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Monday, July 18, 2011

1992 Topps Kids - a TCIC Feature Post

1992 was a big year for me. My family (consisting of my mother and myself) moved from suburban California to edge-of-nowhere Georgia. I started high school. I had my first game console since Atari (a Sega Genesis). I also turned my card collection into overdrive.

With the move to a nearly-rural area (which is now suburbia), I could no longer get around on my own. As a result, I would have boxes shipped from the store I used to frequent in California (Stevens Creek Sports Cards, still in existence) and open a couple packs in the afternoon when I got home from school. Thankfully, cards were still fairly cheap per box then, even with Stadium Club, Leaf and Pinnacle "premium" products. I was able to purchase at least one box of nearly every baseball release to "sample" the offerings. One of the products that year was Topps Kids, which as the name suggests, was designed with the younger collectors in mind. I know I opened at least a few packs of Topps Kids - maybe even a whole box.
The cards are loud in true-to-the-era style, with a Bazooka Comics feel to the artwork. The better cards are the ones like DeShields and Dawson, with their photo heads on comic bodies, and Ryne Sandberg and Tim Wallach, with cartoon action occuring with the player photos. Those cards especially have a fun feel, something lacking even in the most basic level issues today.
The backs are just as fun. The backs are divided into thirds, with an informative cartoon in old Topps style on the top, a trivia or game-based Fun Box in the middle, and a small bit of statistics - just enough for a younger child to begin understanding without overwhelming them.

With the full vibrant colors, fun designs, and low price point, this set was perfect for younger collectors to put together a complete set at allowance prices, and have fun doing so. A few more attempts at sets like this (Bazooka in the 1990s and again in the mid-2000s, Upper Deck Fun Packs in the '90s, some of the Opening Day inserts) have been done, but I'm sure due to a low profit margin, companies don't like putting these sets out.

Why is this set cool? It has fun art and comics, lots of color, and it harkens back to a time when collecting was about the cards instead of mojo.


  1. I love Topps Kids! I bought a whole box about a year ago just to have a set. I bought a ton of packs when I was younger.

  2. I never bought these when I was younger but I have seen them around and still think they're cool to this day

  3. haha I stopped by Stevens Creek Sports Cards today!

  4. I haven't been to Stevens Creek in a month. It's so far from San Francisco. I still like that shop though!