Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Better than expected

I don't remember when it was exactly, but at some point in the last couple of months I was looking at comic books on Craigslist (not a site I got to very often), and came across an ad for a place called Red Rhino Cash Advance in Knoxville. I thought at first that the ad must've been put in the wrong section, but I still clicked on it anyway, and boy am I glad I did!

The ad basically stated that they had comic books and other assorted collectibles for sale, which sounded nice, but how much stuff could a place with that name really have?

I couldn't really find any great pictures of the inside of the store online, so not knowing if would be worth the 2 1/2 round trip, I just kind of filed it away as a "maybe someday" place.

Well, "someday" ended up being about two weeks ago on the day that I went back to McKay's (see last post), it's about 20 minutes away from McKay's, so I figured why not, I'm probably only gonna be in there for 10-15 minutes max... a serious miscalculation on my part.

I spent two hours at McKay's, ate my lunch in the car (I always take a lunch), and headed for the Red Rhino, I even ended up getting there quicker than the GPS said I would (always satisfying). I really wasn't prepared for the sight that befell me when I walked in, especially I was expecting a box of comics tucked away under a table somewhere, and maybe a couple of Funko's (seriously, does every damn place have to carry those things?). Much to my surprise, I was instead greeted by a full on comics and collectibles store, I'm talking comics, graphic novels, toys, statues, CD's, DVD's, vinyl, and a bunch of other stuff that I'm already forgetting. [I have since found out that in the last couple of years, the store has gone from a traditional cash advance place, to a pawn shop, and finally to what it is now... a geek paradise]

My senses had already been overloaded by McKay's, so this was just way too much for my tiny little mind to handle at that point in the day. I knew I wasn't going to get very far, so my plan was basically to look through a couple of comic boxes and just come back on another day... preferably on a day when I'm not suffering from FBS (fried brain syndrome).

Unfortunately I didn't take any pictures while I was in there, because the place was packed (there was even a Knox County sheriff looking at comics), so you'll just have to believe me when I say that they had to have had at least 10,000-15,000 (maybe more?) comic books in this store.

Since I'm not really looking for anything in particular at the moment, I just chose a random spot where there wasn't somebody else already standing, and just jumped in (figuratively of course).

I noticed two things right off the bat (no pun intended), the first being that even though all the books appeared to be organized alphabetically, but once I started digging, it became apparent rather quickly that they weren't -- and I know that that would bother the heck out of some people, but not me, I actually kind of like not knowing what's gonna be behind the next book, it adds a bit of mystery and excitement to the searching.

The second thing that I noticed was that a lot of the books weren't priced, which usually isn't a good thing, but in this instance it turned out pretty well. So starting with the Detective Comics #543 above, until I say when, was all of the unpriced stuff that I pulled out.

It's virtually impossible for me to turn down a cheap horror comic, no matter what condition it's in.

This book is of absolutely no interest to me, but I noticed a signature at the bottom, and figured that somebody else might want it.

I don't recognize the signature, and I haven't gotten around to figuring out who it is yet.

This marks the end of the unpriced stack. I took all of these up to the counter, and the guy told me that he'd figure out a price and let me know. When I went back up to the counter about twenty minutes later, I was told that the total for all of the books that you've just seen would be $9. Sold!

While I was waiting for that total, I went back and looked some more, this time finding a few things that had price tags:

I already had the first two issues of King Conan, but these two are in far better shape than mine, so at $2 each, I decided upgrade my old well read copies (not that it was necessary, I just wanted to that's all).

I probably only looked through about 1% of their comics, but I did find a few Unexpected (pun intended) deals, like this needed issue of Unexpected for $2.

Due to it's condition I don't how many people would've paid $1 for this one, but I really wanted to read it, so...

At $3, this was my most expensive purchase.

After a half an hour or so I was already done for the day, like I said, going to this place after McKay's was not a smart move on my part. But before leaving, I made a quick pass through all of the non-comic stuff (which is all over the store btw). While doing so, I noticed that on a ground level shelf that was underneath the CD's, there were a couple of stacks of loose comics piled up somewhat haphazardly -- with no indication of a price that I could see.

I noticed a couple of things in these piles that were of interest, so I went back to the counter to ask about them. The guy who was up there -- manager?, owner?, I don't know, but he was really nice -- anyway he seemed almost surprised that someone was asking about them, which I thought was a bit odd, back to the point though, he told me that they vary in price... but most of the time they were 25-50 cents each. So back to stacks I went, I thought I'd be grabbing more, but I only ended up getting three, all of which only cost me a total of 75 cents:

Beat up as it may be, this 1963 Dell Frankenstein #1 was my favorite find during this first trip. The cover is as bad as it looks -- but it's still very readable, and it was only a quarter! This is one of those very rare times that I actually enjoy being me, I don't "collect" comics anymore, so I can just buy something like this for reading purposes, and not worry about condition, or even worse... what it'll grade out at.

Overall I'm pretty pleased with what I was able to get for around $20, and will be going back sometime in the next couple of weeks. And for anyone living in/passing through the Knoxville area, I really can't recommend this place enough, for the moment it does seem to be a true hidden gem.

Oh, and on an unrelated, and not terribly important final note, today is this humble little blog of mine's third anniversary, so... yay me!

Thanks for taking a moment to look at my page.

Monday, September 17, 2018

I just couldn't stay away

I had told myself that I was going to wait at least a month before going to McKay's again, apparently I'm not very good at doing what I say I'm gonna do, because I only made it three weeks.

I enjoyed my first trip so much, that I just couldn't stay away. This time was a bit different though, as I had decided to test out their trade-in policy by taking a bunch of unwanted stuff with me... and they didn't disappoint!

I took in a paper grocery bag's worth of books, CD's, DVD's, and graphic novels. I had a rough idea of what they should be willing to give for everything (or at least what I was hoping they would offer), much to my surprise, the quote I was given ended up being over double what I had expected it to be (this was for store credit btw). I knew that some of the stuff that I took in was going to be of interest to them, as I hadn't seen any other copies of said stuff during my first visit, but still...

Since I ended up with more credit than I had expected, I decided to treat myself to something that I have wanted for quite a while now -- that being Movie Maniacs Tooth Fairy figure. I've mentioned before of my love for Darkness Falls, so it shouldn't surprise anyone too much that I would want this.

If I were a smarter person, I would've bought it when it first came out -- but I didn't, because I thought it would go down in price at some point, and guess what? It didn't! Thankfully this particular figure isn't one of the ones that has skyrocketed in price over the last couple of years. It was actually priced well below what the last couple had sold for on eBay (at the time), so I felt like if I didn't buy it now, I probably never would.

For anyone who may care (and not already know), there is also a open-mouthed variant of this figure as well. As a quick aside, it had only been a little over three weeks since I had last been there, and everything on their action figure wall was completely different... which is some kind of turnaround. I'm hoping to get a picture of said wall one of these times, but there was just too many people around it again.

There were a few other items of interest -- namely a loose WWF Hasbro One Man Gang Akeem that I don't have -- but I just wasn't in toy mode that day, so he and those couple of other neat things stayed behind.

After the wall o' toys, it was on to the discount DVD section ($1.95 or less):

I'm a sucker for almost any animal special, doubly so for shark related shows (as long as they don't feature reality "stars"), so for 95 cents, I really couldn't pass this one up. I wasn't sure if I had seen before or not, I hadn't. Had I seen it before, it wouldn't have been bought, because save for about a 3-minute stretch, this special was not very good.

It's been a long time since I saw this for sale anywhere, in any format. I didn't have it, so I of course had to get it.

Very few things have stuck with me for as long of a period after reading/watching them like The Day After did. Off the top of my head, the only other think that I can really think of that similar staying power, is the book, Lucifer's Hammer. It's been about twenty years since I last saw this movie, so I felt like it was overdue for another viewing.

Boxed sets made up of public domain pictures are like my kryptonite. I already have 10 of these movies on other packs, but getting the 10 that I don't have for $1.95 seemed like a good deal (at least to me).

I remember reading about this movie when it came out, and then promptly forgetting all about it. It looks terribly unoriginal, and I don't normally like movies that are described as being "sexy" -- but it was cheap, and it's got Bai Ling in it, so how bad can it really be (I say this with tongue securely tucked in cheek)?

This was just a cheap upgrade from video.

I had never heard of this one, but it does sound mildly interesting. Since I won't be expecting much from it, I really can't be disappointed -- in fact, if I can just get a scene or two that isn't ripped off from something else, I will consider worth the $1.95.

My last purchase of the day, which was also my second splurge of the day, did not come from the discount bins:

[Note to self: In the future, take off the plastic before taking pictures] I'm sure a lot of people have dismissed (then and now) the 2002 Twilight Zone revival without ever having seen a single episode, which is a real shame, because the series contained quite a few very enjoyable episodes.

I haven't watched the show since it's original airing, and just until recently, had sort of forgotten about it (it's impossible for me to remember every movie and show that I have liked over the years). The price of this set is stupid high on Amazon, and my attempts to win one on eBay had all failed, thankfully McKay's came through again, as this new set was priced well below everywhere else's lowest price for a used copy. I'm really looking forward to seeing these again, but I need to finish watching a few other shows first.

I didn't end up staying for as long as I would've wanted because I was trying to hurry up a little bit so that I could go to another place that I just found out about (also in Knoxville). I did end up going to that other place, and will be discussing in the next post (worst teaser ever?).
Thanks for taking a moment to look at my page.

Friday, September 14, 2018

Cagers from a card show

After unintentionally dragging them out for the last two weeks, I am finally on the last of the haul from July's card show -- and for any of the "baseball or bust" readers, it's all basketball, so I won't be insulted if you go ahead and hit that back button.

I don't come across Star cards very often, so I always kind of feel like I have to buy 'em when I do... especially when they're found in a dime box.

Anybody notice what's wrong with this card? If your answer had something to do with the border being the wrong color, you'd be correct (for those who might not know, the border is supposed to be a brownish gold). This card stuck out like the proverbial sore thumb, and I still haven't figured out what's what yet.

My first thought was that it was a printing error, but if it is, I find it hard to believe that I've never seen another one like it -- and I've been around '90-91 Skybox for literally my whole life, or rather, the set's whole life. If it isn't an error, than I have no idea what it is (Google was of no use). If anyone has any thoughts, I'd be most curious to hear them.

These were the first phone cards that I had seen in person for quite a while.

Since my scanner decided to wash out all of the colors, I had to go back and redo the next couple of groups of 90's inserts with the trusty cell phone camera.

I seem to be having some pretty good luck with finding old Topps Draft Redemptions at the last couple of shows that I've attended.

At a quarter a piece, the 'Nique Super Star, and the Kemp Behind he Glass, were the only two cards in this post that didn't come from a dime box. Also, am I the only one who gets a kick out of seeing Otis Thorpe included in an insert set?

Not a huge MJ fan, but I couldn't pass these up -- and please ignore my bad crop job on the top of the photo.

One should not be able to find a 1994-95 UD Collector's Choice Gold Signature in a dime box, even if it is Benoit Benjamin.

You can never go wrong with 10-cent refractors!

Up until a couple of months ago I had been collecting all of the Prizm parallels from 2013-15, but due to multiple reasons that will take too long to explain here, I've decided to focus on just the guys that I like from each set -- not surprisingly, most of those players are of the retired variety.

I thought I already had a copy of the blue Hakeem from the 2013-14 set, which would've been fine because I'm collecting duplicates too, but it turned out that I didn't.

I found a little over 80 different Prizm parallels in the same dime box that I found the stack of 1980-81 Topps basketball from a couple of posts back.

Of those 80 or so parallels, I'm only keeping eight for myself. If I could ever figure out how to use the TCDB, I'd list the rest of them on there, along with all of the others that I had been collecting for the last couple of years.

This was my second orange Batum, as well as my second green Manu. It's hard to tell from the scan, but the Hakeem is a refractor Silver Prizm, it's also a card that I didn't already have one of.

And finally, some 2014-15 Donruss Swirlorama's. Even though I'm not particularly fond of any of these players, it's hard for me to not buy them when they're only 10 cents.

As far as future card show stuff goes, I think I'm going to stop doing my usual 4-5 post recap, and instead just do a two-post best of. These just take too long to get to, and they always tend to push everything else that I want to cover here on the blog to an already overcrowded back burner -- I also can't imagine that anybody actually likes seeing literally everything that was purchased, so...

Thanks for taking a moment to look at my page.