Top-Down Smackdown: For Wrestling Toys, It’s All About the (Custom) Base
As has been the norm for Toy Fairs since Mattel took the WWE license, there were no massive new line-up reveals – those tend to be saved for Ringside Fest and Comic-Con. But between Mattel and other companies, what was revealed ironically allows the fans to finally do what Vince McMahon has such trouble with – create new stars and situations.
Finally bringing the WWE video games’ popular create-a-wrestler feature into the toy world, the new Create-a-WWE-Superstar sets come with body parts to make a figure, in-scale with other Mattels, who can either be a version of an existing star or someone else entirely. Extra body parts and a tattoo sheet are included, though I can’t imagine the tats standing up to rough kiddie play, unless they’re made of some sort of new material.
The Hulk Hogan set also allows you to make his masked alter-ego “Mr. America” for the first time – Jakks Pacific had tried to make him as a mail-away figure but WWE rejected it, presumably because the company had recently stopped using the gimmick, and Hogan’s on-again/off-again relationship with WWE had gone off.
(Check out the full set at Wrestlingfigs.com)
If the line continues, it could be a more useful way to do build-a-figures than in those annoyingly hard-to-collect repaint sets we get every year around the holidays, and it could also produce enough generic heads to make a custom avatar of yourself. Assuming these toys are reasonably sturdy once out together, it seems a great idea.
And for those who have the space, yet another company has filled in a key vacuum in the wrestling toy world:
Yep, I don’t know where you’ll find the table or the floor to hold it, but Ringside Collectibles now makes a barricade and crash-mat set for the extra-large Elite Scale ring, to make the most complete arena set up possible. Combined with existing entrance stages and such, you could fill your entire room with a diorama set up, though it’s tough to imagine either an adult collector with the space, or a kid collector secure enough that a stray parental foot won’t accidentally rain down destruction upon the set-up.
I am still very glad that it exists.
P.S. how out-of-touch is Vince that his big “free” pay-per-view show is going head to head with the Oscars?