Bid Smart: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles collectibles are no joke

A copy of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1 signed by co-creators Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird achieved $55,000 plus the buyer’s premium in April 2021. Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

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A copy of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1 signed by co-creators Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird achieved $55,000 plus the buyer’s premium in April 2021. Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.
A copy of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1 signed by co-creators Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird achieved $55,000 plus the buyer’s premium in April 2021. Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK — The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (TMNT) franchise is something of an accidental success. Artists Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird collaborated on a comic book that parodied some of their favorite comic series, and inadvertently gave rise to a multibillion-dollar franchise about four baby turtles that were transformed into human-like mutant superheroes and learned to be ninjas from a sewer rat that named them after the Renaissance artists Leonardo, Donatello, Michelangelo and Raphael.

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1990s kids are grown-ups now, bidding on childhood faves

A 1999 Pokemon shadowless holographic uncut proof sheet containing seven Charizard cards achieved $234,171 including the buyer’s premium in June 2021. Image courtesy of Hake’s Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.
A 1999 Pokemon shadowless holographic uncut proof sheet containing seven Charizard cards achieved $234,171 including the buyer’s premium in June 2021. Image courtesy of Hake’s Auctions and LiveAuctioneers.

NEW YORK  — The 1990s was a heady decade: the Internet became available to the public, Nelson Mandela was elected president of South Africa, Prince Charles and Princess Diana divorced and several nations joined forces to wage war in the Persian Gulf. In the realm of pop culture, Nirvana conquered the music charts with their anthem Smells Like Teen SpiritFriends debuted on TV, and the first Harry Potter book was published. Like every decade, the 1990s had its share of now-iconic toys, which ’90s kids — now adults — want to buy back. And that’s why 1990s toys are hot now.

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