Thursday, May 22, 2008

MIOSoMA: MegaMetal vs. RockCards

In 1991 the world of metal was turned upside down with the release of not one, but two collections of heavy metal cards. In one hand you had Impel's MegaMetal and in the other Brockum's RockCards. Even tho I had a few cards of each back in the day, I acquired both complete sets in mint condition in 2001. I traded a mint set of 15th series GPKs for them in a non-sports card convention in Philly. Hey, we are all nerds here, right?
Anyway, today, the question that has been haunting the metal scene for 17 years will be answered: which set of metal cards was better? After an ardous investigation I came up with the answer. Which set got the Metal Inquisition Seal of Metal Approval (MISoMA, for short)? Read on and find out.
(I know there was some other set with Motorhead and a few other metal bands, but it also had Vanilla Ice and MC Hammer, so excuse me if I try to forget that that collection ever existed.)

The Basics
First of all, MegaMetal is a way cooler name than RockCards. MegaMetal's logo has a skull in it and the cards have a black border on them. RockCards have poser gradient colored borders. All rainbowy and gay. MegaMetal also has checklist cards, which made writing this thing a lot easier. MegaMetal is off to a good start.

This image is here specifically for the spookyspeegster, who always complains about the lack of King Diamond in MI.

Size. Does it matter?
MegaMetal's basic set was only 150 cards, while RockCard's basic set was 288, plus 16 stickers. But is this an issue of quality vs quantity? I don't know, but I'll award one point to RockCards.
(Please note: There was holograms, promo cards and gay shit like that on both sets, but let's stick to the basic set)

RockCard's set included pretty bad-ass art stickers

The Poser Factor
MegaMetal featured such poser kings as Bon Jovi, Firehouse, Skid Row, Heaven's Edge (who?), The Front (who?), Vixen (!), Slaughter and L.A. Guns. That's a total of 73 hair-poser cards. That's 2 cards short of half the set.
Not to be outdone, RockCards had Winger, Cinderella, Poison, Skid Row, Warrior Soul (ew!), Whitesnake, Slaughter, Tangier (who?), Warrant, Sisters of Mercy (why?), Bon Jovi, Motley Crue and Salty Dog (who?). That's 144 poser cards. That's exactly half.
By 2 cards MegaMetal comes up on top here, so I'll give them the point. Still, on both sets half of the cards are hair-metal. We all lose.

Seriously, if anyone has current addresses for any of these assclowns, let me know. They are just begging for a beating. Denim shorts (x2)? Are you fucking kidding me?

Each set has a few cards that seem to come out of nowhere and do not seem to fit.
MegaMetal has 7 Billy Squire cards. I didn't know Billy was metal, much less "mega" metal. Add 8 Robert Plant cards to that and 8 McAuley Schenker Group cards. That adds up to 23 more cards we can chuck.
RockCards gives us Katmandu (5 cards), Dan Reed Network (5 cards. Who the fuck are these people?), Junkyard (10 cards), Deep Purple (6 cards), Yes (4 cards), The Moody Blues (4 cards), Pink Floyd (4 cards), Iggy Pop (2 cards), Stevie Ray Vaughan (1 card) and Clarke-Rotondo (who? - 1 card) . Total 42 useless cards. This is pretty sad.

I have no clue who the fuck Dan Reed is or why he has a "Network", but what I do know is that they look like idiots.
This why I support tough immigration policy. We could easily deport these dbags.

Both collections have a few gems in there. A few cards you wouldn't expect, but make the set a little awsomer. MegaMetal gives us a Dark Angel card, 11 Iron Maiden record cover cards, 4 M.O.D. cards and 5 King Diamond cards. Not bad, right? Can RockCards match that? Well, not in the basic set, but the 16 sticker set has 2 Slayer covers, 4 Iron Maiden art cards, 2 Pushead cards, and 6 Megadeth's Vic art cards. This is a tough call, but you can't deny Dark Angel. Even if it's just one cards, that's pretty metal. I'm going with MegaMetal on this one, too.

The card that might end up tipping the scale

Down to Business
OK, all the cards we've talked about are the special ones, but what about the rest. The ones we are left with once we throw away all the shit. Well, both sets have Iron Maiden, but MegaMetal features Nuclear Assault, Priest and Dio. Not bad, not bad. RockCards? Well, they got AC/DC, Anthrax, Sabbath, Megadeth, Testament and Exodus. That's also not bad either, but I think Nuclear Assault and Dark Angel are way more Metal. Sorry, MegaMetal on top again.

A couple or rad RockCards of Steve Souza.I can almost hear him: "Do... the Toxic Waltz!"

Individual Cards
The competition is too close to call at this point. What I'm gonna do is look at a few more cards from both sets and make the decision. After all, most people out there don't collect complete sets non-sports cards like I do, so this might end up being the fairest way to judge.

Knock, knock... Who's there?... Tangier... Tangier who?... Exactly.

Yeah, it's 3 different dudes. Seriously, it's 3 different dudes. Yeah, they are dudes.

Damn, it's grampa Lou and uncle Earl!

Lame-ass motorcycle pic, Bad-ass motorcycle pic.

Separated at birth? Nice boots there, brizzy!
That's the beds that
Mustaine gives members of Megadeth on tour. Good luck fitting in there, Nick!

MegaMetal has pretty bad-ass Maiden cards. they are way better than RockCards.
Gotta love the hyper-typical Dave Murray "oh-face".

The inclusion of these dipshits is costing RockCards serious points.
They look like rejected extras in a Miami Vice episode.

This dickhead makes me want to kill my family and then spread my brains all over the kitchen table.
GOD! Why does this picture make me SO FUCKING ANGRY?

I went to college with dudes like this. I punched them in the kisser as often as I could.
Die you fucking hippie. DIE!

The world is a worse place because of this picture.
If you stare at this fucking pole smoker long enough, you'll go blind. Try it.

I don't know anything about this band, except that their Photoshop skills equal that of a lab baboon with serious brain damage.
You know, 'cuz the testing they did on'em.

Well, back in the 90's I was all about MegaMetal. I liked the name and the logo, I guess. After writing this post, tho, I'm not so sure. I mean, RockCards have more cards in the set and they have the nice stickers. But they have too much glam shit... MegaMetal has Vixen and MSG, but also King Diamond and Dark Angel. It's a tough call, but I'm going with MegaMetal. I'm gonna trust my 16-year-old gut.

MegaMetal cards get the
MISoMA! Congratulations!


  1. Nick Menza looks like such a fox in that shot. the shirtless jacket look was dope.

  2. True story. Around 1992 a friend of mine and I found a shitload of these RockCards in a dumpster outside a comic book store that had closed. We kept the ones of decidedly non-faggy bands like Exodus and Testament. Shortly after an old friend of ours joined Exodus on bass. He invited us to a party at his flat and I asked "Hey, are the Exodus dudes goin'?" He said that he invied them but didn't know if they'd show. Well, my friend Matt and I grabbed all the Exodus cards we had and headed for the party. When we arrived we saw Sick Rick Hunolt sitting alone in a chair in the living room. Quickly I found his card, remembered his stats, and went over and struck up a conversation that went something like this...
    Me:Duuuuuuuude, you're Sick Rick Hunolt, you were born on (insert date of Rick Hunolt's birth here), your favorite flavor of ice cream is rocky road...
    Rick: Um, wow, how do you know all that?
    Me: I'm a huge fucking fan, bro, (then I rattle off more ephemeral facts from the back of the card
    Before I know it, Rick Hunolt, Matt and I are huddled in my friends bathroom snorting crank off the back of his toilet. When it came time for me to snort my line I pulled the Steve Souza card outta my wallet and horked up a fat rail of shitty crank. All three of cracked up laughing. This is why RockCards were better.

  3. Oh, and I remember these cards had some sort of gay hologram that was supposed to somehow insure their authenticity, as if people were actually counterfeiting these stupid things.

  4. damn. can't argue with that fucking story. crank being horked up with an exodus rockcard, huh?

    unless someone has a story that includes a megametal card, dark angel and/or robert plant and mainlining meth, dont bother commenting!

  5. Im sorry if it aint metal a Stevie Ray Vaughan card is a fucking plus. Shit they should have thrown in some of the old blues guys they were way more metal than winger, they killed people before norwegians made it cool!!!!

  6. SKULLKRUSHER, you have outdone your self again. I thoughly enjoyed your extensively in-depth look at these two card collections (especially the King Diamond parts, thanks). You take your job seriously and you never miss a chance to poke fun of assclowns in denim shorts. When I go to the flea market this weekend, I now know where to spend my hard earned money, on porn.
    Stay Heavy!

  7. Tommy Aldridge from Whitesnake already looked like a mummy in that card...

  8. I thought MTV had some sort of "Headbanger's Ball" rockcards that had more "live, in-action" photos rather than glamorshots? I worked a restaurant/pizza joint next to a record store in the early nineties and we'd get these stupid cards for free from the record store, then staple them to pizza delivery boxes for shits and giggles. We'd look for cards of ex-punk rockers who went glam-rock (Brian Baker) in hope of embarreassing them someday.
    Good times.

  9. these things were fucking hilarious. i too worked with Skid at the pizza place. it was great to send along a warrant, rob halford, or a ratt stapled to the outside of a random pizza box. the best was Brian Baker though...going from Minor Threat to Junkyard in one fail swoop! Having your own trading card, now thats makin' it big! $$$$$

  10. ..but in the end Brian back to punk rock, I think he plays in Bad Religion now.

  11. Collecting cards-any kind of cards-is like playing D&D. There is never a scenario where it isn't gay.


    I think it was some other similar set that I had a bunch of when I was a kid, and they had the Cro-Mags in there, and I thought that was fucking awesome. I wish I still had those damn things, just for kicks...

  13. I had that album by The Front on cassette and maybe still do. It's a mixture of The Doors and The Cult.

  14. Hah! I used to work with Mike from Katmandu (the "Die Hippie" card). People would bring his card in from time to time. He's be half embarrassed, half amazed that someone had those still. Mike's a good guy even if he's in that cheesy Eurotrash band the Electric Six these days.

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  16. check yourself if your throwing out Deep Purple cards? seriously? half the metal bands you love all started playing guitar with either IRON MAN by Black Sabbath or SMOKE ON THE WATER by Deep Purple---EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM_ don't kid yourself...