Project Superpowers Box Break (Breygent, 2011)
Product Rating: ***
Box Rating: ***
I honestly never thought I'd see this set released. I previewed it a few years back for Non-Sport Update when it was first supposed to be released. But the fine folks at Dynamite Entertainment got too busy with their comics that the set was delayed. Then it was delayed some more. Before you knew it, it was like the Weinsteins got hold of it and Project Superpowers was launched into the trading card abyss.
Enter Breygent who used some superpowers of their own to rescue it. Unfortunately, the release plays out as though it were a few years ago and the end result, although beautiful, falls a little flat.
Released as another of Breygent's premium box sets, Project Superpowers encapsulates the first year of the Dynamite comic book. From what I can remember, the comic brought back several classic super heroes and villains who have fallen into the public domain. The stories brought a more modern feel to the costumed characters and every issue had a gorgeous Alex Ross cover.
The base set is a collection of the comic art, so if you read the books, there's probably not going to be much new material. However, if you're new to the story, it's not a bad way of seeing and experiencing the comic's initial story arc. And get some pretty Alex Ross artwork to boot.
Most of the inserts look as though they were printed up years ago, carrying only the Dynamite trademark. You've got your Chrome cards, which are essentially shiny versions of the base cards and Chrome Puzzles that are essentially shiny versions of the base cards done like a puzzle. Again, the artwork is fantastic and makes for great cards but doesn't do much in the way of imagination. Finally, there's the Fighting Yank's War Journal, which are 18 character cards. These are the only inserts that carry both the Breygent and Dynamite logos.
Each set also has two premium inserts, usually both sketch cards. One in five sets has one sketch and one Ross autograph. I managed to pull two rare autographs. The first was a mysterious one that wasn't signed. However it was numbered out of 38 on the pack. A little hunting revealed it to be Clint Hilinski. The second was an Adam Archer numbered to 50. So here we have two rare sketch cards. In the world of sketch cards, numbering doesn't matter much, though. The sketch cards were done back when the set was originally solicited - several years ago. Several years ago, sketch cards were normally just that, sketches. Today, collectors have come to expect more intricate pieces of work. So while these particular sketches are very solid, they're a little late to the game. It also doesn't help that the Project Superpowers property isn't hugely known so character recognition is also hurt.
So while there's nothing bad about Project Superpowers, it's not a standout set either. I give Breygent tons of credit for making it happen and doing what they can with the release. Unfortunately, the property doesn't seem to be nearly as hot as it was when it first came out. This is a set with very limited appeal. The combination of obscure characters and more simplistic sketch cards make it a lot less enticing. The base set is beautiful but for those on a budget, it'll be a lot cheaper to track one of those down rather than going for the full package.
Base Set (72 cards): 72
Sketch Cards: 2
Autographs (2 cards): 0
Chrome (9 cards): 2
Chrome Puzzle (9 cards): 2
Fighting Yank's War Journal (18 cards): 5
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