Jul 25, 2012

Hallmark Star Wars Ornaments

Way back in 1996 Hallmark released their first modern Star Wars Keepsake Christmas ornaments. Well, I think they're actually just called Keepsake Ornaments to make sure people that don't celebrate Christmas will still buy them. Every year Hallmark publishes it's Dream Book which showcases most of the upcoming ornaments for the holiday season that will be on sale in stores in July. So it really is Christmas (or your preferred seasonal holiday) in July.
Millenium Falcon Star Wars Hallmark keepsake ornament
Hallmark's first modern Star Wars keepsake. Image from RebelScum.com
For the past 14 years, I have always been a little giddy browsing through the latest Dream Book and seeing what new things are coming to stores. Ornaments have come a long way with light up features and sound effects. Since their debut, I've made it a point to get every Star Wars ornament because I've pretty much stopped collecting Star Wars except for the occasional cool item. I felt it would be a good way to keep collecting on a smaller scale. They're relatively small so collecting the entire series wouldn't take up a lot of space.

In 2008, Hallmark started producing convention exclusive ornaments. Up til 2010, these were repaints of previously released ornaments to make them into lesser known background characters, like K-3P0, a Senate Security Clone Trooper, or yet another different colored Astromech. These weren't a huge deal for me because these were minor characters that I could skip and still feel like I had a complete collection.

The 2010 Star Wars Celebration V convention exclusive was a Clone Wars style Yoda. Even though I was at this con, it was near impossible to get unless you were in line before the con opened and ran there to get it when the dorrs opened. But, not essential for me as it wasn't movie-based.
SDCC 2010 Hallmark exclusive Star Wars ornaments IG-88 and Dengar
2011 SDCC Hallmark exclusives. Image from Hooked on Hallmark
In 2011, they produced an SDCC exclusive two-pack of the bounty hunters IG-88 and Dengar. This announcement caused a lot of talk in the collecting community. And by talk, I mean nerd rage. Repaints are one thing, but to make these minor, fan-favorite characters a con exclusive felt like a slap in the face to someone that had been faithfully collecting. Even though Bossk was released as part of the main retail line, it would seem collectors would be hard pressed to ever be able to assemble the infamous bounty hunters.
2012 SDCC Hallmark Star Wars exclusive 4-LOM and Zuckuss ornaments
2012 SDCC Hallmark exclusives. Image from StarWars.com
This year they announced the remaining two bounty hunters from The Empire Strikes Back scene, 4-LOM and Zuckuss, would also be SDCC exclusives. I think they shot themselves in the coffers making these bounty hunter sets exclusives and limited to 1000. I'd bet they would have sold more of them in stores, a lot of Star Wars fans love their bounty hunters especially since they appear in Empire.

Just recently they announced the new exclusives for this year's Star Wars Celebration...
2012 Star Wars Celebration VI Hallmark exclusive Ponda Baba Walrus Man and Obi-Wan Kenobi
2012 Star Wars Celebration VI exclusives. Image from StarWars.com
I mean, come on! How cool is it that you get not only Ponda Baba (Walrus Man) but also his severed arm to hang on your tree?

WARNING: MILD GEEK RANT APPROACHING
 
I understand the whole "con exclusive" thing. But I don't like it. Even if you're at these events, the process to get the items can have you standing in line for hours and/or extremely frustrated when you can't get what you want because you didn't line up outside the con hours before it opened. I'm looking at you, Star Wars Celebration V Gentle Giant exclusive retro 12" Boba Fett!  And if you're not at the con? Your only hope is the secondary market where you'll be lucky if you only end up paying twice retail.

These recent exclusives have helped me decide that I no longer want to try to have a complete collection of Hallmark ornaments. The pricing hasn't helped either. Paying over $20 for one ornament can be kinda crazy. When it's one of the only things you buy in a whole year for your collection, it's not that bad but when you start getting closer to $50, not so much. Starting this year, I'm only getting the ones that I really want.

Hallmakr LEGO Star Wars Stormtrooper and Darth Vader ornament
2012 Hallmark Star Wars LEGO ornaments
Of course, I imagine it's only a matter of time before the first LEGO exclusive pops up...

2 comments:

  1. My best friend Scott has a few of these i think.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for introducing Star Wars Ornaments.
    star wars serials are very entertaining.

    ReplyDelete

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