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"Long ago in a galaxy far away, the Star Wars saga began and Kenner continues the excitement!"
―Kenner toy commercial[src]

Kenner's Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back vintage toy line ran from 1980 to 1982, following the success of Kenner's original Star Wars toy line. This line featured a variety of characters and vehicles from the 1980 film Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back. It was succeeded by Kenner's vintage Return of the Jedi toy line in 1983.

Development[]

Kenner's The Empire Strikes Back line re-released many toys from the original Star Wars line but with the new film's logo on the packaging.

Although Star Wars author Stephen J. Sansweet noted in his 1999 book Star Wars: The Action Figure Archive that Kenner's The Empire Strikes Back product line lasted from 1980 to 1982, he later stated in his 2012 book Star Wars: The Ultimate Action Figure Collection that the line lasted until 1983. In fact, The Empire Strikes Back line's final toy releases came in 1982 before Kenner transitioned to its Return of the Jedi line in 1983.

Continuity[]

The toy line erroneously named the 4-LOM action figure "Zuckuss", and the Zuckuss figure "4-LOM." Since neither name was used on film, many considered those names to be accurate for years. Kenner's mistake was not rectified until West End Games' Galaxy Guide 3: The Empire Strikes Back in 1989.[4]

In a cut scene from The Empire Strikes Back, the character Sate Pestage was intended to have an appearance as a hologram warning Darth Vader of the Emperor's imminent transmission. He was referred to as the "Grand Vizier."[5] Hints of this scene can be found on the box for Kenner's "Darth Vader's Star Destroyer" playset, explaining that the image in the red plastic viewing screen is the Grand Vizier.[6] Some toy catalog ads for the toy changed the title to "Grand Emperor."[7]

Though most of the line featured toys based on the film, a few original items were produced. The Imperial Troop Transporter, re-released in this line as the "Imperial Cruiser", had already appeared in fiction as early as the Star Wars Marvel Comics series. To avoid the high cost of creating large vehicles for the line, small Mini-Rig vehicles that did not originate in the films were created. Many of these went on to appear in the fiction of both the Legends and later canon continuities.[8]

Appearances[]

By type 
Characters Creatures Droid models Events Locations
Organizations and titles Sentient species Vehicles and vessels Weapons and technology Miscellanea

Characters

Creatures

Droid models

Locations

Organizations and titles

Sentient species

Vehicles and vessels

Cloud Car toy

Weapons and technology

Miscellanea


Bibliography[]

Notes and references[]

External links[]