Q&A: Star Wars Exclusives, 3 3/4-Inch Stuff, and Resistance Toys

By Adam Pawlus — Sunday, April 7, 2019

1. Celebration 2019 in Chicago... will there be any 3.75" exclusive(s)? Or is this the first Celebration without something in this scale? Thanks.

I don't know of any - most of what I heard said it'd be 6-inch only. I don't believe the last Celebration had any either. Sadly, this is sort of the place we're in - 3 3/4-inch gets reissues and few new characters, and its sales slow, and the circle continues. I would've loved to have seen something tie in to Return of the Jedi for the Barge, even if it was a strange reissue like a Gamorrean Guard with coin on a Power of the Force cardback or some such. But if you like Darth Maul or blue chrome, clearly this is the year for you. As it is I won't be attending and I'm not really lusting after any of the exclusives I've seen so far.

I haven't heard many rumors of 2019 exclusives beyond what we've heard, so either Hasbro is doing a great job being quiet or it's going to be a drab year for the original scale.



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2. And the Wal-Mart Jabba's Palace Playset...is this the only way to get the new Han and Ree-Yees figures? Will they be released separately?

Yes and no - both are modified releases from The Black Series 3 3/4-inch line. Han's carbonite block has magnets and presumably revised head deco. Ree-Yees may be the same. If you just want the figures, you've got options. Hasbro seems to realize fans want carded vintage figures and this is a weird way to offer them with added protection in stores, so kids and other monsters won't bend them up before you get them. I would not anticipate the carded figures to be sold individually - Hasbro hasn't done that with previous exclusive vintage figures.




3. I was wondering if wave 2 of Star Wars Resistance figures are still on the radar or did that blip vanish. I remember reading in Star Wars Insider that besides the figures released thus far, Tam Ryvora was also amongst them but didn't. What happened? Show ratings perhaps?

Fun story - Hasbro has plans for months, sometimes a year or more, in the pipeline - a lot of toys were planned on paper and never see release. There aren't just a few that you've heard of and never seen, there are hundreds of products that just plain didn't make it out for one reason or another. We don't know for sure if Resistance is 100% done after a single wave, but it's been so quiet that I'm not hopeful. Since the show got renewed there's always a chance for more, and they might find it prudent to ramp up after the movie comes out just so they have something to sell. It seems the figures come and go regularly at my local stores, but I don't know if they're all selling, or if we're just seeing a couple cases move here and there. As always, I would nag Hasbro about it if I were you - write letters, buy figures, voice your support at conventions and on forums. Trust me when I say you have a friend harassing people about the importance of 3 3/4-inch figures, but without fans and market forces supporting it, this sort of thing doesn't matter all that much.

For all we know they'll be coming as Disney+ subscriber freebies. (Probably not, but Marvel gave away figures with subscriptions so who knows?) I'm surprised we didn't get Neeku Vozo.



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The so-called retail apocalypse is feeling a little too real lately. I've been going to this one Chinese place for lunch almost every week since 2011 - and it's been around since the late 1980s, possibly earlier. I ate there a week ago - and last Wednesday, we went by and it was gone. The interior was wiped clean, the Coke machine was gone, the exterior neon signs were removed, the holes spackled over and the shadows from decades of sun were painted. It was like it was never there. They knew my order well enough where I didn't have to say anything. They just made my lunch. This sort of store closes every day somewhere in America, but this week we also heard that two more retailers are in big trouble - Walgreens, and GameStop. Both are big Funko customers and not insignificant Hasbro partners. A few weeks ago Shopko and Payless announced they're going away. Kmart and Sears remain in denial.

A year ago we were all awkwardly looking at each other saying "Uh... now what?" Toys R Us, the country's only nationwide toy chain, announced multiple rounds of closures before throwing up their collective arms. Rumor has it there are still senior managers in Paramus, NJ that still own numerous locations around the country, debating if there is potential to reopen - their specters loomed long over New York Toy Fair. There was some guy haunting the aisles of the Jacob Javits Convention Center in a Geoffrey suit, earning scorn from countless manufactures owed money as well as hope and longing from some of their valued partners. Will they come back? Did they ever truly end the company? And is there hope for retail in general?

I make no secret that I work at an online toy store, but I also have a firm belief that most fans of toys that are adults like seeing things before deciding to buy them. Maybe you see it on a cardback, or on a TV commercial, or in some jerkhole's hand as he walks away from the toy section at Walmart. With Toys R Us gone, dozens of toy companies lost most of their American retail shelf space. There were a lot of items there you couldn't find anywhere else, simply because nobody had that much space to devote to plastic. And it's gone. Walgreens has almost 10,000 locations. GameStop has 6,100. If each store took a couple of cases of a product, that could make or break small or medium-sized toy companies. They didn't carry as much as Toys R Us, but you could see some product lines thrive. In the new toy world order, these two are considered to be not insignificant players. There's a lot of action there.

I'm like an insurance company. I like certainty. I like knowing there's a store I can go to if I need cold medication after midnight (that just happens to sell toys) and I like knowing that there's a store that can sell me a cartridge of Katamari Damacy Reroll because downloading virtual products like games at full price is for suckers when you have no physical ownership - but I digress. Hopefully these stock snags are nothing - to live in a world without game discs and cartridges sounds unpleasant, but a place where my friends can't get their medication starts to get a lot more bleak.

The press painted Toys R Us as the big bad wolf in the 1980s, gobbling up competition before slowly becoming the underdog over the last decade - and you've got to wonder if other big box stores could go the same way. It's unthinkable that Kmart, my go-to nearby store as a kid, is gone from my city and most cities. My shopping mall used to have 4 unique game stores in it - and now the mall itself is an endangered species. I guess what I'm saying is, where are all these small businesses up and coming with new stores and new small chains?

Is it the end? Probably not... but 3 3/4-inch Star Wars isn't exactly in a position to lose much anyway, given recent years. But 15 years ago I'd call you crazy if you told me shopping malls were out, bookstores were less common than legal weed, and Toys R Us evaporated in a puff of investment.

--Adam Pawlus

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