Saturday, May 18, 2013

30 Years of RETURN OF THE JEDI - Part 18

With it's own flyer announcing Revenge of the Jedi products to come, Kenner began to get kids excited for the next movie's worth of action figures, vehicles, and playsets. Sadly, No Return of the Jedi related items made it into the Micro Collection, which is a shame, since it was a cool line (though a bit pricey compared to the other toys, which probably led to its demise) and Jabba's Palce and Sail Barge would have served perfectly for this line of toys. 

What was being made could soon be seen in the first of two booklets which shipped with their vehicles and playsets. The first booklet had the same cover front and back, and was filled with about half older product and half Return of the Jedi product. One comical snaffu is the blackbox substituting for censored photos of the ewok plush toy line, because the visual appearance of the ewoks were still top secret, yet they are clearly shown on the adjoining page with the Ewok Village playset, as well as on the first page of individual action figures. 

Note that there are already two Klaatu action figures 

The bulk of the second booklet were Return of the Jedi specific toys. In a telling difference between the nature of the toy business thirty years ago and today, Kenner was still pushing it's entire line of individual action figures implying that they were all still available (which to my memory they were), versus today where waves of action figures come and go over a few short weeks, with some missing some stores altogether, so that if you miss them now, ebay is your only hope. 

The line would continue for a couple more years before dying off, and the toys made after the ones shown in these catalogues are the scarcest of the vintage Star Wars toy line. This makes sense, since coincidence would have it that this was the same time I went off to college, and even if I had the money to spend, was too self conscious to go buying toys that I'd have sitting around my dorm room, so my original collection also ends at this time with those now scarce figures still absent to this day. 

1 comment:

Tony Simmons said...

My father worked for a company that designed computer-controlled machines for making just about anything on a lathe or press, and he was called to repair one of the machines at a factory where the toys were being produced. While he was there, they were ordered to destroy the boxes and toys that had "Revenge of the Jedi" printed on them. He said if he knew how much they would be worth now, he'd have snagged a few before they went into the garbage. No such luck, though.