It was a slow start to the year.
After the Phantom Menace teaser trailer I was looking for anything Star Wars I could find.
For the Christmas just gone I received Star Wars: Rogue Squadron on PC and I spent most of the early months playing it to death.
I was snatching up the Official Magazine any time I could find it just to see more TPM behind the scenes pictures or any official pictures.
When the posters came out I made sure to buy them, who didn’t love the teaser with Anakin stood in front of a wall where the shadow of Vader loomed over him?
It was in April that I hit what I considered the mother-load. A Toys R Us trip yielded the most fruitful of results. Brand new and oh so glorious…
Star Wars Lego!!!!
X-Wing! Y-Wing and Darth Vader’s TIE Fighter! Luke’s Landspeeder! Speederbike Chase! Snow Speeder!
Oh! My! God!
I bought the X-Wing then and there and I built that thing straight away!
Now I was a Lego fan growing up and had quite a few sets. Then I would try to build new things, including Star Wars ships but with no luck. Now I could build them and do it properly.
A few days later, I got the Y-Wing/ Vader’s TIE set. And not long after that my Grandparent’s bought me Luke’s Landspeeder. I was building myself a little fleet, literately.
Looking back the sets didn’t look all that great, there were a lot of details missing but at the time they were amazing and I still have fond memories of building them. Luke’s Landspeeder was built on a train on our way home from a trip to London, Grandpa surprised me with it, passing it to me over the table as I ate sweets whilst reading something or other. Nanna told me later on that they had been out one day and he’d pulled into the Toys R Us car park, ran in, leaving her in the car and came out minutes later with the surprise gift.
Needless to say, those sets have been built and rebuilt many times and are currently in pieces in a couple of boxes in the shed. I hope to rebuild them all one day.
The next bit of amazing news was on a holiday to France with my parents and there was a news article on TV about the new Phantom Menace merchandise being released soon. More toys!!!
Not long after that I had ventured into town for an afternoon with a few quid (£14 to be exact). I went into the local bookshop and I was blown away. The Phantom Menace books were out. The children’s adaptation of the story, the adult novelisation by Terry Brooks, the Making of and the Illustrated Screenplay. I bought the children’s version and the Screenplay.
I read the children’s adaptation that afternoon. Loved it! The Screenplay just made me want to make a Star Wars film so bad.
Then came the toys. They were released a week or so before my birthday. Again I went to town with strict orders to not buy any Star Wars toys. I went to Toys R Us to have a look. I came out with Mace Windu, oops.
Happy Birthday to me!!!
All I asked for from family was money. I had a lot of stuff to buy. That morning my Mum handed me £100 an we went to Toys R Us ready for opening time. The first item in the trolley… the Commtech Reader that you placed the Commtech chips that came with the figures and it played lines from the film.
After that I loaded the trolley with £80 worth of figures and Lego.
We were out in 20 minutes, Mum said it was the fastest £100 spending spree she’d ever seen.