My apologies for the brief holiday hiatus! As with Thanksgiving, I took advantage of the holidays to grab some older cards in my collection so that I could write about them on the site. For today’s card, we’re going all the way back to the release of the Phantom Menace. I was in middle school when the movie came out and I enjoyed it in the theaters though I’ve since recognized many of its shortcomings. While Jar-Jar and midi-chlorians are things most Star Wars fans would like to forget, there are some great scenes and moments in the movie too. Perhaps the greatest strength is the top-notch visual design of the characters and sets in the movie. Today’s card pays tribute to those wonderful designs.
This card shows a concept art from Otoh Gunga which was one of the more visually stunning parts of the movie (even if you don’t like the residents within!). The concept art really looks great in hand because this is a Chrome card which makes it nice and shiny. I also really like the borders of the card and the font chosen at the bottom. This card is around 20 years old (!) but the design is timeless. What is also neat is that this card is a Widevision release which means it is wider than your average card. This is perfect for a landscape image like this which would not look nearly as cool in standard card dimensions. Widevision cards are probably some of Topps best base sets for Star Wars and they are cards I really enjoy collecting as much as I can. It takes some patience to track these cards down on eBay due to their age.
Maybe it is the era of when this card was made or maybe it is a trait of Widevision cards but I find that the backs of these cards are almost always better than your standard card size as well. For example, with this card you get another concept art image on the back and a little bit of an explanation of the two images. The overall design on the back is really nice and fits the Phantom Menace well. Topps selected art from one of the Trade Federation ships at the beginning of the movie which has more character than many of their newer card backs. One thing I enjoy about cards are the cool and kind of ridiculous names card companies come up with to describe their cards. You can see that Chromium, Holochrome, Clearchrome, and Skin Protector are all trademarked at the bottom. The last name is weird and not that cool sounding but the rest sound like amazing cards even if I can only remember hearing about Chromium cards ever being released.
All in all, if you have any positive feelings about Star Wars: The Phantom Menace, I would definitely recommend looking at the Widevision sets. They feature great images and design and are a pleasure to collect. The only annoyance is getting pages or a card box) that fit the cards but I would say they are well worth the effort!