What’s the deal with this POP life?
In the 1990s, collectors salivated over Beanie Babies. In the 2000s, it was Pokemon. Today, the collectibles market is dominated by Funko Pops!, the ubiquitous vinyl figures that turn pop culture characters into block-headed, saucer-eyed cute bombs.
While Funko has a deep bench of licenses, many figures are exclusive to retailers, available for a limited time, or are otherwise hard to find. After perusing recent auction sales and Funko online price guides, we’ve excavated a few that are being bought and sold for stacks of cash larger than the toys themselves. Take a look at 10 of the most sought after and valuable Pops! that could net you a small fortune on the secondary market
Funko was founded in 1998 by Mike Becker. The company was originally conceived as a small project to create various low-tech, nostalgia-themed toys. Funko's first manufactured bobblehead was of the restaurant advertising icon Big Boy.
Why are the POPular?
They make great gifts
The thrill of the hunt
There is a wide variety
Part of our Nerd Culture
Types of Pops
Chase pops - Rare versions of a common pop; they usually have some small difference such as color scheme or pose
Flocked pops - A pop made with a different texture (sometimes fuzzy or furry)
Exclusives - Pops that are only found at certain stores or events
Top 10 Funko Pops worth the most:
1. HOLOGRAPHIC DARTH MAUL // $2130
The horned villain from 1999’s Star Wars prequel, Episode I: The Phantom Menace, got the glow-in-the-dark treatment from Funko in 2012. San Diego Comic-Con attendees had first crack at the variant, which was limited to 480. The Pop Price Guide, which tracks sales, estimates its value at $2130. The figure is apparently desirable enough that some fans will even pay $200 for a custom replica.
2. STAN LEE PLATINUM METALLIC CHROME SIGNED // $6100
You’d probably have to go rummaging through a Funko executive’s office to find a figure rarer than this 2015 release that was exclusive to attendees of a Comikaze Expo fan event. Late comics great Stan Lee signed just 10 of these, making it one of the most exclusive Funkos on the market. One sold for $6100 during a recent eBay auction.
3. KEN GRIFFEY JR. BRONZE // $2550
One of Major League Baseball’s most celebrated players got the Pop! treatment in 2018, with just 24 gold-finish variants made for fans at Seattle's Safeco Field. The current market valueis $2550, though figures have sold for as much as $3000.
4. HEADLESS NED STARK // $1980
One of the most tragic and unexpected deaths on Game of Thrones was immortalized in this 2013 San Diego Comic-Con exclusive, which features the head of the Stark family and his detachable melon. The Pop Price Guide has valued Stark at $1980, though one eBay auction climbed up to $2600.
5. BLACK RANGER FREDDY FUNKO // $2420
This hybrid mash-up of Funko mascot Freddy Funko and the Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers was limited to fans attending the Funko Fundays event at 2017's San Diego Comic-Con. Only 24 were produced, which is why they’re extremely difficult to find, even on auction sites. While Pop Price Guide lists its value at $2420, one recent eBay listing is asking $4400.
6. THE NOTORIOUS B.I.G. METALLIC // $1960
The late rap headliner got the deluxe treatment in 2011, with a metallic coat and hat version that was limited to 240 pieces. (The regular version is pictured.) Though its listed value is $1960, a recent eBay auction ended with a sale price of $2400 for the figure.
7. BATMAN BLUE METALLIC // $1050
The Dark Knight is looking a little more ostentatious in this 2010 San Diego Comic-Con offering, with a shiny blue cowl and accessories.
8. 1970S ELVIS PRESLEY GLOW-IN-THE-DARK // $1580
A 1970s-era Elvis (above) comes in a special glow-in-the-dark version that has an estimated value of $1580. Another limited chase figure that depicts him at the height of his powers in the 1950s will run you as much as $1820.
9. CLOWN DUMBO // $5270
The ear-shaming of Disney’s 1941 animated classic Dumbo continues to strike a chord with people. The 2013 edition of Dumbo in clown make-up was limited to 48 pieces for San Diego Comic-Con attendees. A figure with a little damage to the package still fetched $3551 on eBay.
10. PLANET ARLIA VEGETA // $1740
The flame-haired Vegeta from Dragon Ball Z was exclusive to fans at the 2014 New York Comic Con and the Toy Tokyo store in New York City. One eBay bidder recently landed Vegeta for $2000