The New Zealand Mint sells some of the most over the top collectible coins inspired by pop culture
Currency has been a form of artistic expression for as long as currency has existed. Countries use it to highlight their culture, significant historical figures, and important milestones — but why stop there? Capitalism and currency go hand in hand, and while many countries have found a lucrative source of income through pop culture-inspired collectible coins, none does it quite like New Zealand.
I’m not exactly sure why Instagram is showing me ads from the New Zealand Mint – a country and mint, who are both on the other side of the world from where I live – but I have no complaints. Where else will you find an effigy of Jabba the Hutt on a $3,950.85 gold coin? Even Disneyland’s gift shops don’t get that flashy.
war of stars millennium Falcon 85.05 g. Silver Coin ($399)
“Give me five Corellian light freighters for a Star Destroyer” is something I assume New Zealanders would say to a bank teller when they need loose change. Given the thickness of this three ounce silver Millennium Falcon-shaped coin, it’s almost certain it won’t fit in a vending machine’s coin slot, but you probably won’t get a chance to find out anyway because only 3,000 of these will be minted and the whole lot is already being spoken for, although it’s only this month was revealed.
The detailing on the front is fantastic, but the profile picture of the Queen of England on the back is admittedly a little disappointing. Couldn’t they have their picture etched into them? Falconhis cockpit?
Lord of the Rings Samwise Gamji 28.35 g. Silver Coin ($148)
I think we can all agree that the most memorable scene is in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Ringsworthy of being immortalized on a 1 ounce silver coin was that of Samwise Gamgee, who propagated people for free aboard an elf boat. There’s a reason this exact image features prominently on every poster promoting the film, and now you can keep a replica of it in your bag, or more likely in its wooden themed box. (Couldn’t they really add a gold finish to the outer ring of this coin? Really?)
The Matrix 28.35g Silver Coin ($148.50)
Like the original film, this tribute is to The Matrix and Keanu Reeves Neo is perfect: no notes at all. The coin’s wrapper is patterned with the digital rain effect of the Matrix Universe, and while the product shots make the balls Neo stops in mid-air look like a random pattern of white dots, they are actually unprinted areas on the coin’s surface. with a highly polished mirror finish on the translucent silver. In other words, it definitely looks way cooler in person.
war of stars Classic Jabba the Hutt 28.35g. Gold Coin ($3,950.85)
If you’re admiring your investment in a $4,000 collectible gold coin, do you really want a frog-eating, smuggler-imprisoning space slug gangster staring at you head-on? Most of us would say no, but the New Zealand Mint estimates there are at least 500 war of stars Fans out there who disagree and would like to add this to their very tasteful collections. See that look Salacious Crumb is giving you? You can expect the same look from your partner when you reveal what you just spent three grand on.
Batman The classic TV series The Joker 28.35 g. Silver Coin ($121.25)
It may be an unpopular opinion, but I’ll stretch out here and say that every country on earth must offer at least one circulating currency featuring Cesar Romero’s live-action ’60s Joker Batman Series. So far, only New Zealand has been brave enough to take my advice, and even then only on this silver collector coin, limited to 1,966 pieces. That’s a shame, but not such a big shame as the etched image of Queen Elizabeth II on the back didn’t give matching Joker makeup.
war of stars Death Star 28.35g. Gold Coin ($3,950.85)
now The How to convince war of stars Fans will pay close to $4,000 for a collectible that isn’t an action figure with a questionably dangerous rocket launcher. Jabba the Hutt might not be for everyone, but a $3,950.85 one ounce gold coin that looks like the Death Star? Who wouldn’t want to fill a whole piggy bank with it? Oh, that’s right, everyone with tax obligations like rent, insurance, and taxes.
Disney Beauty and the Beast 30th Anniversary 1/4 oz. Gold Coin ($1,089.89)
It’s a story as old as time. Someone with $1,000 in disposable income is looking for the best way to invest their windfall, and instead of stocks, bonds, or imaginary digital currency, why not dump the whole kit-and-kaboodle on a quarter-ounce gold coin engraved with the image on the face of an animal of a man – both inside and out – trying to woo a villager he has imprisoned? Only 250 of these will be produced, and as hard as it may be to believe, although the coin was launched last year, it hasn’t sold out yet.
Faces of Gotham Batman 28.35 g. Silver Coin ($134.87)
Somewhere down the list of coins we actually want in our pockets is this pointy-eared Batman head made out of one ounce of silver. If you thought it would be painful if you banged your leg from a house key while sitting down, imagine those bat ears leaving marks on your thigh if you’re not careful. The Mint makes 5,000 of these, so don’t feel like you have to rush ordering online if you want to add one to your collection.
war of stars Grogu in pod 28.35 g. Silver Coin ($134.87)
We’re probably all tired of Grogu by this point (presumably after finding out his name was actually Grogu), but there’s no denying the little green Jedi dropout is still adorable and available for some souvenirs at Disney paid Galaxy’s Edge featuring a $134.87 silver coin in the shape of Baby Yoda in his hover stroller is a shooting move of sorts. Like all collector coins, Grogu is 100 percent legal tender (at least in New Zealand), but with a limited mintage of 10,000 and a numbered certificate of authenticity, you might want to keep one of these instead.
The Lord of the Rings Aragorn 1/4 oz. Gold Coin ($1,089.89)
On one side of this $1,000 quarter ounce gold coin is a well coiffed image of Queen Elizabeth II wearing an ornate jeweled crown – which seems reasonable given the asking price. But on the other side is an etched image of Aragon looking forlorn and wearing a mop of dirty hair. Couldn’t they have found a more majestic image of Aragon in his fancy armor when he became king?