Bleeding Cool's journey through the Sun & Moon era of the Pokémon TCG continues. Now that our spotlight series has moved through the first five sets of this block (Sun & Moon base, Guardians Rising, Burning Shadows, Crimson Invasion, and Ultra Prism), now it's time to look at this era's first special set. A special set (sometimes called a holiday set) is an expansion of cards released in branded products rather than a booster box. You can tell when a set is "special" when it doesn't have the era's name as part of its title. Shining Legends was released on October 6th, 2017 and focused on Shiny Pokémon. Notably, it brought back the vintage "Shining" style of card introduced during the Neo era. Today, let's look at the final card in the set: the Mewtwo GX Alternate Art Secret Rare, known by many collectors as "Mewtube."
Fans of Pokémon lore will know exactly what's going on in this card. This artwork shows Mewtwo being developed in the laboratory from which it would eventually break free. Interestingly, this is the first proper Alternate Art that could be pulled from a pack in the Sun & Moon era. While there were no Alternate Arts for some time after this, this card style would return a few sets later in Sun & Moon – Team Up, starting a trend that would last for four main series expansions before returning once again in Sword & Shield – Battle Styles. This is one of the most popular card types, but the way that it was done in Shining Legends remains unique to this set.
Mewtwo GX Alternate Art differs from most Alternate Arts from this era in two ways. First, it is a Secret Rare, when all other Sun & Moon-era Alternate Arts are classified with the Full Arts. In addition to that, it is done in the style of Shining Cards. What I mean by this is that even though the Mewtwo it depicts isn't Mwtwo's Shiny form, only the actual figure of Mewtwo is textured. The rest of the card is standard foil. These qualities make this card style not only unique to this special Pokémon TCG set but indeed to the entire hobby. There is no other card like this, and that's why it is the chase card and the most valuable hit of Shining Legends.
Stay tuned for the continuing journey through Pokémon TCG: Shining Legends. To look back on this series, click the Shining Legends tag below. Next time, this journey concludes with a final set review.