If I recall correctly, for the Phantom Menace, the toys were released only a few weeks before the movie came out. Flashback to April 1999: Dad, Uncle Jim and I run into a bunch of unopened Phantom Menace figure shipping boxes at Super Walmart in Kissimmee, Florida. The Kenner boxes were marked "Do not put on floor until two weeks after the X date" (two weeks after the then-present date). Well, of course we opened them and carried out as many Jar Jar Binks and Darth Mauls we could carry in our arms. Even the checkout scanners were reading "Do Not Sell" when we tried to pay for the figures. The long line of customers behind us and apathy-toward-her-job attitude of the cashier allowed us to get out of the store with the figures.
This time around it is different; we can see what type of vehicle Rey is flying and the various locales of the movie from the playsets for sale, three months before its release. This is what I saw today at the Toys R Us's in the Tokyo area. As demonstrated by Toys R Us, the Japanese are having the Force Awakened after all.
|Rey, Finn, Poe and Kylo Ren displays.|
|These sets kick the asses of the sets we had as kids. We had to use the megaphone piece as a laser gun.|
There were many new Lego sets.
|Perfect. Jango's head comes off.|
|New stormtroopers are in the house!|
|Mostly characters from the original trilogy.|
|I'd try getting the Boba Fett helmet, but they are blind-bag packaged.|
|I'll get Boba in the near future.|
|These guys were around 50 bucks.|
|A hodge podge of collectibles.|
I'll probably get a few die-cast Force Awakened vehicles for my desk. 3 and 3/4 inch figures, the staple of my Star Wars collection as a kid, teen and young adult, were mysteriously absent from the assortment of goods I saw today. Perhaps they will be released later here? Regardless, I was pleasantly surprised that the Force is strong with the Japanese. I can only surmise from what I saw at Toys R Us today that we will get lots of Star Wars promotional items such as Pepsi bottle caps, stickers with candy and gatcha gatcha toys in the future. I can't wait. Thanks for the read, and may the Force be with you.