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House & garden > Motor City Cribs and Rides

Motor City Cribs

More Kenner booty than you can shake an AT-AT at

Photos by: Doug Coombe
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Published 7/4/2007

Jason Gibner has a Star Wars problem, one that began at a young age. In fact, his out-of-control sci-fi memorabilia collection has overtaken the basement in the home he shares with wife Erin Milan. And it all makes sense if you consider that Gibner’s a founder of Ann Arbor’s off-the-hook monthly dance party called “The Bang!”

Clearly, any evil force foolish enough to set foot here would have their ass kicked like an agent in the hands of Neo. Or blown to shreds like Death Star after Luke Skywalker took a pass in his X-wing starfighter er, or something.

The basement is pop collector’s museum: Star Wars action figures, Lego fighters, posters and bootleg videos cram shelves in every corner, seemingly defying laws of space and time. Matrix, Star Trek and Superman collectables abound too.

Such passion for “cultural” icons might explain the mindset behind his parties, which are known for their inspired stage sets and outlandish themes (a few: “Superhero,” “Ninja” and “Glamrock Shamrock”). It might be the only dance party on earth (not counting Kazakhstan) done entirely off mixtapes … as in cassettes. It takes Han Solo balls and R2D2 resourcefulness to get all your jams in a line beforehand. And they pull it off each month.

A lucky visitor to Jason’s subterranean sci-fi lair might be treated to a boot copy of Dunyayi Kurtaran Adam’s 1982 demented masterpiece The Man Who Saves the World — commonly known as Turkish Star Wars, which is a Star Wars convention fave. The nearly incomprehensible film features whole segments pirated from the original Star Wars film and soundtrack music lifted from Flash Gordon and Raiders of the Lost Ark, among others. “It’s incoherent European science fiction taken to its highest level of art,” Gibner enthuses.

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