Super Hero Squad Rumorbuster

Monday, June 9, 2008

Black Panther is being re-released? Black Cat? Puma?

Rumor: This line, or this figure, or this other one, are going to be re-released soon.

There is one thing that can split most toy collector groups in half: the re-release. Basically, when a toy company decides to put out a figure they’ve previously released, either through case revisions like many Marvel Legends variants or in a new package, in a set, whatever, it can turn a previously coveted toy into an eBay loser.
For some reason, everyone seems to have inside knowledge about Super Hero Squad figures being re-released. We’ve already discussed some of the re-release rumors previously, particularly the perpetual rumor that Kraven was going to be inserted into whatever case comes up next.

If it’s a “new” re-release, either in a box set as some of the Super Hero Squad box-sets like Sand Pit Showdown, or the majority of the Easter sets, then the only people “hurt” by the re-release are the collectors who open their figures and now have a figure indistinguishable from a newer, possibly cheaper, release. A repaint solves this problem as you now have “different figures.” When the figure is identical, both in paint and packaging, as the earlier figure the “mint-on-card” people get irked as well. While an out of package Captain America from Wave 1 is “worth” the same as an out of package Easter Egg Cap, in the package they’re different creatures. If the Wave 1 Captain America pack was re-released in modern packaging, they’re still different creatures. If the pack was re-released complete with Wave 1 packaging, then the “collectible” just got a little less rare.
Of course, Captain America is just an example since the Wave 1 set is still readily available on auction sites.

Now, on the other side of the debate are those that want the figure, but not at the “rare” price. When a loose Vulture goes for 38.00 you can be certain that there are many people willing to pick up a box-set with him, even one of straight up re-releases. A repaint would filter out some demand from people collecting only the characters. A re-sculpt would also alleviate some of that demand. Suddenly finding a source of un-opened Vulture packs and flooding the market would almost certainly bring down prices for the figure, both loose and carded.

So, on May 15, someone pointed out on Fwoosh that the Black Panther/Storm wave was back up for order on Entertainment Earth some people will be pleased, some not so much. Of course, the “reorder” was pulled on May 19th, a few days later so don’t get too excited thinking about finally getting your hands on the Black Panther.

Another interesting re-release rumor was started when Hasbro put the Black Cat, Puma, and Mysterio packs onto their website. By changing the Product ID, you can cycle through their latest offerings (as of right now, the last thing up is a Star Wars troop building 8 pack of Destroyer Droids)

So, are we going to see Black Cat, Puma and Mysterio released again? Who knows. It’s also possible Hasbro only put up the package profiles to enable people to completely mark their online Wishlists, or as a way of showing their history. If either of those are the case, then we may see Vulture and the Venom/Sandman two-pack put up soon as well. But, most importantly, it’s not proof that the figures are being re-released.

In short: Rumors that Black Panther or Puma, or any figures from those two waves, are being re-released are just that: rumors. You shouldn’t try to unload your collections before the prices “crash”, and if you’re thinking of purchasing one of those figures, there’s no proof of an impending rerelease to lower the prices. The Black Panther wave was only briefly back up on Entertainment Earth as available for sale, and was then promptly taken back down, and nobody has any idea why Hasbro put Black Cat, Puma and others on their website.

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