Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Collectible of the Week Update: Interplanetary Star Fortress (Sears; 1979)

Back on November 30, 2011, I wrote here about one of my favorite StarWars knock-off toys, the fantastic “Interplanetary Star Fortress” manufactured and sold exclusively by Sears, and made to fit Kenner Star Wars figures, as well as Mego’s The Black Hole and Buck Rogers figures of the 1970s.   The playset is a quasi-cylindrical carrying-case that folds out to become an expansive asteroid surface and landing pad.

My own version of this disco-decade toy was missing several critical features, including a shuttle pod and plastic gun turret that could stand atop the cylinder.  My version was also missing the carrying strap and the box.

Well, via the wonders of E-Bay, I finally got my hands on a mint-in-box Sears Star Fortress that features all the elements I had been missing.  I only had a few of the base installations previously, but this version came with the “solar reactor building,” “headquarters,” “personnel quarters,” “1 particle accelerator tank” and “1 hydrogen storage tank.” 

Joel and I actually got to fold the light cardboard "buildings" into shape, and connect them together with tabs, which was fun.

This knock-off is a much more interesting toy with the missing shuttle pod and turret intact, as well as the previously missing base structures.  The shuttle pad actually has a door that opens, and snaps shut, and is fully decorated inside with high-tech (for the 1970s) imagery and detail.

Yesterday, Joel and I used the newly up-fitted Interplanetary Star Fortress to stage a battle between Ben Tennyson and Ghost Freak (plus minions BenWolf and BenMummy).  Not exactly the scenario I would have imagined at that age, but still a hell of a lot of fun. 

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