These Star Wars bootlegs are funnier than the Christmas Special!
Star Wars is one of the biggest franchises of all time, and Star Wars bootlegs come in at a close second (ok, not really). With official merchandising revenue estimated at over $250 billion per year, it’s easy to see why people want a slice of the pie, but not everyone does so through the official channels.
To celebrate these scruffy-looking nerf herders, we’ve pulled together a list of some of our favorite Star Wars bootlegs and other unofficial figures!
1. Dennis the Phantom Menace
This is actually a whole series of bootlegs. While the sculpts on these figures aren’t the best, it’s the names that really stand out, including such entries as R2-3PO (the strangely Ironman-eque fusion of R2-D2 and C-3PO), Little Girl (who is probably supposed to be Anakin), and of course the infamous Dennis.
2. LEBQ Star Wart
Much like Star Wars, LEGO is a brand with a huge fanbase and, consequently, many knock-offs. LEBQ has combined the worst of both worlds with STAR WART DIY BLOCK, featuring everyone’s favorite character — Jedi Darth Lando??
3. Pizza Rancor Keeper
Another figure too good to be unintentional, this Cheese Wars figure, made by artist Tony C. of Tone Zone Toys, features the Star Wars version of Chuck E. Cheese — complete with a companion terrifying pizza alien monstrosity. If you’re a fan, be sure to check out some of his other work, including Chewie-Cola and Dank Vadar.
4. COLECCIÓN 2016
This set of bootlegs came out right after the release of The Force Awakens, and the quality is… not that great. Unlike the controversial first wave of official Force Awakens merchandise, this set at least includes Rey… but at what cost?
5. Big Head, Bad Job
These figures have a style that may seem a bit familiar; they appear to be based off the 2005 Burger King toys. The big-head style works well with a good sculptor, but it seem like these bootleggers didn’t have one at their disposal. Still, they could have at least not given Darth Vader Mace Windu‘s lightsaber.
6. Bootlegs by necessity
While many bootlegs are made for a quick buck, that’s not the case for this set. These figures were made by Polish locals in 1983, while Poland was behind the Iron Curtain. The coloring was left entirely to the imagination of the women who painted them by hand, leading to some very unique Star Wars figures.
7. Arco SPACEWAR Play Kid
Some of the more storied Star Wars bootlegs to date, these vintage Arco SPACEWAR figures feature far too long (although “fully jointed”) legs and an assortment of accessories, including mechanical arms almost taller than the figures themselves. Too bad (or luckily) Arco lost the legal battle with Kenner and were forced to stop producing these in the late 70’s.
This self-called bootleg is actually a masterpiece! Artist Henny Zack of Nekosatsu Toys creates many intentionally terrible bootlegs that are so bad they’re good. Garf-Vadar is definitely no exception. In the crossover no one asked for, the lasagna-loving Garfield dons the attire of Darth Vader, making a fitting villain for the very real Star Why? series.
Have you got any Star Wars bootlegs in your collection? Any melty masterpieces on your shelves? If so, we definitely want to know!