Monday, December 31, 2007

2007 Year End Review, Pins, Hot Topic and 20th Anniversary!

Not to be outdone by last year, 2007 was yet another Jessica-filled year with almost 140 items released, dominated mostly of course by pins. The pin-trading craze is still hot as ever but there were some changes that didn't go unnoticed.

In the past, Jessica pins often sold out the same morning of release, forcing people to stay up until midnight (or 3am on the East Coast) to get their desired pin, but this year we often saw a Jessica pin on the site for weeks after release. There were some that did disappear quickly though, like Doctor Jessica and Jessica on a Motorcycle. There was no telling just which pin was going to strike a nerve with collectors but Jessica has now become more commonplace.

Roger and Jessica were often together on pins this time around and this became common throughout the year. We also got to see other characters, such as Baby Herman, Benny and the Weasels.

There were some interesting pin sets this past year, like the Valentine Heart Box - four different Jessica pins in a black velvet heart shaped box. Sadly the high edition size of 1000 put a sale price tag on this set later after many paid through the nose, not to mention only 100 of the sets were a sterling silver set - making this sort of a mystery set. A new change was the Bathing Suit Card Set - five Jessica pins each in a different bathing suit and on a large card. It brings the price down from a framed set, however this also had an edition size of 1000. The Pin Tree Advent set was released in time for the holidays - six Jessica (and Roger) pins you could use to decorate a separately-sold pin tree.

There were some fun new lanyards, a Jumbo Face pin, Jessica dressed as Disney Characters for Halloween, a Space Age series and Jessica Around the World - Eight Jumbo pins of Jessica dressed in places like Brazil, Japan and Antarctica.

Some of the best pins include Jessica Mardi Gras - complete with pin-on-pin crystal mask, Jessica Star - with gold glittered back round, the Who Framed Roger Rabbit Storybook Jumbo - with the full Toon Cast, the Sandals Series, the Super Jumbo Puzzle Pin - six layers of the biggest Jessica pin ever (so large her bosom is a separate layer) along with her Ink and Paint Club crew, a Dressing Room Door pin, The Pirate Coin - Jessica dressed much like The Pirates Red Head, and the Pin Trading Series - Jessica is ready to pin trade wearing a small rope lanyard with little pins on it (and each of the characters in this series wears the same lanyard with Jessica's trademark Kiss).

Some however were weird, wacky or just missed the mark. The Hot Rods set left something to be desired as it was just Jessica thrown in front of 6 different classic cars wearing different outfits. Jessica and Roger - dressed as George and Martha Washington was certainly different. Jessica Patriotic - another overused posed. The Jumbo August Calendar has to be the worst in terms of character art as the lines are bulky and the art just didn't transfer over smoothly to pin form from what I have seen in photos. The Ribbon Flag series also didn't do any justice to the art shown of the pin, and lastly I really don't know whats up with Roger in the Jessica Halloween lanyard but I think they went way overboard. My personal disappointment though is the Balloon Series. The art looked very promising and it was a great concept. I stayed up until past 3am and yet the actual pin does not deliver the impact it should with Jessica's eye looking strange and the cheap black string used to hold the ballon not being the "real wire" as advertised on the site.

Disney is also releasing Valentines Day pins already! I don't quite understand that but the pins are not too bad albiet one is a reuse. We probably have seen the end of Mystery Proof sets - and LE pin of 250 where ONE lone pin was an artist proof. Their trick was since it was a mystery pin, you were neither allowed to exchange nor return the pin. If something is damaged, as many of their pins are, they have no right to not offer a refund. It's something we haven't seen since early last year and may not see again. It's not the end of the actual mystery sets but we did get some Jessica pins in a higher edition than just a dreaded 50. Regular sets seemed to do well with the Pirates of the Caribbean and Snowman likeness sets selling out by morning. These LE 100 pins only include one pin of Jessica but since they might be hard to come by in the future, it might be worth it to buy a set and sell or trade the remaining character pins you don't want.

Not to be too concerned with pins, Hot Topic surprised us with a matching Jessica tote bag, keychain, button, wallet and iron on patch along with some Diva-Worthy shirts. Keep an eye on them and be sure to pick up those items if you haven't. Tokyo Disneyland finally got in on the act with some glittery stationary like pens and folders. A big surprise was Tomart's Disneyana Magazine doing an article on the Jessica's store complete with merchandise and interior photos, but among the unlikely of hot collectables was the Jessica Disneykin - a very tiny plastic figure sold in mystery packs of three in the parks. There was a total of 18 different characters, ride vehicles and buildings, so you never knew what you'd get. This will probably turn out to be one of the rarest items yet so if you see one on auction, don't be surprised or hesitant to drop $50 for it.

We already have some previews for 2008 with another new concept a greeting card series. Jessica is in the middle of the card which reads you make me feel Va Va Voom. Finally we get a pin bag, and one easter pins has already shown up.

......and one can't help but hope the 20th Anniversary of Who Framed Roger Rabbit will not be overlooked!!!! So this year might be the most exciting Jessica year ever!

Happy New Year.