A Comment On Beckett’s Most Recent 1/1 Pull

Mario just alerted me that Beckett has pulled ANOTHER 1/1 out of an early box of Topps Ticket to Stardom. I still cannot believe that there isnt someone who has pulled the plug on this video crap yet. This time it was a ticket stub to a Presidential Inaguration, but the principle of the matter remains. Sadly this brings the pull list from Beckett box breaks to a fucking retarded number of cards, with now over six 1/1s alone from a very small number of boxes.
I CONTINUE to have no idea why companies continue sending boxes out in this respect. It creates more problems than it solves, and its even more stupid for Beckett to post them due to the encited hatred. Of course, due to the extreme douchey arrogance the magazine has over its place atop the hobby media, they would never believe they are anything but invincible. Therefore why not post it, right? Fuck the haters, they cant do shit.
Either way, im not going to say much more because its all been said before. When they close their doors sometime in the near future, I hope they finally will realize how awful they really are. Considering that they have pretty much turned the entire internet against them, I think its slightly apparent already. Hell, two years ago, it was against the grain to hate Beckett, now, its an exception to the rule to side with them. I think its hilarious. Even more so when I get emails from shops saying they have stopped carrying Beckett. Those types of emails are becoming more frequent due to the moral ambiguity the magazine displays on a regular basis. Glad to see things are working out for them. Number one source indeed.
Nice job there guys.

OooOOOooO! Shiny!

What the fuck? Seriously. Im so fucking sick of companies using mirror board, foil board and especially the rainbow foil board as a coating for their cards. It chips, it looks awful, and the cards are never in acceptable condition out of the pack. This is because every single ding is highlighted by the poor printing process and the crappy coating doesnt highlight the subject of the card. I dont get why it is used, especially when most of us cant fucking stand it.

For those of you who dont understand what I am talking about, pull out one of your cards from Absolute, Leaf Certified, Triple Threads, Elite, Prestige, Threads and a few others that are printed on what seems to be mirror or foil. The cards are pretty tough to miss. They arent printed on cards like the Chrome, where the card is produced on special stock, but more like cheaper stock that looks like the player pictures were printed on wrapping paper and rolled onto the boards. For this, you can see why so many of think this type of shitty printing should disappear.
Because the cards are printed on cheap stock, they become extremely condition sensitive, as well as looking like poop. When the coating is chipped or damaged, especially in production, its almost unavoidable in drawing your attention. Unlike other normal cards, where the coating cannot peel off, a ding is more in the actual stock than the card. For these types, damage usually keeps the printing in tact, rather than looking like it is peeling off. Foil board isnt so lucky, because of the process in which it is printed. You will see that in addition to the stock being damaged, the foil overlay will also pull apart. Because its reflective, a ding is much easier for anyone to recognize due to the breaking of the flat mirrored surface.
The looks are the other part of the equation, as a good card on mirror board looks twice as bad as a bad card on regular flat stock. I cant think of a worse idea to print cards as one printed on a surface that reflects rainbows. Not only that, but the scans are basically impossible to get something that an online collector can appreciate, leading to more problems. If I ever have the choice between a card printed on rainbow board or a card on a flat board like base Topps, ill take the flat every time. That MO is something I know many collectors have adopted in recent years, only because buying boxes of products like Limited, Triple Threads and Absolute lead to getting damaged cards practically 100% of the time.
Panini is obviously the worst offender, as almost every set they produce uses some sort of foil board, with the exception of National Treasures. Im sure for those of you who have ever bought a box of Absolute, you have also pulled a rookie premiere card that is missing part of a letter die cut, or has edges that look like a tiny ding fairy came and hammered in the sides like crazy. You can also go and check out Beckett’s crapfully displayed preview for the 2009 set, and really get a good idea what to expect. Remember, those preview cards are supposed to be the BEST ones they can find. Go check it out, im going to guarantee you have the same idea I had. The first thing I thought was, “If these are the best, holy fuck.”
Lets be honest here, 15 years ago collectors liked shiny things and were impressed by a card that took it to a level that hadnt been done. Now, we are more impressed by cool design elements rather than some crappy board you have stockpiledd in the back room from 1998. I think most people agree that cards like the Rookie Premiere Material cards from Absolute, the Freshman Fabrics from Certified, or the Phenoms in Limited would be that much cooler if they didnt look like you were looking into a mirror with rainbow accents. Imagine those cards on a flat stock with brighter colors and clearer elements. Its ridiculous how much better that would be.
Of course the morons who produce each of Donruss’ releases are running around with blinders on as usual, thinking that their horrid design team has great ideas, rather than accepting the fact that the tech is old and rotting. “You mean we could go back to the drawing board and do the work to make a good set, or we could do it like last year and hit the links? Huh, thats an easy one.”
Foil is the work of hacks, and its starting to reek of laziness across the board. Instead of putting out cards that actually look good, its seeming like the companies are using the foil to hide a bad design. Because the colors are dulled and the design becomes obscured, its not as obvious how crappy the card really looks. Lets get rid of the mirrors, rainbows, bright neon orange, and all the other tricks. Start doing better. Make cards look good. Its that simple.

Topps Chrome: Spot The Changes

After the wonderful breath of fresh air that was on card signatures for Topps Chrome BASEBALL, Topps Chrome FOOTBALL is actually confirmed 100% stickers. After seeing the sell sheet that featured great looking mock up cards with supposed on card signatures, its now obvious that was never the plan. Not only that, but the design for the rookie autos has changed as well.

I guess if you are going to use stickers as you have for every incarnation of this set, you might as well avoid the curved auto space. They tried the curve with Bowman Chrome last year, which didnt exactly look great. On the bright side, it wont be as easy as it once was to counterfeit these cards, as the auto versions of the rookies have slightly different name spaces. In the past, there was little that was different between the base rookie and auto rookie, but this year, there is quite a bit.
As if we should be surprised, Beckett got another early box, which in this case only adds to my laundry list of offenses by them and the manufacturers. As if to show the “excitement” over their envigorating and captivating breaks, they posted some preview pics. For the reason of showcasing the differences and showing what I mean, here is what the acutals look like compared to the sell sheet mock ups. I understand this isnt something I normally do, but considering the events of the last week, I dont really care anymore.
As you can tell, the name spot is now horizontal to compliment the sticker. I do like the change, as the curve would have looked very weird with a straight line on the bottom of the label. I liked having the team helmet on the mock up, too bad they couldnt sneak that into the design. I am glad they kept the certified auto language ON the card, as that should signal a fake from a real one.
Its really too bad that all the potential of having on card sigs like the 2009 RPAs was ditched for stickers AGAIN, but it honestly could have been worse. Im sure, in person, these cards will do what they have always done since Chrome’s creation, and I cant wait for my three boxes arriving next week via blowout. Im not as elated as I was, but still very excited.

Hiding Is Not Worth The Effort

Yesterday, Beckett posted the end to their highly publicized in depth three year long expose about the fake Topps Rookie Premiere autos. This move sparked quite a frenzy over why this approach was taken, a lot of those comments focusing on Beckett’s lack of professionalism. Rather than moving on or examining the impact of said news, Hackler instead decided it was better to take passive shots at the vast amounts of discussion over the merits of Topps move. After discussing with some of the other bloggers the reason for this idiotic display of douchebaggery, it became clear to us why this was all happening in such a weird fashion.

As most people said, including myself, the move by Topps was just a minor chink in the armor created by these people who sell hundreds of fake Rookie Premiere Autos. Beckett, as most of us expected, focused more on the inconsequential parts of the story, as not to disturb the plethora of people who come to them with news. I mean, because “player issue” cards are a HUGE part of the problem, right? Personally, I now see why Topps decided that Beckett would be a better outlet to break this story to. Rather than giving the story to a blog like this one, they chose a more familiar outlet. Clearly, its easier to go with a friend who wouldnt question the lack of action or call them out for focusing on the future rather than the present. Topps knew that going with Beckett would provide them with the opportunity to hide behind a solution that only covers upcoming cards instead of securing one that deals with the current problem.

Despite what people may say about my motives, many were left scratching their heads as to why Topps wasn’t going after the scammers more aggressively. If you think about it, it’s a good way to guard against future transgressions if the people responsible are punished for their crimes. Of course, there is a large discrepancy over the amount of time needed to execute this bust and the time available to execute it, which is a great reason why its important to have the discussion now. By throwing this solution at the problem, you still leave the collector base open to decade worth of fake cards, all being sold to unsuspecting people who pay hundreds to get them. How about protecting the customer rather than yourself? Hmm, becoming clearer now why Beckett got the resolution rather than the blogs?

Luckily here in the blog network we have established, its no longer an easy task to hide in plain sight, as many of the people who read Beckett’s blog also read Mario, Rob and I. That means the people who read the kid gloves version of the story, are also going to get a lot of the riff raff you create by handling it that way.