Category Archives: Non-Sports

Magic The Gathering Preview: Battle for Zendikar

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By Ian McDaries | Guest Commentary

The Eldrazi are back, and this time they are ready to win the Battle for Zendikar! This last week Wizards of the Coast has allowed a few spoilers to be let out to the public, and man is the hype real! For this Labor Day weekend I wanted to recap on a few of the major cards coming out in the new Zendikar block.

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Seeing all the 1977 Topps Star Wars Stickers bring the memories rushing back

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By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

When it comes to Star Wars trading cards, for most it goes all the way back to where it began. Even if you didn’t collect them when they first came out, 1977 Topps Star Wars is still a landmark release. When it comes to movie cards, it ranks up there with the most important sets of all-time. For many, it might very well be the biggest entertainment release ever. And while the iconic star field borders of the base set bring lots of nostalgia, the stickers are fantastic as well and worthy of every bit of attention.

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2015 Topps Star Wars Galactic Connexions Details

2015 Topps Star Wars Galactic Connexions Battle Damage Princess Leia

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

2015 Topps Star Wars Galactic Connexions pack several elements into one. They’re definitely not trading cards, but they’re certainly structured that way with blind packaging, a set to build and plenty of chase elements. To that end, it brings them in line with Topps’ Chipz line. But they don’t look anything like poker chips. Galactic Connexions is also a game requiring strategy.

The line is exclusive to Walmart.

The basic set of 2015 Topps Star Wars Galactic Connexions features 75 different characters. However, each of those has more than a dozen different disc styles that vary based on the frame color and type of sticker.

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2016 Topps Garbage Pail Kids American as Apple Pie in Your Face First Look

2016 Topps GPK American as Apple Pie in Your Face Snooty Sam

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

2016 Topps Garbage Pail Kids American as Apple Pie in Your Face trading cards take on pop culture with a big and varied base set and pool of inserts. From presidential hopefuls to some of America’s most sacred treasures, nothing is safe from satire in the product.

Like several recent Garbage Pail Kids sets, American as Apple Pie in Your Face has both hobby and hobby collector configurations. Each has their own focus and exclusives. Regular hobby boxes target those looking more at the base set with 24 packs of eight cards and no guaranteed hits. Hobby collector boxes have fewer cards with just six cards per pack. However, they also promise one premium card per box.

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Month of Marvel Giveaway No. 3

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By Matt Bible | Beckett Non-Sports and Gaming Analyst

The Month of Marvel is unstoppable!

Week 2 of our giveaways has come and gone and another collector walks away with a great prize.

This week we have another question and it’s a doozy.

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2015 Upper Deck Marvel Vibranium Trading Cards First Look

2015 Upper Deck Marvel Vibranium Base

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

If you haven’t heard of vibranium yet, you likely will by the time the Black Panther movie arrives in 2018. It’s an important metal in the Marvel Universe, kind of like Kryptonite in the DC realm. It has been mentioned in several recent Marvel blockbusters, but it’s likely to take on greater importance in the future. 2015 Upper Deck Marvel Vibranium trading cards adopt the fictional metal as a focal point the runs through the product.

Using chromium card stock like the style used in 2014-15 O-Pee-Chee Platinum Hockey, the set brings with it a certain shine that’s been a sports staple for years but not explored much in comic cards.

Each box has 20 packs of five cards, delivering one premium insert plus several basic inserts and parallels.

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2015 Cryptozoic Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies Trading Cards First Look

2015 Hobbit Battle of the Five Armies Box

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

One book, three (long) movies. Peter Jackson’s epic take on The Hobbit has long since wrapped. 2015 Cryptozoic Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies trading cards bring a sense of closure to the trilogy from a hobby perspective. Like the sets for the previous two films, the product offers a rounded look at the Middle Earth adventure.

Autographs and Fine Art cards highlight the chase elements.

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2015 Cryptozoic Arrested Development trading cards info

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By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

While it was originally on the air, Arrested Development won over critics but failed to find a massive audience. DVD and Netflix have been kind to the show in the ensuing years, even leading to a streaming revival season. 2015 Cryptozoic Arrested Development bring a collectible spin to the classic comedy.

The set covers all four seasons with a mix of base, insert and premium cards including an autograph in every box.

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Month of Marvel Giveaway No. 2

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By Matt Bible | Beckett Non-Sports and Gaming Analyst

Last Monday, Beckett’s Month of Marvel started off with a huge bang.

This week is no different as we have a new question and a new prize — 2015 Upper Deck Legendary Marvel Secret Wars deck building expansion kit. Read More »

2015 Rittenhouse Falling Skies Autograph Expansion Set info

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By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

The 2015 Rittenhouse Falling Skies Autograph Expansion set likely closes the chapter for the show as far as trading cards go. Rather than going the premium pack road like it has in the past, Rittenhouse is opting for a limited edition factory set. Even then, unlike 2015 Rittenhouse Under the Dome Season 2, there are no base cards.

Living up to its name, this small release is all autographs.

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Star Wars: The Force Awakens Promo Cards Popping Up in Several Places

2015 Topps Star Wars Chrome Perspectives 2 Force Awakens 81

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

Star Wars: The Force Awakens isn’t sneaking up on anyone — except when it comes to trading cards. First was a group of four Heritage-style promo cards in 2015 Topps Star Wars Illustrated: Empire Strikes Back.

Surprise! More unannounced Star Wars: The Force Awakens promo cards have surfaced in both Chrome Perspectives 2 and 3D Widevision: Revenge of the Sith.

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Whole Lot of Nothing: Ultimate List of Seinfeld Autograph Cards

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By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

Seinfeld has never had a set of official trading cards. It’s unlikely it ever will. Save for a couple of singles in 2011 Topps American Pie, there isn’t much else out there for the TV classic.

But for autograph collectors, it doesn’t mean that there’s nothing for the show about nothing. You just have to look elsewhere and use a little creativity. In fact, you can build a pretty mean collection of Seinfeld autographs without a ton of effort or money. Unless, of course, you’ve got to have a Jerry Seinfeld signature. He’s yet to have a certified autograph card.

Michael Richards, who played Kramer, is the other lead cast member without one either.

But George (Jason Alexander) and Elaine (Julia-Louis Dreyfus) do. As do several notable recurring characters and notable guest stars. Lots of bit players also have signed cards.

Want to know who else? The massive list is after the jump.

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1975 Donruss Truckin’ trading cards get mileage

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By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

History is a big part of what the hobby focuses and thrives on. Look back on today’s cards in 40 years and they’ll be a time capsule to the way things used to be. Sift through a stack of vintage cards now and you’re likely to be taken back to a time when movies were a lot cheaper, televisions were much smaller and the foggy memories of walking to school seem to go uphill both ways.

This idea isn’t limited to just sports cards, though. It carries over into non-sport side as well. 1975 Donruss Truckin’ trading cards are a perfect example of that, showcasing some out-there vehicles from a time when gas about $0.60 a gallon and it wasn’t considered creepy to have curtains in the windows of your van.

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2015 Rittenhouse Under the Dome Season 2 trading cards info

Under the Dome Season 2 Autographs

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

When Under the Dome premiered in June, 2013, it became the most buzzed about show of the summer. Originally it looked like it’d be a one-year special. But with those ratings, the dome stayed up. With the show not as popular as it was, 2015 Rittenhouse Under the Dome Season 2 trading cards take a different approach.

Rather than the traditional route it took with Season 1it goes for a factory set that’s actually got more autographs than base cards. In total, the limited edition release has 31 cards, 18 of which are signed.

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2015 Rittenhouse Continuum Season 3 trading cards info

Continuum Season 3 Autograph

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

Picking up where the Seasons 1 and 2 release left off, 2015 Rittenhouse Continuum Season 3 trading cards bring the same small but tight configuration. Because it’s not the most popular show on television, there’s not a lot of it out there. But what has been produced delves into many of its key aspects.

2015 Rittenhouse Continuum Season 3 boxes come with three autographs, all of which are limited to 200 copies or less.

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2015 Topps Star Wars 3D Widevision: Revenge of the Sith First Look

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By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

2015 Topps Star Wars 3D Widevision: Revenge of the Sith continues to fill in the gaps that showcases the franchise in a format that’s bigger and uses modern lenticular technology. Like the similar Return of the Jedi Widevision 3D set that came out last year, it’s an online exclusive — and a limited one at that.

Packaged as a premium-style factory set, each comes with 44 base cards, a sketch card and one additional premium insert.

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2015 Cryptozoic Arrow Season 2 trading cards info

2015 Cryptozoic Arrow Season 2 Box

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

With plenty of bad guys (and gals) making trouble in Starling City, there’s still plenty more to delve into with Oliver Queen and his masked alter ego. 2015 Cryptozoic Arrow Season 2 covers more of those stories and their characters with a configuration that has a familiar mix of base cards and chase elements.

Like the show’s first release, which has proven to be one of the biggest of the year on the entertainment side of the hobby, boxes come with both an autograph and a costume card.

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Month of Marvel Giveaway No. 1

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By Matt Bible | Beckett Non-Sports and Gaming Analyst

The Month of Marvel is here!

From August 17 to September 18, we will be giving away cards everyday on our Instagram page and we will be having a weekly contest right here on Beckett.com. All you have to do to enter is answer the question in the comment section below. After that, you’re eligible to win our weekly prize.

For the first week, we are not only giving away a complete base set of 2015 Fleer Retro Marvel, but also a complete base set of 2013 Fleer Retro Marvel (for complete checklists of each, please checkout our non-sports online price guide).

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Star Wars Chrome Perspectives: Jedi vs. Sith Autographs checklist announced

2015 Topps Star Wars Chrome Perspectives Prism Autograph Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

Autographs have become a given in almost every set of modern Star Wars trading cards and that’s showing no signs of slowing. The 2015 Topps Star Wars Chrome Perspectives: Jedi vs. Sith Autographs has one of the larger checklists the franchise has seen.

Highlights include Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker) and Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia).

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1991 Topps Toxic High School — a cheap and overlooked set worthy of your attention

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By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

Card collecting is often portrayed as a wholesome activity. You know the image — young kid sitting on his bed shuffling through a stack of his heroes.

“Got it, got it, got it, need it,” is his mantra.

But if you look back on the history of the hobby, trading cards have a subversive and trouble-making side as well. You’ve got the dog getting zapped in Mars Attacks, the mockery of Wacky Packages where no consumer product is sacred, Billy Ripken’s bat and the snotty Garbage Pail Kids to name a few. Even the early days of cards being used to promote tobacco raised some eyebrows then.

When cards caused trouble, it was often at school. Kids get their rubber band-bound stacks confiscated. A trade that seemed good at recess leads to a fight at lunch after the No Trade Backs Code of Honor is upheld.

School is also the battleground for 1991 Topps Toxic High School trading cards, perhaps the most overlooked set of entertainment cards of the early 1990s.

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Beckett’s Month of Marvel Giveaways

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By Matt Bible | Beckett Non-Sports and Gaming Analyst

Summertime is nearing its end. But, the fun is just beginning in Beckett non-sports land. In fact, you could say we have a Marvel-ous month ahead of us.

From Aug. 17 to Sept. 18, Beckett non-sports will be promoting the Month of Marvel.

During this time, everyday on our Instagram page, we will be giving away cards from our Marvel vault. We will also be having weekly giveaways of Marvel cards and products, such as 2015 Marvel 3-D, a complete base set of 2015 Fleer Retro Marvel, etc.

Check back on Aug. 17 for the first contest. And, if you haven’t already, start following us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram so you can have a chance of winning some great Marvel stuff.

Matt Bible is the non-sports and gaming analyst for Beckett Media. Have a comment, question or idea? Send an email to him at mbible@beckett.com.

First Look: 2015 Cryptozoic Penny Dreadful Season 1 trading cards

Penny Dreadful Season 1 Box

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

What happens when you take some of the 19th Century’s greatest literary characters and put them together into a cable TV series? You get Penny Dreadful. It’s a little creepy, sometimes edgy and filled with familiar names — both in its stars and character names. 2015 Cryptozoic Penny Dreadful Season 1 trading cards follow a familiar pattern for the card maker.

The set has a mix of base cards, themed inserts and several premium chase elements. Boxes have both an autograph and a costume card.

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First Look: 2015 Topps Star Wars: The Force Awakens Series 1 trading cards

Star War The Force Awakens We Are Home

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

Of course there are going to be trading cards for the new Star Wars movie. Probably lots of them. 2015 Topps Star Wars: The Force Awakens Series 1 is the first to delve exclusively into the film. Journey to the Force Awakens has some new content, but it also covers the other films as well.

Every pack has at least two inserts including a character sticker that will make a lot vintage Star Wars card collectors think, “We’re home.” Hobby boxes have a pair of premium inserts like autographs, sketch cards, Medallion cards and Printing Plates.

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Beckett readies new non-sports book

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By Matt Bible | Beckett Non-Sports and Gaming Analyst

For the past five years, Beckett Media has produced its annual Gaming Almanac, which provides detailed checklists and pricing of collectible card games and non-sports cards for collectors and dealers alike.

This year, Beckett is producing gaming and non-sports books as their own standalone releases. The non-sports book is due in August, while the gaming book is due in November.

With this, Beckett is going to give the non-sports collector access to more checklists — more base sets, inserts, autographs, memorabilia cards and sketch cards.

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First Look: 2015 Topps Doctor Who trading cards

2015 Topps Doctor Who Box

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

Topps initially announced a comprehensive Doctor Who set more than a year ago. Following multiple delays, it’s back on track. 2015 Topps Doctor Who trading cards delve deep into the show’s history, both the original series and the popular reboot.

A big base set, plenty of autographs and other inserts highlight the release, which is now slated for November. Hobby boxes include a pair of autographs, relics, patch cards or Printing Plates.

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Five-card tribute to “Rowdy” Roddy Piper

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By Matt Bible | Beckett Non-Sports and Gaming Analyst | Commentary

Just when you thought you had the answers, he changed the questions.

The world of professional wrestling suffered another loss last Friday as “Rowdy” Roddy Piper, the legendary icon who headlined the first Wrestlemania, died at the age of 61.

For the last 30 years, Piper had cemented his legacy in professional wrestling as one of the greatest “bad guys” the business had ever seen. He was also a pretty good actor, having starred in several feature films, most notably John Carpenter‘s cult sci-fi classic, They Live.

However, it was the main event match at ‘Mania that changed the game for Piper. He, along with “Mr. Wonderful” Paul Orndorff, challenged Hulk Hogan and Mr. T in a tag team showdown for the ages. Piper’s feud with Hogan established a new generation of wrestling fans and put sports entertainment into the national spotlight like never before.

And, with great popularity come great collectibles. Between cards and action figures, there are currently 345 Piper pieces in the Beckett database and the following five cards serve as a tribute to an incredible career.

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BGS Vintage Challenge: Ryan Cracknell

BVG Challenge Mars Attacks Raw Card

During the 36th National Sports Collectors Convention in Chicago, Beckett Media’s editorial staff were asked to hit the floor and bring back a vintage card to be graded. Each staff member participating in the project will present the results of their hunt to readers during the show.

The Card: 1962 Mars Attacks #50

Name: Smashing the Enemy

The Cost: $35

The Cost to Grade: $15 at show

Find out more about the card and its final grade after the jump.

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Box Busters: 2015 Fleer Retro Marvel cards

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Join Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Chris Olds and Matt Bible as they rip into boxes of 2015 Fleer Retro Marvel cards in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out.

Plus, answer the following question and you could win the Ant-Man sketch card from the video: What would you do or where would you go if you could make yourself small? Leave a comment below. A winner will be selected before Aug. 1.

First Look: Rittenhouse Marvel Avengers Silver Age

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Media

Millions of comic book movie fans flocked to see Avengers: Age Of Ultron and while it was one of this summer’s hottest releases, it should not be forgotten that the original comics have become increasingly valuable and coveted in recent years. While it is cost prohibitive for many to go out and track them down, Rittenhouse Archives has brought them to the trading card market through its latest Marvel Comics-themed collection.

Released to hobby stores on July 22, comic and card enthusiasts will be able to relive the first 100 issues of The Avengers that began back in 1963 and Rittenhouse has even meticulously cut out panels and embedded them into trading cards at a 1:12 rate, making for a truly unique collectible. Throw in favorites such as sketch cards and this potentially becomes one of this year’s hottest non-sports issues.

What else can collectors expect in packs of 2015 Rittenhouse Marvel Avengers Silver AgeRead More »

Look for a historic Box Busters — 1993 MTG Alpha — soon

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By Matt Bible | Beckett Non-Sports and Gaming Analyst | Commentary

On Monday, Beckett Media will bear witness to a monumental occasion.

Magic The Gathering super collector Adam Cai will be breaking open a starter deck from the 1993 MTG Alpha series on a special edition of Box Busters. He will be doing so on behalf of Preston Cordy of Cardhaus Games (check out the official website here).

Magic The Gathering cards debuted in 1993 with three separate series: Alpha, Beta and Unlimited. The three sets paralleled each other and maintain their own distinctive appearance and value.

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First Pitch celebs get jumbo treatment from Topps

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By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

The celebs are going jumbo.

Topps revealed its First Pitch: Complete Oversized baseball card sets and there are three new ways to get your hands on some of the most-unique cards made this year.

Each of the 25 cards found in the first two series of 2015 Topps are now available as 5×7 creations that are part of three limited-edition sets found only on Topps.com.

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Final Update: Funko readies for Comic Con

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By Matt Bible | Beckett Non-Sports and Gaming Analyst | Commentary

San Diego Comic Con is a little less than a month away and all the hype surrounding Funko and its exclusives has the vinyl collectors in a frenzy. There will be plenty of variety as Funko has been announcing SDCC releases. The ten waves have finally been revealed and fanboys  and con-goers alike will be pleased.

Just about every major licensee is represented. DC, Marvel, Star Wars, Disney and Doctor Who will all have a presence in this year’s exclusives. They will be released in these major lines of Funko collectibles: Pop Vinyls, Hikari, ReAction, Dorbz and Vinyl Idolz. With the 10th wave also came the announcement that Funko will begin producing official Pop Tees (the official T-shirt of Funko). Each shirt will come in its very own Pop Vinyl style box and they will depict all the favorite Pop Vinyl figures, such as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Black Widow from The Avengers.

Some of the pieces reflect this season’s summer blockbusters such as Avengers Age of Ultron, Inside Out and Ant-Man. Others pay homage to the classics such as Ghostbusters, T2 and Jaws.

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Promo sets are only Jurassic World card options

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By Matt Bible | Beckett Non-Sports and Gaming Analyst | Commentary

Jurassic World opened last night to much fanfare among moviegoers. I was there and it was two hours of amazing dino action. However, one thing you won’t find much of is Jurassic World cardboard. None of the major card companies acquired a license to produce the ultimate Jurassic World product.

But, as Jeff Goldblum so blatantly put it in the original Jurassic Park … life finds a way. And sometimes, so do cards.

Jurassic World collectors will not go home empty handed this summer as there are a couple nifty little sets out there that feature everyone’s favorite dinosaurs.

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First Look: 2015 Leaf Pop Century

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By Stephen Laroche | Beckett Media

Celebrity trading card products have seen tremendous market growth in recent years and Leaf Trading Cards has brought back its Pop Century brand once again in 2015.

With its deepest checklist to date , 2015 Leaf Pop Century will be loaded up with tons of new signers which span the worlds of sports and entertainment. The company has put together a roster of strong signers that include Hollywood icons such as Al Pacino and Gene Wilder, Frozen’s Kristen Bell and Josh Gad, along with rock legend Roger Daltrey. Each box will contain four autographed card and there are several new concepts that collectors can enjoy once it releases on July 29.

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Box Busters: 2015 DC Comics Super Villains

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Join Beckett Sports Card Monthly‘s Matt Bible and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2015 DC Comics Super Villains in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …