Saturday, October 31, 2015

Boris Karloff On Cardboard

Over the last four years I have been posting custom horror related cards on Halloween night, it began as part of Thorzul’s Nightmare on Cardboard contest but after I won in 2012 I decided not to sit back in 2013 and just be a spectator for the contest and the contest is no longer being held.
I still felt the itch to make some spooky cards even though I was not going to enter them in the contest just to keep up posting on Halloween night. I ended up designing cards based around one of my favorites shows Ghost Adventures, last year I decided to go with one of the best, and original, horror film villain in Bela Lugosi. This year I am following that up with Boris Karloff.
Boris Karloff was born in London, England as William Henry Pratt in 1887. When he began as a stage actor in Canada in 1909 he changed his name to Boris Karloff. He ended up in Hollywood about 10 years later and during his early career he appeared in 45 silent films before the introduction of "Talkies" by the time he passed away he had appeared in over 200 movies and television shows with many of his famous roles in the horror genre.
I decided to make each Boris Karloff character correspond with a card design that was released the same year as the movie.
1931 W517 Frankenstein's Monster From Frankenstein

1932 US Caramel Imhotep From The Mummy

1953 Topps Dr. Jekyll From Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde
1963 Topps Dr. Scarabus From The Raven

1966 Topps The Grinch From The Grinch


Thursday, October 29, 2015

Another Day Not In Paradise... Plus Football Cards

The last week has been very trying for me. I am going through some serious life changes right now and have been dealing with writer’s block, which is pretty obvious with my short posts the last couple of days.

Things are going to get worse for me before they get better and I will be doing some traveling in November and December so I don’t know how much I will post but I will try to keep it as close to 20-23 posts per month even if they are just short 1 card posts or commentary.


Tonight is a two card NFL post.

First up is a 2009 SP Authentic Steve Largent. I picked this one up in a recent COMC purchase for less than a buck. I am always happy to add anything Largent for that price.


The second card is a “Caught up in the bidding” card. It is from the 2015 Spectra Football release, this is the pink Prizm refractor #9/10. The Cards are my second favorite football team and Larry Fitzgerald is a hell of a guy, he does so much for the community and you just have to root for him. I ended up getting this card for around $8 shipped, which isn’t bad for something like this but I saw a similar Fitz card #/5 go for a price around what I paid.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The Art Gallery: 2012 Cryptozoic The New 52 Superman

This month’s Art Gallery display comes from the 2012 Cryptozoic DC The New 52 release. The artist is Dietrich Smith, a comic book artist who has also worked with Topps and Upper Deck for various super hero sketch cards.

 This card was one of my “opportunity” purchases that I ended up buying because the price was right. My logic at the time was “You can’t go wrong with a Superman sketch”, which is pretty accurate but I was not on the lookout for a Superman sketch. These are the kind of purchases that I have vowed to eliminate since 2014 and I am still standing strong on that goal.

As far as Superman sketch cards go this is a nice piece, especially when you consider I spent less than $5 shipped.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

A Follow Up On Daniel Fells

Touching back on a story I posted about two weeks ago. Daniel Fells, the New York Giants Tight End, has been released from the hospital after fighting a MRSA virus infection in his ankle that required seven surgeries and a portion of his foot to amputated. The virus has been stopped and Fells has been able to return home for healing. He will still need additional surgeries but he will not need to have his entire foot amputated. This battle has almost certainly ended his career and the Giants placed him on the season-ending reserve list.

He posted on his Intragam about being home with his wife and children for some much needed rest.

Monday, October 26, 2015

R.I.P. Flip Saunders

 I have to admit that when I heard that Flip Saunders passed away yesterday I was surprised. He was diagnosed with Hodgkin Lymphoma this past summer, which has one of the best survival rates. My brother is a Hodgkin Lymphoma survivor of 20 years now so I know the treatment process pretty well. Just last month it was announced he was taking a leave of absence, which I took as he was just going through the treatment routine and wanted to be able to heal without worrying about the team. Sadly he has spent the last few weeks in the hospital due to complications with his treatment before finally succumbing to the cancer.
Prayers and positive thoughts to his family.

For collectors there are fans of the coach the options are limited to very few options, a couple of official NBA coach cards and a 1989 ProCards card from his CBA coaching days.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Browncoats Unite!

Yesterday Upper Deck released the highly anticipated 2015 Upper Deck Firefly. You might not expect a card set based on a television series that lasted a single season (and a series ending movie) over a decade ago would actually get collectors excited but this isn’t just any series, we are talking about Joss Whedon’s awesome space western Firefly.

Firefly fans were destroyed when Fox cancelled the show after only 11 of the 14 episodes were aired, Whedeon was eventually allowed to close out the shows loose ends with the release of the movie Serenity in 2005.

Following the success of the movie Inkworks released the 2006 Inkworks Firefly set which helped, even including autographs of the series actors but now that Upper Deck has the license they have taken things to a new level.

The set is made up of 171-card checklist and includes Leather and printing plate parallels, toss in sketch cards, inserts, manufactured patches and two different types of autographs and the set just straight up kicks ass. As expected prices are a bit more expensive as the cards slowly make it to eBay but hopefully as product begins to show up the prices will drop.

I am considering just purchasing a complete hand-collated base set and then chasing the sketch and autograph cards that I want. Though I will miss the fun of opening the packs it will be cheaper this way and I probably will be focusing on Kaylee (Jewel Staite) sketch cards and autographs, she is such a cutie.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

A Trip To The Emerald City Skyline

  A single card post tonight.


The Seahawks won so I am going with a 2015 Topps Allen & Ginters Keys To The City Space Needle. I spent 15 years and the Space Needle was one of the first tourist locations that I visited, even getting one of those penny souvenirs.

The Space Needle is actually part of a larger complex that was built for the 1962 World's Fair called Seattle Center which contains the Key Arena, where the Sonics played, along with International Fountain, EMP and the Pacific Science Center. It is a fun location to just people watch, you meet some interesting people. When I found out the card was in the set I had to get it as part of my Seattle collection.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Happy Back To The Future Day

It was 26 years ago during Back To The Future II that Michael J Fox, as Marty McFly, took an adventure that would predict the future. The date October 21, 2015, based on the time period of the movie (10/26/85) it was a leap of 30 years in to the future for young Marty.

 The movie predicted some things that are relevant now and some that are still years away. Video conferencing: Yes, flat screen televisions: Yes, tablets: Yes, hands free video games: Yes, kids sitting around the dinner table engulfed in electronic devices and ignoring their parents: Yes, 3D movies: Yes and a baseball team in Florida: Yes

Some of the things that did not make it, at least not as predicted, besides the horrible fashion? Fax machines as a way of communication: No, the fax machine, while still used, is a dinosaur in the age of the internet, the Cubs winning the World Series: Maybe, and Jaws 19: No all though there are plenty of sequels and Universal Pictures got in on the fun and created a Jaws 19 trailer

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Random Pack: 2015 Topps Star Wars Journey To The Force Awakens

I was at Walmart the other day and I noticed they had a single blister pack (2 packs inside) of 2015 Topps Star Wars Journey To The Force Awakens hanging on a peg so I grabbed it. I like the set but I have not opened any packs so I wanted to take a closer look and bought it.

The retail packs have 6 cards each plus two Family Legacy inserts. The set is made up of 110 cards that cover from Episode I: Phantom Menace up to upcoming Episode VII: The Force Awakens so there is a great selection and some very nice photos. One thing that I am not a fan of is the parallels, once again Topps has included 9 parallels for each base card not counting printing plates. Is there really a reason to have 10 versions of each card?

In the two packs I pulled 6 base cards total of which 4 were parallels. This is definitely not a set to build using retail packs. Here is what I pulled:
Two base cards

Two base card Jabba slime parallel (1 per pack)

One base card Black Starfield parallel (1:2 packs) This is probably my favorite parallel border color

One base card Lightsaber Neon (1:6 packs) These for some reason scan in as a dull pink , they are actually quite bright pink in hand

One Behind The Scenes

Two Blueprint cards

One Power Of The First Order. I like this insert along with the Heroes Of The Resistance (The good guys) version

One Character sticker

One Cloth sticker

Two Family Legacy

I like the set and if I got a chance to pick up a hobby box I would definitely grab it and I am very happy that I did not pull anything Hayden Christensen cards, that man destroyed the legacy of the Star Wars series almost as bad as George Lucas’ constant tinkering with the original trilogy.

Monday, October 19, 2015

You're Fu#*ing Out, I'm Fu#*ing In!

There is a 5-card set that I have wanted to add to my collection since 2009 but usually the price was too high and I wasn’t ready to pay it but I finally found someone selling the set for below the normal reasonable price so I paid the $40 BIN price and finally have the cards in my hand and can remove the set from my Wanted List. The pack even came with a stick of gum.
The set is from HBO and they used basic Topps designs, though no Topps logo, and it was a promotion for Eastbound & Down, the hilarious story about Kenny Powers (Played wonderfully by Danny McBride), a washed up pitcher who is a complete ungrateful bastard.

In the beginning of season 1 you see Power’s decent from a dominant rookie for Atlanta to a complete joke reliever for Seattle. They don’t actually use team names or logos but it is obvious which teams it is based on color alone. It is a quick montage but you see all the teams he played for in the pros: Atlanta, New York (AL), San Francisco, Boston and finally Seattle. After he leaves the big league he also plays for the Myrtle Beach Merman minor league team and the Charros of an independent league in Mexico.

The cards are exactly what you would have pulled from packs between 2001 and 2006 with complete stats on the back. There is another card that was not part of this set but appears to be a promo card, but I will pick one of those up at a later date.

I have been watching these sets for years and packs usually are priced in the $75-100 range and many of the individual cards have been graded and are selling above $60 each. One seller I was watching had posted the pack at $89.99 or BO, I offered $50 and he declined without even offering me a co-offer. Over the months he dropped the BIN price to $75, $69, $60, $50 and finally $40 which is when I bought the pack. Basically the guy lost out on $10 that I would have paid if he accepted by original $50 price but I prefer the $40 I paid so I guess it worked out best for me to wait. The other promo card, which depicts Kenny in his Charros uniform, sells in the $3-7 range.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Ed Asner Has A Card?

I came across this sketch card the other night while I was looking at Star Wars sketch cards and when I saw this Yoda sketch I could not stop thinking that it reminds me of actor Ed Asner.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Vintage Card Of The Month: 1961 Leaf Famous Discoveries & Adventures Lhasa The Forbidden City

This month’s VCoM is straight off of my Top 10 Wanted list, the 1961 Leaf Famous Discoveries & Adventures Lhasa The Forbidden City. This has to be one of my longest card names. The card comes from Leaf’s Famous Discoveries & Adventures release and was released during Leaf’s confectionary days.

The set consists of 50 cards and covers some of the most important adventures in the world including the adventures of Marco Polo, the first Moon rocket, the Vikings and Lindbergh’s solo flight over the Atlantic Ocean. The cards are also a bit larger than modern cards at roughly 2 ¾ by 3 ¾ in size.

The card is on my Top 10 Wanted list because of my interest in Tibet, as a Buddhist I have a cultural connection to the country.

The card front depicts the Potala Palace, which was the Dalai Lama’s home, towering above the city of Lhasa. Lhasa, founded around 650 AD, has been Tibet’s capital since 1642 and due to its elevation, 11,500 ft. above sea level, it has been extremely difficult to travel to before modern travel made it easier to reach.

The back includes a write up describing the history of the city through Western adventurers. Sadly the information is very one-sided. Tibet has been quite isolated following the expulsion of the Mongol invaders in the 1300s, its geography made that quite easy. When Westerners did make their way in to the country they were actually treated very well. The Tibetan people are friendly and even now still will invite foreigners in for Butter tea.
I hope to some day visit Lhasa.


Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Thoughts And Prayers To Lamar Odom And His Family

Yesterday I reported that New York Giants was in a fight with the MRSA virus, today I am sadly reporting another athlete in a dire situation.

Last night former LA Laker Lamar Odom was found unresponsive at a Nevada brothel where he had been staying for the last couple of days. It was reported that he had been drinking, but not much, as well as taking herbal enhancement capsules and it is now being said that he had been using cocaine. He was taken by ambulance to a Las Vegas where he has been put on life support.

Lamar Odom is a well-liked player both by teammates and fans and while he has been known to have his demons he has always remained a positive person.

Hopefully he comes through with no lasting damage. Thoughts and prayers to Lamar and his family.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Thoughts And Prayers To Daniel Fells And Family

It has been reported that New York Giants TE Daniel Fells, who has been fighting a deadly MRSA infection since October 2nd, has had a portion of his foot removed in an attempt to stop the infection from spreading. Fells has remained positive and will most likely have to endure additional surgeries with doctors saying that it is possible they may need to remove the entire foot to save his life.

This situation is dire but manageable and unlike Jason Pierre-Paul's accident this one was not Fells fault, it is believed that the infection stems from a cortisone injection to Fells ankle.

Considering that Fells has been played for 5 teams over 8 seasons and has a career 114 catches for 1,334 yards I am unable to find any official cards for him, which I find extremely odd in a time when Topps and Panini put undrafted and unsigned rookies in almost every autograph checklist. He seems to have been included in a Panini NFL stickers set but other than that there is nothing.