‘Force Friday’ Represents Everything Wrong with ‘Star Wars’
Did you know there’s a new Star Wars movie coming out this year? It’s been hard to miss, especially with the marketing and merchandise blitz that will come with it. Wait, I mean already started. Apparently last week brought us ‘Force Friday’, a branded day that marked the release of all the new merchandise tied in to the upcoming movie. And people went frick’n bananas for it.
There have been reports of people lining up outside Toys ‘R’ Us for hours and hours in readiness for the special midnight opening. Then there are the incredibly angry reports from people who waited in line in the middle of the night in the carpark of a toy shop only to find empty shelves waiting for them as those ahead of them cleared the place out. Some are furious that toy store employees did not physically prevent people from buying multiple items, thus causing them to miss out.
We’re going to take a moment to look at the people in that image above. There aren’t any children picking out toys in that toy shop. We see adults old enough to have a bald patch just above their Ewok back pack and they’re getting more than a little pushy there. Before you skip down to the comments it should be noted that I’m not condemning any adult who loves their geeky hobby. I’ve got the collectors bug for Batman action figures, Lego minifigs and other things. What I’m calling out are the adults who can’t take a step back and get some perspective. Let’s break it down.
The Merchandise Isn’t Going Anywhere
It can be disappointing not to get the toys on the first day they come out, but there’s been some real anger round the internet on this one blaming other collectors, toy store employees and stockists. You don’t need to panic, the purpose of this industry is to make money and producing more stock is going to facilitate that. I’d be honestly surprised if they weren’t fully restocked by the time this article is published. There’s going to be some assholes trying to gouge the prices by buying up the items and posting them on eBay, but have some patience and it will be back on the shelves.
The People Making the Merchandise Don’t Care if It’s Good
As we already said, the purpose of this merchandise is to make more money. Therefore if something is being bought, then they will make more of it regardless of how shit it is. And he’s the thing about Star Wars fans…they will buy anything. Seriously everyone – this is your fault. They will take the Star Wars logo and stick it on any garbage because the collectors will definitely buy it. That’s why we have Chewbacca Furbies:
Pottery Barn beds:
and Mr. Potato Heads.
This is not stuff that anyone, not even the most dedicated Star Wars fan has asked for. And yet the damned Furby (does anyone like those things) are now selling for 3 digit prices.Action figures and merchandise is very much part of Star Wars franchise, and people want their action figures whether it’s kids wanting to play with them or a collector adding their their display unit. But the stuff they were shovelling out last week…nobody would look at it twice if it wasn’t branded with Star Wars.
How do we get them to stop making this crap? Stop buying it.
You Might Not Like The Force Awakens
I’m not going bullshit you, the trailer looks fantastic. Even someone as tired of Star Wars as I thinks it looks amazing. But do you know what else looked fantastic? The trailer for The Phantom Menace.This may sound insane but people were even more hyped for The Phantom Menace than they are for The Force Awakens. Maybe it’s because they hadn’t yet been exposed to terrible prequels, shitty animated movies and broken video games, but people were insane for it. The buying frenzy occurred then as well. And what happened? The big selling item for the weekend was this US$150.00 bargain (substantially more on eBay now):
That’s pretty cool. But…what is it? Ok, it’s called BB-8 but what do you know about it? He’s featured for less than a second in the trailers. He might have less screen time than the equally overhyped Darth Maul got in the prequels. Remember how hyped up that guy got? They’re still selling him as a big deal in merchandise in spite of his 5 minutes of screen time and one line of dialogue.
Unfortunately even if the movie blows they’ll be a legion of Star Wars fans who will still buy all the merchandise and defends the movie. People defend Attack of the Clones and that was complete arse. Because of that they’ll be more and more shitty merchandise and straight to DVD knock off movies for years to come until we reach a tipping point where more new viewers are being turned off than drawn in. Some people are already excusing the recent sins due to nostalgia, and that can’t save it forever. When that day comes it won’t be the fault of George Lucas, J.J. Abrams or Disney. Not even Jar Jar Binks. It’ll be the fans who ate up the crappy merchandise instead of demanding good products.
That goes doubly for anyone who bought the fucking Chewbacca Furby.