One part of last week's limited discussion that I wanted to focus on this week is the definition of the word vintage. Jon from Community Gum started collecting basically around the same year, 1986, as me. He said that 1982 Topps was the newest set that felt vintage to him. I had never thought of 1982 as vintage, but I'm sure there are some collector's out there that do especially those born in the 1990's. Wow, I felt old just typing that. Back to the definition of vintage, I have always felt that vintage is exactly one year before you were born and thus, like beauty, it is in the eye of the beholder for each collector. For me, vintage is 1975 and back. For younger collectors, 1991 could (and should) be considered vintage.
Anyway, I just wanted to chit-chat a bit before I conclude the bottom third of the best Topps sets.
PLUSES -Player name not in foil for the first time since 1994 (or since for that matter). I like the big team logos on the front as well as the small one on the back. Player name in team color on the back is a nice touch.
MINUSES - BUSY, BUSY, BUSY! Way too much going on with this set. The last name in foil at the top seems unnecessary, especially with the full name nearby. Sideways writing is never a good thing, never. The back isn't too bad except for the OPS stat being located in two different places. The overkill set should be the name of this set.
PLUSES - Generally good photography, especially for the era. The double cartoon on the back is very good although sometimes doesn't make sense. Stats are very easy to read in the white box. A nice touch.
MINUSES - Facsimile signature on the front. The lack of a larger border really hurts this set. The player name and/or the team name is sometimes hard to read due to the photo. The vertical back brings this set down a few slots as well.
PLUSES - The "Diamond Vision" on the back was a very interesting addition. I wonder why it only appeared in this set. Generally interesting photography
MINUSES - The card number is at the bottom...I hate that. The glossy finish on the front was a bad mistake. This set reminds me too much of the strike that nearly killed my (and many others') love of the game in 1994.
PLUSES - I like a nice colorful set. I think it might be time for Topps to do a rainbow-type set again. The names on the front are very easy to read in all cases. I have always liked the all caps name at the top of the card. I don't know why, but I have always liked the "barber pole" stripe at the bottom on the back.
MINUSES - Generally, this is a boring design on both the front and back. Most of the photography is lackluster at best.
PLUSES - The theater marquee nameplate on the front is very appropriate for the time period. It's the first (major) Topps set, so it gets a little bit of a pass for the design. Neat backgrounds in some "photos." Fielding stats on the back were a great idea that shouldn't have disappeared.
MINUSES - The logos on the front are awkwardly placed on some cards. Hair and eye color on the back? It seems like a bit much. The design has been done to death by Topps, so that pushes it down the list as well.
I'm sure some of you are happy to finally see 1990 show up. What do you guys think of my bottom third? I know a few of you guys are big fans of the 1967 set, tell me why it should have been higher. Did I let my feelings for the strike push 1995 down too low on the list? Did I let my feelings of overuse push 1952 too far down the list? Is 2005 better than I gave it credit for? What sets should have been seen by now? Why do I continue giving you guys essay questions? Until next week...