Union Jack Ranger, Power Rangers

Union Jack Ranger collects Power Rangers merchandise. In this edition of Collector Spotlight, the UK-based collector shares details of his possibly one-of-a-kind collection of autographed Funko POP! figures and how his work in money management plays into how he approaches collecting.

How do you describe your collection?

It’s mainly modern. I don’t have many retro Power Rangers items (but I’m getting there, trust me). At the moment, I’m trying to keep up with the Lightning Collection (Pre-Zordon Era). However, I do have quite a few pieces from Ban Dai’s legacy line and many Funko Power Ranger pieces, too.

I have over 250 pieces of Power Rangers merchandise and I collect some Final Fantasy and Sailor Moon merchandise, too. My oldest piece is a mug my Mum recently found while clearing out her house. It was a present one Easter (Easter eggs quite often come with mugs in the UK), I can’t have been older than six years old when I got it. Amazingly she’d kept hold of it all this time and it now rests on my “Power Rangers food shelf” – don’t ask! My newest piece arrived yesterday for my birthday (33 years old and collecting Power Rangers: BE PROUD!). I got a Hasbro Morphin Hero Blue Ranger. Once I get pink and red, I’ll shoot an unboxing video!

When and why did you start your collection?

I started in 2014 with a small Funko collection. I wanted to collect the Power Rangers figures but as they didn’t have Blue Ranger, I didn’t buy them (I’m nerdy like Blue Ranger).

I’ve always been a collector, whether of comics, cookbooks, video games, or toy cars, and starting an action figure collection was the next step. I ramped up my Funko collecting in 2016 to include various brands such as the Power Rangers Funko POP! vinyl figures. From there, I started to look into other Power Rangers merchandise and then moved onto Ban Dai’s legacy figures. In 2019, I rebranded my YouTube channel and my collection to focus more on Power Rangers and this gave me the opportunity to really ramp up my Power Rangers collection. I now do monthly Power Rangers merchandise unboxings.

How do you display and store your collection?

First, I take inspiration from a friend of mine, Sailor Samara, who collects Sailor Moon merchandise. She has everything displayed so perfectly and I’ve used tips from her methods of sharing her display. My bookcases are white to help reflect light. I use command-strip hooks to hang bits and pieces around my collection room. All plush items are hung up.

My entire collection is on display, though I am rapidly running out of room so that may change soon, but I hope not, as I love displaying it. I’m mainly an “in-box-collector”, so most of my items are still in boxes on shelves. My only exception to this is the Lightning Collection. I display these out of the box so I can pose them. I also tend to display by type – Funko together, Ban Dai legacy items grouped together, etc. I do have a dedicated space to store all the boxes and keep them safe, as tiny fiddly bits tend to go missing over the years, like figure heads.

I don’t have things like a software catalogue, but I did when I collected Funko. Now I just have a spreadsheet that I update about every six months.

What do you consider to be the Holy Grail of your collection?

Oh, man! Just one? C’mon!

Well, it’s kind of two. They are both Power Ranger Funko POPS!: Yellow Ranger and Lord Zedd. Sadly, both actors died before these items were released. However, I managed to ask Audri Dubois (the Yellow Ranger from the pilot episode) and Steve Blum (Lord Zedd’s video game actor) to sign these on their behalf. With that, I now have a full signed Power Rangers Funko POP! collection – possibly the only one in the world. I’m really proud of it. It took four years of comic cons and travelling around the UK to get them all signed, but I did it!

I think if I had to pick a Holy Grail item that I could have, no questions asked though, it would be SDCC 2013 White Ranger Funko POP! One recently went on eBay for £500.

What advice would you give to someone interested in starting a similar collection?

I make my living helping people who struggle with their money. So the biggest piece of advice I can give anyone before starting collecting is: set an affordable budget and stick to it!

I’ve seen too many people over the years get into debt or get behind on their bills by spending money they can’t afford to try and keep up with the release of manufactures so they don’t have any missing pieces in their collection. It doesn’t matter if your collection is 12 or 1,200 pieces; you have the rest of your life to work on it if you want to.

In terms of starting a Power Rangers collection, essentially you can start with what you like. Whether that be retro toys from the ’90s or a specific collection such as the Lightning Collection. There is plenty of choice and some bargains to be had, too!

Also, collecting can be a great way to make new friends. I met my friend, Andy, this year through Power Rangers collecting; he has a similar display to mine in his garage. I also met my friend, Steve, for the first time recently through Power Rangers collecting – and that’s just this year, during a pandemic when people weren’t allowed to meet for six months. Imagine what it’ll be like when the brakes are off!

See more of Union Jack Ranger’s collection on his YouTube channel.

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