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July 2020 - Antique Shoppe - 5

            By Mike Kaye

           Let’s go back to 2007, yes that was 13 years ago,                                         price because less were produced when they made
        a time when an animated Japanese show called                                                their come back.
        Bakugan premiered. The animated series, like                                                  You may recall a time when you saw a particular
        most others, then began producing products to                                                    line of toys that were duplicated more than
        sell, featuring recognizable characters from                                                      others. So, from the beginning, there are
        the show.                                                                                        already some more rare than others. Consider
           Walking down the toy aisle, seeing the                                                         holding the less-common toys when you
        Bakugan packages hanging on the hooks,                                                            find them in original packaging, even if the
        my young son took an interest. He didn’t watch the                                          characters are not very desirable. Most companies
        series, but he liked the idea of a ball opening up with                                   produce the more popular characters in larger
        a magnetic card, turning into a dinosaur. We began                                      quantities, and this means supply and demand for those
        buying them, tossing out the packaging so                                                         are at a minimum over time.
        that the kids could play with them.                                                                       Now fast forward twenty years and
           Now it’s time to assess the damages                                                                   new life breathes back into some of
        as I researched the decade old toys                                                                       these toys. This is a sentimental time
        that were torn open, and how much                                                                          and collectors begin to pay more for
        money slipped through my hands,                                                                            those memories and savvy collectors
        once again. I started with eBay and                                                                        start to unload their stockpiles
        type “Bakugan” in the search window.                                                                       knowing this day would come.
        A list of related items with photos                                                                          After thirty years it can go either
        appears in the default “best match”. By                                                                  way. Prices can spike again, or
        adding “show only” and “sold items”                                                                      interest can fall flat. Case in point,
        you view auctions that have ended                                                                         Dream Team Basketball collectibles
        with successful bids and the final sale                                                                   which I kept since 1992; I will be
        prices. This is a good way to gauge what                                                                  lucky to make my money back. If I
        the current market is bringing for the                                                                   had bought a Silver Age comic book
        particular items you’re researching. A                                                                     instead, like Amazing Spiderman #1
        few more clicks bring you to auction       New Bakugans hang                           Vintage Bakugans    in a high grade, it would have been
                                                                                               can sell for $100s,
        “ended recently”, and sorting by          on the pegs of retail                        even out of the original   a different story on the thirty-year
                                                   stores ranging from
        “Price + Shipping: Highest First”.                  $8-$20.                            packaging.          plan.
        Here’s what I found:                                                                                          Who would think that items you
           Bakugan Limited Edition Hydranoid Translucent                                     passed up this century are already becoming collectible?
        Exclusive (still sealed) $500+, a lot of (39) Bakugan                                 I remember stories of my uncles, who bought every
        loose balls sold for about $450, a rare clear version called                          baseball card, putting ‘52 Topps baseball cards in their
        Helios mk2 Japan import SEGA toys sold for $400 and                                  bike spokes. As I listened to their childhood adventures,
        a sealed Brawler Evolution from 2009 now fetches $300!                            I’m passing up Batman Adventures #12 offered in large stacks
        Sealed, packaged Bakugan can sell in the $100s.                           at cover price during 1992, and today selling for over $1,000 a copy.
           Perhaps you’re thinking like I am, “Which toys can I buy today,          Just when you think you missed that golden opportunity you fast
        will become worth $100s or more in a ten-year period?” A recent trip      forward to 2003 only to pass over a stacks of The Walking Dead
        to my local retail shop and I was surprised to find Bakugan hanging       for a few bucks each, which today sell for $1,000s per copy. What
        on the pegs. New ones are in the $10 range, but will they ever            toys and pop culture items are on the pegs today that we should be
        reach the price heights of their predecessors? Or are they now mass       buying and storing?
        produced, without a prayer of becoming worth more than the original         Today’s kids are begging their parents to open the toys, tomorrow
        purchase price? One thing I’ve noticed is that there’s an invisible       they’ll be looking for sealed examples to collect and reminisce on.
        timeline when items become collectibles. Here’s what I learned              In closing, I’d like to take a moment to extend my heartfelt
        through the experience of being a collector.                              prayers and well wishes to all those enduring these tough times.
           If we go back in time to when Bakugan first began to appear
        on toy store shelves, their popularity was fueled by television and       This came from left
        marketing. They slowly began selling better than other toys. Then         field and I pray you
        savvy collectors began gobbling them up, but not opening the              and your families are
        packaging. The market flooded with the newest popular toy began           all safe.
        to linger and Bakugan eventually found their way into the clearance       Do you have anything to
        bins. The fad was over. Some time passed, and like many popular           sell? Mike Kay is always in
        toys, another series fuels a partial comeback. Interest piques again      the market. Contact Mike at
                                                                         or text
        and collectors start looking for older versions. Then the interest fades   561-628-4369.
        again. Years from now there may be certain Bakugans that spike in
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