In the summer of ’83, I started recreated the famous Freezing-Han-Solo-In-Carbonite scene from The Empire Strikes Back. I would recreate this scene by filling a glass with water, dropping my Kenner Han Solo action figure in it (preferably standing straight up), and then placing the glass in the freezer right before going to bed, ensuring that the action figure would be encased in solid ice when I woke up.
I soon discovered that I could not recreate this scene using a glass glass. Those of you who have frozen anything in glass know why. But I just as quickly discovered that I could recreate this scene using a plastic cup. My plastic cup of choice? One of the cups from the Kool-Aid Pitcher and Cup set.
I can’t remember how we got the Kool-Aid Pitcher and Cup set. It may have required us to send in some proofs of purchase (proof of purchases), or it may have just been on sale at the store in the Kool-Aid aisle. In any case, we got it, and it was probably the first housewares purchase I ever got excited about. The set included one 2-gallon pitcher (the perfect size for making an envelope of Kool-Aid) and four smaller cups. Both the pitcher and the cups came in many different colors (ours were transparent), were shaped like the Kool-Aid Man, and were emblazoned with the Kool-Aid Man’s signature eyes, eyebrows, and smile. Oh yeah! indeed.
Now these cups were great to drink Kool-Aid out of, but they were even greater for my The Empire Strikes Back recreations. It was a little hard to get the frozen action figure out of the cup; the wider bottom didn’t allow the ice block to easily slide out. But the cup never broke as glass did, so I was able to recreate the scene again and again and again. Recreate it not just with Han Solo but with C-3P0 and Elmer Elephant as well. I may have even given a few Glamour Gals the carbonite treatment. Freezing these action figures and then chipping them out of the ice with a butter knife kept me busy that entire summer, and none of that would have been possible without the Kool-Aid Pitcher and Cup set.