Topps loves to rehash its old designs and it knows faithful collectors like me will eat it up because they grew up with Topps and they love the old designs (better than the new designs).
But I will eat only so much. I know when I'm full (kind of). Topps is forever riffing off its old designs in Archives and insert cards like the one above, sent to me by Cards On Cards recently, and yes, there is a blue-bordered parallel of this '85 Koufax on COMC right now.
Even though I adore colored-border parallels, I'll take my reverence only so far. Much of what Archives produces and those inserts yield, I can take or leave.
But when it comes to Heritage, and doing border stuff with old designs, that's when it gets serious.
I started to become aware of Heritage creating colored border parallels in 2011. The black-border parallels were part of retail blister packs and they were all the rage.
Although Heritage chrome black borders were a thing prior to 2011, the 2011 Heritage set is interesting to me because the cards resembled the wood-bordered 1962 set. The '62 set was the first time that Topps featured a design without a white border.
Creating colored borders with white-bordered designs is easy. You're not drastically altering anything. But when there is no white outlying border, it gets interesting. You're causing havoc with the whole look.
To stay connected to the original '62 look, Topps left a little "unpainted" wood in the lower right corner where all the factoids are. Perhaps the designer wanted the tiny type to still be readable, but part of me thinks Topps couldn't handle erasing all of that wood.
Until last year, this was the last year that Heritage had paid tribute to a non-white bordered design. Then 2019 Heritage came along with its tribute to the 1970 gray-bordered set.
This is one of the "hot box" purple chrome parallels from 2019 Heritage. I'm not sure when hot box purple became a thing with Heritage, I remember pulling them in 2014 Heritage for the first time.
Since the arrival of these Heritage purple parallels, the cards have displayed a deep purple color. But the 2019 Heritage cards don't, they're more like a lavender.
Again, I wonder whether Topps didn't want to totally erase the gray-bordered theme by coming up with the closest way that purple could look like gray.
OK, never mind. Clearly, they have no attachment to that gray border.
But this is an interesting time period for Heritage because of the back-to-back non-white-bordered cards from 1970 and 1971.
Here we now are with the proud, deeply black borders of 2020 Heritage and would anyone want to mess with those things just for the sake of a stupid parallel?
This is another card from the Cards On Cards package (the regular Heritage Seager came from Padrographs, more on his shipment later and his sneaky attempt to hook me into collecting another set).
The Heritage gang must be freaking out because they CAN'T MAKE BLACK BORDER PARALLELS THIS YEAR. But the purple ones are still here and I'm pleased to see the darker purple color has returned.
It's quite the gaudy card with red and orange and purple. But in general, I don't mind these "remakes" of the original cards. As much as I appreciate those vintage sets and think they're the best ever, I don't consider them untouchable. People who don't like the colored parallels simply don't have to buy them.
2020 Heritage is the last Heritage set to encounter a non-white-bordered design for the next few years. We'll get colored border cards on the '72 design next year (talk about gaudy, purple on the psychedelic tombstone design?), and on the next two.
Then it's time for 1975 Topps.
My goodness, I don't know how I feel about that.
I don't even know what a parallel will look like with that set (what Archives attempted for parallels with its '75 tribute last year was just bizarre). Anything I can imagine doesn't look good to me. And I'm sure, even though I had no issues with coloring up '62 or '70 or '71, I'm going to be wincing through every parallel treatment of 2024 Heritage. It's not going to be pleasant.
I suppose '75 Topps IS untouchable. Or too close to my heart anyway.
Anyway, those were my thoughts when I started opening the envelope from Kerry. Here are some others:
What passes for gold parallels these days. I don't think I want to see what Heritage looks like in 2068. Not that I'll have to worry as I'll be over 100 if medicine has advanced far enough and you know damn well baseball isn't even going to be a thing then.
Closing out with a foil parallel. Bleh.
Those purple-border parallels look real nice now.