1999 POKÉMON SHADOWLESS HOLOGRAPHIC UNCUT PROOF SHEET WITH 99 CARDS, INCLUDING 7 CHARIZARD CARDS.
EARLIEST POKÉMON UNCUT PROOF SHEET TO COME TO AUCTION - 7 CHARIZARDS!
The Pokémon franchise first debuted in Japan in 1996 as a video game for Nintendo's Game Boy handheld gaming system - Pocket Monsters: Red and Pocket Monsters: Green (with a special edition follow-up Pocket Monster: Blue being released later that same year). The widely popular Pokémon collectibles trading card game (TCG) was first published in Oct. 1996 by Media Factory in Japan (a month after Bandai's Pokémon Carddass Part 1 Green and Part 2 Red, which although not part of the TCG, it is regarded to be the first Pokémon card set released). Both the video games and cards saw phenomenal success and were imported to the US; the Pocket Monsters games became Pokémon Red and Pokémon Blue and Pokémon cards saw their first American release through Wizards of the Coast (known for their own popular Magic: The Gathering TCG) in Dec. 1998. The original set (known as the Base Set) included a total of 102 cards, with the first 16 cards being holographic, and including artwork from artists Ken Sugimori and Mitsuhiro Arita among others. The Base Set's 1st issue print and a few of the following (2nd issue) prints have a slightly different design than the standard Unlimited (3rd issue) prints. These early prints are generally brighter in color, use a thinner font, have the year 1999 appear twice in the copyright notice and lack the shadow around the pictures. Because of this, these cards are known as Shadowless cards among collectors. These Shadowless cards are more rare as they had a smaller print run than the Unlimited cards. Offered here is an uncut 23.5x39-3/8" proof sheet of 99 Shadowless Holographic cards. This is the earliest uncut Pokémon proof sheet to come to auction. Earlier this year an uncut proof sheet of Unlimited sold for $116,000 The sheet offered here is the earlier and rarer Shadowless set. Cards include all 15 Shadowless Holographic cards produced for this set; No. 1 Alakazam (7), 2 Blastoise (7), 3 Chansey (7), 4 Charizard (7), 5 Clefairy (7), 6 Gyarados (5), 7 Hitmonchan (7), 9 Magneton (7), 10 Mewtwo (6), 11 Nidoking (6), 12 Ninetales (6), 13 Poliwrath (7), 14 Raichu (7), 15 Venusaur (7) and 16 Zapdos (6). Cards are arranged in 11 rows of nine and proof sheet bears black felt tip pen at top margin that reads "Okay For Color & Fit. 2-7-99 3:55pm Jeanne Maddox." Maddox was the Production Director for Wizards of the Coast at the time. Proof sheet has slight curl and some lt. scattered handling wear w/single pin hole at top left corner along margin edge. Most notable wear is 3.5" crease at center left, which crosses Magneton card and extends slightly into adjoining Poliwrath. Aside from the cards mentioned, rest displays Exc. and sheet would make for amazing framed display. This proof sheet came to us directly from a Hasbro Employee who received it as a gift in 1999 while working for Hasbro and this is the first time this has ever been offered for sale. Not only is this the earliest uncut Pokémon proof sheet ever sold at auction, it shows the most desirable and rarest cards from the set, all 15 holographic cards, including seven Charizard cards! Since its origins in Japan, Pokémon has since become the highest-grossing media franchise of all time and all things Pokémon have seen a recent surge in demand with many impressive prices realized. This one-of-a-kind proof sheet is sure to become an impressive centerpiece of any Pokémon collection.