I was in Target over the weekend and saw Mars Attacks sitting there, so I bought two packs. I would’ve bought more, but I wasn’t sure if I was going to buy packs or just buy a complete set from my LCS.
I’ve been looking forward to Mars Attacks Heritage since I heard about it. After all, what’s not to like? It’s a painted vintage set, it inspired a Tim Burton movie that I really liked – and that’s notable because, for me, Tim Burton movies are very hit or miss (and more often “miss”).
I was pretty excited about Mars Attacks Heritage… and then I opened my packs. And now I’m not sure what I want to do.
This sounds more critical than I really mean it to be. Going in, I honestly didn’t know many specifics about the original set, other than it being controversial, causing an uproar, and inspiring Tim Burton. But I had only a general idea of what would be on my cards, so maybe the fault is on my expectations.
And it’s not like it would be a difficult set to complete. Even if you go with the basic inserts, you’re still talking about fewer than 100 cards, and I don’t believe any of them are short prints.
Maybe the fault lies in unfortunate pulls in my packs. Of the 12 cards in my packs, this one pictured above is the only one which clearly pictured a Martian. Everything else had giant insects, or soldiers getting frozen or fried, or humans preparing to blow the hell out of Mars, or just general mayhem. Then there are the “Deleted Scenes” cards, which aren’t bad but also are a little too well done; they don’t have that pulp magazine look to them. Finally, you’ve got the parallels (I pulled a green one, whoop-de-freakin-do), sketch cards (which sound neat, but I didn’t pull one) and “New Universe” cards which are a promotional thing for an IDW Comic.
I haven’t given up on this set, I will buy more, and hopefully I’ll get some cards more along the lines of what I was hoping for. And maybe since this year I don’t have Topps Attax as a low-cost “what the heck” pack, I can go with Mars Attacks instead. Which reminds me… where are the “Mars Attax” Cards? A collectible card game based on Mars Attacks seems like it would’ve been a natural.
One thing which intrigues me a bit about this set is the cost of producing it. Think about it… Most of the artwork had been created long ago, and there are no licensing costs because Topps owns the set and the concept and the characters and such. It seems to me that the only non-production costs involved are the sketch cards, the costs of creating the “Deleted Cards”, and the crossover cards with IDW Comics… and IDW probably did much of the work with those.
I’m not complaining, the packs are relatively cheap ($2.09 at Target for 6 cards). I just think it’s interesting in that it probably gives us an idea of what the lowest-of-the-low price points would be for a Heritage-style set.