Spaceballs the Toyline: The Search for More Shelf Space

Being a fan of something can start at any age or any stage of your life. I became a Star Wars fan when I saw Return of the Jedi on cable when I was about 7 or 8 years old. Eventually I worked my way backwards and saw the first film, Episode IV, A New Hope, however you want to refer to it, and then Empire Strikes Back. Without question I knew that Star Wars was the hotness, even though it had been several years since the original trilogy wrapped up.

But, Star Wars has always been the hotness, from the original trilogy to the mixed bag of the prequels to the even more mixed bag that has been the latest installment of films up to and including the incredible series The Mandalorian. With any good franchise comes toys and Star Wars toys may have been and continue to be even hotter than the movies themselves. What’s a franchise without that sweet, sweet merchandise, right?

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Another film I watched a ton of in the late 80’s was Spaceballs. I loved Spaceballs and couldn’t get enough of it, watching it constantly because; much like Return of the Jedi, it was on cable damn near around the clock, and unbeknownst to me, I became an enormous Mel Brooks fan, and sought out his other films. For as much as I love his other films though, Spaceballs still tops the list.

And from that film, we learned from our good friend and wise sage Yogurt that; as mentioned above, what’s a franchise without that sweet, sweet merchandise. At the time in 1987, Mel Brooks made an agreement with George Lucas that he could parody, spoof and poke fun at Star Wars as only Mel can, if he agreed not to allow any merchandise for Spaceballs to see store shelves. Obviously, I don’t know Mel personally, but I’m sure merchandise was the furthest thing from Mel’s mind; Yogurt’s maybe, but not Mel, he just wanted to make his film. Now, over 30 years has come and gone and Lucas no longer has control over the Star Wars property, and while it’s unlikely we’ll ever see Spaceballs merchandise in one form or fashion, today I’m going to countdown five entries on my own personal Spaceballs toy wishticle.

And no sir, I didn’t see you playing with your dolls again!

5) Pizza the Hutt

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For a character as deliciously evil as Pizza the Hutt is; figuratively but also literally, toy companies could go different routes with his toy.

Super7 would nail a 3.75″ figure with ease, but I could see a 6″ or 7″ inch representation as well. Pizza’s right hand man Vinnie would make a fine addition either as an individual toy or as part of a two pack.

But, where I think Pizza would really shine; seeing as he’s a gooey pile of cheese and pepperoni, would be in either plush or vinyl form with my toy collector brain leaning towards the soft and squishy plush variety.

No matter how you slice it (see what I did there), this Pizza wouldn’t set you back a million spacebucks.

4) Lone Star/Barf, Princess Vespa/Dot Matrix

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My immediate thought for our quartet of heroes would be a four pack from Playmobil packaged with Lone Star and Barf’s Winnebago, Eagle 5.

But, there’s no reason to limit our toy imaginations, as I could easily see Lego packages of Lone Star and Barf with Eagle 5 as well as Princess Vespa and Dot Matrix packaged with her Royal Highness prized Mercedes.

I’d also plunk my credit card down for Super7 ReAction figures, or even NECA could get in on the fun with figures of all the characters.

Vespa could come with her match luggage and an interchangeable head highlighting her “not Princess Leia” bun hairstyle headphones. Dot Matrix could come with interchangeable chest plates included; showing when she’s in sleep mode or with her virgin alarm going off before Lone Star does.

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For added fun we could even get alternate figures of Lone Star and Barf in the guards uniforms they stole to rescue Vespa in with the option to swap out heads on all four to represent their stunt doubles.

3) Yogurt

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Never underestimate the power of the Schwartz, and never underestimate the power of clever merchandising.

For as mind numblingly adorable as Baby Yoda has been (and there is some majestic Baby Yoda merch out there to be had), Yogurt was no less adorable, and I’d be buying up all of his merchandise as well.

Give me a vinyl Yogurt doll, give me some Yogurt and the Dinks 3.75″ ReAction figures, and definitely give me a fully detailed and articulated Yogurt complete with the Cracker Jack box he found the ring of the Schwartz inside of, as well as package him with his very own Spaceballs the Flamethrower! The kids love that one.

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By the time I’ve finished filling my cart and clicked on check-out, my bank account will have gone to plaid.

2) Dark Helmet

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I love Rick Moranis and as a fellow Canadian consider him nothing less than a national treasure. And, for as much as I love practically everything he’s ever done in his career, Dark Helmet is his best role, or at least it’s my favorite character he’s ever played.

Once again, the possibilities are endless with what to do with not only Dark Helmet, but you could include Colonel Sandurz and President Skroob as well, either as 3.75″ figures or larger and more detailed toys, but let’s keep the focus on the guy who only Lone Star would dare give the raspberry to.

A group like NECA could shine here with not only a standard Dark Helmet figure; maybe with interchangeable hands (including one holding a cup of Mr. Coffee), but also packaged with miniature Vespa and Dark Helmet dolls. As well we could have a combing the desert Lord Helmet alternate figure.

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The best however would be a post Ludicrous speed Dark Helmet. An alternate head with the crunched in helmet and singular cracked glasses lens. Damaged, disheveled, and asking for a five minute break a figure of this magnitude would have me cracking open my wallet faster than Skroob cracking open a can of Perri-Air.

1) Mega Maid

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Here we have the inspiration, the idea that popped into my collecter’s brain in the middle of the night that spurred me on to write this wishticle.

If Hasbro can engineer and build a two-foot Omega Supreme and an even larger Unicron, then someone could build me a Mega Maid of equal size and amazement.

Whether this Mega Maid could transform to Spaceball One and back is irrelevant; at least to me it is. Because if you’re anything like me, you take your amazing robot out of its cardboard and plastic prison and proceed to stick it right on your shelf in a most badass pose showing it off in all its splendor for the world to see.

That’s not to say I don’t turn my bots into vehicle mode from time to time for some sweet toy photography, but overall there’s no need to mess around with perfection and a two foot Mega Maid would be perfect and would neither suck nor blow while standing majestically on both my and your toy shelf.

Will we ever see a toy company, any toy company obtain the license to make Spaceballs toys? I’d have to think it’s probably unlikely as it seems like it’d be too much of a niche product, but stranger things have happened and we’ve seen our share of niche toys in the past.

What I do know is that if it were to come to light, if I ever were to go online or into a local toy store and see a high quality Dark Helmet, Yogurt, Lone Star and the rest of the gang ready for purchase, my immediate reaction would be, Spaceballs?!

Oh damn, there goes my money.

 

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