Knockoff Star Swords Lightsabers
In the realm of bootlegged or knocked-off Star Wars merchandise, lightsabers hold a special place. They were among the earliest knock-off items to appear and probably the most varied in terms of construction and appearance. I guess this is easy to understand: lightsabers played a special part in the first Star Wars film, and they were fairly easy to replicate in toy form, since all they required was a hilt and a rudimentary blade. And, of course, Kenner's lag in getting licensed merchandise to market only helped to encourage the rip-offs.

You see here one of these early knock-off sabers. It's called, rather predictably, a "Star Sword," and it consists of a plastic hilt and an inflatable blade, just as Kenner's earliest toy version did. But whereas Kenner's package contained a one measly saber, this one came with two, so you and your pal could set right to whapping each other over the head once you got home and tore open the box.

The painting that adorns the box front is probably the best thing about this piece. It features a Darth Vaderesque fellow and another, much stranger guy. He has Luke Skywalker's boots, Princess Leia's hair, and Ronnie James Dio's bracelets.

The company that made these things was known as Skyline, Incorporated, and they were located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The reverse of the box seems to indicate that both blades were colored red (which contradicts the box front), and shows that the hilts were more Douglas Fairbanks than Buck Rogers.

The slogan is "soft inflatable fun," which pretty much describes my love life.

Description by: Ron Salvatore
Photo: Ron Salvatore
From the collection of: Ron Salvatore
Country:United States
Film:A New Hope
Category:Toys / Role-Playing / Lightsabers


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