My Green #183 Story


The Green #183 figure has eluded me for quite some time. For most of my collecting days I have been rather passive in my pursuit. When the remaining number of needed Master Set figures dropped to five it seemed like an appropriate time to reduce the passiveness.

Ironically, the Green #183 was discovered passively. I missed the figure’s original appearance on eBay. A M.U.S.C.L.E. collector, rightfully, wasn’t crazy about the (I believe) $1300 BIN for the lot. The same collector reached out to the seller, johnnyultimate, to attempt a more reasonable price for the Green #183 figure. The potential buyer said, “he again tried ripping me off” but the pair landed on a final price of $500 Canadian (about $350 US). Here’s where the chaos began.

The seller listed it without telling the potential buyer. Hours passed. That’s when my Inbox filled up. Other collectors were letting me know that a Green #183 was listed – using my picture. Most collectors assumed the seller had done some homework and was taunting me.

Asking to see a picture of the figure seemed like a simple solution. I asked if the seller had a picture of the figure. Here’s what he said:

He initially sent the group picture from his original listing. That was good enough for me. I decided recklessly spending about $350 was ok at this point. I told my wife and kids. They were excited we had moved one figure closer to the end.

I posted the What Would You Do? expecting collectors to be shocked when they learned I had purchased the figure. I even shared my purchase with a few collectors, but asked them not to say anything – to avoid ruining the surprise.

The seller even decided to relist the lot, without the Green #183 figure.

Then I received this message:

I should have been pissed, but I wasn’t. Instead I thought, “Yep, this what M.U.S.C.L.E. collecting has become. This is why I don’t try.”

I assumed that some collector got in his ear; suggesting it was worth much, much more money.

My family couldn’t understand anything about what had happened. Trying to explain the common M.U.S.C.L.E. insanity to outsiders was nearly impossible.

Before I could ask the seller anything I received this message:

I didn’t know a seller could cancel a completed listing without any warning.

Interestingly, the seller said the exact opposite thing to the person that he had originally been dealing with about the Green #183 – as documented by the screen capture the person shared with me.

A seller cannot be punished, in any way, by eBay if they cancel a sale. I even called eBay to confirm it. I wanted to confirm it because I want to be 100% sure, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the seller was lying.

This seller is a liar. Fact.

Back to my cancelled listing, I was surprised to hear that the figure didn’t have the YSNT markings. It didn’t make any sense to me. I have been collecting a long, long, long time. I have never seen a green counterfeit figure that didn’t have markings. Especially on that looks like a real M.U.S.C.L.E. figure.

I told the seller that I still wanted the counterfeit figure, but not at the same price. That kind of oddity would have a good home with me.

Here is the response I received:

If it was just business, then he would have sold the figure. Whatever.

I asked again about the “melted” figure. Here was the response I received:

I responded, “Ok. If you won’t sell garbage, then can I have it? I only need 5 more figures. I’d be happy with a damaged figure.”

The seller completely ignored my question. Instead he said:

My snark spilled out:

But he continued to ignore the melted figure:

Two days later I decided to try the unthinkable. I would Make-An-Offer with the original price I paid. To my surprise he accepted the original price. He said:

Interesting that he would call it “funny business.” Do you know what we’ll never see listed? A “volcanic” Green #183 figure.

When the figure arrived, I left honest feedback.

The seller wasn’t happy.

I thought the seller had properly set the tone for our temporary interconnection. I thought it was best to take a page out of his book:

His response makes it seems like a little more than business. It sure seems like his feelings are hurt. Do you agree?

I’m closing in on almost 20 years of M.U.S.C.L.E. collecting (dear god, that’s embarrassing). I can say with complete confidence, sellers, like this one, don’t understand the hobby. They think they’ve discovered a golden goose. And for a hot minute, it is exactly that thing. However, the buying population withers and dies before they can even blink. There is not an endless supply of buyers.

Just ask newhobby905/make-an-offer/ohsooffices_1 still trying to sell her Class A figures since 2015 – like the Class A Salmon #165 figure.

Four figures to go.

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  1. #1 by StrangeMorris on June 12, 2019 - 8:19 am

    I would love to play poker with johnnyultimate since he’s the absolute worst bluffer/liar I’ve ever seen. “No. That’s not how I operate. I’m not selling garbage.” Hahaha.

  2. #2 by Walker26 on June 12, 2019 - 11:58 am

    Poetic justice when you replied: “It’s just business man….” lol

  3. #3 by Trashcandream on June 12, 2019 - 2:54 pm

    Congratulations! I thought it smelled funny, and I guess it did far more than I could have imagined.

  4. #4 by Trashcandream on June 12, 2019 - 3:55 pm

    The most remarkable part of this to me is that for the seller’s story to be true this person would have known or found someone nearby that just so happened to have this incredibly rare figure. You haven’t found this figure in all your years of scouring auctions, but this seller “has a guy” I guess that just so happens to have such a rare figure. There are probably fewer than 50 people on earth that even know that is a rare figure, let alone have one at the ready to pass on to this seller.

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