Throughout his decades of picking experience, American Pickers host Mike Wolfe has collected some unique film relics. With his vast knowledge of cinema, he’s been able to identify iconic pieces of film history that others might think are just another piece of junk. Most of the time, these items end up being props or pieces of costumes, and they almost always have a thriving fanbase just waiting for it to hit the market.
During the Q&A session of a book signing, the American Pickers star shared the story of the time he found a full alien suit in someone’s basement. But this wasn’t the pick he originally came for. At one point in his career, he found an ad in a Wisconsin paper for old Harley Davidson literature that was for sale. Wolfe contacted the man to see if he had any left, and the two met at a bus stop for the exchange.
Ever the talented collector and salesman, Wolfe convinced the seller to let him take a look at the bike parts that he had in his basement. That led him to a dark room with a stranger and a giant alien head.
“Imagine walking down a dark basement with a Grizzly Adams-looking dude and you see that,” Wolfe told the crowd.
As the American Pickers star quickly learned, the piece was an actual costume from the 1955 sci-fi movie, This Island Earth. The costume was complete with the headpiece, shoulder pads and extremities. At first glance, it’s no wonder Wolfe felt a little nervous about the seller.
‘American Pickers’ Star Discusses Importance of Unusual Items
Even though the costume was in rough shape, Wolfe decided to take it home anyway for a measly $50. If not to sell then just because it was unusual.
“It’s still cool, you know? That’s what I was talking about something unusual and different, that you haven’t seen before, that sparks emotion. That was one of those pieces,” the American Pickers star explained.
Like many professions, picking to Wolfe often resembled an art form. Not every piece he took home needed to have a practical purpose. Rather, if it resonated with him in some way, it was more than worth the money and the long journey.
Oftentimes, this is still the case on the show, too. On American Pickers, Wolfe will find something that reminds him of his childhood or his love for bikes and will gladly shell out the money to the seller. He’ll drive a hard bargain and likely leave with a good deal. But nevertheless, he continuously demonstrates his love for and appreciation of the weird and unusual. After all, those are the items that we remember the most.