Wednesday, October 24, 2012

2012 Panini Americana Legends & Heroes Trading Cards Box Break Recap And Review

Card sets based on Americana tend to include a fun mix of humor and nostalgia, seldom featuring the other side of what makes America great, the people who rise up to represent the citizens of this country.  With the bottomless pit of attention paid to news about entertainers, celebrities and Honey Boo Boo Child, it is refreshing to celebrate the people who’s accomplishments go beyond self interest and make us proud to be a part of this nation.  2012 Panini Americana Legends & Heroes takes a look at our Presidents, Astronauts, Tuskegee Airmen and members of our National Sports Teams and provides an important set collectors to consider building.

Panini Americana Legends & Heroes falls under our classification of trading cards.  Hobby Boxes contain 18 – 10 card packs and feature 3 memorabilia or autograph cards.

Here is a look at some of the cards we pulled.

Base Set

Presidents of the United States
 George Washington, front and back
 Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt
 Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry Truman 
 Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan

To see a video montage featuring all 44 Presidents of the United States of America, use this link

 First Lady
Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Barbara Bush  

Al Worden, Dick Gordon, Scott Carpenter 
Allen Bean,  Kathlyn Thornton, Fred Gregory

 U.S. Athletes
 Bonnie Blair, Scott Hamilton 
 Kerri Strug, Bart Conner, Carly Patterson 
Mark Spitz, Greg Louganis, Lenny Krayzelburg
 Bruce Jenner, Frank Shorter, Dick Fosbury

Tuskegee Airmen
 Charles McGee, Herbert Carter, Eugene Richardson
Roscoe Draper, Floyd Carter, Roscoe Brown

U.S. Women's Soccer 
 Alex Morgan, Abby Wamback, Hope Solo
Heather Mitts,  Carli Lloyd, Kelley O'Hara

Base Set Numbered Parallels
George H.W. Bush color version #/299,  Kelley O'Hara Silver Proof #/50


 Bob Beamon
Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Lisa Fernandez
Sally Ride, Edgar Mitchell 
George T. Sakato, Theobald G. Wilson 
 Nicole Barnhart & Shannon Boxx
 Amy Rodriguez, Stephanie Cox

The Hits
 Edgar Mitchell Memorabilia #/299
Amy Lepeilbet Autograph #.179 
 Eric Heiden Autograph/Memorabilia #/99

Overall Look
Panini chose to go with all black and white photography for the base cards, reserving color photography for numbered parallels and inserts, a choice I feel works for this set.  The write on the back of the cards are well done.  All of the inserts look great with some really nice layout work. Hit cards are well designed and executed.

Quality and Variety of checklist.
This is a great mix of people.  The corresponding numbering of the Presidents’ cards from 1 to 44 is an excellent choice, but the arrangement after that is confusing.  It appears there was an original list of cards that were done in alphabetical order according to first name and then others were added arbitrarily within that list.  A minor point but not enough to detract from the subjects on the cards, like the inclusion of the Tuskegee Airmen.

Do the hits hold up?
I really like these hits.  The sticker autos are placed neatly on the cards and blend in with the design.  There are lots of desirable hits with good secondary market values like the top members of the US Women’s Soccer team and others.  The highlights of the product are the four Eisenhower cut signature cards that include an actual U.S. Army General’s star from his uniform.

Will you want to collect them all?
This is one of those sets that should be highly desirable for set builders.   At the very least you will want to one of the complete 125 base card sets.

 5 out of 5

2012 Panini Americana Legends & Heroes is a great tribute to a group of people worthy of recognition.

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