Thursday, July 16, 2009

2009 Topps Magic Football

I was a bit uncertain about Topps Magic football release. A number of reviews that I have read have pasted the set as “an average release” which does not give it an appealing aura. I finally decided to take the plunge myself because I am a vintage collector and have felt that many of the re-creations have done justice to the original sets.

I picked up a couple of packs and honestly have to say that Topps did a pretty nice job with the set. There are some positive qualities but there are also so negative qualities. Overall I do like what I have seen so far and definitely will consider picking up a box to break to work on building a base set.

Beginning with the card description itself, Topps did a great job using a similar style cardboard for printing; the cards have a similar feel to the original 1951 release. The fronts contain an action shot of the player in their college uniform with a small black box along the bottom containing the player name, position and team nickname. The backs contain player information, the school logo and a question and answer box. The difference from the original set is that instead of a photo of the college campus the bottom box now contains a state map pinpointing the location where the player played during college.

One thing that bothered me was the way that that Topps photoshopped the player’s image to give it an “old-time feel” and to add a grain. The original set used photos that were hand colored, Topps used filters to give the photos a similar look but instead ended up looking cartoonish. Another disappointment is Topps used some photos of players in practice gear, ruining some of the cards.

The minis replicate the original 1951 release, where the cards were 2 1/16 x 2 15/16. The minis are exactly the same in appearance and feel as the full size cards except they contain a black bordered parallel version. I do not want to even go on to the Magic Thrills cards, this insert seem like it was just an addition to add more filler.

I am a huge fan of the original 1955 All-American set so the addition of the All-American insert set made me smile. I had to wonder though why Topps would make this an insert when in 2005 they released the Topps All-American set which was a re-creation of the original 1955 set. Not that I am complaining. It makes me wonder if Topps will re-create the 1950 Felt Backs as its own set? There was a Felt Back set that was re-created as an insert in the 2005 Topps Heritage Football set, but I think it deserves its own release.

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