Almost a year ago, I compared all of the Topps base sets, from 1952 on, and wondered which sets were the "biggest busts" or "biggest improvements" when compared with the set that they followed.
I received a lot of feedback on that post, which led to a poll, which led to me procrastinating for about five months, which led to the final results.
During that whole saga, I threatened to do the same thing for the other card manufacturers, so I can then start a poll, procrastinate and finally -- dear lord what is he DOING back there -- spit out the final results.
Well, tonight's your lucky night. It's Upper Deck's turn.
Comparing the looks of past Upper Deck sets is a bit odd, because Upper Deck has never been about the design on the front. It's almost always been about the photo. But if you take a moment to look, there is a bit of a design on every set, or otherwise you wouldn't be able to tell one year from the next.
The sameness of sets is still a problem with UD, but I think we can get past that for this exercise.
For me, the best-looking Upper Deck set, by a trillion miles, is 1993. Nothing else comes close. Best photos, everything. Therefore, the biggest improvement is 1992 to 1993, and the biggest bust is 1993 to 1994.
But I'm way biased.
Other UD sets that I like are 1995, 2006 and 2008 (which is almost identical to '95). Upper Deck sets that are not favorites are '91, '99 and '07.
But I'm letting you decide here.
I'm going to leave this post up at the top of the blog for 24 hours or so, partly so you can leave a comment on what you believe is UD's biggest bust and biggest improvement, and partly because I'm not going to get a chance to post anything else until the wee hours of Thursday morning.
Once I receive enough comments, I'll put a poll on the sidebar, so people can vote on the choices.
But first a look at a representative card from each year of the Upper Deck base set, to make your choosing less brain-intensive:
Sorry about all the Dodgers from earlier this century. I wasn't collecting then, so all of my cards from those years are post-period Dodger pickups.
Remember, I'm looking for what you think is the biggest bust from year-to-year (i.e. 1996 sucked after 1995), and the biggest improvement from year-to-year (i.e. 2008 was way better than 2007).
I've added a feature on the sidebar linking to the biggest bust/biggest improvement for each of the card companies, as I plan to do this for Fleer, Donruss, etc., too.
So, I'll shut up for awhile now. It's time to comment. ...