Epilogue – Week of April 3rd

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Did you see BvS? Well, you didn’t see me.

I was perfectly cropped out of the shot. Frankly, I think seeing me as the Senator’s Aide would have saved the movie. Just one of the many mistakes they made.

I’ll spare you another review of the movie. I wouldn’t be saying anything you haven’t already heard.

Yesterday I shared some of my feelings over the flood of Class A figures we have be seeing. For someone that only is only 12 figures away from a Master Set (actually 11 figures away, thanks Instagram). You think I would be really excited. I have even received some friendly encouragement to just finish.

Then I received an email that said:

Hi there,

Just looked at your uofmuscle site and noticed your little write up on the Class A figures. I listed all of mine (including another light blue mito). Check em out. Ebay user: evalueway. So far I sold a orange claw, salmon sunshine and a flesh set with ring figs and SC in one day.

If you want any pics for your site before they all go let me know.

I didn’t quite know what he was suggesting I should post. Sold auctions?

Sellers routinely email me suggesting I should look at their “awesome” auctions. It’s never been a good auction. Ever.

I was getting ready to write the Epilogue; was planning on scanning eBay, so what could it hurt to look at this guy’s auctions?

I smugly scanned his auctions. Once again I could bask in my conceited knowledge that I was right. He had Class A auctions, but nothing that deserved extra special attention. Until I was proven wrong. Not just minor typo-mistake wrong, but cataclysmically the-Titanic-won’t-hit-that-iceberg wrong.

This seller has a Magenta #161. It is one of the final 11 figures I need.

I felt pretty stupid. I had prejudged this seller and I was 100% wrong. Once the embarrassment passed I thought, “Maybe I should place a bid.”

It wasn’t coming from a place of excitement. It was like a reflex. Before I could even click to place a bid I thought, “What would my top bid be?” It would be $20. I wondered if it could be $50, but it seemed laughable to me as soon as I thought it.

I’m sure it will sell for much more than $50, but I won’t be a part of it. I just don’t care.

Don’t get me wrong, I love M.U.S.C.L.E. maybe more than anyone in the world. But owning that figure will do absolutely nothing for me. I feel like a clean and sober collector. Discovering that Dark Blue #228 was important in my “recovery.” After getting over the embarrassment, which was the primary feeling, I felt nothing about the figure. Nothing.

I was happy I could take the #228 picture, but I can achieve that feeling without spending a dime. I could simply borrow the figure to take the picture. Exact same level of very momentary and minor excitement.

It would be nice to own the Magenta #161. However, at this point in my life I am only willing to put in the effort/energy to things that provide an equivalent or greater return. Owning that single figure, or even completing the Master Set, won’t bring me any greater happiness or satisfaction.

If a cynic (like me) is still reading this, then I imagine they’re thinking, “It wouldn’t take any time or energy to just put in one big guarantee-a-win bid.” Fair point. But it would take my energy. I would lose sleep over spending that money when it could have been used better. I’ve done some work with non-profits recently and it would genuinely and significantly pain me if I wasted money that could have done something positive.

Just because I wouldn’t spend a fortune on Magenta #161 doesn’t mean I don’t still have interest in M.U.S.C.L.E. auctions.

Not something I need to own, but super cool to see (and $10 seems fair).
I would be thrilled to get $100 for this lot. What could the reserve be?
Ignore the auction; enjoy the description.
Besides the Magenta #161, this seller has a bunch of Class A figures.
Another person with several Class A figures.
ANOTHER person with several Class A auctions.
WHAT?! Another guy with a bunch of Class A figures?!?!
This is the last Class A seller I will point out.
– Can you believe this price has dropped almost 108% since March? Wow.
The clamps look rough, but I can’t argue with a $0.99 opening bid.
If this poster had an opening bid of $0.99, then the final bidding would have gone higher than $80.
Speaking of posters, this may never sell without a $0.99 opening bid.
That Green figure is so discolored I thought it was a bootleg.
Not even a SC in the lot. I need to empty some boxes.
Whether the seller was being serious or joking, the description will make you roll your eyes.
The price (and shipping) seem terrible, but I loved the product and picture. Does anyone know what an actual set would sell for?

One of the other absurd M.U.S.C.L.E. trends I noticed on eBay was vastly overpriced ring figures. I was preparing a new ring figure post. Maybe people will calm down on the pricing with a little more knowledge? Probably not, but the Figure Guide will look better.

As I was reexamining the #141 and Muscleman ring figure (figure “#234”) I was left with the feeling that the difference in the belt is the result of recasting the figure and making it smaller. It seems like the simplest explanation. Mattel wanted ease from the M.U.S.C.L.E. licensee. Completely re-sculpting a figure (nearly perfectly) doesn’t make sense.

Vote in this week’s poll. If you think there is a different explanation, then vote other and leave your explanation in the comments below.

If the Epilogue seemed a little aggressive or angry this week, then I’m sorry. If you thought that, then imagine me looking like the angry little guy below as you read it. That should level set the tone.

  1. #1 by Neverwhere on April 8, 2016 - 11:16 am

    Seeing that Class A figures are indeed not rare illustrates the most frustrating thing about this hobby: Sellers keeping the prices artificially high. What’s worse are people paying $100 or more for these figures. It’s also the reason why I’ll probably never own Satan Cross.

  2. #2 by goffers on April 9, 2016 - 3:52 am

    I too have seen the ring figures going for absurd prices. Perhaps it has just been dumb luck but through my several years of buying and collecting I have personally owned more of those two figures than any others.

    On my way to a flesh set I purchased 4 larger lots and subsequently traded or purchased individual figures to complete it. Every one of those lots contained a pair of ring figures. I have quite literally owned 4 of each at one time while never exceeding more than 3 of any one figure in all of my combined collecting.

    One must consider how many of these were produced. It would be difficult, if not impossible to know for sure but any kid who had the ring, had the figures. These were likely 2 of maybe 10-60 figures in their collection (what I personally feel is a reasonable estimate of a childhood collection of the 80’s). Sooo, they were no more rare than any of the other figures in the collection.

    If you couple this with the logic that larger collections (more likely those containing the ring figures) survived the trash bin, the stray 4 figure collection getting burried, ate by the dog, etc. one could argue that the ring figures are currently and equally as plentiful as any other flesh MUSCLE.

    I got all 8 of mine for an average of $0.47 each. Apologies for the lengthy rant, but I happen to agree. Never would I have thought that seeing ring figures listed at $20 a pop would be a common theme. Just further evidence of the unpredictable and sometimes volatile niche hobby of MUSCLE collecting.

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