Playmates put out a shit ton of Star Trek action figures and ships and roleplay toys, but they also launched a pair of interesting little lines called Innerspace and Strike Force. These consisted of little transformable playsets with minifigures. The concept is very close to the Micro Machines Star Wars playsets in that they’re pretty simple and you can close them up and take them with you. We’ll get into the Strike Force stuff eventually, but today we’re going to take a look at one of the Innerspace toys. It’s the shuttlecraft Goddard, and it’s one of the better toys in this little series.
While there were some larger, boxed Innerspace toys, the majority of the line came carded, which should give you an idea about just how small these things are. The Goddard is partially opened so you can get a peek inside and the two tiny minifigures are mounted off to the side. The back panel of the card has some specs and background information on the shuttlecraft, consisting of both fictional details as well as its first appearance in the series. You also get a bunch of close up photos of the toy and the various features. The packaging isn’t exactly attractive, but then this is Playmates we’re talking about. It is, however, informative and there’s even a little punch out collector card.
Out of the package, the Goddard is a really nice little recreation of the shuttle designs that started becoming standard about halfway through The Next Generation. In fact, it’s pretty spot-on. How small is it? Well, it falls right between the size of a Deluxe and Scout Class Transformer. There are a few nice details in the sculpt, and the markings on the toy are a combination of paint apps and fairly well applied stickers. About the only complaint I have here is that the windows are stickers instead of paint, and the main windshield is actually two stickers placed on each side of the seam where the toy opens up. I may get inspired enough to actually paint the windows on this thing one day, as I think it would be a big improvement.
The aft of the ship opens up and the boarding ramp drops down, just like it did in the show, and you can reach in and slide out the cargo pallet, just like you could on the larger Goddard vehicle that was designed for the regular action figure line. There are a couple of pegs under the shuttle that can be used to land on and pick up the pallet for transport. Honestly, even if this were all there was to it, I would still really dig this little toy.
But as the name, Innerspace, implies, the Goddard can be split down the middle and opened up to reveal an interior play area, as well as the minifigures (assuming you put them in there). The interior of the shuttle is even a bit more accurately portrayed than the larger Playmates shuttle. There’s a pilot area with a swiveling chair in the front, with some pretty cool stickers to make up those distinctive LCARS control panels. There are similar stickers on the two halves of the shuttle that open up, including stickers showing a replicator serving up a meal and another a piping hot beverage… earl gray tea perhaps? The back portion contains the cargo pallet, which can be slid out to allow the passenger seats to fold open. The interior really is well executed for such a tiny little toy.
The minifigures consist of Lt. Commander Geordi LaForge and Commander Deanna Troi. Really? A Commander? Every time I’m reminded of her rank, I want to call bullshit. But I digress. Imagine what you think of when you hear the term “minifigure” and now shrink it down a lot more, because these things are really friggin small. And yet, overall the sculpt and the paintwork are well executed to the point where you can certainly tell who they’re supposed to be. Geordi even has a little tool molded into his hand so he can run one of those damned Level 5 Diagnostics he was always talking about. Geordi is articulated at the hips so he can stand or sit in the pilot chair. Deanna on the other hand, has zero articulation, so she can either stand behind him and nag him while he’s flying or just lay out in the back cargo area. Her paint is a little less polished than Geordi’s. In fact, someone went a little crazy when painting her comm badge.
The reason this toy works so well for me is because it’s totally in scale with the figures. There’s really no gimmick here, it’s just a little vehicle that opens up to let you play inside it. I would have LOVED it if the larger Goddard toy had been designed more like this tiny little toy. Unfortunately, the Goddard is pretty atypical for the Innerspace line, and as we’ll see next Saturday, most of the rest of the toys feature the huge Starships that really require you to suspend your beliefs and summon up all your imagination for them to work. Next time, we’ll look at the Romulan Warbird and the Klingon Bird of Prey.