Yowie and I go over the latest in the Star Wars galaxy in this week’s Unboxing Star Wars video. We bring out a B-wing as we talk about Hera in this week’s Rebels episode, ‘Wings of the Master’, and try some Star Wars packaged Honey Nut Cheerios. We also show off some Star Wars stamps from the UK and talk about the upcoming Vader Down comic crossover event. I even talk about a scene from Rescuers Down Under.
Making Star Wars reports of rumblings that Lucasfilm is “retiring” the Slave Leia bikini. However, do note that piece’s only quoted source is J. Scott Campbell, an artist whose work mostly seems to consist of pinups – not exactly the most neutral of parties regarding this subject.
That said, I do feel it’s a very smart move for Lucasfilm to be more selective in how and when they use the bikini. It’s all-too-often used as the character’s default look – see Tsundo Sanda’s recent Newsweek cover, where any iconic Leia would do the trick just as well. The problem isn’t so much that slave Leia is a thing that exists in merchandising, it’s that the bikini dominates – and that’s not a fair representation of the character.
I do think a blanket ban on it is rather unlikely – I don’t have a huge problem with the Return of the Jedi poster that MSW uses an an example, for instance – but less of the bikini? Yes, please.
Fast Company has a profile of Hasbro Star Wars design director Steve Evans, focusing on The Force Awakens rollout. Of special interest to us, some words on the changing market:
“I’m actually very, very fond of the three-and-three-quarter inch Rey figure,” Evans says. It’s an appropriate choice, and not just for the fact that Rey is one of the main characters in the next Star Wars chapter. That figure symbolizes a radical shift in the action figure market—and the Star Wars toys market in particular.
“It’s because of what it stands for,” says Evans. “Just because of the way it’s embracing girls into the brand more. I have a son and two twin daughters and my girls are infatuated with Rey. They think she’s brilliant.”
Back in the ’70s and ’80s Star Wars action figures were thought of as something to be made just for boys. But Evans says that’s all changed now. And not only are the artificial gender action figure barriers are coming down, now they’re designed to appeal to people of all ages.
As for The Force Awakens, “as we lead up to December 18, there’s a certain amount that gets released,” says Evans. “There are certain surprises from our product line that no one knows about, that we’ll release leading up to the movie, at the movie, and beyond the movie.”
Sony Classical is reissuing three new collector’s sets of John Williams’ iconic Star Wars soundtracks in January, in vinyl, CD and high-definition download. They’ll be available January 8, 2016.
Would it be possible to make a version of the existing Sphero with a head that stayed on top as it rolled? he asked.
As it turns out, yes. I asked Sphero’s marketing senior vice president Kelly Nyland how the company managed to get the head to stay upright. “The Force,” she told me with a straight face.
And a video of BB-8 with puppies if you don’t, thanks to Vanity Fair.
There’s also a review over at Gizmodo.
If $150 is a bit steep for your blood (or you don’t want to hand kids your smartphone,) there will also be a significantly cheaper Hasbro version that comes with a controller. But who are we fooling here? We know the audience for this, and it’s totally us.
Youtubers from Disney’s Maker Studios will be unboxing The Force Awakens toys live on Force Friday. The official Star Wars Youtube stream will host the events, which will begin with Bratayley in Australia on September 3 at 7:45 a.m. local time (5:45 p.m. EDT on September 2) and finish up with Chris Pirillo in San Francisco at 8 a.m. PDT (11 a.m. EDT) on Thursday.
→ With Entertainment Weekly, J.J. Abrams reiterated that we won’t get a new The Force Awakens trailer at D23, or at all until fall. There’ll be no TFA footage at all, “behind the scenes or otherwise,” he said. Of course, that doesn’t mean we won’t get something, like another character reveal or a new poster. (Not to mention things regarding the Parks…) And I’d bet actual money is still that we’ll get something for Rogue One.
→ The Force Awakens scoring sessions are “beyond anything I have experienced musically in my life,” a source tells the John Williams Fan Network.
→ More juice for the theory/hope that Episode VIII will return to film on Skellig Michael at The Star.
→ I won’t be tracking every TFA merchandise leak this month, but here are a few interesting ones: A Micro Machines Millennium Falcon playset, Black Series Finn, Chewbacca and < href="https://twitter.com/Sompeetalay/status/630494610574458880">Kylo Ren and Funko Pop Vinyl figures. My favorite, though, is a lunch bag with some new-to-us Captain Phasma art, which I love because even though she is 100% in armor, the way she’s standing is badass yet makes it absolutely clear that the character is a woman. Men don’t stand like that!