Saturday, March 3, 2012

Back down, looking up again

I really need to post more often to this blog. I'll try to keep a better record of what I'm collecting going forward. So, the big change since my last post here is that I've reduced the number of figures on my shelves. A few months ago, around the time the DOTM Ultimate Optimus Prime figure was hitting the stores, I did some basic re-arranging of my collection. I needed a space at the top of my shelving to hold Ultimate Op, since the top shelves were the only ones tall enough to accommodate him. In doing so, I ended up with two empty spots in the lower shelves, both around two feet wide. Now, I've packed my figures shoulder-to-shoulder, usually around four-deep, just to leave that space. I had almost reached the point that I'd no longer be able to display all of my collection at once.

After some thought, I decided that there wasn't any point in having part of a collection that would sit in a box, just rotated out with other figures from time to time. I really like having everything out on display together. So, ultimately, I decided to part with some of them. I did a few rounds of wandering along all of my shelves and pulling out figures that I couldn't remember the name of, or had no real significance in my memory. Figures that weren't in any of the comics or TV shows, or just didn't have interesting transformations. I even made the decision to part with the majority of my Mini-Con group. All in all, I set aside somewhere around 100 figures that I sold together as a lot.

It wasn't the easiest thing to do, but what surprised me the most was that it also wasn't really all that hard to do. I like my collection, and It's something that has always been fun for me to add to. But ultimately, it's not about having ever increasing numbers of toys. Whatever number I end up with, I'm happy if they all display well and have some sentimental value attached. So that's my plan going forward. When I get up around the 1K mark again, it will be time for another reduction round.

It took another few evenings to re-sort my collection on the shelves after selling off the extras. But it let me group the majority of the figures in sections based on the series they belonged to. The Transformer brand has usually had a "core" line of figures with specific branding that they run for a couple of years before switching to something new. It's often tied up with what's running on TV or in the theaters. So there have been a couple of years of "Transformers: The Movie" movie toys. Then "Revenge of the Fallen" toys. Followed by "Dark of the Moon" toys. Before that were a couple of years of "Animated," "Energon," "Cybertron," "Armada," "Robots In Disguise," and so on. There are also some sub-lines that get wedged in between, or mixed in with, the main lines. Each of those typically have an Optimus Prime figure and his opposite. Mostly Megatron, but not always. At any rate, that cycle lets collectors like me group our collections together into something that at least seems logical to us. I've finally managed to do that with my own stuff. The only exception is for characters that I have a number of different versions of.

Some characters have been re-used at different times through the different lines. None as often as Prime or Megatron, but there are still some stand-outs. Those include Bumblebee, Starscream, Soundwave, Grimlock, Thundercracker, Hot-Rod, and others. When I manage to collect six or seven of the same character from different lines, I group them together on their own. I've always been interested in seeing how the same character can be made to look distinctly different, but still have the core remain the same.


Swarm of the Bumblebees



Grimlock (left) and Hot-Rod (right):

Swarm of the Bumblebees


Swarm of the Bumblebees

So that's my collection status. I'm somewhere just shy of the 900 mark again, but with the Prime line hitting the stores now, I'm sure it will move upwards again soon. Not as quickly as in the past, since I don't think I'm ever going to feel the need to collect an entire "line" again, but it will still grow. Til' all are one (thousand)!