STORY WRITTEN BY BRIAN BINGAMAN
@brianbingaman on Twitter
The collectibles market fluctuates so rapidly — often depending on the timing of a movie/TV show/web series release — that the info. we gathered from interviews with collectibles experts may already be out of date. But here goes …
Most Popular Types of Collectibles
1. Funko “Pop!” miniature figurines: There’s 600 niche lines covering anime; Disney; video game characters; sports, TV and rock stars; Star Wars and DC Comics characters; even the Presidential candidates.
2. Action figures: Star Wars Black Series, Marvel Legends, Marvel Select and DC Icons are among them.
3. High-end, highly detailed action figures manufactured by the likes of Sideshow Collectibles, Hot Toys Limited and Play Arts Kai.
4. Anything autographed
5. Comic books
7. T-shirts and cosplay apparel
8. Replica weapons/props, licensed or unlicensed
Most Popular Comic Brands
3. Image Comics
Most Popular Titles/Characters
Marvel: Deadpool; The Avengers — Thor, Captain America, The Hulk and Iron Man; X-Men; Spider-Man; Daredevil.
DC: Batman, Harley Quinn, The Joker, The Flash, Superman.
Image: The Walking Dead.
What’s it worth?
A look at eBay, Amazon or Facebook trading groups will give you the best idea, says Mike Ridlen of the Garner, N.C.-based New World Toys and Collectibles, who will be one of the exhibitors at the Greater Philadelphia Comic Con. “Fair market value is really driven by line and character popularity and edition size — supply and demand at work,” he wrote in an email.
The Funko “Pop!” vinyls, he commented, are seeing rapid appreciation, and that “retired and limited run figures from 2013 and before have increased from five to 10 times over their value from this time last year. Supported by a multitude of licenses, a retired and vaulted figure process, and a huge amount of store exclusives, these may be sticking around for awhile.”
“People will spend $100-$200 on a (sought after) Pop vinyl,” said Ray Bistline, manager of Comics and More at the Plymouth Meeting Mall.
“I’m surprised the bubble hasn’t burst on the Pops — no pun intended,” added Jason Radosky, co-owner of New Wave Comics & Collectibles in Skippack.
Ridlen said that even though action figure distribution has “generally been good,” dampening the secondary market, “older Marvel Legends and Sideshow figures are showing 1.5 to two times gains (in appreciation), with some more popular characters posting higher.”
Radosky said that collectors have been known to seek out action figure variants, such as Deadpool without his mask or X-Men’s Gambit with his early ‘90s-era headpiece and hairdo.
An autograph that’s validated can raise the value of an item 20 percent above its price guide book value, according to Bistline.
Five years ago at Wizard World, Bistline’s wife paid $30 for a meet-and-greet autograph with Norman Reedus (Daryl Dixon from the AMC “Walking Dead” series). Reedus now charges $250.