For this review of the 1995 Star Trek Innerspace Shuttlecraft Goddard, I’m writing a smaller review than usual. I’ll say I’m keeping at a micro level in honor of this tiny vehicle/playset and its diminutive inhabitants, but it could also be because there’s only so much to say about two semi-articulated figures and their dwarf hamster-sized vehicle.
I’ll leave it up to you to decide whether I’m paying tribute or being a lazy slob, dear readers.
Anyway, no smartass filecard or tech spec mimicry this time! If you want to read about the Shuttlecraft Goiddard, here’s a link to its entry at Memory Alpha.
On with the review!
A Childhood in Micro: Shaky Hands and the 1995 Star Trek Innerspace Shuttlecraft Goddard
When I was a kid, I loved micro-scale playsets. You know, the kind of toy that was an environment for tiny figures to interact with. The figures weren’t generally even an inch tall and, as such, they were light on detail and articulation.
The big names in the micro playset game were Polly Pocket and Mighty Max. I never had any entries from either of those toy lines (though I do enjoy learning about them– check out this review from The Forgotten Starship and this video review from Zubbie), but I had my share of micro playsets.
I had toys from lines like:
- Star Wars Micro Machines
- Star Wars Action Fleet
- Marvel Pocket Comic
- Beast Wars
- Star Trek Innerspace
Obviously, you’ve already caught on that we’re talking about Innerspace today. I’m tackling Innerspace as my first micro playset review for two reasons:
One: because I’ve always loved Star Trek. My Grandfather, the person who sculpted me into the nerd I am today, always watched Star Trek: TNG and DS9 with me in between reruns of the 1966 Batman show, and he always fostered my love of science fiction and comics. He took me to see Star Trek VI in theaters, and he was never happier than when he talked about “Good ol’ Captain Kirk.” We also regularly watched Walker: Texas Ranger, but that’s a story for another day.
I watched Star Trek: The Next Generation in syndication every day after school in the mid 1990s. I watched new episodes of DS9 every weekend with my Grandfather. Star Trek: Voyager was the first TV show my Mom let me stay up past bedtime to watch.
I’ve had my sordid love affairs with Star Wars, but I’ll always be a Star Trek guy at heart. Needless to say, I was enthralled with Playmates’ Star Trek toys from the 90s, and I still am.
Two: because I love micro playsets. They offer an entire world for small figures to interact with, and they lend themselves to Big Idea play scenarios. And I always loved Star Trek for the Big Ideas– even if I still don’t fully grasp them all.
I especially enjoy the “transforming” micro playsets, like today’s entry. This toy transforms from a shuttlecraft into the interior of a shuttlecraft, so it’s pretty straightforward. Other toys, though, were statuesque, chromed models of C-3P0’s head that opened up into a Mos Eisley Cantina, or were abominable monsters that opened up into torture chambers for Mighty Max to escape from.
Now, the micro scale of these playsets presents a few unique challenges to me personally. The biggest of which is that I have always had shaky hands, so posing and displaying the figures that come with these sets always represents an obstacle for me. Even as a kid, I had a hard time setting up stormtroopers or Klingons for my heroes to shoot down, as my hands would rarely allow for me to leave a figure standing for long before a tremor knocked it over.
As such, shooting the photos for this review was a challenge. It was, though, a challenge I wanted to overcome. Even posing robust, well-balanced figures like GI Joe is often problematic for me, so you can imagine how difficult it is to stand and pose a figure the size of a large bean.
But, it was worth the hassle, because now we can explore the inner spaces of the Shuttlecraft Goddard together.
1995 Star Trek Innerspace Shuttlecraft Goddard Review
Hasbro, Kenner, Toy Biz, and Lego were all triumphant in the 1990s. Hasbro offered us expertly crafted, detailed and intricate entries in both the GI Joe and Transformers canons. Kenner supplied stocky, hearty takes on characters from R-Rated sci-fi blockbusters like Aliens, Terminator 2, and Predator. Toy Biz gave us a bold, rough and tumble take on the Marvel Universe. Lego’s entries in their Space, Castle, Pirates, Wild West, and Aquazone lines were nothing short of magical. Aquazone was particularly enchanting.
But I believe Playmates Toys were the unsung heroes of the 1990s. They gave us Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Toxic Crusaders, where many of the figures represented a hilarious and grotesque horror-comedy in plastic form– these figures were sculpted with oozing wounds, deformities, mutations, maggots, insects, rats, and viscera all over their bodies. I’m not sure that would fly today.
They also gave birth to the Exo-Squad toy line. Exo-Squad, as far as I’m concerned, is the only vehicle-focused action figure line that comes even close to rivaling GI Joe. You had small, well articulated, highly detailed figures with their own personal weapons who could then climb into huge robotic battle suits. Those Exo-Frames were equipped with mind blowing weaponry and action features, and each of them came with exhaustively detailed character bios and blueprints for the vehicles. You know– the kind of stuff GI Joe fans of all ages obsess over today.
Add in the Exo-Squad cartoon, a poetic and heartbreaking sci-fi/cyberpunk classic, and you have something that will never be surpassed.
Except for by one toy line– Star Trek. If Exo-Squad was a thinking person’s franchise, Star Trek doubled down on that premise. Each figure had a great likeness, a vast array of accessories, and great articulation from the time. Each cameo-only alien was given just as much care as Captains Picard, Sisko, or Janeway. Eventually, Playmates hopped on the micro playset trend, which is what we have here today.
Presenting: The 1995 Star Trek Innerspace Shuttlecraft Goddard.
I never had the larger shuttlecraft toy meant for the Star Trek line’s standard figures but, in some ways, this toy plays tribute to it perfectly.
Simply put, it’s a Type 6 shuttlecraft with an opening rear cargo bay door. It splits in half along the top to reveal the interior of the vessel, which includes a control console with pilot’s chair, and two benches for personnel. Though it only has one crew station instead of two, it’s pretty faithful to the source material.
Here’s what you get with the vehicle/playset:
It comes with micro figures of Deanna Troi and Geordi La Forge, along with a cargo palette.
Let’s start with the figures. They’re each about a centimeter tall, and they’re reasonably detailed for being so tiny. You can definitely tell who each character is by looking at them.
Geordi is molded with his iconic VISOR and an engineering tool in one hand, which is a good look for him. Geordi is easily in my top 10 Star Trek characters, and he has an iconic look– so I can’t abide by it when a figure gets him wrong. This one doesn’t get him wrong. He moves at the legs, which are connected with a single axle so they can’t move independently. This allows him to sit at various stations and consoles.
Deanna, on the other hand, has no articulation. This allows her to either stand behind Geordi while he works the control console, just generally look cool in her Starfleet uniform, or lie down on one of the benches to take a nap.
But, if I had to pick three things I want to do right now, they’d be “hang out with Geordi La Forge,” “be a super cool Betazoid empath,” or “take a nap,” so she really doesn’t suffer too much from lack of articulation.
The paint on the figures isn’t great, but they’re so tiny that it hardly matters.
The Shuttlecraft Goddard also comes with a cargo palette. It’s an abstract sort of thing, so you can pretend it’s some advanced sensor array, food or medical supplies for a colony in need of rescue, or maybe a collection of Lwaxana Troi’s various wigs and gowns. Lwaxana totally rules, by the way, and I won’t hear you talk any mess about her.
The cargo palette can either fit into a neat little slot under the shuttlecraft, or you can fold the crew benches up and slide the palette into the shuttle itself. I’m told this mirrors a function on the larger Goddard toy for the main Star Trek: TNG action figure line.
Now, for the shuttle itself. It looks good! It resembles a pretty accurate, proportionate take on the Type 6 personnel shuttle we saw fairly often in TNG and DS9. Most of the details come from stickers, which leads us to our first problem– the stickers on this thing SUCK.
As you can tell from these photos, the stickers love to just come off of whatever surface they’re applied to. This is a problem with the entire Innerspace line.
Once you get past the stickers, though, this vessel is pretty boss.
The rear cargo door opens, allowing you to load in crew and supplies without splitting the toy apart at the seams.
Once you do split the toy apart at the top, though, you’re rewarded with a detailed interior. The inside of the shuttlecraft has a command console with a swiveling chair, two benches that allow you to load it up with up to four Starfleet crew members, and some good sticker detail– including control panels and a replicator!
And, really, that’s all there is to it. This is a nice representation of a TNG-era shuttlecraft. It really comes alive when you pair it with other ships and figures from both the Innerspace and Strike Force toy lines.
Verdict: If you like Star Trek and micro playsets, this is a pretty strong toy. It’s a good representation of a TNG shuttlecraft, and it comes with two cool characters and a trunk of wigs. If Star Trek and living small aren’t you’re style, you can probably skip it. Mildly Recommended.
- Figure Fan Zero has a great review of this toy.
Other Thoughts on the 1995 Star Trek Innerspace Shuttlecraft Goddard
The 1995 Star Trek Innerspace Shuttlecraft Goddard was the first Innerspace toy I ever got as a kid, so that’s why I chose it for review. The only other two entries from the line I had back then were the big Enterprise playset and the Klingon Bird of Prey. I still had hours and hours of fun with them.
I’ve since acquired most of the line, and they’re neat toys. I might review another one some day.
The figures and vehicles were about the same size as Galoob’s Star Wars Action Fleet line, so it also allowed me to make my dreams of Star Trek vs. Star Wars come to life. And you’d best bet the Enterprise could blow up the Death Star.
Aww heck and damnation, I guess I lied. This review wasn’t so “micro” after all. Sorry about that!
What was your favorite micro playset from the 90s? Some of those Polly Pocket sets looked pretty badass. Let me know in the comments!