Christmas Toy Aisle Zen, 1980: The Empire Strikes Back

Star Wars Toys 1980

The caption, via the Birmingham Mail:

Edgbaston twins Antony and Richard Joseph, both aged six, are seen here enjoying the toy department at Lewis’s in Birmingham on December 15, 1980.

Lewis’s was a department store chain in the UK that was in business from 1856 to 1991.

Lovely photo from a time when man-children weren’t snatching up all the Star Wars toys before the kids could get to them.

8 Responses to “Christmas Toy Aisle Zen, 1980: <em>The Empire Strikes Back</em>”


  1. 1 Brad Conrad December 17, 2015 at 5:21 pm

    My jaw was on the floor reading that “Force Friday” link. Who the heck are these people that need ALL the toys on the day they go on sale AT MIDNIGHT!? And then to unironically complain that they didn’t get what they wanted because some other fully-grown dude got to them first…

    I just need to look at that 1980 photo and bring myself back to my happy place.

    • 2 2W2N December 17, 2015 at 5:43 pm

      Very sad and frustrating. I was going to write a whole article on it but decided against it – for now. These grown men are hanging on to their childhoods so tightly that they’re denying one to the the next generation.

  2. 4 narvo December 18, 2015 at 10:46 pm

    Definitely a must-read article about that Farce Friday thing. The only thing I can’t stand about articles like that is the whole shit storm that follows in the comments. It gets way out of hand.

    At least here on this blog we’re limited to a small crowd that better understands this kind of stuff, and we can actually have a low-key conversation without having to deal with all these people that seem to just want to throw rocks.

    Ok. In the meantime. I keep kicking myself in the rear for not having bought the SW figures and vehicles when there was that lull a few years back. ‘Coz now my 9 yr. old son is really into it and is asking for toys, especially what he likes to call the chicken walker, which makes me laugh every time.

    Do you guys remember that? There was actually a time at Target when they were totally blowing out all the re-pops of the SW vehicles: TIE fighters, Y-Wings, X-Wings etc. because nobody was buying them! Now when I try to search for these same things, they’re easily around $100 right off the top. Well, it doesn’t help that this new movie is out too, right…

    • 5 2W2N December 18, 2015 at 11:05 pm

      My daughter is really into classic Star Wars now, after finding an old Empire Strikes Back pop-up book, and I got her some circa 1997 action figures from Amazon. They’re not the greatest, and Princess Leia looks like a man, but it’s the best I could do.

  3. 6 michellehauser January 8, 2016 at 1:09 am

    My husband pulled out his Empire Strikes Back bedspread. It’s faded as hell but our son really digs it. This is a very cool blog.

  4. 8 Tim May 28, 2016 at 3:27 am

    I’m truly glad there wasn’t always some adult collector or dealer ruining my childhood by grabbing all the good stuff from the toy department before I even had the chance to see what was new. These days, everything seems geared more for those who wanna display the toys rather than actually play with them. Toys should end up in kids’ bedrooms, not on eBay.


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