Let me tell you about my experience I have had with collecting Alchemist Smurf (#20116).
As most of you may already know Alchemist Smurf can be found with either white or green smoke protruding from his test tube. Wearing a dark blue robe with a half moon on the front and his white Smurf hat is decorated with stars. In one hand he is holding a red genie like bottle and in the other a test tube with smoke coming out of it.
In the beginning I was only aware of the Alchemist with green smoke coming from his test tube. This may have something to do with the Alchemist being made out of Hong Kong was sold like this. But then I started noticing the thickness of the smoke also varied. Like a lot of varainces with Smurfs, nothing big but still a point of difference.
As times went by ……
It took me a while to collect an Alchemist Smurf with white smoke. Actually come to think of it, the white smoke was partially damaged but I still didn’t care as by this stage I had ten green smoke ones to one white smoke variation.
A little while later, I was able to obtain another Alchemist Smurf with white smoke but this one was different to my existing one. Firstly, it wasn’t damaged but it had a gold half moon on his robe. Up until then I always thought the half moon was yellow. I was desperate to know if it was genuine or if the previous owner had added their own paint work to the half moon.
When I started to get more serious about collecting Smurfs with different markings, I quickly discovered that Smurfs made and painted in different countries could lead to different colour variations. This time it was discovering the Alchemist Smurf with green smoke when painted in Sri Lanka (red paint dot) has green stars not gold on his white hat. Also they tend to have the thicker smoke than others.
- Alchemist was first produced by Bully in 1979. Can be found with white or green smoke. Yellow or gold crest of the moon on the robe.
- Was produced by Schleich in 1980 until 1989. Can only be found with green smoke and yellow crest of the moon on the robe.
- Wallace Berrie sold Alchemist between 1982 to 1984. Can only be found with green smoke and yellow crest of the moon on the robe. Typically found with a darker blue robe.
In my opinion this is what makes Smurf collecting unique and worthwhile. It is finding these little differences whether it is done with the different paint colours used or markings that can be found, it is never boring. Please let me know if I have forgotten another variance, as always happy to discover something new.
Keep on Smurfin