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monsterwax

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Reply with quote  #1 
Nope, it isn't vintage, but Mars Attacks cards in general are, and they crowd funded for another of several sequels to the original 1962 card set on Kickstarter several months back. I just got my survey so the light is at the end of the tunnel for shipping (I'm assuming). But my question is this:

The producer has recently stated they plan to continue making follow up series for as long as Topps allows them the license and customers buy it. The last campaign did close to $170K, so that could be a long while. I'm just curious how other collectors feel about this franchise becoming a yearly event, with no end in sight. When you have a series you love, do you want more and more and more? Or do you just want ONE and no more, or one and a few more? 

I'm thinking how Wacky packs went on for 16 series (although each series only had like 27 or 30 stickers in it), which was interesting-- but then they picked up again in the 1979, 1985, 1990s, and now the floodgates are wide open and they seem to have no end in sight. 

Then of course, there's Star Trek vs. Star Wars, and Buffy the Vampire Killer. 

Is it better leaving the customer wanting more, or to keep cranking it out until sales make it no longer profitable? 

It is a business, so the purpose of business is to make money. But it's also an art form, and there's the nostalgia for the story, artists, and over all "product/franchise" to consider. Does making more of it help or hurt those memories? Does making a lot more vs. a little more impact it differently? 

What are your thoughts?

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bvb5366

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Reply with quote  #2 
Kurt:
      Let me know how this latest episode turns out. It is the first Mars Attacks set that I have not purchased. Mars Attacks has turned into a money sucking franchise to squeeze the most money out of the collector. It boggles my mind that there was a $10,000 pledge level. The franchise has turned into a sketch card sale. Not to mention all the other "special cards" which have nothing to do with the original story.
      People do remember that there was an original story, I hope. That story was a one-shot, with a beginning, a middle and a conclusion. It developed into a cash cow for Topps and now they have licensed the franchise to another company. That company ran the Mars Attacks Occupation set for topps. I purchased a master set and then went to Allentown and saw most of the items from that set being sold as extras by the company. I picked up a base set and one subset that interested me. I put the MS away because I found myself not caring about it. That was the beginning of the end for my interest MA, and this latest set killed it completely.
       The only good thing, from my point of view, is that the legion of MA fans make up a great customer base. My MAO master set sold for twice what I paid for it. Those collectors who enjoy the Garbage Pail, Wacky Pack, Dinosaurs Attack, Judge Dredd, Mars Attacks mish-mosh should continue to do so and I do wish them well. I will think about the fun I had walking back from the candy store, with 5 packs of Mars Attacks, opening the packs looking for the cards I needed and throwing away those oh so valuable wrappers as I went along. No kickstarter can provide that kind of fun.

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monsterwax

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Reply with quote  #3 
Thanks for detailed response, not just saying how you felt but why. I got thinking about this after hearing other friends talk about their feelings of Wacky packs and some other franchise titles that have resurfaced (GPK, etc.).

I remember how excited I was when I heard Topps was first bringing back Mars Attacks with the Heritage edition, with crystal clear reprints and some new sub sets. And it has been interesting where it has gone from there. Trying to nail down my own feelings about nostalgic titles being revived intrigues me, and I enjoy hearing what others remember about Mars Attacks in the past as well as its future. I don't think there is a right or wrong answer, but I love hearing people talk about it because it is such a seminal series. 



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JRhodes

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Reply with quote  #4 
I'm thrilled that there are enough people out there interested in non-sports cards to chip in $170,000 on a "Mars Attacks" Kickstarter. That said, it's not for me.

I was in high school when the 1994 Archives set came out, and I jumped at it because I figured it was the closest I would ever come to owning the real thing (plus, in those pre-internet days, it was the only was I was ever going to be able to read the full story on the backs). I've since purchased the "Unpublished Version," the mini comics and the cards from the mini comic boxes, as well as some of the original cards (but not all... yet).

The only post-'94 "Mars Attacks" set I've been remotely interested in was last year's "Wacky Packages" crossover because I thought some of the designs looked neat, but the fact that they were sold only in random packs and not as a set, coupled with the price per pack, turned me off. One day, if I really feel like it, I'll buy it on the secondary market.

At quick count, I probably have around 40,000 cards in my collection, and I'd guess fewer than 1,000 of them were printed in the past 20 years. And most of those I got for free at shows, as magazine insert promos, randomly found in parking lots, etc. With very few exceptions, most modern cards, even the ones with ties to classic sets, just don't appeal that much to me. I have no idea why.
lcummins

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Reply with quote  #5 
I think it dilutes the original some what, but you can't tell that from prices on originals!

I recently (while staying at home) went after unopened boxes of the "Mars Attacks!" Heritage from 2012, because I like the look of the homage boxes, especially the "Attack From Space" Topps online exclusive. I couldn't believe I picked up that one, the "Mars Attacks!" retail and the "Mars Attacks!" hobby, all for about $35 apiece! I also figured like JRhodes, I'll probably never get around to finishing an original set, so these would be a nice 'placeholder'... even though I have the 1994 set, including the "First Day" issue set and the Renata Galasso set (which stuck to my 9 pocket pages, so pretty much ruined). I opened the boxes and packs and got several sets of the base cards and subset cards, but somehow did not complete the lenticular set! I've since picked up a green border set cheap on eBay and thinking (just a little bit) about trying to finish the silver border set. I've got two gold border cards and 3 sketch cards (one unsigned [bawl]), so types of just about everything except the Len Brown autograph cards and a printing plate, which I'm not too concerned about. I mention all of this just to say, this is one reason why I quit collecting in the early 2000's and only started again a few years ago. I made an exception for this set only because it is "Mars Attacks!", but I just can't do modern sets with all these chase cards, parallel sets, sketches, etc.! I never feel like I've completed the set.

So, back to the original question... if new sets offer really good artwork and aren't just rehashing the original over and over, I don't think it hurts too much, but of course, too much of anything isn't good! It seems like except for the occasional issue like "Stranger Things", Topps only remembers "Mars Attacks!", "Wacky Packages" and "Garbage Pail Kids" when it comes to non-sport issues. The recent "Ugly Stickers" On-Demand set this week really took me by surprise, but then I saw the price and calculated how many you would have to buy just trying to get everything and it turned me off again. I'll stick to my wheelhouse, bubble gum cards from the 30's to the early 90's.

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Lonnie Cummins
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Reply with quote  #6 
I'm mixed on these sort of things. I'm a collector so I do enjoy collecting things. However, "black hole" collectibles turn me off when you have zero chance to complete everything and the make more stuff forever. Especially when it's so expensive. I admit that I did do this recent MA kickstarter. However, it will probably be my last. I do not like that they added so much stuff after the campaign was over and that you have to pay for things upfront and then it takes years to get what you paid for (paid for this a while ago and it won't ship until sometime next year if I'm lucky). There are a ton of interesting looking things in this campaign, but I would have preferred less so they could get it out faster. 
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Todd Riley
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bvb5366

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Reply with quote  #7 
Todd:
     Just for the heck of it I went into the Kickstarter to look it over again. It turns out you can still go in and buy into several different pledge levels. There is still one each of the $6000 and $8000 levels available for late arriving, big spenders. So it appears that one reason it will take so long to get your stuff is that Sidekick is extending the Kickstarter presale for as long as possible to sell as much as possible. What a shock!! They are up over $200,000 total as of now.

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Joe Marciano
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Reply with quote  #8 
Yeah, what a surprise! MONEY, MONEY, MONEY!!!
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monsterwax

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Reply with quote  #9 
I don't think they are extending the shipping time to round up more orders. They are just keeping the door ajar for late comers until the plane takes off. (And who can blame them for that?) I suspect they are very eager to get it all shipped out but the commie virus has caused chaos and big delays with the printers. All those different levels and add-ons must make it really complicated, too. 

We should also keep in mind that this isn't the fairest forum to get a broad opinion from the hobby about sequels and just how many are the best for any given franchise. As vintage collectors, there's a natural bias against "new stuff" here. I think part of that bias is because the supply of older stuff is limited, and collectors like rare stuff. The only new stuff that is rare is something limited to begin with. So discussing any title that has open-ended production like this gets a tough crowd around here.  Still, Mars Attacks gets a lot of love here, too. So to leave the original collectors out of the debate would be unfair as well. And Todd Riley was one of the BIGGEST Mars Attacks collectors there ever was-- he even collected the Mars Attacks magnets! (Not to mention all those toys, models, and action figures.) 

I guess when art and business team up to make money, there is always going to be a debate about when it "jumps the shark". Now that Disney is running (some say "ruining") Star Wars, and two different studios are making Star Trek (Discovery &. Picard), we see a lot of that debate going on now. James Bond has gotten away with it for decades... but now that they are turning Bond into a black woman, even he/she is starting to get scrutiny. (I'm surprised they didn't make Bond Trans (but maybe they're saving that for the future.)!) They did a similar thing with Dr. Who-- after countless reincarnations of that series. 

It still attracts discussion after almost 60 years. That by itself is no small accomplishment. 




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commishbob

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Reply with quote  #10 
I was in grade school when the original MA set was issued. My friends and I all were sports card collectors but the non-sports sets, Mars Attacks and Civil War News, in particular, were enormously popular. In our parochial school, the general rule was that if we were caught fooling with our baseball cards when we were supposed to be paying attention to the nuns, we'd lose them but normally get them back at the end of the week if we acted contritely.

But Mars Attacks and CWN cards were, once confiscated, never seen again. I think that made them even more special in our fifth-grade minds.

I'd picked up a card or two of the original set over the years but really never gave them a lot of thought until the Kickstarter MA Occupation campaign came along. I bought in and loved it. The set wasn't a reprint or rip-off of the original, but a new approach to it and I found it to be a lot of fun. Some of the 'art cards' are very well done. 

It also inspired me to start looking with more intent for the '62 cards. I've slowly picked up most of them in the last few years. I ramped up my search when I got wind of this new Kickstarter effort. I've invested quite a bit more in this latest effort and from what I see on their preview pages it's going to be worth the money.

I guess what I'm saying is that the Kickstarter 'revivals' haven't taken away from the originals for me, they've become a nice addition.

BTW...I have one dupe from the '62 set (a graded #39 in PSA 4) I'm hoping to trade for one of the couple I still need. I'm going to post that in the appropriate forum here.

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Collecting Topps sets from the 60s...Civil War News and Mars Attacks (both completed), Soupy Sales (45/66) and cards of several actresses including Greer Garson, Ingrid Bergman, Ann Dvorak, and Claudia Cardinale.
billbengen

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Reply with quote  #11 
I would love to see a 200-card Davy Crockett series based on the Disney 1955-56 TV mini-series. The two Topps series, although a nostalgic favorite of mine, are a mess in terms of chronology, narrative, and mismatched images and narrative.
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