Did you miss us GoCollect universe? The GoCollect writers missed all of you. In the down time the writing team was very busy. Articles were researched. Events were documented. Conventions were attended. The reason for all that prep work is that collecting has never been more competitive than now. Information is power and the possession of a little bit of power can make a great difference in possible collecting outcomes. Nowhere is the importance of information gathering more apparent than the ever changing MCU's impact on collecting.

A Giant Stumbles

The Marvel Cinematic Universe was once the gold standard of entertainment property and the collectible market. Each media property was produced with such attention to detail that their films and television shows oozed with an "it" factor that made them bonafide hits. Actors and directors fought each other to appear in the next announced project. The mere mention of a rumor that a character could appear on a television show drove their collectible value skyward. Sadly, success breeds neglect.

Losing Sight of the Target

Themes of professional and personal redemption (Stark), Shakespearean family dynamics (Thor), and keeping ideals in the face of disaster (Rogers) once were elements of the MCU. Viewers were invested in characters both big and small as a result. That quality was replaced with poor attempts at humor (She-Hulk); forced team ups (Marvels), or wasting talent in a convoluted storyline (Secret Invasion). It is that last area of failure that seems to have infected every recent MCU property, and it is so apparent it hits viewers with the impact of a thunderbolt.

Motor City Comic Con Delivers

Collectors who do not attend conventions are like stock investors who do not read news. Getting insight not commonly known is more important than just reading articles on the hot stock tips. Motor City Comic Con (MC3) is an event that fans should attend. Buying/Selling trends manifest in real time deals. Collector populations can be observed in the wild. Unique news gathering can also be gleaned from the very stars of movies and television shows as well that rarely sees the light of day. David Harbour was a featured guest at the most recent MC3 and it was from several days of journalistic observations that one truly realizes how the MCU is undervaluing their talent

Van Gogh Cut off His Ear so...

David Harbour is a true artist of his craft. He spent hours conversing with his fans who waited in the long lines to talk and take pictures with the guest. The actor then regaled fans in a capacity filled hall with stories of his career. It was through a fan question about how the actor lost weight for his portrayal of Jim Hopper in the Russian gulag that the depths of his dedication to a role was revealed. There were no secret diets or tricks. The actor stated he just did not put food in his mouth. Long term health concerns and the impact his self imposed starvation would have on his personal relationships be damned. The situation called for it and he delivered.

Bolt of Lightning or Mere Static Electricity

An actor that is willing to harm himself deserves to have that dedication repaid. Disney has to provide him with a role that he can truly display his artistic abilities rather than force him into some lackluster scene chewing portrayal. The character's relationship with Yelena Belva must be a focal part of "Thunderbolts" to make viewers care about the characters. Past movies sadly leads to a prediction that this movie will try to be Avengers-like, cramming a few plot details into one movie. If "Marvels" taught viewers and collectors anything is that caring for a lackluster product would be a waste of valuable time and money.

Proceed with Caution

Investing in the MCU is now a risky venture. Quality matters and if the project is found lacking then collectors will lose attention. Currently Blade keys are being ignored because of the continued turmoil surrounding the film. Even with a talented cast that includes the aforementioned Harbour, "Thunderbolts" keys are not garnering the attention other MCU properties once did. Fans and investors require quality from a project. People are afraid that "Thunderbolts" will be a poor version of "The Eternals". Character development and plot details sacrificed for the sake of cramming everything into one film. Even a talented cast cannot overcome poor production decisions. The Mouse must deliver or risk the possible failure of the Fantastic Four, X-Men and future Avengers properties before the first story board is drawn. Fans are also a rabid bunch when they care about something. Once they care they cannot hide it no matter how hard they try. Just ask one David Harbour.

David Harbour, a True Fan

Those who attended the Motor City Comic Con saw a different side of David Harbour. He revealed part of himself usually ignored during a panel discussion. A fan asked David to predict the winner of a hypothetical battle between a Demogorgon and pack of Demodogs. He answered without hesitation, but displaying the true conviction of a fan. David used storyline evidence to base his decision. It was then through a follow up question that caused David to lose his self control. He blurted out a reply that he joked he regretted because it could be used for clickbait if any reporters were in the auditorium. Well one was in attendance that day and heard it all.

A Very Important Reveal

David Harour joked about the statement and how it could be used for nefarious means. For Mr. Harbour, and more importantly the GoCollect audience, there was something important that came from his statement. In a rush to respond he let down his guard and made a major character reveal about David Harbour himself. He truly cares about his work and immerses himself in his projects so much that it is hard to differentiate him from any other fans. "Thunderbolts" will not fail because of him. He is a fan who loses himself in his art and the product. That is important because "Thunderbolts" is an important film for both the Mouse and collectors alike.

Canary in the Mindshaft

"Thunderbolts" should serve as an indicator of the future health of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Gone are long term mainstays like Robert Downey Jr's Iron Man. New characters must carry the banner. "Thunderbolts" is also one of the first films released with Disney CEO Bob Iger fully back in charge. Projects have been delayed in an attempt to recapture the lost Disney magic. After watching David Harbour at MC3 it can only be hoped that the film channels his dedication and puts it on the screen. If not, the collectibility of future MCU properties will need to be reassessed and downgraded. "Thunderbolts" is that important a film.

Finally to Mr. David Harbour

Finally, if David Harbour or any of his people are reading this rest assured that the secret of what was said is safe with me and those attendees that were smart enough to attend MC3. What was spoken was not as important as why it was said. Collectors who attended the event and those reading this article know what is truly important in predicting collecting trends and insight into an actor's conviction to a project is a very important piece of the collecting puzzle.

Oh, and GoCollect readers you may want to know the final scene of "Stranger Things" is going to feature..........(word limit reached)

"Collecting is more than buying objects." - Eli Broad (Billionaire and Philanthropist)