Are the Panini Prizm Pylon Cards a Bridge to the Future?

Over the last few weeks, Panini has been running a promotion on their site for a program that has never been attempted by a major card company in the modern internet era. They created a special 1/1 parallel of their popular Prizm set, and auctioned them off on a special internal auction. Although I am one of the people that thought Prizm was both poorly named and poorly designed, I am not going to discount the popularity of the set. This was a good idea to capitalize on the boom that may never be replicated.

Here are some that are being re-auctioned on eBay:

2012 Panin Prizm Peyton Manning Pylon Parallel 1/1

2012 Panini Prizm Ray Lewis Pylon Parallel 1/1

2012 Panini Prizm Jarius Wright Pylon Parallel 1/1

I have often wondered how long it would take for one of the major companies to invest the money in building an auction style system for this purpose. Leaf tried using eBay to sell cards before, but it never caught on like this has. Its not cheap to build, and it also brings about a long line of questions when it comes to execution. Hopefully they have gotten a big enough response to keep doing things like this.

However, with a set that is basically “Diet Chrome,” Prizm is the perfect experiment. Because of a strong lead in from Basketball, the parallels have sold very well – as one would expect from a set built on Topps’ tried and true formula. Funny enough, I dont even think the 1/1s were the most popular, only supplanted by the popularity of the gold refractors /10:

2012 Panini Prizm Andrew Luck Gold Refractor /10

2012 Panini Prizm Adrian Peterson Gold Refractor /10

2012 Panini Prizm Russell Wilson Gold Refractor /10

If it were me, I would invest some more money in auctioning off special items frequently. The Panini Authentic brand has done nicely with their exclusive signers, and I could see this being a nice vehicle for it. I can also see exclusive items from the rookie premiere being auctioned off in ways that are unavailable normally, to huge success.

There is an obvious issue here, and it has everything to do with the way sets are done and marketed. Is it fair to the general collectors for a company to do extra cards for a product that has already been on the market? This is obviously a money grab, but its one that I think collectors can latch onto. Its not saying they should continue to compromise the integrity of their set further, but it is a program that ensures there is a future for commodities that are sold 100% over the internet. Maybe next time, they can lay off the mass tweets.


4 thoughts on “Are the Panini Prizm Pylon Cards a Bridge to the Future?

  1. Topps, in a way, has tried this with the etopps program. They used a limited print run per card at a set price. They were the same technology as chrome and were fantastic looking. It never really caught on. It may have been due to the lenght of time it took the collector to receive the cards or the cost to receive the card.

  2. Topps also did this with the blank backs of cards already produced.

  3. It brings up some interesting questions. For example, did Panini disclose these auctions before Prizm was launched thus informing customers that cards that are a part of the set were not available in box/pack form?

    I just wonder what the legal obligation is here. But, with card collectors seemingly being such suckers for anything printed 1/1, maybe it doesn’t matter.

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