From the May, 1979 Marvel comes comes this full-page ad for Battlestar Galactica t-shirts! This was just a small example of the BG merchandising, which also included models from Monogram (of the Galactica, Cylon Base Star, Viper, and Cylon Raider... but no Cylon model, after the success of the Star Wars droids and Darth Vader kits?), action figures and vehicles from Mattel... and some other stuff I don't recall right now.
It's almost hard to imagine these days, but Galactica was really presented to licensors as being the next big thing in sci-fi... and I'd imagine the licensors who'd passed on Star Wars were all too happy to latch onto the next thing to come along that even remotely resembled Star Wars! Although, oddly, Mego didn't pick up the BG rights.
When Buck Rogers came along a few years later, Mego did grab that license, and was probably one of the last toy lines they produced. Monogram also did some models from Buck Rogers in the 25th Century.
What really makes all this surprising is how these days, there's virtually no licensing done on a TV show immmediately... unless it comes from Japan, where it's already been a major hit, no doubt. Now, I'm not talking about those 80s shows that were created more or less as commercials for toy lines (like GI Joe, Transformers, He-Man, Thundercats, etc.)... I'm talking about stuff like Justice League and Teen Titans, which were each on for some time before any action figures were produced (I think they were even slow to do comics based on those shows... or maybe not so slow). Krypto the Superdog was on for a while before there was much merchandising done on that, and DC didn't even do a mini-series until after that show was no longer in production!
Then there's Legion of Super-Heroes, which DC's actually got a comic book based on already (amazingly, before the last ep of the season was aired)... but still no news on a toy line, which could be HUGE if they don't waste time producing it.
Then again... look how huge Heroes is on NBC... and what merchandising have we seen on that? Some T-shirts sold on NBC.com... and that's about it. OK, perhaps action figures might be kind of pointless (although maybe not... even with some of the characters killed off, perhaps a line produced for adult collectors wouldn't be a bad idea, especially if they came packaged with some kind of tie-in, like a 9th Wonders mini-comic?). One would've thought that perhaps some posters might've been done, for that matter... and maybe there have been, I haven't checked the NBC online store for a few months.
Anyway... like I said, lots of promotion for BG toys and stuff... they sold badly... and are sought-after collector's items today. Go figure!
(Seriously, I loved the original Galactica, and would've liked to have had some of the toys back then... the only figures I ever actually got, second-hand, were a beat-up Cylon in the tiny size and a Daggit with a broken tail whose color was faded).
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