Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Super Job on the Super Chase

Wow, it's been some time since I've blogged! You'll have to excuse me - we recently had grandchild #3 and things have been a bit chaotic here . . .

Well, I'm going to tackle a pretty straight-forward subject in this blog. McFarlane's MLB Series 19 recently hit the stores and with that came the announcement of a new Super Chase figure of Albert Pujols.

First, if you don't know what a super chase is you need to step away from this blog momentarily and read my writeup on regular, variant, chase, super chase, etc. figures and what qualifies as each figure type. You can view that here.

I'm not a fan of the super chase concept, personally. I'm a collector, not an investor. Anything that creates a perceived monetary value for one figure simply detracts from the rest. Worse, a super chase is a source of frustration; a guy who is a big Tom Brady fan has to pay big bucks to get all the variations of a Tom Brady figure as it is - but when you throw a Tom Brady super chase into the mix, it gets absurdly expensive for the collector.

That said, I understand that a lot of guys DO like the super chase figures and McFarlane has decided that they need to cater to this segment of their collector base. So the problem becomes, how do they create a figure that is enough different so that the super chase version won't just be ignored - but not so different that the collectors end up getting hosed or having major holes in their collection. Todd McFarlane has an approach to this that I think offers the best possible balance; he wants a super chase to be slightly different, but not so different that it has unique collector appeal just based on the difference.

Example: Ozzie Smith super chase had Smith exactly the same as the regular figure, but the glove was gold rather than brown. This was a minor difference, not a significant change like a different jersey or uniform.

TMP walks a real tight rope with this approach but I think it's the best way to appeal to the investors without alienating the collectors.

The Pujols super chase follows this same approach. It is the same as the regular figure except that 1) the shoes are white, not red, 2) the wristband is yellow, not red, 3) the patches on the uniform are for the 2006 All Star Game. The super chase commemorates Pujols' appearance in the 2006 AS game with these changes - but if you put the super chase next to the regular figure, you might not even notice the differences.

Excellent job on this figure. If I collected active MLB players, I could pass on the super chase Pujols. The differences are so subtle that they mean nothing to me. However, the changes are significant enough that the guys with dollar signs in their eyes can still go on their quest to get the super chase so they're happy as well.

Grade on this super chase? A all the way.

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