See, I really thought everything would be fine. I knew there were crowds, I knew they would be rabid (thanks Twitter) and I knew some figures would be cleaned out but at the very least, I knew there would be a small, sliver of a goldmine of Star Wars wonderfulness to choose from. This is The Force Awakens, after all. The new Star Wars movie, directed by a very talented director (who is also a fan), and backed by Disney (using clear, hands off approaches to their brands IE Marvel). The force was with me and with the fans.
I remembered, of course, a similar situation which happened back in 1998. I didn’t have to wait in line and I wasn’t cued up to a fever pitch from ‘the internet;’ the world, wide, web had yet to find its legs. It was only through news reports and word of mouth that I found myself taking a break from my work of waiting tables, and headed on over to the local Toys R Us. There I found a bounty of Phantom Menace figures. The goldmine was waiting for me and I was able to find not one, not two but three Darth Maul’s (I bought two); along with a Jar Jar Binks (I had no idea), a young Obi-Wan and a Qui-Gon Jinn. All was right in the world.
Fast forward to yesterday, 2015 and I figured the same sort of thing would happen. Sure, the #ForceFriday hashtag was trending, yes I knew many a geek waited in line for a midnight shopping spree. But nothing would prepare me for what I found when I took off work early and headed to my nearest Wal-Mart.
A controversial recap was presented thanks to Germain Lussier over at iO9. The opening image is exactly like the one above. And the saddest part of the experience for Germain is that he did everything I wanted to do and still ended up with zero Kylo Ren and/or Captain Phasma figures (arguably the most sought after).
I’m not as upset as Germain, nor am I bummed that I missed out on the communal hype of Star Wars camaraderie. After all, I WAS able to find one Black Series Finn that someone ‘seemed’ to have hidden away in a place they thought no one would look (sorry, whoever you are, I’m a Star Wars toy ninja).
I know I’ll be able to get my hands on Kylo and Phasma sooner or later. Hasbro WILL make more figures. Or there’s always eBay.
I’m not bummed because this event, this Force Friday proved that Star Wars is back. The magic, the hype, the childlike wonder and excitement hit the world squarely in the feels. Sure, every single store understocked their product and that must have really sucked for the people who DID wait in line. But I like to look at the bigger picture.
This Force Awakens movement is something entirely new and exciting. Even the title make complete sense… The Force has awakened the world over. People are talking about it every day. And with this brilliant marketing move by the powers that be (you have to admit, it worked), Star Wars fever has taken hold.
I did see a bunch of angry tweets and Facebook stories about people missing out on all the good stuff, but I also saw the happy tweets contrary to the anger and hate (that leads to the Dark Side!).
Force Friday worked. Plain and simple. The toys, remote controlled BB8′s and lego sets have been sold and enjoyed. If you look over the internet there are videos, images and posts showing happy people opening/playing/worshiping their toys. No matter if you’re ten years old or forty years old, Christmas Part 1 landed on a Friday in September of all things. You better believe Star Wars is back.
And now, I want to talk to YOU! I want to find the people out there that bagged some loot and had some fun. I want to hear the stories of how you claimed your Kylo Ren. I want to know who missed out on the Black Series Figures and forced to search eBay to satiate the hype. I want the stories that happened a long time ago- scratch that. That happened yesterday in this galaxy.
You have joined the (geek) nation for a reason. Now tell me why down below in the comment section. This is a celebration after all; stories and pictures of your loot. will be discussed and applauded. I want to see it all and hear it all!
And as always, keep checking back here for all your Star Wars updates — right here on GeekNation!
May the Force be with you.