Monday, May 4, 2015

See Endor Play!

May the Fourth be with you! 

I've always been a fan of sci-fi. One could say that I was born to it. The first film I ever say, in utero, was Ridley Scott's horror/sci-fi mash-up ALIEN. Since then I've pondered distant worlds and strange civilizations. I sought out new life and...wait...that's the intro to Trek. I love Star Trek dearly, but this is Star Wars day after all. 

So, onto the festivities of May the 4th! 

I was overjoyed to see the new trailer for the new Star Wars film; Episode Seven: The Force Awakens. I will admit that I was misty-eyed during the whole experience. It felt like time had hurled us back to 1983. Everything that was once old was made young again. I felt the same way when I saw the re-release of Ghostbusters this past summer. That by itself is another tale for another time. 

As for the above image.

I used to spend hours looking through the toy section of the J.C. Penney catalog. I don't recall if this treehouse and swing set was among their wares, but it must have been. I remember this ad vividly. I imagined myself standing watch in the Walker Command Tower, after my rebel crew took out some bucket-headed stormtroopers. That speederbike swing must have been the smoothest ride this side of the Ewok village. I would be most happy if I could find an adult-sized version of this. 


One wonders what parents would allow their kids to play at night, while the Death Star looms over-head, but The Falcon is there to safe-guard them. The sound effects must have been stellar as well. All that guard tower needed was a working intercom or P.A. system. Using Nerf guns to defend it would have made for a boss battle scene! 

It also appears that Gym-Dandy is still around. Listings for them online show they now sell their products through the likes of Wal-Mart and Target. 

That was a time when children had imaginations. Yes, we were helped with gracious mentors such as George Lucas, Gene Roddenberry, and Stan Lee (to name only a few). They were the ones that ignited the spark of creativity that we'd kindle well into adulthood. Back then, one could dream all day long. There were adult concerns to scare us all into submission. We weren't hampered by "the box," because, as Lucas once put it, "We didn't know the box existed." 

Who will be the Lucas, Roddenberry, and Lee of the next generation? Well, Lee and Lucas are alive and well, so they will hold onto their thrones as active dreammakers for quite a while. But even after one has passed; such as Roddenberry, Bradbury, Clarke their work continues to inspire both current and future generations. 

Yes, looking at that photo in the catalog provided inspiration as well. While I never did get my Star Wars treehouse, I did get to imagine life on Endor. And there was no white picket fence to rein in my imagination...and there never will be! 

May the Fourth be with you! 

Text copyright Riley Joyce 2015 

Star Wars Copyright Lucasfilm/Disney 

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