Tag Archives: X-Wing Fighter

Star Wars Transforming X-Wing Fighter by Takara

 

NEW Takara X Wing 02

In 1977 Japanese toy manufacturer Takara was licensed to produce and distribute toys and merchandise from the first Star Wars film up until Popy took over for The Empire Strikes Back in 1980.

Takara Star Wars toys often came with cool action features such as Missile Firing R2-D2s and C-3POs, a wind-up walking R2-D2 (often rumoured to be George Lucas’ favourite toy) and many other interesting and quirky items such as the Transforming X-Wing Fighter which is the subject of this post.

NEW Takara X Wing 01

NEW Takara X Wing 03a

The Transforming X-Wing Fighter was released in 1978 in Japan by Takara. The vehicle came in kit form and included fuselage, four wing sections, a sprue tree containing the smaller parts, a decal sheet, instuctions/catalogue and Luke Skywalker Pilot and R2-D2 figures. Working features included cockpit and landing gear, open/closed wings and spring-loaded missile-firing laser cannons!

But that’s not all… Takara also held the license for Microman which was later rebranded as Transformers for the western market. What could make better sense than to fuse the two lines together to create a super-cool X-Wing Fighter that transformed?

And so, with just a few snaps and clicks the X-Wing Fighter goes from this…

NEW Takara X Wing 04

… to this…

NEW Takara X Wing 05

… to this…

NEW Takara X Wing 06

… to this…

NEW Takara X Wing 07

… to this…

NEW Takara X Wing 08

… to this…

NEW Takara X Wing 09

… to this…

NEW Takara X Wing 10

… and much more! There are a few suggestion examples on the box to try out but essentially this toy is ideal to let your imagination fly.

For me the Takara is a winner. One of my favourite retro toy collectables is the vintage Star Wars line – in particular Kenner’s original X-Wing Fighter and its foreign variants. So hats off to Takara for not only producing a version of this iconic space vehicle but for taking it to a completely different level.

NEW Takara X Wing 11

 

NEW Takara X Wing 03

Below: Takara X-Wings. Collectable postcard. Star Wars The Toys Chronicle Books. 1995.

And finally, some collectors wonder about the scale of the Takara Transforming X-Wing in relation to the original Kenner model. The Takara version is almost the same size although the Luke and R2-D2 figures are significantly smaller than their 3 3/4 inch Kenner counterparts.

Below is a pic of the Takara, Palitoy original, and Micro-Collection X-Wings to give you an idea of the scale.

To learn more about the many variations that exist for vintage-era X-Wing Fighters check out my guide on TIG

Takara comparison 1

Jabba the Hutt, Luke and Han in chains and may the Ffftthhh be with you!

Look carefully at the advert below featuring the Jabba the Hutt play-set… in the absence of a slave Leia figure (often cited by collectors as a figure they would like to have seen produced back in the day) Parker decided to employ a Han Solo (small head) figure to be chained up by Jabba.

Germany. Fix Und Foxi N° 37. 1984. Kenner didn't make a 'Slave Leia' figure so Parker decided it would be fun for Jabba to chain up Han Solo!

Germany. Fix Und Foxi N° 37. 1984. Kenner didn’t make a ‘Slave Leia’ figure so Parker decided it would be fun for Jabba to chain up Han Solo! Dance, Han, dance! He doesn’t look too impressed does he?

 

The following year, no longer content with grumpy old smuggler Han, Parker designed a new advert showing Jabba with a Luke Jedi figure now in chains! Palace denizens such as Bib Fortuna and a couple of Gammy guards look on as C-3PO makes a sporting attempt of showing Luke some dance moves. Luke, like Han before him, seems most unimpressed. Jabba… well he just keeps chugging on that old hookah.

Germany. Star Wars N° 2. 1985. This time it's Luke's turn to be chained up by Jabba!

Germany. Star Wars N° 2. 1985. This time it’s Luke’s turn to be chained up by Jabba! C-3PO tells master Luke to try the mash-potato!

I’m curious to know if Parker ever set up a scene with the Leia Boushh figure in chains. That would have made a bit more sense in the grand scheme. But I quite like seeing the ‘wrongness’ of Han and Luke in chains. Obviously Parker were very keen to show off the ‘slave’ features of the excellent Jabba the Hutt play-set… little realising it would cause a bit of a giggle in later years.

Something else I like about these Parker ads is the clever use of graphics. The ‘Swaaawaa’ sound effects in the title emulates an utterance Jabba might well make. The font design aims to represent -deliciously – the ugliness and gooeyness of Jabba.

star wars Swaaawa Jabba logo

These cool design touches can be seen again in other Parker ads like the ‘Ffftthhh’ sound for the X-Wing Fighter and the ‘Ssssccch’ sound for the Speeder Bike. Note also: the figure in the cockpit is not Luke X-Wing Pilot but a B-Wing pilot! Thanks to Bonsai_Tree_Ent for pointing that out!

Germany. Star Wars N° 2. 1985. Sound effects courtesy of Parker!

Germany. Star Wars N° 2. 1985. Sound effects courtesy of Parker!

 

Germany. Star Wars N° 1. 1985. Is the 'Ssssccch' sound being made by the Speeder Bike or cleverly hidden Ewoks about to spring a surprise?

Germany. Star Wars N° 1. 1985. Is the ‘Ssssccch’ sound being made by the Speeder Bike? Or cleverly-hidden Ewoks about to spring a surprise?