Open the Exclusive Figure? -

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Open the Exclusive Figure?

How much for a few ounces of plastic?

By Robert T. Trate     July 03, 2008

Special Edition ROTJ Jedi Luke Skywalker Theater Edition
© Kenner & Lucasfilm

Several weeks ago I attended a baseball game and was handed a limited edition bobble head figurine as I entered the gate. Everyone in attendance was guaranteed a bobble head that night and the attendance was well over 45,000. Many people collect bobble heads and sell them on eBay to other collectors. Other people open them up and display them. Bobble heads do not make great toys for children. They are retro throwbacks to a simpler era and are more bar paraphernalia than anything else. Little Timmy can’t really put his baseball bobble head in a toy truck and have him deliver sand to his sand box. He could, but it would be pretty lame (even to a little kid). So, outside of the bar owners and the baseball enthusiasts, would you open one? Would you open it, put it with three other identical ones in a backpack and then unknowingly throw away his bat? I know that I am preaching to the choir here but that is exactly what I saw on bobble head night.


Immediately I was reminded of the special edition release of Star Wars Return of the Jedi.  If you went to the first screening that day they were supposed to hand out an exclusive figure (Jedi Luke Skywalker, see picture) to the first thirty people in attendance. I got to the theater early that day and made sure I was close to the front of the line to buy my ticket and get a figure. When I picked up my ticket, I received no figure. Figuring there were none in my rural town I went to the restroom, got my popcorn and sat down. Then, right in front of me were these young kids opening the exclusive figure. I asked where they got them and they told me they were handed them as they went into the theater. Extremely upset and mad I thought about asking the manager if there were any more. Then this guy approached the kids and asked them if they would sell him their figures for $40 a piece. It took all of ten minutes and the price was already set. 


What I want to ask you Maniacs is, are other people naïve to their value? Are we crazy for not opening these exclusive figures? Does the value increase because people open theirs and treat them like common toys? Has that whole generation of mothers who threw away the baseball cards and toys really doomed us to a life of excitement contained behind cardboard and clear plastic?  


I struggle with this a lot and there are times when I do want to open these figures up and set them out. Perhaps, I might even give one to my nephew. Then I read that LEGO handed out a limited edition Han Solo and Indiana Jones Lego 2-Pack at the International Toy Fair which are now selling for $500 online. I just shake my head in disbelief and wonder who is paying that much for a few ounces of plastic?

San Diego Comic Con TOY Exclusive Update:

DC Direct is releasing a Batman and a Joker (see picture) figure to commemorate their 10th anniversary. Packaged and sold separately in a clamshell book package, these figures will retail for $20.00 at the SDCC. They will be available in limited quantities and will be the figures to pick up at the SDCC if The Dark Knight is as great as it looks. They will be sold at the Graphitti Designs booth (#2315) which is next to the DC Comics area. The Batman figure is pretty standard, which is why I didn’t include a picture. The Joker figure stands out with his straight jacket and bare white feet; making him reminiscent of the Joker as seen in Batman Dead End.  


Would I open the Joker? No. Besides looking incredibly cool and creepy, the Joker in a straight jacket does not do much. He can look just as cool in his plastic clamshell box.

Spotlight Toy of the Week:
Star Wars Saga Legends Zev Senesca by Hasbro 

The Star Wars saga characters have almost been picked clean by the good people at Hasbro and there are not many aliens or side characters left. Zev Senesca (Rogue Two), the heroic rebel pilot who found a stranded Luke Skywalker and Han Solo, finally has been given the action figure treatment. The likeness of Christopher Malcolm is well done considering the sculptors were going off of old video/ DVD footage to get him right. The artist rendering of Zev on the package is practically iconic. Denis Lawson (Wedge Antilles) never had such a rendering. Zev’s character profile is probably the saddest of all Star Wars action figures. Under characteristics it simply states that he was killed during the battle of Hoth, making the Zev action figure a bit of a downer and really not a great figure for a kid to pick up. “Which one do you want Billy, another Stormtrooper or Zev the dead rebel pilot?” For this collector Zev will receive his own snow speeder and a place of honor in the collection. He’ll go right next to Wuher (the bartender) from the Mos Eisley cantina.

Open him? Yes, Zev deserves to live again.


Video Games:
PS3, PS2 and PSP

Guitar Hero Aerosmith by Activision Inc. (PS2)


Guitar Hero Aerosmith Wireless Bundle by Activision (PS2)


Guitar Hero Aerosmith Bundle with 2 Wired Guitars by Activision (PS2)


Guitar Hero Aerosmith by Activision Inc. (PS3)

Guitar Hero Aerosmith Wireless Bundle by Activision (PS3)


Nintendo Wii and Nintendo DS


Amf Bowling Pinbusters by Bethesda (DS)

Ducati Moto by Bethesda (DS)

Final Fantasy Fables: Chocobo's Dungeon by Square Enix (Wii)


Guitar Hero Aerosmith by Activision Inc. (Wii)

Guitar Hero Aerosmith Bundle by Activision (Wii)


Journey to the Center of the Earth by THQ (DS)


1 Vs. 100 by Destination Software (DS)


Purr Pals by Crave Entertainment (Wii)


Soul Bubbles by Eidos Interactive (DS)


Trauma Center Under The Knife 2 by Atlus (DS)

Xbox 360

Gears of War (2-Disc Edition) by Microsoft


Guitar Hero Aerosmith by Activision Inc.


Guitar Hero Aerosmith Wireless Bundle by Activision


Alice Greenfingers by Mumbo Jumbo (Windows 2000 / 98 / Me / Vista / XP)


Dream Chronicles 2: The Eternal Maze by Encore Software (Windows Vista / XP)


Jungo by Mumbo Jumbo (Windows 2000 / 98 / Me / Vista / XP)


Showing items 1 - 10 of 13
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Flint521466 7/3/2008 4:42:20 AM
I ALWAYS opened my "guys" as my Mom would call them. What 4 yr. old gets a toy and doesn't want to play with it? I'm 31. I have every Star Wars, GI Joe, Super Power, MASK toy Batman TAS figure all in seperate gym bags all waiting for Lil' Flint to come along.
AMiSHPiRATE 7/3/2008 6:56:26 AM
almostunbiased 7/3/2008 7:05:11 AM
Amish(butt)pirate, if you're reading this your probably a nerd. There are just different levels. Now I love sports and cars, and I don't collect toys, but I'm still reading this article, so I must too be a nerd, a movie and video game nerd.
Flint521466 7/3/2008 7:26:50 AM
I don't still collect/buy the shit ASSpirate. I kept it for posterity fuck you very much.
AMiSHPiRATE 7/3/2008 7:39:48 AM
ha ha ha. nerds!
darkheart00 7/3/2008 12:32:06 PM
Actually I prefer "Geek" over "Nerd" but hey whatever, I am the king "Nerd" then. Strange, I don't hear my wife complaining about it when were playing "Han and Leia" though ;)<BR itxtvisited="1" /><BR itxtvisited="1" />To answer the question, If you become so obsessed with the market value of the items you are collecting you will never, ever enjoy the hobby. That's like staring at my 401k every day, lamenting my investments and changing them everyday. It will get me nowhere but crazy. Some very few items are purchased with the intent to just leave in the package (ala the SDCC exclusives) but most of the stuff could go either way depending on the amount of available space I have for collectibles. The enjoyment of the hobby for me is surrounding myself (my office anyways) with items that remind me of good memories and childhood. How does that happen if they are all hermetically sealed and buried in a temperature controlled closet?? It boils down to, don't just do it to be an investment speculator, do it because you enjoy it. In the package, out of the package, it shouldn't matter as long as your having fun with it. Oh and for the record, I was one person back from getting that theater exclusive Luke back when the ROTJ Special Edition hit. I missed it, Oh well. Rather than offer some shyster a load of cash for his, I just picked up the same non-exclusive figure for $5.99......and yes, opened it.
gauleyboy420 7/3/2008 12:37:44 PM
I open everything Immediately. Comics, Toys whatever. There are VERY few things I leave in the package. I am a fan, not a collctor. I want to read, or play with my cool stuff I buy. HOWEVER that said, I am enough of a geeknerd to keep the packaging. yeah I'm stupid
mckracken 7/3/2008 2:43:21 PM
whoah... such hostilities...<BR itxtvisited="1" />I'm still waiting for my charbroiled aunt Beru and Uncle Owen remains! Whats the deal with that? Too gristly? what about Char Broiled Anakin Skywalker with removable facemask and a sound clip that screams "NOOOOOOO!!"<BR itxtvisited="1" /><BR itxtvisited="1" />I'm not a geek... Hell, by the time I get to San Diego I dont go for any big bulky toys, I search out those ellusive comic book pages from my fav artists or $500 <A class=iAs style="FONT-WEIGHT: normal! important; FONT-SIZE: 100%! important; PADDING-BOTTOM: 1px! important; COLOR: darkgreen! important; BORDER-BOTTOM: darkgreen 0.07em solid; BACKGROUND-COLOR: transparent! important; TEXT-DECORATION: underline! important" href="#" target=_blank itxtdid="5593754">animation</A> cels or sketches from Heavy Metal or The Simpsons Movie. i actually found a pencil drawing (Authentic storyboard) of Bart standing next to Milhouse for $50! how friggin cool was that? its not colored but its not a photocopy either, the photocopies were also $50!!
AMiSHPiRATE 7/3/2008 3:14:27 PM
neeeerrrrrrrrrrrds!!!!! --- though I'm surprised to hear charboiled aunt beru & uncle lars remains haven't come out yet. seriously, I thought lucas would have licensed that off to mcfarlene by now.
almostunbiased 7/3/2008 3:44:08 PM
You're just upset because we call you Amish(butt)pirate.
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