Carded Australian Greedo

May 23, 2000
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Here are some pics of a figure Dax was talking about last year that I finally got around to shooting pics of. It is of Australian origin, I believe. The bubble is very odd. Inverted and square cornered. And extremely brittle. The card is also noticably smaller than a standard version Kenner card. Took pics to show scale. I think there may be 2 other known carded examples, being a Hammerhead and a DSD. Anyone know of any others?

Dax, if you are reading this, what other info can you provide?

I assume that's an offerless 20 back? "It is of Australian origin" because we are upside down here
Hi Troy,
If this is a production piece it is probably worth comparing the dimensions of it to a 20 back toltoys card (if you have one or can get one). I wouldn't have thought the card would have been any smaller than that of the US production card but hey my understanding on the topic isn't the be all and end all.

It would be interesting to confirm the origin and whether the card size is infact limited to those wacky cantina aliens.

Thanks for the pics of the Greedo Troy, that's a beautiful piece to see! Can you confirm for me though that yours is actually a 20 back as all the ones I've seen so far are 21 backs?

So far I'm aware of just the three carded figures that you mentioned, the Greedo, DSD and a Hammerhead. There may be others out there though as there are also a few cardbacks that show this bubble style was used on them. I'm currently at work right now but when I get home I'll dig out my list.

Both Dan and Will have been fantastic in their help in compiling knowledge about these items and that's what I love about the hobby, that even 30 years on we're still putting the pieces together and helping build information.

Check out in their Star Wars section for a pic of the carded Hammerhead (it's about half way down the page):

There's also this thread from a while back talking about the cardbacks which was before I knew about the carded figures and what the full bubble actually looked like: Unusual Vintage Find

So in summary, although the Greedo and the DSD were most recently handled through Australia common belief is that these are most likely New Zealand produced items. Will suggested that they may have been a high quality bootleg from a company called Lincoln Toys who were infamous in producing such items however looking at the Hammerhead figure in person this doesn't seem likely. The figure is almost certainly a Kenner manufactured items with no variance you would expect from a bootleg such as lost detail or smaller scale.

The cardbacks however are certainly a different scale, not just a smaller size. That is, the artwork has been shrunk in proportion to fit the smaller card size. Right now all I have is supposition about how this occurred and it could be that although the figures were made in Asia, perhaps the cards were manufactured in NZ and locally produced bubbles were used to assemble the figures in country for distribution. Honestly I have no idea if that was the case and would welcome any other insight about manufacturing or the NZ market at that time.

Will did propose a plausible theory that the artwork for these smaller cards was produced from an original cardback instead of the master artwork.

The smaller scale might have been done to fit in with local manufacturing limitations such as printing presses or cutting templates. i.e. the NZ Cardmaster 6000 is only 30" wide where as the Hong Kong based Binford 6000 Cardmaster is 32" wide and can handle 4 carded figures wide in the presses. By slightly reducing the scale of the cardbacks NZ could now also produce 4 carded figures wide instead of only 3, increasing their performance by 33%.

OK, that example is purely my imagination at work and I expect we'll never know the real story, but something like that could explain the difference. I would welcome anyone out there with more (that would be any) knowledge to shoot holes in my hypothetical

To answer your question Brody, the Toltoys cardbacks are a standard size so no relation to this style of figure I'm afraid.

I'll try to post a few images and some more information later.
OK, no new images just yet however he's some additional information.

In relation to cardbacks that have this bubble I've seen the following characters:

Ben Kenobi
Sand People
Death Squad Commander
Luke X-Wing
Death Star Droid

That's loose cardbacks, not including the three carded figures I've already mentioned. Who knows if all 21 figures ended up receiving the same treatment but I imagine putting such a run together would be an incredible challenge.

All this focus on NZ suddenly caused me to recall a fine entry in John Kellerman's book which shows a sample of a NZ 48 back card which has the unique cardback sporting the Toltoys NZ name. Does this indicate that cards were indeed printed locally for their product, or at the very least, were printed in Hong Kong as a specific separate run for NZ? Honestly I don't know enough about the production process to answer that one but hopefully someone else might be able to add more.
Troy I think that Greedo is the actual one that came out of New Zealand a couple of years ago listed as "Toltoys Foreign", along with another auction for a DSD of the same style:



Did you win that or purchase it later?

Will -- were these the MOCs that comicbug had for sale? i remember him having a few for sale a few years back now (2005 or so)...perhaps he could shed some light on the subject asto their source....i actually remember him talking about them to me that they were toltoys out of NZ.

i guess if it came down to it perhaps somebody should give Kosta a call?
Hey Will,

I can't see the pics right now, but I won my example 2 or 3 years ago off Ebay. It has been in storage since my mishap. Dax asked for pics sometime last year and I am just now getting around to snapping them. I don't remember the DSD, but then I wouldn't have been looking for one, either.

Will -- were these the MOCs that comicbug had for sale? i remember him having a few for sale a few years back now (2005 or so)...perhaps he could shed some light on the subject asto their source....i actually remember him talking about them to me that they were toltoys out of NZ.

Hmmm not sure! I think I would have remembered if it had been Kosta selling them, but nothing is coming to mind. Perhaps they were just described as being from New Zealand and not actually from an ebay seller in NZ.

Kosta would have had better images in the auction too wouldn't he? The photos were just crappy scans. Maybe Kosta won them and relisted them.

I have the prices recorded so I'll see if they match up with what Troy paid.
Those horrid scans are definitely Kosta's from about 2 years ago.
They were the only 2 figures he had like this.
NZ was mentioned but I can't recall specifics.
Yes these were Kosta i had a look at them myself in person and had the option to buy them and i passed as i did not no much about them and was not sure if they were reseals or original they were brought local in Sydney from what i can recall so im guessing these were released in Australia maybe they weren't doing to well in NZ.