Saturday, January 28, 2023

1986 Fleer Grossville High

Today, for what appears to be the first time ever on APTBNL, we're going to open an odd wax pack from 1986:

Grossville High!
Fleer released this set in a fairly obvious attempt to ride the coattails of the Topps Garbage Pail Kids craze that began the previous year. I wonder how upset Topps was at Fleer for doing this. I can't find any information online that documents a court battle or anything of that nature, so maybe Topps wasn't that worried. (Once we look through the pack, I think you'll understand why.)
As you can see from the image above, each wax pack contained 5 stickers and 1 stick of bubble gum. Fittingly, the stick of gum in this particular pack was pretty gross with some mold issues. I decided to not take a photo of it.
Another point of interest is that each pack wrapper featured one of three members of Grossville High. This pack was the Norman Nerdwood variation. There was also Judy Cooty (misspelled "Cudy" on the wrapper) and Prof. Bob Beaker.

Also note the "1st Series" designation on the left-hand side of the wrapper. This inaugural series consisted of 66 cards, and it seems like Fleer had big plans to expand the Grossville franchise. Unfortunately, this first series was also the last series. The stickers never caught on.

Now let's get to the five stickers inside my pack.

Keep searching, Debbie. You'll find someone.

After just the first two stickers, you can see how Fleer even copy-catted the Garbage Pail Kid names by using rhyming or alliterative techniques. (Topps even had a GPK girl named "Dana Druff" in their 4th series that same year of 1986. I wonder which card was released first.)

Here's Fanny Form, who appears to be a school secretary. It's nice that Fleer gave a nod to some of the administrative staff at Grossville High.

Dale Fail has not so cleverly hidden a "Ratman" comic inside a copy of War and Peace. Classic move. I love the look on that teacher's face in the background.

Finally, we've got Guy Fly checking the contents of a cafeteria trash can. I think it's interesting that Fleer went so far as to trademark the names of every character. It's another example of how they might have been hoping the cards would really take off and generate a bunch of merchandise. Not to be.
Next up are a couple of card backs.

Here's a list of announcements from Miss Fanny Form. She's thorough, if nothing else.

This "yearbook" design was the more standard version of a card back, with quite a number of characters in the set receiving the treatment.

Note that there might be an error on the back of this one. Dale Fail's class award is listed as "most likely to succeed". With a name like Dale Fail, I wonder if they meant to say "most likely NOT to succeed".

Also note the "Canew Ideas" company name at the bottom. I couldn't find much information on this Pennsylvania entity, but they did release a couple of comic books in 1991 under the title "Revenge of the Oil Slick Ducks".

So that's that. Grossville High, for the first time on the blog. These five cards were indeed pretty gross, but after looking through the 66-card checklist and some of the associated images, I think we were pretty fortunate here with the gross factor.

What do you think of this odd, one-off set? Leave your thoughts in the comment section, and thanks for reading!

Saturday, January 21, 2023

2021 Panini Select Football Value Pack


Hope everyone had a fun New Year's celebration.  

I ended 2022 with a colonoscopy and then began 2023 with my second bout with The Virus (I first had it back in early June).  Symptoms weren't so bad, just like last time (headache, fever, sore throat at first, but then just a cough).  I spent the first week of the year quarantined in my basement, working from home, and spent the second week back in the office all masked up.  I did notice this go-around that I've been pretty wiped out when I got home from work, so maybe fatigue is a symptom for this strain (either that, or it's still the whole 3rd shift thing).

Panini released 2021 Select in August 2022.  Yet another set from last year released this year.  Seriously, there's has to be some catching up to do this year.

I picked up a pack last month after the vendor restocked the Target card aisle.  It was $15 bucks for the Value Pack, so a buck a card.  Probably not worth it, but here's what I got:

#40 - Charles Woodson
#97 - Jalen Camp (RC)

There are 400 cards in the set, divided into 4 "levels" (rarity).  There are apparently 25 additional XRC Prism cards tacked onto the end of the set.  Woodson and Camp belong to the Concourse Level (the first 100 cards).

#55 - Rashod Bateman
#13 - Jared Goff 

Quite a turnaround for the Lions this year.  Goff also led one of my Yahoo Fantasy Teams to a Public League title (he led my main Yahoo Fantasy Team to a 5th place finish after Kyler Murray got hurt).  

#70 - Anthony Schwartz
#27 - Quinnen Williams

Schwartz had an injury filled rookie season and his sophomore season wasn't much better.  Hopefully the third time's the charm for the guy.

#51 - Mac Jones (RC)
#264 - Kellen Mond (RC)

A lot of the same players pop up in the different "levels," like Kellen.  The different border means a different rarity, in this case the Club Level.

#1 - Tom Brady

Each pack comes with a "Silver Prizm Die Cut".  Not a bad pick up at all!

#SN-25 - A.J. Brown (Select Numbers)
#SCR-6 - Kellen Mond (RC) (Select Certified Rookies)

We've hit the inserts portion of the pack.  As we all know Panini never gives us the odds, so who knows how rare these are.  Also, Kellen Mond hot pack!

#TUR-13 - Stefon Diggs (Turbocharged)
#HT-19 - Warren Moon (Hidden Talents)

The Turbocharged insert is pretty nice looking.  The Bengals play the Bills this weekend; should be pretty emotional...maybe Damar Hamlin will make an appearance to pump up the crowd and his teammates.

#103 - J.J. Watt
#161 - Tutu Atwell (RC)

These two are part of the Premier Level.  J.J. Watt announced his retirement; he'll probably wind up in the Hall of Fame.

Here are the backs because football:

Anyway, that's the pack.  I don't think it was worth a dollar a card, but shiny cards are cool, so this was a one and done for me.  Enjoy the weekend, and thanks for reading!

Sunday, January 15, 2023

2021-22 Panini Select NBA Hanger Pack

Here's another Panini release that came out in the latter part of their basketball release cycle. For the second straight year, Panini offered a retail version of their typically higher-end Select product, with the caveat that all of the base cards are blue instead of silver. Here's a hanger pack that I picked up recently.

17 - Jalen Johnson - This is the "Concourse" design that comprises the non-short printed portion of the set. Johnson has a regular bench role in his second season with Atlanta.

74 - Scottie Barnes - Here's last season's rookie of the year. If you're wondering how this can still be a RC when this was released recently, it's because Panini really is that far behind. (To be fair, the new 2022-23 Hoops set finally dropped this week.)

31 - Carmelo Anthony - Melo as a Laker? Still looks weird.

88 - Julius Randle - The backs are typical of late period Panini products. Boring, no stats... who cares about card backs, I guess?

46 - Trey Murphy III - Another rookie card, Murphy is a 3 point shooting machine, with a name that practically forced that to fruition.

4 - Patrick Williams - I tend to get Patrick Williams mixed up with Grant Williams of the Celtics.

62 - Moses Moody - Moody is another second year bench guy.

20 - Kawhi Leonard - Here's one of the oft-injured Clippers superstar.

77 - Jayson Tatum - Tatum is a St. Louis native and another one of the biggest stars in the game.

100 - LeBron James - Apparently this is the star portion of the pack.

132 - James Harden - Ugh, this guy? This is a Premier Level card, which means it gets a different design and is more rare than the rest.

18 - Joe Wieskamp Blue Prizm - Wieskamp was a second round pick who didn't make it back to the Spurs this season. This is a Blue Prizm parallel, although when scanned it nearly looks the same as the base cards.

3 - Josh Christopher Rookie Revolution - This insert set has a weird design that reminds me of the '90s.

79 - Bones Hyland Blue Shimmer - Each hanger pack promises four cards that are either inserts and parallels, including the hanger pack exclusive Blue Shimmer cards like this one. Bones has one of the cooler nicknames in the league.

22 - Luka Garza Blue Shimmer - Garza was a big star in college but is still trying to find a foothold in the NBA. He's with the Timberwolves these days.

Friday, January 06, 2023

2022 Topps Update Baseball

Finally found a pack of 2022 Topps Update. Max Scherzer and Pete Alonso on the cover of this set. Reason why its difficult to find right now? It have to do with Jeremy Pena, Julio Rodriguez, and Bobby Witt, Jr. rookie cards in this set along with Spencer Torkelson and Jose Miranda. Then there's five ultra short print cards featuring mascot cards. Let's see who are the 16 cards in this pack.

US324 - Avisail Garcia
US277 - Jhoan Duran - solid rookie season
US251 - Andrew McCutchen - still a free agent as of this posting
US317 - Bryan Lavastida - got in 6 games last season
US39 - Carlos Correa - bet on himself opting out of Twins contract for a big payday and losing badly. Astros fans don't miss him at all.
US228 - J.P. Feyereisen - 0.00 ERA in 22 games of relief til shoulder surgery ended his season. Now a member of the Dodgers.
US282 - Alek Thomas - one of players I'm looking forward in the future
US82 - Taylor Hearn
US234 - Joe Perez - its no Jeremy Pena but still an Astros player. He bounced all over the place playing in four levels including a 1 game stint early in the season.
US197 - Jesus Sanchez
US171 - Manny Pina - now a member of the A's via 3-team trade and defacto starting catcher unless A's quickly hotshot Tyler Soderstrom (still not ready) up there while they have William Simoneit and Kyle McCann in the minors.
US164 - Blake Treinen - shoulder injury derailed his season and likely be out for remainder of 2023 season. Double whammy.
US143 - Daniel Norris - got released during middle of the season and signed with the Tigers for remainder of the season. Still currently a free agent.
US93 - Bradley Zimmer - got DFA'd twice in the season including re-joining the Blue Jays 11 days after Phillies signed then DFA'd him. Now a member of the Dodgers.
SMLB-6 - Ryan Mountcastle

Didn't get Pena, JRod, and Witt Jr.