Force Friday is all about the toys, a merchandising push through and through. This year, I lined up with my husband and a few friends at the Target in Hollywood. We naturally bought more than we planned, including several Funkos, a couple of action figures and stuffed Porgs. While waiting for the clock to strike midnight, I checked in with a few other fans to ask them about their favorite Star Wars toys.
Arien, 31, remembered his dad giving him a box set of the original Star Wars trilogy on VHS for his birthday when he was five. "I didn't like Empire when I was little," he told me, explaining that he didn't like when Luke loses his arm, and that the "bad guys won. I wasn't used to the bad guys winning." Of course, as he grew up and learned about the finer points of storytelling, he changed his mind, and it is currently his favorite Star Wars film. Arien's favorite Star Wars collectible is an R2-D2 bank he got from Disneyland to celebrate the opening of the Star Tours ride. On Force Friday, he was most looking forward to buying the R2-D2 Sphero toy and some of the Funko figures.
Mike, 30, remembers that one of his first Star Wars collectibles was the Power of the Force action figures. They were built with superhero proportions and had five points of articulation. His favorite collectible is the Black Series TIE Fighter, and tonight he was there for more Black Series models, as well as Luke and Rey figures. In Mike's conservative estimates, he has about 100-150 pieces in his Star Wars collection.
John, 45, was about eight years old when he got his first Star Wars toys, a Kenner Luke Skywalker figure and landspeeder. He played with the Luke toy so much its arms fell off. Tonight, he bought a bunch of Hot Wheels and Legos for his teenage children. John also won the store raffle and walked away with a Porg doll that is almost as big as he is.
My co-workers Ernie Estrella and Shana O'Neil were having their own Force Friday adventures, and they found other Star Wars fans with their own favorite toys and collectibles.
- Paul Jones, 37 - a MicroMachines Millenium Falcon he got at age 17.
- Michael Willis, 27 - Luke Skywalker ForceFX Lightsaber.
- Ana, 25 - Mark Hamill autographed lightsaber from Star Wars Celebration.
- Meghan, 28 - Thrawn Trilogy.
- Megan C., 29 - Giant Chewbacca she mug bought when playing Imperial Assault.
- Kayla and Andy Chavez - They love their drinkware.
- Kevin Winston - Custom Ultra Saber.
- Josh Lomibao, 36 - General Grievous Disney Elite Figure.
- Carlos Munoz, 47 - Kenner Toys 1978 Cantina Adventure Set with the Blue Snaggletooth figure, Walrus Man, Hammerhead and Greedo.
- Richard, 28 - Max Rebo Funko figure for sentimental reasons.
The Pitts family was out in full force. William, 44, loves his original Boba Fett Slave 1 ship. Renee, 45, loves anything with Ewoks. Sienna, 9, is all about her Chewbacca comic books. Kyla, 16, loves her Jedi dress from San Diego Comic-Con.
What are your favorite Star Wars collectibles? Let us know in the comments section - and be sure to share your Force Friday hauls!