Saturday, September 8, 2018

Stablemates, Unicorns, Tractor Supply, Etc.

The store where they were acquired is a bit out of the way of my usual travels, but I just happened to be in the neighborhood about a week ago and thought, why the heck not?

Apparently some of the Unicorn Stablemates Glow – regrind from the Glow in the Dark sets, obviously – but these two aren’t among them. I’m fine with just having them.

The store – not one I’d normally consider a sales hotbed – received not one, but two cases of the Paint Kits. That tells me that either it’s an open stock item, or an early launch of a Regular Run item. The 5000-series numbering on these sets leads me to believe that these are (or will be) Regular Run items.

However, items made for Tractor Supply – Regular Run, or Special Run – tend to come with either extended VIN numbers on their bellies and/or Made in China stickers, subtle differences that mean little to someone merely looking for a nice horse to add to the herd, but mean yet another subtle variation for the completist to track down.

This means that the Copper Florentine Djangos turning up at TSC are – or could be – interpreted as a separate entity from the actual Chase piece in the standard Mystery Box assortment. If you are so inclined.

As for the upset some are feeling over the declining prices of Copper Florentine Djangos because of the appearance of the TSC Djangos, there’s the reason why I can’t justify spending more than 20-30 on any given Stablemate.

Because aside from a handful of Special Runs (like Hermes) and Promotional items, most Stablemates aren’t numerically rare: most piece runs are in the thousands, or at least the high hundreds.

It’s perceived rarity, rather than actual numerical rarity, that’s driving the Stablemates market, especially now. When you’re told that that only one in four Mystery Boxes has a Copper Florentine Chase piece, that sounds pretty rare, right?

Here’s the kicker: we don’t know how many boxes have actually been produced.

Some hobbyists have been trying to parse the numbers based on the shipping boxes they come in from China – the ones that say “XXX of XXX boxes” – but that’s not necessarily accurate either. That “96” number that’s been batted around could be per shipment, and we have no way of knowing how many shipments.

They sell an ungodly amount of Stablemates, y’all. It could be lots.

Even without the appearance of the TSC Djangos, the price on the Copper Florentines was bound to fluctuate lower, eventually, as more boxes of Mystery Stablemates were distributed.

Because of Tractor Supply, it just happened sooner, rather than later.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Nice to see them in tsc. However where are the unicorns. Even crackerbarrel carried them so early it's too late to shop them there. So any clues where I can buy one in a box somewhere instead of a case with no luck? Thanks. God bless. Joy.