Merch Hunter #17: A Flux Capacitor, Depp’s Rum Diary, and Marty McFly’s Sneakers

This week’s column is brought to you by the letter e – for eBay: the single greatest opportunity for collectors to pick up gems for a tiny portion of their value.

Yes, it’s a market that is now unfortunately populated by self-styled “experts” like never before – in the olden, black and white days, you could go to a yard sale, or a car boot sale, and pick up prime merch for a pittance, smiling in the knowledge that you had just robbed some ‘orrible little cretin of their inheritance – but there are still opportunities out there if you look hard enough.

And wouldn’t you know it, I’ve found a couple for you – just expect mostly exorbitant prices…

1. Replica Flux Capacitor

Merch and memorabilia collectors are invariably forced to face a telling dilemma when it comes to replicas. The purists may turn their noses up, but no purist snob am I when it comes to replicas this accomplished.

As with the hover board already included in a previous column, this limited edition Flux Capacitor replica is a triumph of design and authentic execution, and with only 25 made (they’re selling pretty swiftly) they’re super-rare. Expect the $699 current price to increase dramatically as time goes by – replica or not, it is a great bit of prop work that works both as a fitting tribute to a modern classic film, and a must-have for collectors with the money to buy prestigious items like it.

You can buy one while the stocks last here.

2. Johnny Depp’s Rum Diary Notebook

Discovered by a prop company who lent a number of props to the production of The Rum Diary, these notebooks came back with the added bonus of some sketches and notes by the hand of Johnny Depp it seems, making them not just rare, but a one-off. The six pages of notes, supposedly scribbled by Depp between takes, offer an insight into his on-set process, and how he processes elements of his character, and as such for a Depp fan, or a serious movie prop collector, they represent an incredible find. For those collectors, money is often no object, which is lucky, because the notebook is currently listed at an eye-watering $7,777.77. But at the end of the day the question is not of financial boundaries, but of motivation.

Bid for the notebook here.

3. Nike Mag 2011 Back To The Future

The footwear for movie fans – Nike’s special, ultra-limited edition Back to the Future commemorative shoes, with something wonderfully sci-fi sounding called electroluminescent out-soles – are a bona-fide treasure. With only 1,510 made, they’re a rarity, and opportunities to pick up a pair are few and far between, especially at comparatively reasonable prices, so when they do come up, they should be leapt upon.

Can you tell I collect BTTF merch by the way…?

At the time of writing, there’s just under 3 days to go on this particular lot with the reserve price some $3000 away. But even that high-looking Buy It Now price of $6,350 will be dwarfed by the value of the shoes in a very short time. It’s very much a case of speculation.

Bid your life away here.

T-Shirt of the Week

Another eBay find – and a vintage beauty


Empty your wallet with more Merch Hunter

Born to the mean streets of Newcastle, England the same year that BMX Bandits was cruelly over-looked for the Best Film Oscar, Simon Gallagher's obsessive love of all things cinema blossomed during that one summer in which he watched Clueless every day for six weeks. This is not a joke. Eventually able to wean himself off that particular dirty habit, and encouraged by the revelation that was One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, he then spent many years reviewing films on the underground scene, throwing away thousands of pounds on a Masters Degree in English in the process, before landing feet-first at the doors of British movie site ObsessedWithFilm.com, where you can catch his blend of rapier wit and morbid sardony on a daily basis. Simon is also a hopeless collector of film paraphenalia, and counts his complete Star Wars Mr. Potato Heads collection among his friends.

Read More from Simon Gallagher
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