Friday, May 31, 2013

Daps!: 2005 Topps Flagship and Opening Day

In my collection: 1 regular, 6 Opening Day, 3 Highlights, 1 Hit Parade RBI5

Griffey looks: friendly on the front, diabolical on the back

Is this a good Griffey card? Yes.  Heavily designed but still a good-looking card.  Plus he's giving daps.  How cool is that?

The set:  The flagship base card has a whole lot going on design-wise.  Huge surname on top in foil, name again printed vertically on the left, huge logo-based team name on the bottom, team again printed vertically on the right, the set year in foil (love this), a border made of team colors that criss-cross above and below the picture, and the Topps logo. 

Oh, and for the Opening Day set, add a big, honking Opening Day logo, too.

Now, I'm a firm believer in the idea of less is more.  That may be hard to believe from all the words I tend to put into blog posts, but trust me - while I tend to ramble I also do a lot of editing.  Each paragraph is about a third longer before I go back and edit out the fluff.

So you might expect me to deride 2005 Topps for trying to overdesign this set, for adding and adding until the picture is only a small fraction of the card.  By the way, roughly 52.6%.  Just barely over half the card front is picture.  Let's nerd:

picture width = 1 15/16 = 1.9375", picture height = 2 3/8 = 2.375"
1.9375" x 2.375" = 4.602 sq. in., (4.602/8.750) x 100 = 52.6%
See?  Crazy, right?
And yet the design of this set  It doesn't come off as cluttery; in fact, it's aesthetically quite pleasing despite the numerous elements that went into it's design.  It looks like a baseball card.

Griffey time:

Griffey looks super friendly giving somebody daps.  Whoever that dude is, I'm jealous of him. 

You have to keep in mind that this is before Barack and Michelle Obama brought daps to the forefront of public awareness.  Remember when those two did it and suddenly daps (often called "fist-bumps" by dap-noobs) were all over the damn place?  Well here's Junior way back in '05 dapping it up all nastyballz in your pathetic face.  Griffey is so much better than Obama....

The back of this card also calls for another look:

Is it just me or is that the most diabolical-looking Junior ever to grace cardboard?  He's got a real everything-that-has-transpired-here-has-done-so-according-to-my-design expression.  I'm creeped out.

This is a great subset and an iconic image among Griffey fans.  The dropped bat, the crowd beginning to stir, the catcher angling his head up, Junior's graceful form and heroic expression.  This card gives me goosebumps.

Plus that is an excellent blurb written by the very talented sports reporter Topps Scout.

This flashy beast is the Hit Parade insert.  It features a dynamic blend of holographic patterns and primary colors known to cause seizures if looked at for more than a few moments.

This insert is divided into three categories: hits, homeruns, and RBIs.  Barry Bonds is at the top of the HR and RBI lists and second on the hits list to Palmeiro.  Amazing, right?!  Don't get me wrong - Sammy Sosa was doing pretty well, too!  What wonderful natural talent we have on these hallowed lists!

You just can't type sarcasm.

Griffey makes an appearance on the RBI and HR sections of this insert.  I only have the RBI card for now.....

There are no parallels, subsets, or inserts from 2005 Topps Opening Day to be had - just the base card which is nearly identical to the flagship base card, hence it's being lumped in with this post.  The only differences between them are the blue foil in lieu of gold, an Opening Day logo, and the number on the back. 

The double-dap.

Here are all the cards from 2005 Topps Flagship I don't have:

#335 Highlights Gold #/2005
#335 Highlights Black #/54
#440 Gold #/2005
#440 Black #/54
HR4 Hit Parade
HM19 Hobby Masters

If I ever meet Griffey, I am certain we will mismatch our attempts at a greeting resulting in what I call a dap-slap, that being one person goes to shake hands and the other goes to bump and the two meet in an awkward communion of fingers and palms that looks just terrible.  I'll try and get video if it ever happens.

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