My Swamp Thing collection has been certified by Guinness World Records. If you’re new to the site, this post may help to bring you up to speed.
The final tally of Swamp Thing collectibles came to 797. 839 items were reviewed but Guinness doesn’t recognize name only references in magazine articles. If an article primarily focuses on Swamp Thing, it counts. Good to know for when your Swamp Thing obsession leads you to a heap of cool Swamp Thing books/collectibles and you get a wild hair to go for a world record.
Numbers aside, I’m just as proud of seeing the whole Guinness process through, from start to finish, as I am of my collection. Attempting a record requires cataloging and photographing all of your collectibles. I didn’t think that portion would be too time consuming since I had a decent system already in place. Photographing and documenting the details of every single item turned out to be quite time consuming- it took weeks. Another requirement involves hosting a public viewing of all of your collectibles. Two Guinness approved judges must be present to review every single item. I was fortunate enough to have Phil Hester as one of my judges and his credentials were more than adequate for Guinness’ standards. The review process took roughly three and a half hours. Three and a half hours of lists, pointing and picking up books and collectibles. It was a Swamp Thing dream. Being in a room full of comics fans, talking Swamp Thing is pretty special and it doesn’t happen often, if at all, for me.
Since my collection was too big to display at home, I held the review event at the Sioux Falls Design Center (a gallery/meeting/event space). I hadn’t seen my collection on display, in its entirety so I built a 3D model of the Design Center to figure out where and how everything would be displayed.
My obsessive nature is blaringly obvious at this point.
Another requirement was to video record and photo-document the entire event. I had a GoPro and camcorder recording the entire time. Two photographer friends documented the review process and the event. I could go on forever, it was one hell of an endeavor. It took months of planning/coordination and weeks of paperwork. Many friends helped and volunteered their time and resources to make the Swamp Thing Guinness event happen. It wasn’t merely a collection on display for review, but a celebration. It was really wonderful to see so much hard work, research, collecting and fandom in one place.
My ST collection has grown even more in the past two months, following the event. I don’t know if there is an addendum process to add new collectibles to the record tally, and I don’t know if I’d want to go through the whole process again. As fun as it was, I’m just glad to share my Swampy collection with other fans and spread the good news. The record may be a once in a lifetime opportunity and I’m more than ok with that.
Here’s to all fellow Swamp Thing fans. May more of us come out of the woodwork.