2001 Bowman Heritage was released after the grand fanfare of 2001 Topps Heritage, (in which the 1952 Topps design firmly cemented itself as the go-to design for retro vintage sets) with a decidedly different feel.
Whereas, Topps Heritage was all about design and paying direct homage to the granddaddy of card sets through exact copying of back variations and shortprinting of the same numbers as the original, this first Bowman Heritage went more for an indirect approach in honoring this first Bowman set (1948). Also, Topps Heritage had practically zero of the impact rookies from that year, while Bowman Heritage included those such as Ichiro, Pujols, Hafner, and Utley in the checklist.
The 1948 Bowman set was only 48 cards, of which 12 were shortprinted (25%). The 2001 Bowman Heritage set was 440 cards of which 110 were shortprinted (25%). The 1948 Bowman set was smaller than the standard card size (picture 2007 Goudey as an approximation) and the 2001 Heritage set was standard size.
The design is very sparse in general. It is a black and white posed player portrait with no text on the front. There are no stats on the back in linear form, but only a bit of prose about the pictured player. I've never held a 1948 Bowman card, but the 2001 Bowman Heritage set was made from a cardboard stock and has no gloss.
It is not an artistic set by any means, and the attempt to include a chrome insert set with this design did not enhance the general aesthetics of the offering.
But it was Heritage and it was retro, and that's all Topps has needed in the decade of the '00s, including in 2001 when the retro craze began.
Let's see what a pack gets you. (I don't know why, but the scans are all different sizes; the cards are really all the same size)
This is the pack wrapper, a bland yellow color. I don't think this paid homage to anything. This is the gum...that I threw out.
You know what? I don't have the cards in front of me at this moment, and I'm feeling lazy. Whomever can name all the players pictured in the comments will be entered into a random drawing to receive a yet to be detemined prize (team lot/set needs, etc). Entries should be received by 12:01 AM PST this Friday because that is the time of the witching hour.