What a busy day it was yesterday!
I took a trip (from Manchester) down to Birmingham to take another look around Barry Potter Fairs. The toy show was set up at the NEC and as usual served up a fantastic mix of toys and collectables from yesteryear.
Before I talk a little about yesterday’s fair, here are a few of the delights on offer from various sellers.
As you can see from the images above, the show featured a lot of ’70s, ’80s & ’90s toys, including some iconic lines – My Little Pony, Star Wars and The Real Ghostbusters. However, this wasn’t all that was on offer – modern toys, such as Funko Pop! figures put in a showing, along with classic tin toys from the 1950s, various bears, dolls and train sets.
Primarily I’m a collector of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (TMNT) toys, so my goal was to track down a few figures to add to my collection. I don’t restrict myself to mint on card figures, so whenever I go to a show like this I am more than happy to have a rummage through the bargain bins to search out some of the cheaper TMNT toys.
I’m pleased to say that there were a number of traders with TMNT toys for sale, so I managed to pick up a couple of new figures to add to my collection. However, my goal of sticking mostly to TMNT lines pretty much went straight out of the window within the first five minutes, once I had come across all of The Real Ghostbusters (TRG) toys that were being sold.
I love TRG and think the toy line from Kenner was (and still is) one of the best action figure lines of all-time. The toys were so inventive and just plain fun, so I find them difficult to resist.
I have a number of TRG toys amongst my collection and every so often I’ll add to the pile if I see something fun. Yesterday I came across two ‘fun’ items: Fearsome Flush (a haunted toilet) and Wicked Wheelie (a ghostly motorcyclist).
Having picked up these two toys, my focus pretty much remained in the realm of the Ghostbusters and subsequently I picked up three figures from the Extreme Ghostbusters toy line – Eduardo & Egon (both loose without accessories) and Kylie (boxed & complete).
The trader that sold me Kylie had a collection of carded Extreme Ghostbusters toys for sale and had I taken a little more cash with me yesterday, I can guarantee more of these toys would have come back with me. Ah well, I now have something to look out for at a future show.
Outside of the TMNT, TRG and Extreme Ghostbusters toys, the only other toy I picked up was a loose Bucky O’Hare figure. I already have this figure mint on card, but I’ve wanted a loose Bucky for a while now, so this proved to be the perfect opportunity to nab him (and for only £5).
One of the standout pieces I saw yesterday was the rare, Robin Dragster from Kenner’s Batman: The Animated Series (B:TAS) line of toys. As an ex-collector of B:TAS toys I can tell you this is a rare item and one I’ve never seen boxed before – so this was a treat to see.
The toy is rare because the production mold was reportedly destroyed in a fire and as a result, few of the toys were manufactured. This explains the hefty price tag, which as you can see from the image below was an eye-watering £650!
Is the Robin Dragster worth £650?
The truth is, toys (like anything) are only worth what people will pay for them.
And that brings me nicely onto the subject of pricing. Yesterday, I did see some rather inflated prices, especially when it came to Funko Pop! figures.
Some of the convention exclusives and harder to find figures were priced up quite high and I believe this is due to eBay. I have a feeling some traders check associated eBay listings and base their prices accordingly.
But is that a true reflection of the figure’s value?
While eBay and specialist stores, like Forbidden Planet, will keep prices high for Funko Pop! figures, there are now many places that collectors can purchase the same figures for a fraction of the price. B&M & The Entertainer both sell Funko figures for between £5 and £7 and they don’t hike up the price for convention exclusives – it’s a set price regardless of the figure.
As an example, yesterday I saw various traders selling a Masters of the Universe Beast Man Funko Pop! figure for up to and including £20. Two weeks ago I bought the same figure from The Entertainer for £6.66.
I’m not trying to bash traders or call them out on overpricing, they can choose whatever prices they wish, however I am making people aware that not all prices are truly reflective of a figure’s value. It’s always a good idea to shop around and try every avenue before committing to a purchase as you could find it considerably cheaper elsewhere.
I appreciate that’s not always the case.
Overall I had a blast at Barry Potter Fairs and I look forward to returning to the NEC for a future event (probably in 2019 for me). It’s a bit of a trek from Manchester to Brum for a couple of hours but as the event is central it tends to attract a high number of traders, which makes it all worthwhile.
For those that want more information about Barry Potter Fairs or to see when/where the next show is taking place, take a look through the event website. For everyone else, here’s one final image of two very iconic Masters of the Universe toys which I spotted while wandering around the show.
Now tell me you didn’t want these when you were a kid?
So, did you attend yesterday’s show? What did you think? More importantly, what did you buy? Sound off in the comments section below.