One of my favorite Star Wars
trading card sets is the Topps Galactic Files
series. It was massive, pretty, expansive, classic, epic and it included some great autograph and sketch cards. I thought it would be difficult to get this excited about another card set just four years later, but believe it or not, Topps has done it again.
First announced during New York Comic-Con in 2013, the Return of the Jedi
3D Widevision set finalizes the original trilogy which collectors had to wait on for a significant amount of time before calling their collection complete. The set was extremely limited to just 2,000 and sold exclusively through the Topps website at $99.99 per box. It sold out in mere hours leaving collectors no choice but to pay the inflated prices on eBay and through third party dealers which are now more than double the original retail price.
Forgetting the actual cards for just a minute, look at the box it comes in! Han Solo frozen in carbonite with the classic red Return of the Jedi
logo on the sides, a set edition size that's hand numbered and a Star Wars
logo that you can only see in the proper lighting. The box is slightly raised making Solo's hands and feet pop out just a bit. The 44 card base set is placed securely inside the box unwrapped with the two "hit" cards inserted about a third of the way down and the very first card in the set is numbered the same as the box.
The cards have a lenticular surface which dances across the card face in glorious 3D making the cards literally come to life. The back of each card features either trivia or movie facts along with a paragraph about the scene.
Box #0825 of 2,000 contained the following "hit" cards:
Return of the Jedi Sketch Card by artist Jason Crosby
Return of the Jedi Luke Skywalker Patch Card
In addition to the Luke Skywalker Patch Card above, you can also hunt down a Darth Vader, Jabba the Hutt or Wicket W. Warwick patch. There are also four different Ewok Sketch Card Relics that feature Ewok fur and Sail Barge Relics with actual pieces of screen used Sail Barge sail embedded into the cards.
Finally, if you're lucky enough to pull an autograph which is only one in every four boxes and a possible third "hit" card, you could get Mark Hamill, Jeremy Bulloch, Carrie Fisher, Peter Mayhew, Tim Rose, Alan Harris, Kenneth Colley, Femi Taylor, Barrie Holland or Mike Quinn.
Unlike other sets, if you're just trying to put together the full 44-card run, buying one box will get the job done as each one contains the base set. It's only the draw of the "hit" cards that would lead to further purchases. If you have a favorite artist or want a specific Relic card, eBay is choked full of these along with cheap and complete sets with box included that simply don't include any "hit" cards.
Here's hoping we don't have to wait another four years for the announcement of the Episode VII 3D Widevision set.