After much hype and a two week release delay, the highly anticipated Topps Chrome set is now live. Always a fan favorite for rookie cards, this year’s release follows suit, delivering great value to the collector. 2009 Topps Chrome is available in hobby boxes of 24 packs of 4 cards each. The base set consists of 110 veterns and 110 rookies.
Like any chrome product, 2009 Topps Chrome has plenty of base parallels to chase, including refractors (1:3 packs), Copper (#/699), Red (#/25), and Super-Fractor (1/1), as well as all four colored printing plates (1/1). Additionally, Topps Chrome delivers some great rookie cards. First and foremost, the much coveted rookie autograph cards. Fifty of the top rookies featured in the base set have an autographed base variation that is also available in Black (#/25), Gold (#/10), and Super-Fractor (1/1) refractor technology. Another great rookie insert, Rookie Patch Cards, is also sure to please fans. A hobby exclusive, this insert consists of 30 of the top rookies and each features refractor technology and is numbered to just 25 copies. Additional inserts include Chicle cards (featuring legendary 1935 National Chicle design elements), Cheerleaders (some of the hottest AFC team boosters), and Ring of Honor (featuring Super Bowl XLIII MVP Santonio Holmes’ autograph). All insert sets are also available in Refractors (#’d), White (#/100), Red (#/10), and Super-Fractor (1/1) parallels.
Per Box Breakdown: 24 packs of 4 cards each (96 total), including 1 rookie autograph, 10 inserts, and 9 parallels.
I will admit that I have never really bought into the whole chrome hype scene. However, I will also say that this year’s release looks really nice. The chrome and refractor technology stills makes me feel like I am holding elite cards that I was lucky enough to snag. They are definitely some of the nicest, non-high-end cards available in hobby shops and on the secondary market. At around $60 per hobby box, you will definitely get your money’s worth, especially with all of the highly sought after rookie cards. Even if you usually do not have luck with busting boxes, you are bound to pull some nice cards from 2009 Topps Chrome. I am intrigued by the Chicle insert set though. In a year that has seen several high profile lawsuits in this hobby, especially those directly involving Topps and Upper Deck, it is odd and almost ironic that both have released insert sets that borrow from the legendary 1935 National Chicle design. Either this design is so old and not protected anymore, and is therefore public domain, or we may see yet another legal battle from this. I would be interested to know if anyone owns rights to the design and name anymore. I also find the cheerleader cards interesting. I usually am not a fan of non-sports players being in my sports card boxes, but cheerleaders are technically in sports. Plus, they are a nice change of pace from all of the over sized and bulky men on the rest of the cards. I’m not sure if you can ever complain about seeing pictures of attractive females, regardless of the media in which they are featured.
What are your first thoughts? Are you buying into the hype and really excited to bust some boxes/cases? Are you are planning to buy some packs or just chase down singles on eBay? Or are you completely apathetic to this set?