The Good: Limited edition, Great images, Easy to collect
The Bad: Very expensive, Simplistic concept/images
The Basics: With eleven cards, the 2013 Star Trek Movies Star Trek Into Darkness Preview Set is great for die-hard collectors, but is a tough sell to Star Trek fans in general!
Pushing the envelope works in a lot of industries. In the collectibles market, there seems to be a pretty fine line between pushing the envelope and alienating one’s base. As a fan of Star Trek collectibles, it seems like the line between pleasing and upsetting fans comes in the form of making items too rare. One of the first collectibles to really upset Star Trek fans (back in the day when the internet was chock full of active message boards!) was the “Tapestry” Picard action figure (reviewed here!), which was limited to 1701 pieces worldwide. At the time, Playmates Toys lost a number of collectors because they realized that they could never complete their collections based on how limited those figures were. Standards have changed! In the realm of Star Trek trading cards, fans have watched as rarity has gone from there being 500 of a card to 125 (with some of the first sketch cards) to 25 when Rittenhouse Archives released the Star Trek The Original Series 40th Anniversary set (reviewed here!) with 25 cut autograph cards from Gene Roddenberry. Now, there are only 5 truly complete sets of Star Trek trading cards and as a collector and dealer of Star Trek trading cards, I’ve watched the consumer base shrink over the last twenty years.
An odd debate raged among Star Trek trading card collectors when Rittenhouse Archives released their 2013 Star Trek Movies Star Trek Into Darkness Preview Set. The eleven card set was released for hundreds of dollars and while it contained autographed costume cards for both Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto, the idea of shelling out so much for so little seemed to shock collectors (which is odd because people tended to pay more for similarly rare autograph cards when they were released in bigger sets). So, the emotional disconnect with the 2013 Star Trek Movies Star Trek Into Darkness Preview Set makes it more analogous to the mini-disc vs. c.d. (SONY discovered that people felt they weren’t getting as much for their money when they bought mini-discs, even though they sometimes had exclusive tracks – more content!). In other words, most of the problem with the 2013 Star Trek Movies Star Trek Into Darkness Preview Set is a perception problem.
The2013 Star Trek Movies Star Trek Into Darkness Preview Set is an eleven card limited edition set that was sold directly from Rittenhouse archives. It was strictly limited to 250 sets, each one hand numbered on the two autographed costume cards. Each set was sold as an entire set in a cellophane pack. Each pack has all nine cards and the two autographed costume cards.
The limited edition 2013 Star Trek Movies Star Trek Into Darkness Preview Set was originally sold direct from Rittenhouse Archives and they are long since sold out, making the eleven-card sets a real find from dealers who might still be clinging to them. These sets have steadily increased in price over the years and fans are lucky to be able to find them for under $500.00 now, if they can find them at all.
The nine common cards are essentially movie posters for Star Trek Into Darkness. Paramount released promotional posters of the seven main crewmembers, as well as Dr. Marcus and Khan. Rittenhouse Archives replicated those posters for the 2013 Star Trek Movies Star Trek Into Darkness Preview Set. Each of the portrait-oriented movie poster trading cards features a single character from Star Trek Into Darkness, as they appeared in key scenes of the film (and were used for promotional purposes).
The backs of the nine common cards simply state the actor and character names over the slightly reframed and enlarged photo of the character on the front. This is a very simply limited edition common set.
The 2013 Star Trek Movies Star Trek Into Darkness Preview Set features two bonus cards. There is an autographed costume card for Chris Pine as Captain Kirk and another of Zachary Quinto as Spock. The autographed costume cards are landscape-oriented and have decent, clear signatures on the front and a window that features a piece of the set-worn costume from Star Trek Into Darkness for each of the two main characters. On the back of the two cards, which came sealed in a toploader directly from Rittenhouse Archives, are hand numbered to 250.
There were no cards for the preview set not in each limited edition pack.
The 2013 Star Trek Movies Star Trek Into Darkness Preview Set is small, but valuable. It is unremarkable, save the two cards which are truly impressive, even if they do not quite fit the same style as the rest of the set. In short, the 2013 Star Trek Movies Star Trek Into Darkness Preview Set is an inconsistent mix of incredible and mundane, making for an ultimately average product.
This set culls images from Star Trek Into Darkness, reviewed here!
For other limited edition card products, check out my reviews of:
Star Trek: Enterprise 9-Card Preview Set
Star Trek Genesis Limited Edition CCG Set
Star Trek Cinema Collection
For other trading card reviews, please visit my Trading Card Review Index Page for an organized listing!
© 2015 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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