Wednesday 16 May 2018

1221. 🇮🇲 Isle Of Man Attempts To Cash In On Science Fiction Craze.

  🇮🇲 The desperate scramble by postal services and philatelic agencies to come up with subjects which they can feature on their products and which they believe will have a special appeal to a wider audience than their faithful stamp collector customers seems to have taken a number of them down the route of science fiction and fantasy films and television programmes. Royal Mail was clever enough to bag the big prize of featuring Star Wars on not just one but 2 issues and prior to that it had prepared the ground with earlier issues featuring The Hobbit and Dr Who. New Zealand Post made the most of the Tolkien Hobbit books films having been made in the country by a New Zealand director and released scores of philatelic items featuring the countless Lord Of The Rings and Hobbit movies and then followed up by featuring the CS Lewis Narnia films with, I suspect, less success. Oh and ofcourse we haven't been spared the appearance of Harry Potter on various stamps and Jersey Post even thought it was a good idea to release a set of Superman movie stamps because the actor who plays the role was born on the island. Then, within in weeks of issuing its second Star Wars set, Royal Mail inflicted a large issue on the subject of Game Of Thrones on an unsuspecting philatelic world. Later this year Royal Mail has an unidentified new issue to be released in October, just 3 or 4 weeks before the 55th anniversary of Dr Who and its reappearance on television with the first ever female actor playing the title role - too tempting a money making opportunity to be missed?
  So how can a little philatelic entity cash in on this tide of science fiction/fantasy stamps without bankrupting itself by the amount of money it spends on acquiring the rights to feature such subjects? The Isle Of Man Post Office thinks it has an answer - feature a vintage film where the cost of the rights are probably considerably less. And the chosen subject - the 50th anniversary of the release of the famous 2001 A Space Odyssey which was directed by the revered if controversial Stanley Kubrick. The products for this issue are almost as numerous as those which accompanied the Royal Mail Star Wars issues but principally there are 8 basic stamps (total cost £7.99p) accompanied by 8
'Pictorial sheets' produced in limited editions of 3000 each and each containing 6 stamps and costing £47.94p for the set as well as an accompanying 'Commemorative sheet' which contains 8 different stamps and costs £7.99p.
  The designs, by Glazier Design, lack the visual appeal of Royal Mail's Star Wars stamps and I fear that this issue is not going to do as much for Isle Of Man Post Office's profits as it might hope. The issue was lithographed by Cartor, is perforated 13 and will be issued on 14 June 2018. I predict that this issue will not be popular with collectors. Rating:- 0.

  🇬🇧 Royal Mail issued a second counter booklet containing 6 self-adhesive stamps in connection with its issue which commemorated the Centenary of the Royal Air Force on 11 May 2018. The booklet contains 4 x 1st Class Machin Head definitives and 2 stamps from the miniature sheet depicting the RAF display team, the Red Arrows, Rating:- ***.

  A further counter booklet will then be issued on 26 June 2018 in connection with the Dad's Army issue. Again the booklet contains the 2 1st Class stamps from the set and 4 1st Class Machin Head definitives and is self-adhesive. Rating:- ***. In addition there will also be a 'Generic sheet', sold at the premium price of £7.50p, containing 10 1st Class stamps (5,of each of the 2 designs) with attached labels. The stamps in the sheet are self-adhesive. Rating:- *.

  🇮🇳 India Post issued a single stamp on 15 May 2018 to commemorate the late MV Arunachalam (1929-1996), a leading Indian businessman, Rating:- *.

  🇲🇾 Pos Malaysia will issue a set of 3 stamps and 1 miniature sheet on 17 May 2018 as the fourth part of its ongoing Medicinal plants series. This is an attractive issue. Rating:- ***.

  Pos Malaysia also issued 2 Personalised stamp sheets on 15 May 2018 to commemorate Mothers' Day and Teachers' Day. Both sheets contain 8 stamps (2 x 4 different stamps) with appropriate attached labels).

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