Review | Plastic Galaxy: The Story Of Star Wars Toys (2014)

Review | Plastic Galaxy: The Story Of Star Wars Toys (2014)

If you enjoyed the first episode Netflix’s ‘The Toys That Made Us’, then maybe you’ll enjoy ‘Plastic Galaxy: The Story of Star Wars Toys’.

Netflix’s recent low-budget documentary series ‘The Toys That Made Us‘ hit us right in the nostalgia feels. Not least the opening episode which focussed on the rise of Kenner Toys and the success of their Star Wars figures. But it’s not the first (and certainly won’t be the last) documentary about the Kenner Star Wars toy phenomenon.

Presented in a similar low-budget style, ‘Plastic Galaxy: The Story of Star Wars Toys’ is an hour and ten minute long documentary first released in 2014.

Directed by Brian Stillman, the filmmaker tells the story of how Kenner rose from obscurity to become a phenomenon through their deal with Lucasfilm to create Star Wars toys in 1977. The narrative is mostly told from the perspective of collectors, but also through the accounts and recollections of the original team responsible for designing and conceptualising the toy line.

Like ‘The Toys That Made Us’, viewers get to see some rare prototypes and examples of toys that didn’t make it to retail along with point of sale items that might have made their way to toy shops. A section of the film is dedicated to explaining the artistic process that went into creating the backing boards of the packaging that held figures.

Whilst ‘Plastic Galaxy’ doesn’t delve too deeply into the politics, decisions and the business side of the Kenner story, it does showcase an extensive world of interesting and unique collectibles. The enthusiasm of contributing collectors and those that were present during Kenner’s rise in fortunes is compelling and allows one to forgive the lack of production values.

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Essentially ‘Plastic Galaxy’ is very similar to the first episode of ‘The Toys That Made Us’. Perhaps it will come as no surprise to learn that the documentary filmmaker was also a consulting producer for the series. But if you enjoyed ‘The Toys That Made Us’ Star Wars episode – and you fancy an hour and ten minutes more of the same – then ‘Plastic Galaxy: The Story of Star Wars Toys’ is definitely worth a look.

‘Plastic Galaxy: The Story of Star Wars Toys’, is available to view via Amazon Prime streaming in the UK and other places you get your films and TV. For more information visit

3 out 5

A low-budget nostalgia trip. What it lacks in story telling it makes up for in retro cool. – 3/5

About Plastic Galaxy: The Story of Star Wars Toys |┬áPlastic Galaxy: it begins a long time ago… When Star Wars landed in the theaters, it introduced audiences to a galaxy filled with heroes and villains, robots and spaceships, and a dizzying variety of alien life. But when the lights came up, they all disappeared… Unless you had all the toys. In which case, the adventure never had to end.

Will Harrison

About the author | Will Harrison

Founder of The Unheard Nerd. A husband and father of two girls, Will is a fan of Nerdcore Hip-Hop, a comics fiend, a podcast host and champion of independent nerd culture. | Follow will on twitter: @TheUnheardNerd