Friday, February 18, 2011

Dexter Season 3 (Breygent Marketing)

In late 2010, Breygent Marketing finally issued its second set based on the Showtime original program Dexter. Dexter Season 3 follows the very successful Dexter Seasons 1 and 2 set issued in 2008. I previewed the set here and was very open about my excitement for the set. And it did not disappoint.

While my cards from the previous Dexter set fell victim to the great Pre-Mid-Ohio Con sell off of 2008, this set will firmly hold it's place in my personal collection. I went all out and purchased a case of the product. Each case holds 12 boxes. Each box holds 24 packs. Each pack holds 6 cards. With all the premium inserts available for just 3,000 total boxes, each box was guaranteed to hold 3 premium inserts from the following: costume cards, prop cards, autographed cards and autographed costume cards. Also, each case included one case-topper Metallogloss card depicting a piece of original art and an original sketch card.

Now to the cards:

Base Cards

The base cards for this set are typical for a set based on a television show or movie. Each card (with the exception of the first) has an image in landscape orientation from one of the season's episodes. The base set includes 72 cards. At the bottom of each card is what appears to be a smear of blood along the entire length of the card. On the bottom left of each card is the Dexter logo with "THE THIRD SEASON" below it. The backs of the cards, also in landscape orientation, show a small pool of blood in the upper left corner with the Dexter logo and "THE THIRD SEASON COLLECTOR CARDS" below it. Other drops of blood are scattered throughout the back of the card. In the upper right corner is a small blood spatter with the card number in the center. In the lower left is an image of a bloody knife, while the Breygent logo resides in the lower right corner. In the body of the card, there is an extensive description of the story that corresponds with the image on the front side. I love this about the Dexter cards. Some sets have minimal description or none at all, so this shows a nice commitment from the company.

Base Card Front - Card #2
Base Card Front - Card #2

Base Card Back - Card #3

Foil Inserts

Dexter Season 3 has three insert sets: a 9-card puzzle set, a 9-card victims set and a 10-card quotes set.

9-Card Puzzle Set
The foil puzzle cards when placed together (or in a 9-card page) complete an image of 6 of the show's main characters. Of course, Dexter is in the front, while Vince Masuka (played by C.S. Lee), Lt. Maria LaGuerta (played by Lauren Velez), Sergeant Angel Batista (played by David Zayas), Rita Bennett (played by Julie Benz) and Detective Debra Morgan (played by Jennifer Carpenter) fill out the scene. Oh, and don't forget the nameless victim lying on the table in the middle of the image.

9-Card Puzzle Insert Set
Looking at the overall image, it is evident that there are two main cast regulars who are not depicted in this scene: Harry Morgan (father of Dexter and Debra, played by James Remar) and Detective Joey Quinn (played by Desmond Harrington). I'm not sure why these two were not included, however, the backs of the puzzle cards profile nine of the key cast members from season 3. The other one missing is Assistant District Attorney Miguel Prado (played by Jimmy Smits).

Regarding the missing cast members from the image, further investigation turned up the complete image of the cast of which only a part was used for the puzzle. I'm guessing it was cropped to better fit the dimensions of the 3x3 set of cards. The larger image is used as the background for the 7-swatch case incentive costume card. In that image, to the left of Vince Masuka is Harry Morgan. However, Joey Quinn is still absent from the group shot. Not sure why...

7-Swatch Costume Card - Case Incentive

9-Card Victims Set
Each card in this set shows a scene from season 3 that is connected to one of the deaths of Dexter's victims. The front is foil and has an oval blood spatter pattern with the image from the scene in question residing in the middle. The card back outlines the story that leads up to the death of Dexter's victims.

9-Card Victims Set Card Front - Card #1
9-Card Victims Set Card Back - Card #2

10-Card Quotes Set
This foil set starts with four cards highlighting four characters: Dexter, Masuka, Batista and Harry. Each card has a profile image of one of those characters and the back highlights some of that characters best quotes from the season. The remaining six cards depict a scene from season 3 and the card back has a conversation connected to the highlighted scene. The card fronts also have bloody smears and bloody hands along the edges.

10-Card Quotes Set Front - Card #1
There is an error in this insert set. On the card front, as seen above, there is the Dexter logo in the lower left corner. On cards #2 and #3, there also is a smaller version of the show's logo in the upper right corner.

10-Card Quotes Set Error Front - Card #2

Premium Inserts

This set also includes 6 different premium inserts: sketches, metallogloss case toppers, autographed cards, autographed costume cards, prop cards and costume cards. These inserts (with the exception of the sketches and case toppers) are distributed three per box for a total of 36 per case.

Sketches and Metallogloss Case Toppers
The sketch cards and metallogloss case toppers come one per case.

Sketch Card by Brian Kong
Metallogloss Case Topper w/art by Len Bellinger
The metallogloss cards are like the ones that Breygent introduced earlier in 2010 with the special inserts sold in the San Diego Comic Con Mystery Packs. This is certainly an interesting way to present the cards and provides a nice collectible in a way that is different than a normal card. In my opinion, many of the case toppers produced by Artbox are nicer ("crystal," metal or wooden cards).

Autographed Cards
There are 5 possible autographed cards: Jimmy Smits, James Remar, Michael C. Hall, Michael C. Hall-Jimmy Smits dual, and a Michael C. Hall-Julie Benz dual. Each of the cards includes an image of the character with space for the autograph. Some were autographed in red ink and some in black ink.

James Remar Autographed Card

Autographed Costume Cards
There are 6 possible autographed costume cards: Desmond Harrington, C.S. Lee, Jennifer Carpenter, Michael C. Hall, Lauren Velez and Julie Benz. Each of the cards is similar to the auto-only cards except there is a costume swatch in between the image of the character and the space for the autograph. What is nice about these cards is that an image of the article of clothing from which the swatch is taken appears on the back of the card, and on many of the cards, the image of the character shows that character actually wearing that article of clothing.

Desmond Harrington Autographed Costume Card

Prop Cards
This set includes 11 different prop cards that have pieces of actual props used in the show. Like the autographed costumes cards, the image on the back of the card is of the actual prop the piece is from and the front of the card includes an image of the prop as it was used in the show.

Bloody Framed Photograph - Prop Card #3

Costume Cards
There are 29 possible costume cards, 27 of which are dual costumes. The other two include a 4-swatch costume card and an 8-swatch costume card. Of the dual costume cards, 23 include 2 different clothing swatches from a single character. The characters portrayed are Rita Bennett (4 different), Lt. Maria LaGuerta (3), Sergeant Angel Batista (2), Detective Debra Morgan (6), Dexter Morgan (5), Vince Masuka (2) and Detective Joey Quinn (1). The other 4 dual cards include costume swatches from two different characters: Dexter and Assistant District Attorney Miguel Prado, Rita and Dexter, LaGuerta and Prado, and Debra and Joey. As with the other premium inserts, the backs show an image of the actual piece of clothing the swatch is from and most of the fronts depict the characters wearing that piece of clothing. The 8-swatch costume card includes a swatch of clothing from the eight prime characters of the show, while the 4-swatch costume card includes swatches from Debra, Angel, Dexter and Vince.

Rita Bennett Costume Card - Card #7
8-Swatch Costume Card - Card #29
4-Swatch Costume Card - Card #28

There is one mistake in this set of premium inserts. On the dual costumes, at the top of the card is the show's logo and at the bottom is the Breygent logo. The words "AUTHENTIC WARDROBE MATERIAL WORN BY" followed by the names of the characters whose costumes were used for the card also are at the bottom of the card. These words are missing from the Debra/Joey dual costume card.

Debra Morgan/Joey Quinn Costume Card - Card #27


Base Sets
This case (12 boxes) produced 21 complete base sets of 72 cards for an average of 1.75 sets per box. There are 106 extras.

Foil Inserts
  • Puzzle: the 9-card puzzle insert cards are inserted at an average of 1 per 12 packs (2 per box, 24 per case). This case produced 2 complete puzzles and 6 extras for the expected total of 24 cards.
  • Victims: the 9-card victims insert set are inserted at an average of 1 per 12 packs (2 per box, 24 per case). This case produced 1 complete victims set and 15 extras for the expected total of 24 cards. Of the remaining cards, only 1 was needed to make a second complete set.
  • Quotes: the 10-card quotes insert set are inserted at an average of 1 per 12 packs (2 per box, 24 per case). This case produced 2 complete quotes sets and 5 extras for 1 more than the expected total of 24 cards.

Premium Inserts
  • Sketches and Metallogloss Case Toppers: these cards are inserted 1 per case. This case produced 1 of each as expected.
  • Autographed Cards (including Autographed Costume Cards): autographed cards are inserted at 1 per 48 packs (0.5 per box, 6 per case). This case produced 3 autographed cards and 3 autographed costume cards for the expected total of 6 cards. There is one double, the Jimmy Smits autograph, but they were different in that one is signed in red ink and the other in black ink. In addition to Smits, this case included the James Remar autograph, the Desmond Harrington autographed costume, the C.S. Lee autographed costume and the Lauren Velez autographed costume. I also purchased singles of the Jennifer Carpenter and Michael C. Hall autographed costumes off e-Bay.
  • Prop Cards and Costume Cards: these cards are inserted 1 per 10 packs (2.4 per box, 28.8 per case). This case produced 5 prop cards and 25 dual costume cards, for a total of 30 prop and costume cards (slightly more than the average). There are no doubles in these cards, and the case was only 6 prop cards and 4 costume cards shy of a complete set. I also purchased a single of the 8-swatch costume card from e-Bay.

Final Thoughts

This is a great set and provided a superb collation. Every card possible based on the odds is present and of the premium inserts there was only 1 double, making the case a very positive purchase. The base cards are typical of TV/movie sets but have extensive descriptions of the show and the depicted scenes. The design is nice and Breygent found a number of different ways to "smear" the design with images of blood. Of the foil sets, I really liked the puzzle. With the larger image on the front, it is nice to have detailed information about each of the main characters provided on the back. While I did not receive autographs of the big three (Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Carpenter and Julie Benz) in my case, the fact that Breygent was able to secure those autographs as part of the set makes it more desirable. And getting three different types of autographed cards from Hall just adds much more value. Also, the inclusion of 27 dual costumes increases the overall number of different swatches available to collectors.


Base set: A
Foil Inserts: A
Premium Inserts: A+

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Back to the Blog

If you follow this blog at all, you've noticed I haven't updated in awhile. Since my last post, about artist Danielle Soloud, I've acquired a number of new pieces of art and quite a few new sets of non-sport trading cards. So, I'm very backed up. The next post here will be my review of the Dexter Season 3 set issued by Breygent Marketing in late 2010. What will follow will be a number of posts playing catch-up on the non-sport sets I have, followed by a handful of blogs about my commissioned art.

Now that I'm back, hope you enjoy the reviews.