When I was deep in the thrall of Transformers fever, before the days of the Headmasters, the Targetmasters and the other odd variations they came out with in later years there was one toy that I pined for. This toy was (at the time) the biggest Transformer to be released, Omega Supreme! Not only was he the biggest, he was motorized too! He had a tank that circled a track and a rocket that you could use to fly your other toys to outer space! He was everything a kid could want!
The only problem with Omega Supreme was he was fifty bucks. FIFTY BUCKS! When your a pre-teen/teenager fifty bucks is like a million! I had to have this amazing toy, but how? How was I going to be able to save that much money? Even if I saved my allowance for weeks it’d still take like fifty years to get enough to buy it! But that’s what I decided to do, I would make the ultimate sacrifice, I would save my money for as long as I needed to buy the holy grail of Transformer-dom. I even asked if I could do extra chores around the house to earn more money. EXTRA CHORES?!?! Why that was unheard of! No kid offered to do extra work! They did what they had to and your parents were lucky to get that! Slavery ended 100 years ago, what right did they have to “make” you take out the trash? You deserved that money for the hardships you had to endure! You had to go to school, do homework and deal with your big sister picking on you too! They should double your allowance for making you do work on top of that! But save I did and finally I had done it! I had saved $63 thanks to Christmas and Birthday money. Omega Supreme would be mine!
I decided to make a day of it, I would take my best friend Stephen with me, we would go buy Omega and then go to a movie, my treat. Unfortunately for me the closest store that held the holy grail of toys was thirty miles away but that wasn’t such a big deal, the movie theater was that far away too. So we loaded up the car and headed to Jerseyville on our quest. As we pulled into the Wal-Mart parking lot my excitement knew no bounds, in mere moments I’d be holding the almighty Omega Supreme in my hands. Stephen and I ran into the store, straight to the toy aisle……only to find they didn’t have one in stock. They had a Go-Bot Power suit which was their version of a Go-Bot mecha I suppose you could say. It was five suits that combined together to form one big robot. I was still kind of into Go-Bots at the time and it was only twenty five dollars, quite a bit cheaper than Omega. Should I get it and use the extra cash to buy a couple of other Transformers? Or should I see if I could talk my Mom into taking me to Alton, to the holy mecca of childhood Toys R Us? They would have it for sure! So I put on my best puppy dog face and trudged my way back out to the car empty handed and gave my Mom a sob story about how they didn’t have any but they said that the TRU in Alton for sure had them but that was farther away. I guess I must have played my cards right that day because she agreed to take us the additional thirty miles to TRU. Never had a thirty mile trip felt so long in my life, I just knew we were caught in a time warp that caused us to drive slower than other cars and we would never make it.
Finally after what seemed like weeks we finally pulled into the TRU parking lot, I don’t think the car had even come to a complete stop before I had jumped out the door of the family station wagon and headed inside. The contents of the store were a blur as I flew down the aisles looking for the boy toys, more importantly the Transformers section. Then as if a light from heaven shown down I saw him; Omega Supreme! Big as life in that huge cardboard box…..all the way up on the top shelf way out of reach! How could they do this to me? To place the object of my desire in front of me but just out of reach! I scanned the store desperately for someone to get him down for me and finally had him in my hands! After weeks of chores, scrimping and saving I finally had him in my grasp! Stephen and I ran to the front of the store eager to open the treasure trove of plastic Autobot goodness and transform the robot within. I pulled the crumpled wad of money out of my pocket and shoved it at the cashier, reluctant to let go of my prize. We climbed into the back of the car and I started to open the box when I heard the words every kid hates to hear “Don’t you open that until we get home!”
What?! How could she do this to me? I had waited for what seemed like eons for this day and now I couldn’t enjoy the fruits of my labor? This was child abuse worse than any spanking I ever received as a child but I relented to her demand and left the box unopened. I would instead imagine all of the good times that lay ahead, how Omega would be the ruler over my army of G.I. Joe, He-Man, Transformers and those pathetic Go-Bots. Any who dared defy him would taste his fury from his gigantic laser hand and be reduced to an insignificant pile of ash! Yes big things lay ahead for Omega and I, all my friends would envy me and my new toy. Oddly enough the trip back to Jerseyville didn’t seem as long and I couldn’t tell you to this day what the movie we saw was, all I could think about was getting home to open that box and transforming him for the first time. After the movie got out Stephen and I went back to the car to wait for my Mom to get out of bingo, drooling over the box, reading Omega Supreme’s bio card over and over again. “You know” Stephen said “she’d never know if we opened it and just put the stickers on while we’re waiting. We’ll put it back in the box and close the lid and you can pretend to open it then.” My God! That was brilliant! Why had I not thought of that? I would get to play with my toy and not get in trouble because she would never know we had already opened the box! So I opened the box and handed Stephen the tank portion and the sheet of stickers while I looked over the directions to see where the stickers went and how to transform this monstrosity. Stephen had extended his arms and legs and shifted his head into the robot position and we attached the rocket portions to mostly complete his upper body. I knew we were supposed to just attach the stickers but who could resist not playing with a new toy for the first time? As I was reading over the instructions again I heard the sound no toy owner ever wants to hear, snap. SNAP?!? No! It wasn’t possible! Not now! Not already! But it was true, Stephen had broken Omega Supreme. I don’t know which I was more of livid or shocked. “What the hell did you do?!” I asked. “I was trying to get his leg back in and it just broke” he said. “It’s not that big of a deal you can still play with it” Not that big of a deal? How could he say that? He wasn’t the one pining for this toy for ages, who had passed over the chance to buy new G.I. Joes, He-Man figures and even other Transformers. Needless to say Omega went back in the box after that and the rest of the trip home was spent in silence. He did still function and transform ok but in my eyes he was never the same. He had the one gimpy leg and it wasn’t even me that did the damage. Stephen and I got over our spat and are still friends to this day and yes I still have Omega Supreme gimpy leg and all. Was he worth the time and effort it took to get him? Looking back on him now, probably not but when I was a kid he was the crown jewel of my collection. He didn’t get out much because of the multitude of small parts he came with and the fact that he was a pain in the ass to transform but he was mine. I don’t have kids yet but when I do I gurantee they will have to work for their high end toys or video games. It makes you appreciate it all the more when you have to work for it versus having someone give it to you. Like I’ve said before kids today have it too easy, they can just go on-line and order their toys, theres no thrill of the hunt. I know times change and so do people but Omega, he stays the same, gimpy leg and all.