August 23, 2016

The 2017 Topps Design Reminds Me Of 1973 Topps

For whatever reason Topps now announces their new flagship design six months before the ahead of time of the release in February. The 2017 set design has been met with at best mixed reviews after two years of what I would call generally positive reaction from the card blogging community. My main gripe with the set is that the design takes up way, way, way too much of the card. It sort of looks like a brief informational graphic ESPN would flash on the screen during the game and then quickly jump away,

Wouldn't it be nice to know where exactly Harper was standing on the field? The set and its complete waste of card space, reminds me a lot of the 1973 Topps design which squandered so much space, especially on the sets' horizontal cards.

I mean at best you are only getting 60% of the possible photograph of Terry Crowley running full steam into Thurman Munson. Wouldn't it have been nice to see the plate and get the full experience of that great moment? 

Here are a few more examples of great action photograph from the '73 set that could have been so much better with an improved design. Like, was the Mets runner safe at home in Pat Corrales' card?

Same thing with Bob Didier's card...out or safe?

The problem was rectified (a little bit) the following season as the horizontal cards in the 1974 Topps set were expanded and greatly improved. Here's another Thurman Munson play at the plate card that is a little better with the expanded photograph frame.

August 20, 2016

Star Trek 50th Anniversary Chibis

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the debut of the Star Trek TV series, toy maker Bulls-i-Toy has issued a set of tiny chibis toys featuring nearly all of the key figures from the original Star Trek series. My pack of three figures came from Target and was $3.99.

The back features a checklist includes all the major characters from the Federation and quite a few villains including a Gorn, General Chang, and Khan! I would love a Scotty, Spock, and a Gorn or Khan. Let's see what I received.

Success! Yes, I pulled two out of my three favorites.

 And since I pulled Captain Kirk, I'm able to reenact the greatest fight scene in television history:

Who's Going To Make A Stranger Things Card Set?

So who's going to make the Stranger Things card set? And it HAS to be done in the Heritage style with the old school cardboard from the 1980's.

You can make your own Stranger Things logo on

July 30, 2016

Card Aisles I Have Known

My life has been one of transition these past few weeks as I've been moving houses and traveling around the north east. I've been to many a card aisle in my time but I don't think anything compares to the Target card aisle I found while stopping off in the city of New Hartford in upstate New York. The card display on the right continued on for several more feet with wax boxes from new and older products from more than a year. Appropriately, I came upon this lovely group of cards before heading over to the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown. 

July 12, 2016

Three All In The Family Board Game Cards

My favorite cards pickups from the comic and cards show in Virginia this past weekend came from the 50 cent box of non-sports cards at one of the tables that specializes only in non-sports cards. These are three of the cards that came included in the board game created by Milton Bradley for the All In The Family TV show and feature the characters Archie, Mike, and Gloria. The cards have a playing card feel with the numbering in the card's corners and they are shorter and narrower than a standard trading card.

Here is the reverse side design featuring the show's logo.

All In The Family is probably my favorite 70's sitcom and if you haven't seen many episodes, you should, just to get an idea that today's America is not that far removed from that of the early 1970's. We tend to think we are experiencing new difficulties today but in truth they have been going on forever here. Here is a collection of some of the shows best clips:

And here's what the original board game looks like that I took from eBay. It seems that you can get complete games from $10-$20, depending on the condition of the box. Collector interested in the cards can also find an All In The Family card in the 2011 Topps American Pie set #107

There is of course an Edith card that was included in the game but I didn't find in the 50 cents box and I will have to track down as well. This is also a wild card in the game called the "Ding Bat" card which refers to Archie's nickname for his wife. Here's a clip of Mike and Archie debating Edith's time on a jury.

July 10, 2016

The Problem With This 1966 Batman Card

I've been slowly picking up any 1966 Batman cards I come across at card shows as they are some of my favorite non-sports cards ever made. I picked this Batman "red bat series" card at a card show in Annandale, Virginia today as it seems like an appropriate card for my time living in Washington DC.

The reverse side explains the action on the front as Batman has traveled to the nation's capital to help catch a bank robber who only stole pennies. The robber made his way to the Lincoln Memorial in what I imagine is in honor of Lincoln being memorialized on the penny coin.

But taking a look at the card again, you will notice that the top of the Washington Monument sticking out over the top of the Lincoln Memorial. If you've ever visited the Lincoln Memorial you'll know that this particular image is impossible. 

Here's the view of the front of the Lincoln Memorial and as you can see there is no Washington Monument visible. 

This is because the Washington Memorial is located directly in front of the Lincoln Memorial. Here is the view from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial looking across the reflecting pool.

I thought maybe the artist used the reverse side of the Lincoln Memorial for the design of the card. But again you can't see the Washington Monument and the card features tourists and sidewalks, both of which the reverse side doesn't have. 

I think the artist of the cards (the famous painter Norman Saunders) included the second monument on the card to make it more clear that the setting was Washington. Either way, it is one of my favorite 1966 Batman cards now after spending some time in the capital.