12/13/16

THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK Dixie Cup "Story Cards" (American Can Company, 1981)


This post replaces the previous one on this subject, because at the time, I did not have a complete set of these cards, and now I am glad to finally fill in this missing piece of vintage Star Wars promotional collectibles on the complete list.  Here is the low-down:  Star Wars-themed Dixie Cups were always a thing, from the very beginning of the saga.  They continued through RETURN OF THE JEDI, and many styles were produced, in many, many different boxes, which featured cool artwork and, sometimes, cardboard items that could be cut from the back of the boxes.

Cut Card #2 (front)
Cut Card #2 (back)
In 1981, to further promote THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, a series of "Story Cards" were included inside "specially marked boxes."  The cards, if you can call them that, were really just heavier-stock paper, and small at that, and came in strips of four.  You could try to collect the entire set by buying boxes of Dixie Cups, OR send off six proof of purchases and FIFTY CENTS for the ENTIRE SET of cards, plus an ESB poster that had numbered spaces to attach your cards.  The completed poster told the story of the film. (Well, most of it, as it stopped just before the BIG REVEAL at the end.)  I imagine that more than a few kids ended up gluing their cards to their posters, which would have been very unfortunate, and probably not age well, either.  Today we will look at a complete set of cards made up of various strips.  Here is the only photo of the mail-away poster that I can find (until I track one down):


The strips were pretty randomly-printed, as you will see below, and I'm sure it was difficult to complete the set.  Here, then, is a complete set of 24 cards, made up of various uncut card strips:

Uncut Strip: Cards 15, 5, 12, & 22 (front)
Uncut Strip: Cards 22, 12, 5, & 15 (back)
Uncut Strip: Cards 3, 11, 19, & 8 (front)
Uncut Strip: Cards 8, 19, 11, & 3 (back)
Uncut Strip: Cards 21, 10, 18, & 9 (front)
Uncut Strip: Cards 9, 18, 10, & 21 (back)
Uncut Strip: Cards 1, 23, 17, & 15 (front)

Uncut Strip: Cards 15, 17, 23, & 1 (back)
Uncut Strip: Cards 22, 7, 4, & 16 (front)

Uncut Strip: Cards 16, 4, 7, &22 (back)
Uncut Strip: Cards 20, 13, 1, & 23 (front)
Uncut Strip: Cards 23, 1, 13, & 20 (back)
Uncut Strip: Cards 14, 2, 6, & 24 (front)
Uncut Strip: Cards 24, 6, 2, & 14 (back)
Lastly, here is the Special Offer from the back panel of a box containing a strip of these cards.  Interestingly, the cards don't seem to have been included with Star Wars-themed Dixie Cups, but non-SW (as in the first photo in this post).  This back panel was included with the final cards I bought, and the partial side panels (which I cropped out below) were from the "Fresh Herbs" collection, and not even SW boxes!  Note the nifty placemats and cool hat that you could also order!

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