44 right leg BAD Pts Offered For Trade: PM me - I have lots of parts now including BG-J38!. New Kyle Katarn is also available.

  7. #7
    Well yes, the collecting part is a puzzler. Why collect so much stuff that actually has no real purpose other than to exist and gather dust? The thrill of hunting and finding is a part of the draw for me. Especially getting hold of the exclusives. I like the smalness of the figures, always have had a thing for anything miniature, ever since I was knee high to a grasshopper.
    I wonder sometimes at my motives in collecting, is it just to have something that perhaps others don't? Is it just to have something I couldn't have when i was a boy due to financial reasons? Is it just to have something up close and personal in úD rather than simply gaze at pictures in a book?
    Can't really answer those. I haven't come up with a solid reason why i do collect exept to know that I still do and still enjoy it for the most part.
    I open everything I purchase and put it on shelves and also play with everything in my own fashion. I usually have a couple of toys with me when i sit at the PC and talk to you guys here, While waiting for pages to load I'll sit and play. I spend quiet times sitting in my room gazing at the stuff and figuring out ways to show it off better. I sit and scrutinise the sculpts and turn the things over and over in my hands marvelling at the work that went into the original sculpt that gave rise to the plastic incarnation.
    My family think I'm nuts and mostly refuse point blank to buy me plastic 'junk' preferring to buy me clothing for birthdays and so on. Yet clothing is just something to put on to keep me dry and warm but star wars toys have kept me amused and creative for 25 years. Perhaps that's why I keep reaching into my wallet - the reason is that nothing has captured my imagination in quite the same way as these little figures and vehicles. I certainly can't imagine ever getting rid of them. There may come a time when i can no longer afford to collect new items but I will still have these toys I own now at this point in time to keep me entertained in my own way.
    It's a difficult subject to rationalise really. The very nature of collecting is such a personal thing, what draws us to buy anything other than either greed, a love of aesthetics or a tactile experience. Other than that the only reason is necessity and there's certainly no necessity in buying toys so the other reasons must apply.

    I can't add anything more, I think I just answered the question for myself at least to be happy to carry on collecting. tactile experience, aesthetics, greed, Those are my resons for collecting.
    Greed is bad in one sense but if you look at it as hunger rather than avarice then it isn't so bad is it?

  8. #8
    I used to get that question all the time from my ex g/f and my friends and stuff and the answer i only gave them was, "I enjoy collecting them. What do you care?" The Star Wars saga are by far my favorite assortment of film, ever. I've loved them ever since i was a little tyke and since i missed the vintage figures, so, i feel like this is my second chance to collect figures. The action and lessons of the saga have always been in my head (C'mon, anybody who says that they haven't quoted Yoda is a liar!). Someday I'll buy a house and i plan to have a room dedicated to my collection (i have alot of SW stuff and alot of Simpsons). I think downright, i just enjoy it. Some of the most fun evenings i had were out buying toys with my friends. In fact, this past onsale (4/23 as I refer to it) was a downright blast. C'mon, what could possibly be more fun than being first in line for SW Toys, steak n' shake and then a lightsaber fight in the courtyard at my apartment complex at 4 am, getting up at 9 am just to find the toys you couldn't find the night before??? Not many things, mind you.
    "Woke up at 9.55am. Soon as I woke up, I looked at Suzanne and she looked at me. I said, 'Did I tell you about the immune system?' Suzanne starting laughing, I said, 'it's amazing.' She said, 'Not now.'"

  9. #9
    When I was younger (like 10 or 11), I played with all kinds of action figures. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Power Rangers, Star Wars, G.I. Joe, WWF, Matchbox, I wasn't very picky.

    After I got into High School though, I strayed away from the figures. It was all video games for me. I have had mostly every major system ever made. Nintendo, Super Nintendo, Sega Genesis, Nintendo 64, Dreamcast, Sega Saturn, Playstation, PS2, XBox, Gameboy, GameGear (Remember that one?) and I plan on buying a Gamecube soon.

    While I was into those, my brother (whose is 13 now) "inherited" all of my action figures, which he still plays with today. But not too long ago, maybe 9 months, I got into action figures again. Star Wars. I was totally psyched about Clones, because it sounded like it would be a 100 times better than Episode 1. I was looking up all kinds of info on it, when I came across some pictures of the toys. Wow, is all I could say. I thought they would be just like the old POTF toys, and even the newer Episode 1, just a stationary figure with no pose, who most of the time doesn't even look that good. But these were totally differant. They actually looked cool. Very cool. Right there I knew I had to have them. So the day the were released, I was down at Walmart with like 70 bucks, and I went crazy. Between my brother and I (whose also wanted them) we got all the first day releases with the exception of the hard to find ones (Yoda Dooku etc.), and Jar Jar (Sorry, he just didn't appeal to us ) We took them all home and ripped them all open, setting up scenes we thought might be in the movie.

    After having all of those, the desire to get the rare ones grew. And it still grows today. As of now, I have every figure (minus some of the deluxe) and every vehicle in line up until the Han wave. I can't find TA Anakin for the life of me, although I do have the Gunship.

    My parents think Im crazy for spending the kind of money I do on these things, and some of my friends think its Immature, but whatever. I love going out all the time "hunting" for toys. Its a great feeling when you finally aquire the rare one. I don't play with them much. But they are always set up in some kind of Diorama in my room. Right now all the vehicles are hanging from my ceiling in an all-out AirFight, and the figures are going at it in the Arena battle.

    So I guess for me, its the thrill of the hunt, and satisfaction of seeing what you have. And of course, making a scene with the figures is pretty fun too.
    Powdered Toast Man!

  10. #10
    I have also wondered these same things. I myself, am reaching a turning poin t in my collecting. I have run out of space, and I may be going away to college soon. I have successfully collected Star Wars since '95 when The Power of the Force line came out. And aside from everything that has come out since then, I have also collected a very nice collection of Vintage Star Wars and other very cool looking collectibles.

    However, I'm at a difficult crossroad. I have begun buying up plastic storage bins to store my collection. Much of it is in the box as is open. I'm going w/ plastic that way they can store safely w/out the fear of getting damaged by water, weather, etc. I enjoy my collection very much, and I find great joy and pride at looking throught it. I plan as of now is to store it until I can someday give it a room of its own where it can once again be displayed.

    Somday down the road, I plan to minimize my collection. Sell off parts of it here and there. Its also my plan to leave instructions on what to do with my collection. Will my son or daughter appreciate it as much as I did? Maybe? Maybe not? I'm only 21 now, and still have lots of life and Star Wars ahead of me. After Episode III and Hasbro has exausted the Star Wars line, and the amount of merchindise has come to a slow, I think I'll be happy with what I have.
    "Maybe I can help you. I am Boba Fett. The ship you seek is nearby." -Boba Fett

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