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|11-14-2012, 10:17 PM||#1|
Join Date: Oct 2008
I have an on again/off again relationship with Star Wars collecting. I never collected Star Wars as much as I collected GI Joe. In fact, I got into Star Wars collecting relatively late. I used to think Star Wars was corny and stupid. That was until USA started showing reruns of Star Wars back in 93 or 94. My friends had them recorded on VHS and I borrowed them. I was blown away. ESB was shocking to me. Vader being Luke's dad? Why did Obi Wan lie? Yes that was explained in ROTJ but you wouldn't know his reasoning until you saw it. Luckily for me it was just a matter of putting in the next VHS. For everyone back in the early 80's, I can imagine the speculation being full of puzzling theories and WTF moments.
I intended to get back into Star Wars collecting back in 95 when Kenner and Hasbro had merged and released a new line of toys. To me, coming off the USA reruns, this was a god-send(prior to that I was so desperate I wanted the gummy bendy figures and vintage 12 inch figures at an LCS). I actually held back but was able to enjoy the toys through one of my best friends whose parents had a habit of buying most of what was available at the time.
It would not be until 1997 that I would have Star Wars toys that I could call my own. I started with some Shadows of the Empire series figures, thought Luke in Coruscant Guard armor was bad ass. Wonder why Hasbro hasn't made a fully articulated version yet? Got the stubby X-wing. This was at a time when the Power FX X-wing would be revealed not too long afterwards, and despite having a pilot built into the toy, was still a huge jump over the old stubby X-Wing.
I used to think passing on the AT AT, A-wing, B-Wing, TIE Interceptor, et al, was a stupid decision. I regretted this for years. See, I only got the stubby X-wing and literally a handful of figures. The appeal to me was that there was so much stuff to collect. What stopped me was the lack of articulation. I mean back then the price was what, $3+ per figure? Not hard to amass a collection. However this was at a time when I was beginning to outgrow my Toy Biz X-men/Marvel figures because of a lack of articulation.
So fast forward to 2004. A new "super articulated"(whatever) ROTJ Luke was on the horizon and since this was a jump over the usual figures, I was actually excited(years later the only thing impressive to me would be the cloth cloak it came with). Then came ROTS. ROTS was a tease. A few super articulated figures, and a lot of action gimmicks. Remember that Order 66 Anakin with the jedi robes? Looked bad ass BUT had 1 ball elbow and 1 cut elbow. I thought that was stupid.
2006 brought about the Evolutions sets and surprisingly I missed out. I had waited too long and the parents/kids/collectors nabbed them all during xmas shopping season. 2007 brought about a line that did many things right in my eyes the TAC(Thirtieth Anniversary Collection). I collected a good number of figures in this line and this is where I can truly say I started collecting Star Wars with more emphasis. I liked how a lot of figures had close to full articulation(super articulation at the time). I liked the character selection. I liked most of the McQuarrie concept figures.
From then on I got some Force Unleashed figures, then some Legacy figures, and who could forget, Vintage Collection figure. Also some Clone Wars mixed in after I watched season 1(I love that show, but that's the only season I've seen, yes I know I am missing out).
From the years prior to 2010 we got a lot of great Star Wars toys. Sure there were times were Hasbro left my head shaking, like WTF is going on why would they do this? However that does not compare with this year. Looking at how the brand was handled this year left me appreciating what I had from prior years even more, substantially. It seemed like not only did Hasbro go backwards and release old outdated toys from the original Episode 1 release or years after, but retailers over ordered and are sitting on unsold toys from January.
Vintage Collection? Yeah, wave 1 had kick ass figures like the new kid Anakin with that training ball(that was cool to see Luke use 1 in ANH, hence why I even bought this figure), and of course the Darth Maul that was a long time coming, but a lot of the later waves were difficult to find. I just NOW found Darth Malgus. This is ridiculous.
Clone Wars took a step back....or years back. The smaller Class II vehicles next year took several steps back. It seems that if you want good vehicles, you almost have to wait for retailer exclusives now, because the mass market ones aren't cutting it(aside from mini-rigs but the good ones are hard to find).
I've said the same thing about G.I. Joe, and Transformers, for toys prior to this year, but for Star Wars; yeah, it was good while it lasted. I am glad that the Build a Droid line is coming back next year, and it isn't because of the Droids. Honestly, the BAD gimmick is neat but I am not that big into droids. I am mainly excited because it looks like every figure in that line has "super"(close to full if not full for a Star Wars figure) articulation. This was the main draw for me to the vintage collection(especially since I don't keep the cards).
Maybe someday years from now we will finally see the BMF style ROTJ Slave I we were meant to see, a new A-Wing(or reissue of the last Walmart one with new paint), and a BMF style Y-Wing. Also a new super articulated Darth Revan. Someday..
|11-15-2012, 05:39 AM||#2|
Join Date: Jul 2009
While 2008-2011 weren't terrible, I had to strategically hit stores (i.e. go at opening, and on truck days) and order online to get what I wanted. Figure selection was good in the collector-targeted lines, but the Legends and Clone Wars assortments got bogged down with pegwarmers. Prices were also creeping up, which sucked.
2012 has easily been the worst year in recent memory for Star Wars collecting. I'm not sure if it has EVER been this bad. The Target closest to me finally restocked Vintage figures for the first time since the spring... my local Wal-Mart, however, hasn't stocked since February. This is the first year ever where most of my figure purchases have been made online, either by the case or individually via HTS or Amazon. I have found fewer than ten new Vintage figures since the Deleted Scene wave came out back in February... even Movie Heroes and Clone Wars bombed hard this year, with very few restocks in my area.
The one, and only one, bright spot this year has been the exclusives. We have gotten some great items like the Speeder Bike and K-Mart 2-packs, and best of all they have been plentiful (at least in my neck of the woods).
I'm hoping stuff can actually be found in stores next year. Beyond that, I'm hoping the upcoming movies rekindle interest in Star Wars, so we can enjoy more "movie years" with plenty of (hopefully quality) toys. This year overall was really terrible, and if next year ends up being more of the same I'll be very upset.
|11-15-2012, 06:54 AM||#3|
Lazy MUtant Overlord
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Ottawa, ON
Before this year all I had was some action fleet ships so maybe I haven't noticed as much but I do see the things you are saying. For someone like me, I'm able to pick and choose the best and I still have catching up to do. I do find it frustrating that all the best looking and most desired (for me at least) figures seem to get made in such low quantities and I never see them.
|hasbro, original trilogy, otc, star wars, star wars toys, the vintage collection, votc|
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