Auction Watch #137 offers something for every M.U.S.C.L.E. collector – casual observers, novice beginners, grizzled veterans attempting to complete a Master set, and everything in-between.
Class A figures always get attention. Sometimes the attention is from people gawking at the final price. Sometimes the attention is because of the popularity of the figure. And sometimes a train wreck of negativity and shady behavior mar the entire ordeal.
Hopefully this week the Class A figures will only be getting positive attention, because of the uniqueness of the offerings. There are three different sellers, each with three somewhat similar Class A figures, and two different approaches.
The first seller, ironoak, has three Class A figures all listed separately: (1) M.U.S.C.L.E. Men Class “A” Figure #93 Purple; (2) M.U.S.C.L.E. Men Class “A” Figure #97 Dark Blue; and (3) M.U.S.C.L.E. Men Class “A” Figure #145 Light Blue.
All of the Class A figures featured above start at $0.99 and feature clear pictures and fair shipping. The only major difference between these figures and the two other lots of Class A figures is the choice to sell separately instead of in a lot of three.
The price of Class A figures is most often driven by the popularity of a sculpt. The secondary driver of price is often the competitiveness of two Master Set collectors – essentially the MRT. It will be interesting to see if the three singular auctions collectively sell for more than the final price of the two grouped lots of Class A figures.The sculpts of all the Class A figures are very similar in terms of color and popularity. The only outlier may be the Light Blue #145. This is arguably the most attractive figure of the nine and in a very popular and attractive color. This figure is likely to be the highest priced and similar to the Purple #154 that recently sold on eBay.
But because of the fickle nature of Class A figures sales is breaking the group of three into individual lots the best choice? Consider the fourth auction, Muscle Men Figure, M.U.S.C.L.E.s Rare Class A Lot.
This lot features a Purple #77, a Red #110, and a Salmon #156. Not many M.U.S.C.L.E. collectors would make an impassioned argument that these are three of the most popular sculpts. However, if a Master Set collector needs one of the three figures, then there may be a chance that the other two figures in the lot need to be over-valued to insure an auction win. If that scenario plays out, then the seller will have been better off grouping the three figures together.But with only one lot of three Class A figures a very valid argument could be made regarding the popularity of certain sculpts. Thus it would be difficult to say sellers are better off selling separately or collectively. Thankfully the fifth auction, M.u.s.c.l.e. Men Figures, Class A Lot, Muscle Men, provides collectors with a second lot of Class A figures.
This lot features a Purple #41, a Magenta #134, and a Salmon #179. Again, not a lot of figures that M.U.S.C.L.E. collectors would herald as wildly popular sculpts – but still the lot serves as an interesting counterpoint to the individual auctions.M.U.S.C.L.E. collecting is not just about Class A figures and high price tags. In fact, M.U.S.C.L.E. collecting was known as a devotedly inexpensive hobby for its early years. One bastion of those early days still exists with bootleg figures. However, many collectors overlook these charming figures. It’s easy to do to especially if a collector hasn’t had first-hand experience with the different textures – which is a huge part of a bootlegs charm. The sixth auction, M.u.s.c.l.e. Men Figures, Bootleg Muscle Men Lot, is a perfect introduction lot for collectors.
The lot looks to feature two types of bootleg figures over the four sculpts. None of the figures feature the YSNT trademark, instead it has been replaced by China or Honk Kong. The plastic quality suggests the two types may be Type D and Type E . With a starting bid of only $0.99 this is a lot that is too good to pass up. If a M.U.S.C.L.E. collector has never experienced a bootleg, then this is a purchase that requires no thought. Once the figures are physically held there’s an excellent chance that a M.U.S.C.L.E. bootleg collector will be born.The seventh auction, * VINTAGE M.U.S.C.L.E. MUSCLE MEN FIGURE SETS #1 , #2 , #3 , #4 STILL IN BOXES, is one that could easily be overlooked. At first glance collectors may think, “Another set of 28-packs. Boring.”
This set of four 28-packs might actually be one of the best 28-pack lots ever. All four of the 28-packs are in very good condition and include figures. For those two reasons alone the starting price is quite fair at $49.99 – essentially $12.50 per 28-pack. But what really makes this lot stand out is that all four of the 28-packs feature the same Kinnikuman graphic and poster offer. This is a set of No Logo, Poster 28-packs. This is the only variant of the 28-packs that is documented to exist in all four 28-packs. For the perfectionistic collector this lot should be a dream come true. This is arguably the only way to have a perfectly matching set of 28-packs. (For more information on the 28-pack variants read the 28-Pack from History 100.)The eighth auction, * VINTAGE M.U.S.C.L.E. WRESTLING RING ARENA IN THE BOX WITH LOT OF MUSCLE MEN, is a great lot that could be easily overlooked because of its main auction picture.
Because M.U.S.C.L.E. figures are small many auctions feature everything in one main auction picture. And with the title of this auction it would be easy to assume that the lot consists only of a ring, box, and a few figures. Even clicking on the auction reveals six ring pictures and two pictures of the lot of figures that need to be scrolled to see.
It’s those pictures that are key to the auction – over 80 Flesh figures, a ring with its box, and a nice surprise mixed into the lot too. This lot started at $21.99, but will probably end well north of that price.