You are here
May 2016 Nerd Block Review
I’ll be honest: I’m not 100% sure why I received this box. I won a Sci-Fi Block from a giveaway and I believe this might’ve been sent in its place. I don’t mind getting a Nerd Block in place of the Sci-Fi Block, but I can’t confirm without a doubt that is where it came from. All I know is that I didn’t pay for it (at least as far as I’m aware!)
Nerd Block is one of the most popular geek subscription box companies and I have previously purchased a subscription from them. Specifically, I bought two of their Arcade Blocks that came with a Welcome Nerd Block.
You can read those reviews using these links:
In the end, I determined that the boxes provided a good value, but not all of the items were to my interest. Will the May 2016 Nerd Block offer a similar experience?
The first item I took out of the box was a shirt based on Morty from the show Rick & Morty. I recognized the character immediately and I have generally favorable thoughts about the show based on what I’ve heard about it, but I haven’t seen the show. The design is interesting in that it includes the character along with some sketches of his face.
The theme of the May 2016 Nerd Block is “80s Takeover”, and it’s not immediately clear how this shirt fits into the theme. My guess is that the curators included it because Rick & Morty was derived from Back to the Future, which is an iconic 80s film. Regardless, it’s a neat shirt, even if I probably won’t wear it myself. I’ll assign this shirt the estimated $10 value I usually give generic t-shirts.
The second item in the box was a Funko! POP of Long Duck Dong from the Sixteen Candles movie. I have to be honest...I haven’t watched Sixteen Candles, so I didn’t recognize this character. The name of the character immediately stood out to me as being incongruous - what a ridiculous name. As for the movie itself, I haven’t avoided it purposefully, but I believe it came out a bit before my time and so it’s never been on my watch list.
The figure itself is okay. I like the detailing on his cardigan and the buttons on his shirt. This is a POP I will probably gift or sell rather than keep, though, based on my disinterest in the source. This figure usually sells for $12.
The third item was a plush of the Staypuft Marshmallow Man from Ghostbusters styled by Monster Factory. This is the first item that really caught my interest. Although Ghostbusters was also a bit before my time, the new movie has brought it back into the spotlight and I think the inclusion of this item is well-timed for the new film’s release - while also keeping a clear connection to the 80s theme.
The stylization of the plush is a bit odd, but I appreciate the distinct look that Monster Factory gave to the plush. It helps differentiate the plush from the other ones available and the style is so unique that I was able to identify it as belonging to their brand before even reading the label. This is an exclusive Nerd Block item, so I couldn’t find an exact price for the item; Monster Factory’s lowest cost plushs sell for around $13, which seems like a fair valuation.
The fourth item was a mini mug from Marvel that featured Captain America or Iron Man - I received Captain America. The mug is only 6oz, so it seems impractical for actually drinking. The ceramic nature of the cup further discredits that use. However, I think the mini mug will serve well as a pencil holder or storage container for little knick knacks.
This is another instance in which I think Nerd Block did a good job fitting the 80s theme while also representing a franchise that is currently popular. The design of the mug is based on the 80s style of Captain America, but it can appeal to Captain America fans of all eras. This also seems to be another exclusive item, so my best value estimate is the ~$8 that the mug currently sells on Ebay for.
The fifth item was a packet of 100 sticky notes reminiscent of the Etch-A-Sketch toy. I appreciate this item both for its resemblance to the iconic toy, but also for its practicality as a pad of sticky notes. I wouldn’t pay the retail price of $7 for these, but I think they are a great item to have included in a box with this theme.
The sixth and final item was an exclusive pin from Nerd Block featuring the OUTATIME license plate from Back to the Future. I don’t currently collect pins, but I’ve gotten enough over the past few months to want to start a collection in the near future, and this pin will be added to the bunch. Being an exclusive, they can’t be purchased at retail, but they are selling on Ebay for around $5.
Overall, the May 2016 Nerd Block contained about $55 worth of items. The box itself costs between $15 to $19 plus a small shipping fee, so it’s clear that the box’s value far exceeded the cost.
In terms of the item selection, I think Nerd Block did a great job fitting the items this month to the 80s Takeover theme. The 80s were a bit before my time, so not all of the items appealed to me. I expect people who grew up in that decade would enjoy the box more than I did. Despite that, I still liked some of the items, such as the Monster Factory plush and the Captain America mug, and I appreciate the value that the box delivered.
Recommended for: geeks who appreciate good value and themed boxes
Not recommended for: people who aren’t interested in geek culture