The Disney Store retail outlets are fortunate enough to have a parent company that seems to have a real lust for developing its newfound intellectual properties. Sure, there are toys to be had, and lunch boxes, and kid-size shirts, but now you can get mugs too. Excited? Well, it's a mug, what do you want from me?
Much like how the statue license, figure license, and pretty much every license seems to be handed out to as many takers as possible, companies like Vandor and the like have some competition with these stylized character mugs.
Pricing was unclear at the press event - either $12.95 or $14.95 - but they're certainly cute and manage to evoke the character without bludgeoning you over the head with it.
The first round features R2-D2, C-3PO, Chewbacca, Luke Skywalker, a Stormtrooper, and Darth Vader.
Chewie and Threepio are interesting in that they are based on the characters' bodies rather than their heads, featuring elements that you no doubt have seen a kajillion times and Disney now feels you may enjoy seeing holding on to your coffee at breakfast or at the office. Or maybe stuffed with pencils.
The others feature an impressive amount of decoration, Luke's in particular has some faux weathering which sort of clashes with the slick, clean, comic-like style. It may be a little too much, but it shows the attention to detail the designers are going for. Personally, I could stand for them to tone it back a bit, but I do dig the vibrant colors like the blisteringly delicious orange handle and interior.
A consumer item like this feels like a strange fit for the kid-driven audience at the Disney Store, but hey, it's not like a curious fan wouldn't pop their heads in there to see what's available. I bet these would do well in Target's bed and bath section, but who knows how these licenses are divided up these days anyway. I do not have a specific date on the mugs for availability in my notes or press materials, but you'll probably see them soon if you're in to such things. Looking at this stuff serves as a reminder of the vast troves of people who like Star Wars but aren't as fanatical about it as we are - and there's a lot of money there. While few of the aging collector class are sitting here wanting mugs, you can bet that a lot of people are going to get them as gifts in the coming year - including, possibly, you.
Special thanks to Disney for the early look at these items! More articles from this event are still coming.