Figures, cards, and videos are all great collectibles. Promotional photos, original ring worn items, and belts are incredible items as well. For me, though, it all comes back to magazines.
That isn't to say that I'm ready to get rid of everything but the mags. Quite the contrary as I've always prided myself on being able to collect a little bit (okay...maybe a medium bit) of everything that's out there. In my case it may have started out with a couple of action figures, but there's just something about holding a thirty-year-old magazine in your hand with that musty smell and great black and white photography. The whole package encapsulates whichever era in wrestling that the magazine is from.
Even though figures and cards became the predominate wrestling collectibles by the 1980's, great wrestling publications are still sprouting up to this day. Add that to the fact that many classic vintage magazines and programs are obtainable at extremely affordable prices might make them the premiere pieces of wrestling memorabilia to collect.
Whether or not you collect them yourself or just want to see what the old boxes of magazines in your basement may be worth, you know by now that these MarketWatch entries attempt to help on both counts. Let's take a look at some recent online auction results.
*We'll start off with an item that should appeal to most audiences, that being the program for the 1988 Survivor Series. As opposed to the plain black cover on the 1987 edition, the 1988 program looks right at home in the colorful late '80s WWF. A huge photo of the Mega Powers over shadows pictures of the rest of the '88 team co-captains. WWF pay-per-view program interest can best be described as fickle. The same publication can sell for $40 one week and go unsold the next at $10. This is the best way to illustrate the fact that items truly don't have a set "value." It's all up to what the collectors are currently willing to pay. Recently, this program (unsigned) sold for $30.
*Next is an item that could be described as a cross-collectible. The 1985 Wrestling All Stars Trading Card magazine was the only way to obtain the 54-card set. Featuring such stars as Hulk Hogan, Dusty Rhodes, The Road Warriors, Exotic Adrian Street, and many others, the cards are perforated and included as pages in the magazine. Examples including all 54 cards still attached have just recently sold for between $80-$100. Don't expect the interest or price to wane anytime soon.
*While the WWF originally had WWWF Wrestling Action Magazine and then Victory Magazine, the first official WWF Magazine is the April/May 1984 issue. Featuring Hulk Hogan with the "big green" belt around his waist, this issue has always seemingly commanded a high price. Most recently the issue has fetched $35 at auction. Depending on the "mood" of the market, adding or subtracting $15 or so dollars from that price is feasible.
*Jumping ahead about 13 years to the dawn of the "Attitude Era" brings us WWF Program #245. The program features an imposing head shot of Kane in one of his very first merchandising appearances. This era of WWF Programs show up a bit less at auction than late '80s-early '90s editions. This particular issue recently sold at auction for $15. With the popularity of the era, its stars, and the fact that many of these programs have awesome photos of those stars right on the cover, I would snap these up at $15 or under while you can. D-X and Hart Foundation covers from the same time are equally impressive visually.
*We wrap it up with what I would call my "best bet" for this edition of MarketWatch. While all territories had their own programs sold at live cards, the nicest may be the ones that came out of Georgia. The NWA Georgia Ringsider covered all the stars and events of Georgia Championship Wrestling. Ole Anderson, Dusty Rhodes, Abdullah the Butcher, Thunderbolt Patterson, and Jack Brisco are just a few of the stars that were covered in these nicely published programs. Recently selling for between $30 and just $6.50, now is the time to pick these up. As we get closer to the NWA Wrestling Fanfest this August celebrating Georgia's wrestling history, prices and interest will undoubtedly rise. Many of GCW's top stars will be attending the event providing the opportunity to have many of these great Georgia Ringsider covers autographed.
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