Comics : Ultimate Spider-Man Sticker Album
This story is part of a Lookback Series: Book of the Month Club
This review was first published on: Nov 2016.
Does anybody out there collect Spidey Sticker Albums, or is this a purely private perversion of mine? This one is from 2014 and (like most sticker albums) it's from Panini, who are pretty much the king of collectable stickers these days.
There's a long history between Panini and Marvel. Back in then 80's, Marvel raised a bunch of cash on junk bonds and then purchased Panini (and distributor "Heroes World"). You can read about that in Comic Wars, if you're not up to speed with that bit of history.
After Marvel went bankrupt and Panini got sold off, they later returned the favor by purchasing Marvel UK and acquiring distribution rights for Marvel reprints in the UK – and they seem to have retained that right even after the Disney buyout of Marvel. But I digress.
Ultimate Spider-Man Sticker Album
Year 2014 : SM Title
Anyhow, Panini produces sticker sets, and with each set there's an album into which the stickers can be stuck.
This "Ultimate Spider-Man" sticker set contains 168 regular stickers, plus 24 "special" stickers (I believe they have gold foil enhancements). You can buy the stickers by the pack (7 random stickers per pack), or by the box if you're super-keen (50 packs = 350 stickers per box).
The album comes in UK and USA versions. The USA version has 10 regular stickers stapled into the book, and the book is 9.1" x 10.6" staple bound. The UK edition of the album came in a sealed bag with "31 stickers" (which is probably the 10 in the book, plus 3 loose packs of 7 stickers each). Dimensions of the UK edition yet to be confirmed.
The album is 32 pages, each page with a background picture, on top of which is superimposed rectangles marked with a number of the sticker that belongs there.
Also stapled into the center of the album is a Spidey poster which unfolds into 18" x 20". The poster is double-sided, featuring a swinging Spider-Man on one side, while the other is a neon blue city-scape with locations for each of the 24 "special" stickers.
The stickers all feature scenes from the popular Ultimate Spider-Man TV (2012) and are pretty good quality artwork. There's no story in the album. This is all about the collecting!
Originally these packs cost $2 each. Goodness knows how many packs you'd need to purchase until you had all 192 of the jolly things! Probably enough to bankrupt your average mom if they were foolish enough to keep indulging their child until they had a full set. But I just bought a box of 50 packs on eBay for $9.99.
Is your kid too young for meth? Get 'em started on sticker collecting. You can probably acquire a complete set for a mere $150. And then you'll finally have... a book full of pictures!
Oh, who am I kidding. I know it's bad for me, but I'm addicted to this stuff.
I've seen advertising mention "48 special stickers". But the poster clearly has only 24 spaces marked with "S" series numbers. I'll get back to you on that little detail once my box of stickers arrives.