A New Book Remembers “Planet of the Apes: The Original Topps Trading Card Series”

It’s a comprehensive volume that includes everything but the gum!


WHEN I WAS buying Topps Planet of the Apes trading cards back in the late 1960s and ’70s, I wasn’t thinking about how much they might be worth in the future, or how much I’d miss them in the year 2017. Like other kids, I was buying them purely as a way to own part of a story—a world—that had blown my mind. At that point home video hadn’t yet been invented, but thanks to Planet of the Apes trading cards I was able to relive the original movie, and later the subsequent, short-lived CBS television series, whenever and wherever the mood struck. And it struck often. 

So the cards got manhandled, a lot, and as time wore on, they wore out…or got lost, or confiscated by teachers. Either way, they’re history.

Fortunately, though, I can now collect ’em all again in a single shot thanks to a hardcover volume entitled Planet of the Apes: The Original Topps Trading Card Series, published by Abrams ComicArts.

Set to be released on June 6, the book runs 480 pages and includes the fronts and backs of all 44 cards from the original 1969 Topps set, based on the original film; all 66 cards based on the 1975 television series; and all 90 base cards, 10 sticker cards, and 44 chase cards from the 2001 Tim Burton film. Also included are four exclusive bonus trading cards, and some rare promotional images.

There’s also a lengthy introduction and commentary throughout the book by author and screenwriter Gary Gerani, who’s worked on hundreds of Topps card series since 1972.

All in all, this shapes-up as the definitive volume on an historic and beloved collectible.

It’s available both digitally and in print from Amazon.

The book’s cover nicely recalls the card series’ packaging.


FRONT AND BACK: Before home video, movie tie-in cards allowed fans to re-live the action over and over again.

Images: Abrams ComicArts


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Stephen Vincent D'Emidio is the editor and publisher of Wonder Alliance. steve@wonderalliance.com

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