I've been a Pee-Wee Herman fan since I was a kid, with Pee-Wee's Playhouse being a favorite show of mine back then. Took me a while to finish this post (sparked now in tribute to the passing of Paul Reubens), but back in 2019, I decided to combine my love of Pee-Wee with my love of card collecting and build up a collection of Pee-Wee cards, chiefly the Pee-Wee's Playhouse cards that Topps put out in 1988. Wasn't easy, but I eventually completed a master set, and by the end had come close to a second master set, which I'm still working on.
1988 Topps Pee-Wee's Playhouse has just 33 base cards plus a few different insert sets, but with variations, a master set is 159 cards deep. That doesn't sound too bad, but man, it was a challenge! It's tough to find singles online so I figured my best bet was ripping unopened product. The collation is brutal with those packs, though, even sourced from different sellers. Some cards were very tricky for me to track down, while I ended up with tons of dupes of others.
It's kind of a confusing set. As a reference for anyone brave enough to go after it, here's the checklist I put together. I did my best identifying the different cards, but it's not always easy to tell the variations apart.
I wanted to go more in depth with the set, hence this post languishing in my drafts for over 3 years, plus I've been meaning to create some supplemental customs to go with the set (--There's tragically little from the first season of the show represented in the cards). But I'm not sure when I'll get to that, so for now I'll just give an overview.
The base cards look like this. Each has a background variation, with an analogous baseball card situation being like with 1990 Donruss how there are "paint splatter variations" with the factory set versions of the cards. I don't believe there was any short-printing going on in the set, so I don't think any variation has a premium on it.
sticker/flipbook #7 Ants/today's secret word is fun/hi/arf/pee weesticker/flipbook #8 Ants/today's secret word is fun/hi/arf/pee weesticker/flipbook #14 Dirty Dogsticker/flipbook #24 Give me air/made you look/i know you are but what am isticker/flipbook #25 I love that Story!/Moo!/Sit on Me!sticker/flipbook #28 Like cool/Hi/fishy/P-man/Wish you were heresticker/flipbook #33 Pterristicker/flipbook #40 Y/P/&/Nsticker/checklist CL #3 Alphabet stickers/playhouse foldies/flying things (V/L/K/R)puppet card #3 Chairry/Conkypuppet card #5 Jambi/Pee-Weeopening door #5 Dirty Dogflying things #1 Flying Pterridisguise card #1B skull mask (flatter top crack on right)foldies #3 Randy