In 1990, fans were introduced to a new style of WWF (now titled WWE) wrestling action figures that were available in the early 1990’s. Some of these older figures have become sought after collectors items from Wrestling fans that have a nostalgic attraction to this style of action figures from this time period.
Mattel re-introduced this retro style in 2016 and fans that had these figures growing up, as well as fans of today have been swarming the pegs looking for the latest offerings. While the early 1990’s line only had the wrestlers of that time period, this new line has a mix of both golden era and modern characters that are jointed together into this new age. While only four golden era characters have been made, which includes The Ultimate Warrior, The Undertaker, Ric Flair and Macho Man Randy Savage, the line is more geared on modern characters as evidence in our photoshoot and the line-up.
Yesterday, we published our review of the WWE Retro Wrestling Ring that Mattel just released, and since 2016 they have been offering many great figures inspired by the early 1990’s style. The original run of the style of wrestling figures ran from 1990-1994, and offered at least all of the core wrestling characters of the 1980’s and early 1990’s. Since that time, many more characters have been introduced and some with several different outfits and clothing that Mattel has been focusing more in their 6″ line, which is by far a great line of figures if you’ve been following that collection. As of now, only a few dozen WWE superstars are offered in the retro style, and while most will run you at least $12, there are others such as Romain Reigns that come with a hefty price tag. These waves are just shipping from Mattel, and you may want to grab these now as demand on these figures are very high.
A breakdown of the latest waves are below –
WWE Retro App Figures 2018 Wave 2 – Finn Balor, Sami Zayn, Kevin Owens, Ric Flair
WWE Retro App Figures 2018 Wave 3 – Kofi Kingston, Big E, Xavier Woods, Macho Man Randy Savage
Thank you to Mattel for providing the WWE Retro Ring Playset as well as waves 2 and 3 for review.
Availability: June 2018
Mattel’s latest WWE retro figures includes two new golden era figures, Macho Man Randy Savage in his NWO (New World Order) and Ric Flair. In addition, there are also six new modern era characters including Finn Balor, Sami Zayn, Kevin Owens, as well as the first tag team brought into the retro style, which includes Kofi Kingston, Big E and Xavier Woods. Each of these figures comes with a special app that allows you to scan the bar code on the back of the figure stand and play as that character in the new game.
One important aspect about each of the figures sculpt that we immediately noticed is that while the chests, back and upper legs have a gloss coating, the head, arms and lower legs do not.
Finn Balor is in the style of a spring loaded feature, which is slightly different than what you might be used too. The right arm lifts up and causes the figure to shorten and rise back up when the arm is lifted back down. The figures arms, shorts knee pads and boots are cast in black, and the mutant teeth and green tongue are painted on his chest with nicely detailed and crisp deco, as well as the teeth and facial deco on his head. The rest of the head is cast in black, and the hair is a dark brown with nicely sculpted detail. Finn Balor’s mutant deco has some of the most detailed paint work in the retro line so far, and we especially love how it turned out.
Sami Zayn has a kicking feature for his right leg, and once that is raised the figure does have some trouble standing on his own without the use of the figure stand or leaning on another figure or the ring. The paint apps on his pants are nicely done including the red and white deco. The pants are cast in black with the logo’s and red and white deco over it, and his wrists are covered in white bandages. The head sculpt is nicely done with brown hair, a beard and a mustache. The eyes are painted as well as the tongue, which is a nice touch. The articulation includes a swivel head, swivel shoulders, swivel waist, and swivel hips with the right one having the kicking feature.
Kevin Owens features a ball jointed torso that allows him to head bunt other opponents. This is a feature that we don’t recall any of the vintage figures having, and it definitely a nice touch to the line. Kevin Owens wrestling outfit is mostly black, with his hands are gloved with his fingers showing through. He has a tattoo of a bull on his right shoulder that can out nice, and the white and light grey lettering on his torso readers Fight Owens Fight, which is also a nice touch. His facial details are nicely done with painted eyes, eye brows and a tongue. His hair is painted in a dark brown as is his mustache and beard. This is Kevin’s second figure in the retro line, as 2016 offered him with a KO letting on his chest. Besides his torso being ball jointed, he has ball jointed head and swivel shoulders.
Ric Flair is back in retro style and has a swivel waist punching action that we remember very well from the vintage line from other figures. The figure looks great, and he is wearing his light blue shorts and dark blue knee pads in the front with light blue straps in the back, and dark blue boots. His head sculpt is nicely done with an off white hair, and nicely detailed facial sculpting and deco that includes the eyes, eye browns and tongue. Unlike most figures in the retro line, Ric Flair is given a swivel elbow on his right arm, as well as a swivel head, swivel shoulders and a swivel waist that is part of his action feature. It’s great to have a legend back in this style, which follows Mattel’s other figures such as the Ultimate Warrior, the Undertaker, and Macho Man Randy Savage. Shawn Michaels is also confirmed but it’s unclear what outfit he will be wearing.
Kofi Kingston, Big E, and Xavier Woods all share the same bright pink colors in their outfits with a bright blue and symbols. Kofi Kingston has a spring feature and you would have to pull down on his back to launch him into other figures to knock them down. The paint apps includes pink pants, with blue on the knee pads and logos on the side of the legs and back of the boots. His head sculpt is nicely done and he has painted eyes and a tongue, with long black hair in the shape of a ponytail, a mustache and beard. His wrists are covered in white bandages. His articulation includes a swivel head, swivel shoulders and the spring loaded feature.
Big E features a throwing action that when you raise his arms up, they launch down and can toss another figure. His outfit includes the bright pink shirt and shorts with the logo on his chest, and black elbow pads and boots. Hi head sculpt includes painted eyes, tongue, and short black hair, mustache and beard. His articulation includes a swivel head, spring loaded shoulders, and swivel waist.
Xavier Woods features a ball jointed torso that allows his torso to move side to side rather than front to back. He is also in a bright pink pants with blue deco, and the logs on the lower portion of the pants, as well as pink bandages on his arms and blue gloves on his hands. The bright colors make the characters stand out, and are each nicely painted especially the logo’s and pink and blue deco. His head sculpt includes nicely done facial details and hair, which includes painted eyes and a tongue. Each of their mouths are opened so you can see the painted tongues. His articulation includes a swivel head, ball jointed torso, and swivel shoulders.
Macho Man Randy Savage returns in this style that has not been seen since 1994, and his action gimmick includes spring loaded arms that can be raised and shoot right back down. His outfit is the New World Order that he wore in the late 1990’s. The paint apps are done so well and crisp especially the tiny white patterns on his shirt and stars on his pants. The outfit includes the New World Order (NWO) logo on the bottom part of the shirt, with the word Madness in black text over white deco. His hands are wrapped in white bandages that looks great, and his thumbs are showing through it. His head sculpt has a bandana with the white pattern and the word Madness on the front. The back of it is cast in black. As of now, he is the only retro figure to wear glasses, which are black with shite triangles that look like teeth on the top and bottom. His his sculpt also has long brown hair, a brown mustache and beard, as well as white teeth. His articulation includes a swivel head and spring loaded shoulders.
Each of these eight new figures also includes a figure stand with a peg for the bottom of their feet, and the top of it is painted with their logo.
Overall, Mattel continues to offer such great wrestling figures and these retro inspired offerings are truly a special gift. We especially love the nostalgic throwback to the vintage line and have been so happy to have this style of figure back on shelves once more. Wresting fans should definitely be buying these as well as everyone else that once played with this style of figure growing up.
Amazon.com – Wrestling ring $20.99
Entertainment Earth – WWE Retro figures