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The Wayback Machine

A Star Wars Christmas

The Christmas of 1977 was pretty much devoid of Star Wars toys, as the possible demand for them was grossly underestimated. In truth, who could’ve imaging that the Star Wars universe and everything associated with it would be such an incredible phenomenon?

Christmas of 1978 looked a little more promising, with manufacturers having an entire year to make up for their error the previous Christmas…

Underneath my Christmas tree that fateful morning in ’78 were several coveted Star Wars items. I’ve written about the remote-controlled R2D2 I received in a previous article, but I also got action figures of C3PO and R2D2 and Luke’s land speeder. For a grade school kid like me, this was like getting a bag of gold bullion. I remember with fondness, the hours of fun I had, dreaming up my own Star Wars adventures. Next to my G.I. Joe, these were my favorite toys by far.

Unlike me, my brother hung on to all of his Star Wars stuff over the years, and a few old pieces of mine now reside at his house, with his. It’s nice to know that they still exist and are being looked after.

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Now Showing

Now Showing: The Mandalorian

Nothing could be more exciting to a kid who grew up in the 1970’s than a new entry into the Star Wars saga. It was from that vantage point, that I excitedly waited to watch The Mandalorian.

From Disney, “After the stories of Jango and Boba Fett, another warrior emerges in the Star Wars universe. The Mandalorian is set after the fall of the Empire, and before the emergence of the First Order. We follow the travails of a lone gunfighter in the outer reaches of the galaxy, far from the authority of the New Republic.”

While that official description might not elicit excitement in Star Wars fans, the serial itself will. It does play like a futuristic western, and the character of The Mandalorian (played with Clint Eastwood dryness by Pedro Pascal) is humanized far more than the Fetts. In his quest to obtain multiple bounties, he’s warned by Greed Karga not to bite off more than he can chew. Played with weightiness by veteran Carl Weathers, Karga offers up a bounty that must be done off of the books, and the adventure begins.

Created by director Jon Favreau, clearly a fan of A New Hope, this serial puts the viewer back into the worn-out galaxy that Han Solo and Luke Skywalker came from. The future shown isn’t covered in shiny stainless steel and glass, it’s full of underworld miscreants and horrible weather. 

In a nutshell, that’s the thrill for me. As a fan himself, Favreau completely understands our need to not only see new Star Wars stories and characters, but the need to escape life for an hour or two and actually go to the places they inhabit. I’m in.