Let’s send 2015 out on a high, with the final pre-Black Friday box: Benchwarmer Eclectic! These things are hella monsterbeasts, I tell ya. 8-9 guaranteed hits + 60(!) packs, mostly from the days before Leaf came along and ruined things by turning Benchwarmer into an an almost exclusively high end affair. Said packs usually drop at least 3 more hits (1 is guaranteed) and maybe a few early-mid aught chrome inserts & things. It’s a very fun time, but collating and scanning can be pretty daunting tasks. I still don’t have all the packs I set aside from my first box scanned. They were originally intended to be posted over the summer & early fall on A Pack to be Named Later. Oh well, if the extra strength, climate change-powered El Nino ain’t already doing it, then maybe they’ll finally make it in time to heat up your winter. 😉
Anyway, here’s all the guaranteed stuff you get from every box (though #’ed parallels don’t always happen; my first box had none). We’ll see if I ever get around to posting up the autos/chrome/inserts/high number SPs/etc. from the packs, but it’s well past time you at least had the chance to take a gander at the main stuff.
Sabrina Rose is the only keeper here. Love that inscription. The rest are available, for your hottie binder needs or whatever.
In my first box, the promo autos were the highlight. Both were keepers. These two… not so much.
The promos are available, but I think I threw all my Carmen Electras in a package that’s outward bound the beginning of next year.
We’re in the home stretch. Now all that’s left is the Eclectic Swatch!
Not sure if it’s just my monitor, or it actually scanned that light, but the swatch is pink and it looks like there’s an outline of a number or something rising out of the bottom of the window. Pretty cool, but not a keeper.
There ya go. That’s what you can expect (again, possibly barring a #’ed auto) from one of these boxes. As noted, the post-break work is indeed a burden if you’re planning to show them off in any meaningful way. They’re still super fun breaks regardless. You get upwards of a dozen hits and both my boxes were well below $40 (before shipping). Definitely worth it at that price.
Sabrina Rose is my only keeper. Everything else is available. If you wanna make a deal on one, leave a comment or email me (see my blogger profile on the sidebar). Thanks for stopping by!
Until our next…
The next box in my gun-jumping Blowout Order, and definitely my favorite. I mean, it had a sketch card in it, so the other two boxes would’ve had to have been ridiculous to surpass this baby (or conversely, a Ryan Waterhouse-esque abomination of a sketch card, the likes of which fortunately don’t seem to exist in most Rittenhouse releases). But while they were decent enough to not leave me feeling much regret (outside of the lack of funds leftover for COMC Black Friday sales and all the scanning), they couldn’t surpass a sketch, maddening as the one I pulled has proven to be.
Alcione Silva is excellent artist for me to pull, because not only does he do great work, according to the sold listings on eBay, his cards typically sell for 2-3 times my usual price range on the low end. So if I didn’t pull one of his sketch cards, I’d never get him in my binder otherwise The problem is… I can’t figure out who the character is, and it’s still driving me nuts several weeks later. I feel like I’m almost certain that I know who she is but the name just isn’t coming to me. Help in identifying her would be most appreciated.
On the plus side, Blowout was also kind enough to throw in an Embrace case topper with my order, which further sweetened up a box that was devoid of anything beyond the promised sketch, inserts, & parallel (and also helped ease the blow of foregoing the possibility of Black Friday packs with the Prizm box). Part of the multi-product 75th Anniversary set (#’ed /75), Artifex autos of the fantastic artist and stone cold super hottie who did all the art for said insert set Rhiannon Owens, Diamond parallels #’ed /10, and framed comic panels all fall in the range of 1:4 boxes to case hit.
Speaking of the other inserts & parallel, we’ll close out this post with them. I think I’m going to try to collect that gorgeous Milo Manara set, and the other two inserts and the parallel will be available for cards from that set or any of the following:
Emerald #’ed /100- 36 Songbird, 43 Yelena Belova Black Widow, 51 Caiera, 57 Elektra, 69 Maria Hill, 80 Rogue, 83 Silk, 90 X-23.
Sultry Seductresses- S11 Psylocke, S15 Caiera, S16 Rogue, S18 She-Hulk
In addition, I’m also willing to trade the Case Topper for a either the X-23/Cyke or Psylocke/Fantomex Embrace cards, another of the above mentioned tough pulls, or multiple inserts and/or Emerald parallels, if you happen to have something more to my liking.
I don’t usually require specific things for my trade bait, because there’s usually no chance of it ever happening. Unlike most box breaks though, there’s nothing in here I have to get rid of, so I don’t mind hanging onto them until they can definitely net me something of greater use.
Anyway, that’s all for now. Thanks for stopping by!
Until our next…
As I write this, day has barely even started to break. It is Monday though (my humble apologies for the reminder). While RAW is usually terrible these days, this is still the day for pro wrestling. So it seems like the right time to unleash my first ongoing series on the unsuspecting masses. Being a big fan of pro graps sort of inherently means wrestlers are a pretty regular staple of my portrait drawing, so from time-to-time, I will show off a bit of my work.
I can think of no better subject for my first subject in this ongoing series than the current NXT Women’s Champion, Bayley! It probably wasn’t drawn up (hehe) that way, but Bayley and Sasha Banks ended up with these amazingly deep, diametrically opposed character arcs that played off each other beautifully and lead to a final, epic showdown that was something like two years in the making. Between the heightened emotional state and the fantastic battle that ensued, their title match at Takeover: Brooklyn was unquestionably my favorite match of the entire year, and I know I’m not alone in thinking that. Their rematch also has to be ranked amongst the very best matches ever fought under the Iron Man (most falls in a specific time limit wins) stipulation. I’m sure this won’t be the last time I draw Bayley, and it’ll be an honor every single time.
That’s all for this post. Thanks for stopping by!
Until our next…
I didn’t really want to post this yet, because my most recent post was also art of my own making. Things are also going to get extremely sketch cardy around here for the next little bit. Alas, this is the draft that’s most ready to go, so today you get some old sketch cards I pulled out & colored around the time I finally finished the McGriff & Seneca Wallace I owed Tim over at the GSNHoF. Anyway, like almost all my own art, these are available for sale or trade (or some combination of the two; I’m pretty to easy to work with). Get ’em while they’re hot!
I wanted to love .hack//Sign, but I found the show soooo boring. Later I would learn it was just one story in a much wider-ranging franchise, but as an introduction, it didn’t make me want to delve deeper. Mimiru was one of the few highlights though, so I drew her a few years ago.
The Big O was another anime series I found a little dull, but it was fairly heady and more visually interesting than .hack, and I didn’t need any extra context for its story to click. The post-apocalyptic Batman vibe didn’t hurt either, I guess. I nearly botched the coloring on the eponymous Megadeus, but I worked through it well enough for the card to turn out fine in the end.
Next up, Big O’s pilot, Roger Smith. A dark, brooding rich guy… with a badass butler… and a cool car… who protects his dying city from all manner of danger… and also has a thing for an equally badass, semi-antagonistic woman? Yep, he’s pretty much apocalyptic mech suit Batman.
Finally, we have R. Dorothy Wayneright, the super strong/agile android gal who… doesn’t really do anything besides get kidnapped occasionally. As with basically everything when it comes to this show though, she at least has a cool design that’s fun to draw.
Moving on to one of the all-time greats, in anime or any other medium: Cowboy Bebop. Absolutely everything about this series is top-notch, and it regularly lands at, or near, the top of greatest anime lists. It’s just a straight up sci-fi masterpiece, and if you have any interest in anime or science fiction at all, it’s an absolute must see. I believe I laid down the pencils of 3/5 of the crew in Spike Spiegel, Faye Valentine, & Jet Black during a single epic binge that spawned the majority, if not entirety, of this post. Unfortunately, you only get the first two today. I still haven’t colored Jet yet (it could still be awhile, but he’ll most likely be in the next bunch I finish, along with some other anime staples I drew during that period of time but never colored like One Piece’s Luffy, and Dragon Ball’s Vegeta & Piccolo).
Not too shabby. That’s it for this post. I also take commissions. Thanks for stopping by!
See You Space Cowboy…
It has finally happened. No more waiting. The Force Awakens is here. I made a couple pieces of art out of it over the past few months. Enjoy.
Until our next…
I suppose it’s somehow appropriate that amongst my first posts of note after my unceremonious return to WordPress would be a small trade with Gavin of Breakdown Cards, considering how prone to mental/emotional breakdowns I am. Even the brief move to Tumblr was arguably the result of one. He’s also had a noteworthy influence on the way I collect in recent times (adding a soft cap of 100 cards for full collections, and finally deciding to officially add another collection I’ll talk about whenever I get around to it). But anyway, he sent some cool stuff. So have a looksie, won’t you? 😉
First up, the whole reason for this trade in the first place. It’s a rookie card of borderline Hall of Famer and notable transphobic douchecanoe, Lance Berkman. I was never the biggest Fat Puma fan in the first place, but yeah, to hell with him. Curse my desire for as many RCs of star players as I can get my saucy little mitts on. I would like to be rid of every other card of this asswipe I own by the end of the year though. I don’t think I can even justify his inclusion in my blingy insert-laden 1-Star Binder right now, even though he was a more than good enough player to qualify. Take a hike, buddy.
Fortunately, it’s all uphill from here.
This Hector Rondon might have been the first 2015 Allen & Ginter card in my collection. Don’t think I ever bought any myself, and I wasn’t around to make any trades in the middle of the year. So yeah, until that Shot Not Taken trade showed up a little while later with some Ginter Goodies™, I think this was it. Now I need more. 2014 too. Pretty much every other year too. Non-baseball inserts especially. GIVE THEM TO ME NOW.
Heading down the stretch with a guy that failed at two sports, which is still two more sports than I’ll ever be good enough at to have the chance to fail at on a professional level. If skee ball or being bad at sleeping were professional sports though, I might be onto something. 😛
And finally, the unexpected crown jewel of this trade…
Gavin threw in one of his original creations and it is easily the highlight of this trade. The design is 1989 Upper Deck and Kris Bryant is in a similar pose to Ken Griffey Jr.’s most famous RC. Fantastic card, and there’s like a 1000% chance that if UD still had a baseball license today, they would have done something exactly like this. Love it!
The design work carries over to the back, and in case you missed his excellent rookie season, there’s a nice write-up explaining why he was so hyped up in the first place. I have quite a few personal sketch cards (including a glow-in-the-dark Rizzo from Gavin), but this is the just about the only custom print-type card like this to ever enter my collection, and I’m exceedingly happy to own it. 😀
Thanks for a great trade, Gavin. And thanks to everyone for stopping by!
Until our next…
I got antsy and couldn’t wait until Black Friday to buy some cards, so I bought three boxes and a hit pack on Blowout. It’s okay though. The prices were plenty decent, and I didn’t end up seeing anything else in later waves or on Black Friday itself that were anymore compelling to me than the boxes I picked up. This was probably my weakest box, and it might’ve been bolstered by the addition of a couple of Panini’s famous Black Friday packs, but it was still enjoyable enough that I didn’t really regret it.
Aside from that, the effect of bustin’ some boxes on my eternally precarious emotional state was absolutely wonderful. For whatever reason, it’s just a very therapeutic thing for me to bust a box and then collate it. The eventual scanning… not so much (though a better setup would help with that).
With that all said, time to jump right in.
That badass low #’ed Gerrit Cole at the top of the post is easily the hit of the box, but there’s lots more fun stuff to look through. Here’s all the regular prizms from the box. Lots of Dodger representation here.
I’m considering keeping this Puig Fireworks Prizm as his entry in my 1-Star Binder/possible future Single Page Sensations collection, but I have good news. I also pulled the base version of the card, which is definitely available for trade.
See? Miguel Cabrera is also well-represented in this box, but more on him in a moment. First, more inserts!
And those are the inserts. Yep. Not much to say about them. The better designs (Diamond Marshals, Fireworks, Field Pass) are really, really good at least. Now for the bigger ticket items. Things get better from here, but then jump off a cliff at the end. Kinda like your sex life.
We close out the #’ed parallel portion of the box with that other Miguel Cabrera I mentioned earlier. Probably the second best card in the box. I also pulled my best, and only other keeper of note (there are also 3-5 base cards) in the form of that suh-weet Arenado camofractor Prizm. So yeah, the #’ed parallels pretty much saved this thing for me.
Yeah, the autos did their best to tank this box. I watched a fair bit of this product be opened earlier in the year because I was considering entering some group breaks of it at the time, and the two autos that came out of my box are easily the worst I’ve seen come out of any box. If nothing else, they are hard-signed and well designed, and neither player is terrible or anything, so they could at least be pretty tantalizing trade bait for the right collector. They just aren’t any good for me.
That’s it for this one. Everything but Arenado, Fireworks Prizm Puig, & Fresh Faces Baez are available, so make me on offer here or by email, which you can find here. Thanks for stopping by!
Until our next…
Heyo, the former Lonestarr here. My very brief Tumblr experiment failed, so here I am, back on WordPress. Turns out I like having the option for meatier, scan-heavy posts even though I don’t really intend to do them very often going forward, and Tumblr just wasn’t really built for that. Of course, little as ever managed to blog in the past, I couldn’t just quit entirely. Writing is an inherent and necessary part of my existence, so I’ll probably always need to keep one around for when the mood doth strike.
The old site linked above was an unfocused mess, so things are going to have to be different this time around. The new plan is thus: In an effort to keep things more on-point, this blog will be devoted entirely to collecting. The furthest I ever intend to stray from that will be the occasional batch of sketch cards of my own creation, because they basically count as a trade bait and/or for sale post. When I get around to it/when it becomes necessary, I’ll just create separate blogs for my other various pursuits and link to things that may have crossover appeal.
I don’t know if any of this will actually work or not, or if I’ll just disappear for 6+ months after like 10 posts like I usually do. It’s definitely worth a try though. The card blogging community is just about the only place in this world I don’t feel like a total outcast most of the time, so it’d be cool if I could ever actually contribute to it in some worthwhile way.
I guess that’s it for my (re)introduction post. Here’s an awesome card I own.
Thanks for stopping by.
Until our next…