X-Wing Fighter
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Catalog Entry
Catalog Description:

LUKE SKYWALKER'S X-WING FIGHTER

Dramatic reproduction of STAR WARS X-WING rebel spacecraft used to fly LUKE to YODA'S planet of DAGOBAH. Wings open to "X" position by pushing down on simulated R2-D2 behind cockpit. Second button returns wings to original flight position. Cockpit flips open to seat most STAR WARS Action Figures. Front landing skid locks up in place during flight, and for real excitement, third rear deck button operates laser sound and flashing laser cannon in spacecraft nose. Two "AA" batteries and Action Figure not included. Ages 5 and up.

Source: 1981 Kenner Toy Fair Catalog


Is there anyone who was a child during the late '70s/early '80s who isn't familiar with this toy? Not many, I'd wager. The Kenner X-Wing Fighter was simply one of the most popular toys of that era, a fact which shouldn't be too surprising considering the important role the vehicle held in the most popular film series of the era.

One of the first three action figure toys to be released in the Star Wars line, the original X-Wing can be found in a number of different boxes. The first, issued in 1978, featured the "LP" logo(short for "long play") in the lower right corner, and the box's fron tand sides depicted an original Luke figure as occupying the vehicle's cockpit. 1978 also so the release of a "Special Offer" version of the toy. It came with free Han Solo and Luke Skywalker figures and featured an attractive yellow sticker on its box.

In '79, the "LP" logo was removed from the package. The photos on the sides of the toy's package were also changed-- the new ones depicted the newly released X-Wing Pilot figure as being in the cockpit (the frontal image remained the same). Then, in mid-1980, the logo on the box was changed to the blockier Empire Strikes Back monniker, while the silver "racetrack" border was reduced from two stripes to one and the silver-and-red nameplate was replaced with simple white text reading "X-Wing Fighter." Although the general look of the first-issue ESB box was very reminiscent of the Star Wars original, it in fact featured all new photography. Now not only did the photos on the box sides depict the Luke X-Wing Pilot figure, the frontal photo did as well.

Finally, around 1981, the look of the X-Wing package was completely overhauled, the familiar red-backed image being replaced with a photo showing the toy placed within an elaborate diorama reminiscent of the swamps of Dagobah. This was the last package the original X-Wing toy appeared in. It was replaced in 1982 by the "Battle Damaged" version of the product. The original X-Wing is distinguished from its battle-damaged counterpart by its color: it's white while the later toy is gray.

Outside the States, in countries like the U.K. and Australia, the toy was released with several major modifications, including a chromed R2-D2 button and no electronics. But even more interesting were the X-Wing toys issued by Japanese licensee Takara. One of the Japanese X-Wings even transformed! But neither bears any resemblance to its Kenner counterpart. In 1995, Hasbro used the old Kenner molds to produce a re-vamped X-Wing Fighter. Its 1995 date imprint, complicated paint job and heightened electronic capacity make it hard to mistake for the original.

Description by: Ron Salvatore
Photo: Ron Salvatore
From the collection of: Ron Salvatore
Country:United States
Film:A New Hope
Licensee:Kenner
Year:1978
Category:Toys / Action Figure Related / Vehicles


  


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