San Diego Comic Con should be a good time. Hearing all the new toy news should be exciting. But I am finding myself more distraught than overjoyed. It’s not that SDCC isn’t delivering the goods when it comes to toys. In fact there is a virtual cavalcade of goodies coming our way. Whether you collect DC, Marvel, 3 3/4, GI Joe, Mego, even Doctor Who, you’ve gotten a ton of great announcements about this year and the year ahead’s toys.

To me though, that’s where the problem is starting to come in. Take Mattel’s Masters of the Universe Classics line as an example. When it was first announced that you’d be able to buy one a month at $20 I thought it was the perfect line for me to start collecting. The figures were a bit pricey, but they were coming in a fashion that I would be guaranteed the figure without the hassle of the chase and they’d come at a pace I could keep up with.

That’s exactly what I expected last year at this time, but fast forward a year and Mattel has announced a subscription plan where I have to sign up to get an exclusive figure. Then “bonus” figures seemingly every month which include other figures I’d like. No longer is this the easy one figure a month collection I got myself into. Of course part of me is happy to see the line expanding. This means I’ll get so much more cool stuff…

But it also means I’m going to pay a lot more money. At $30 a pop for a figure, plus deluxe figures like Battle Car costing $40 it begins to add up quick. Especially with Mattel’s shoddy MattyCollector distribution in which I have to pay separate shipping for items not in the subscription. It starts adding up QUICK.

I currently actively collect, JLU, MOTUC, GI Joe, TMNT, Doctor Who and Marvel Universe. I love these lines and I do occasionally pick up other toys from other lines if they tickle my fancy. I collected DCUC for a few waves but I don’t think I’m going to get back into it. It’s just too costly.

When I first started collecting GI Joe again they cost $5… Soon $5 became $6 and then $6 became $7. Between army building, vehicles, accessories it all began to add up. SDCC brings it’s own headaches with exclusives and variants which all fetch premium price tags and that’s not just GI Joe, it’s every line.

JLU just announced like 50 some odd figures. That’s in addition to the 15-20 I still haven’t managed to track down. I pick and choose on GI Joe, but any army building I do there negates anything I might skip over. Doctor Who isn’t a line where I feel the need to rush to buy everything but even they have started to force my hand with exclusives that cost a premium price.

Something has to give sooner or later I fear. I plan on picking up the Ghostbusters line, because I’ve always been a fan of the property. There goes another $30 a month and knowing Mattel they’ll find a way to screw me on that too. Not that this is all directed at Mattel, everyone is getting me. Hasbro is doing some incredible things with the GI Joe line, how can I refuse them? The simple answer is, I can’t. I never expected to buy more than a few movie GI Joes, but now I’m working on a collection!

I want to give up on DCUC totally and probably will, but there are a few figures of those that I’d really like to have. Marvel Universe is such a great line, but it’s very costly. I am not sure how long I’m going to be able to keep up with their prices.

What to do, what to do? That’s the collector’s lament after SDCC. It’s a lot of excitement for sure, but is anyone else out there feeling the crunch? Or am I the only guy out there with his wallet cringing at all the awesome stuff that could be headed our way? In a lot of ways I miss the old days when there really was only two or three lines to collect.

One Response to Comic Con Blues

  • Wes says:

    Hah, I know how you feel! I’ve never been a completist, so it’s not like I’d be buying stuff just for the sake of buying it… but those NECA SFIV figures do look bloody cool. And then there’s the 3rd Doctor figures on the way! And April O’Neil in YELLOW!

    Luckily, with the exception of a few DC/Marvel figures here and there, that should do it for me… but that’s still a lot of money that I really shouldn’t be spending.

    And then there’s the insane amount I spent on Whoplastic this week. I’m thinking I might have to follow your previous example and do a Doctor Who week/month/whatever just so I can get some more mileage out of these things. 🙂

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