Hasbro/Kenner Mail-In Rocket Firing Boba Fett

Awhile back, I received my retro-inspired Hasbro/Kenner mail-in Rocket Firing Boba Fett. For the few of you who have not yet enjoyed the original Star Wars trilogy, Boba Fett is the infamous bounty hunter who captures Han Solo for Jabba the Hutt.

Boba Fett’s first appearance was on the equally infamous Star Wars Christmas Special cartoon that aired before Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back in 1980. For that appearance and his upcoming film debut in The Empire Strikes Back, a special mail-away action figure of Boba Fett was offered by Kenner.

The way these mail-away action figure specials worked is that you had to buy a few action figures available in stores, cut out the proof of purchase, write a check for shipping and handling (usually by handing over saved lunch money to a parent), and mail it all to Kenner.

Originally, this Boba Fett action figure was promised to have a “rocket firing backpack.” Unfortunately, it was deemed to be dangerous to children, because the tiny rockets could strike and injure an eye. The Boba Fett action figure was redesigned so that the rocket was permanently embedded in his backback, and the firing mechanism was also removed. That was in 1979/1980.

Now, Hasbro/Kenner offered a new mail-away action figure of Boba Fett that was based on the original rocket firing backback design albeit slightly changed and with larger rockets. When I heard about this new action figure, I dutifully bought the needed store shelf action figures, cut out the proof of purchase symbols, cut a check for shipping and handling, and mailed it all away to Hasbro. After a six week wait on a particularly crummy day, I received a beat up package in the mail–my new Rocket Firing Boba Fett. See pictures of it here.

Published by Jason W. Ellis

I am an Associate Professor of English at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY whose teaching includes composition and technical communication, and research focuses on science fiction, neuroscience, and digital technology. Also, I coordinate the City Tech Science Fiction Collection, which holds more than 600 linear feet of magazines, anthologies, novels, and research publications.