I am currently on vacation here in Upstate New York. Usually this area has a plentiful supply of SW figures. There is a small, but thriving SW community that buys just enough stuff to keep new products flowing into the stores.
But not now.
This area hasn't even seen the Tarkin wave. It's starting to get ridiculous. To make matters worse, I see online scalpers like Brian's Toys, the absolute WORST OFFENDER of the bunch, selling figures like the #50 Anakin for a whopping $20, not including shipping!
Even the ebay scumbags are selling that figure for less. This is disgraceful. The folks at Brian's Toys are FAR WORSE than your average scalper.
Hasbro, please get your act together because get this....
People actually want to buy your figures.
It's a surprise I know, especially considering how movie related products choked the shelves after the last two films. Still, every time I go into a store, I see kids looking for figures that they just cannot find. This is a great way to kill the interest many young fans have in Star Wars. I guess no one has told Hasbro that young people today have very short attention spans. If you don't give them what they want now, they will quickly move on to something else.
Personally, I'm starting to think that SW collecting is a bit of a "pyramid scheme." There always has to be the "have and have nots." If everything were in abundant supply, there would be no scalpers buying extra figures and driving up sales. If figures weren't hard to come by, collectors wouldn't suffer under the delusion that their figures have monetary value. (Which honestly, they don't, but I don't care because I collect for FUN.) These collectors are the same folks who buy multiples of every figure they think might someday increase in value.
I even see people in the "just found" section talking about how they purchased 5 of a certain store exclusive to keep "just for trades." Honestly, these people are just hoarders.
What's the sollution to all this mess?
Sharing, helping each other out, joining a local collectors club and avoiding scalpers and eBay at ALL COSTS! You are only hurting yourself when you support their dirty deeds. You help contribute to an enviorment that only causes your own suffering.
And one last thing....
If you are dumb enough to buy a $20 #50 Anakin from the online scalper known as Brian's Toys, please do me this small favor:
Grap a marker and go to the closest mirror.
Once you are there write the words "I am an idiot" on your forehead. You might as well be honest with people.