They are lying, or you misunderstood. I understand they are all surplus old stock and maybe come with scratches. I have four and they are all pristine. The module is all-new assembly and I imagine there is enough quality control to screen out any that are badly scratched. Most of mine came from Singapore as they are one of the few outfits that offer them with white LEDs and it also enables me to keep the wiring consistent.
All 5110s are mono with black chars and all are fine for daylight use - as is the phone.
The advantage of the 5110 is its price, size, shape, and resolution. If that is what you want, there is no alternative - just like the 5110 is no alternative if you want something different, and are prepared to pay for it.