Thursday, 22 March 2012

One gets ideas in the strangest places.

When I were a lad, I had this toy.

By the power of Google, I find he was one of Star Team, a range of Star Wars knockoffs rushed into stores in late 1977. They may not have been the real things, but the real things didn’t come out until summer 1978.

Like the real things, Marvel did a comic for them. Unlike the real things, it didn’t run for years and continue to count as EU material.

But I got him after Star Wars figures came out, making him doubly puzzling. I never saw the Knight of Darkness (who had a face like a Dumbo Pink Elephant on the box art) or the R2 lookey-likey until now. And I got him for Easter, as I recall, which didn’t set a precedent of non-chocolate Easter presents but might well reflect his “yes, this is a weird knockoff we got in a bargain store” origins undeserving of a birthday or Christmas.

But I remembered him today while thinking about a Star Wars game. A green and silver protocol Droid with a slightly less startled expression than C-3P0. He could be the start of a whole team of knockoffs, like a roguish pilot played by Dirk Benedict or Robert Vaughn.

Or classing things up a bit, unused character names from earlier scripts, with unused designs from the Art Of Star Wars books. Clone Wars has been making good use of them, after all.

Prince Valorum pursues Princess Zara across the Granicus System. Datos and Quist lead Valorum’s Legions of Lettow away, seeking to buy the Princess time to reach Aquilae and warn her father of the Starkiller....

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