12.15.2009

Christmas Toys 1978

By the time Christmas of 1978 rolled around, Kenner was cranking out the Star Wars toys by the ton, and of course I had already been collecting Star Wars action figures all year long! My Santa parents took the holiday opportunity to deliver some of the larger Star Wars toys, including the massive Death Star playset, which had a unique design to represent a multi-level “slice” of the space station. I went nuts with this toy, since there was so much to do with it, and I’ll never forget the cool trash compactor (filled with bits of foam garbage). I also got a TIE Fighter (sized so a figure could pilot it), and I loved carefully putting on the decals and then pressing the secret buttons to pop off the wings to simulate battle damage! Aside from action figures, I got the human-sized Stormtrooper Rifle that had some pretty cool firing effects and was a blast to hold. It was definitely a Star Wars extravaganza!

But as usual, Santa brought even more amazing stuff, such as Electroman, which was a cool large action figure with a big light on his forehead and sensors to detect movement (he was the same size as the Six Million Dollar Man, so they went well together). I also got the Star Bird Avenger, one of the most innovative space ship toys I can remember, which changed its electronic engine sounds to match the angle of the ship, and it even had fantastic laser sounds and lights. I even got the Star Bird Command Base to go with it! I have no idea how all this stuff fit in my room.

After 1978, Dad stopped using the old home movie camera, so I can only dream about the spectacular toys I received in 1979 and beyond. I know that when I read nostalgic toy sites like Plaid Stallions I am constantly reminded of cool stuff that I had, all thanks to my incredible parents (and being a spoiled only child). Every Christmas brings joy and happy surprises, and it’s been fun remembering my childhood treasures!