This is no ordinary box set. For one thing, it comes in a refrigerator.
s we pointed out last year, the trend of releasing massive, over-packed, overpriced box sets as a way to con gullible collectors has reached absurd new heights. But if you thought paying $500 for a 6 CD, 4 DVD version of U2's Achtung Baby was the pinnacle of box set ridiculousness, you ain't seen nothing yet. The Residents, the art collective/avant-garde rock band known for wearing giant eyeball/tophat masks, have taken the box set trend to its logical conclusion with their new $100,000 set.
Mind you, this is no ordinary box set. For one thing, it comes in a refrigerator. It's not just any old cheap fridge either—it's a 27.8-cubic-foot stainless steel French door Frigidaire, worth about $1,500. Inside the appliance are every single issue of every single Residents release—over 100 items in all, including not only LPs, CDs, and videos, but an eyeball/tophat mask and other Residents memorabilia.
It's hard to estimate the value of this collection—original pressings of Residents albums are highly collectible, and the band's first single, "Santa Dog," fetches upwards of $2,000 on eBay—but it's probably a safe bet that $100,000 includes a healthy markup.
It's a brilliant concept. The band is only making 10 of what they are calling the "ultimate box set" available. We can only assume they will only purchase the refrigerators (other than the one featured in the video) if they sell any box sets, and they stand to make $1 million if they can find 10 people rich enough and crazy enough to purchase them. That's about $985,000 pure profit, not including whatever the delivery costs would be.
And as if a $100,000 box set wasn't enough, the band is offering a one-of-a-kind "mystery box" for the mere price of $5 million. There's no hint as to what's inside the box, but it will be interesting to see if anyone takes the bait. The box set and the mystery box are being made available on Christmas Day, which happens to be the band's 40th Anniversary (but too late for last minute shoppers).
Leave it to The Residents to take collector-scum baiting to its most absurd conclusion.
For a more detailed look at The Residents' "ultimate box set," check out this 7-minute promotional video.