5 Old School LJN WWE Action Figures That Look Great (& 5 That Look Horrible)
Action figure collectors in 2022 are spoiled compared to collectors of the past. In 2022 we are able to pre-order figures online as well as get previews and previews via social media of promotions. Additionally, the technology used to craft figures has improved dramatically, allowing for excellent articulation and accurate likenesses.
The range of LJN action figures from WWE is very fondly remembered in the present day for all the nostalgia that accompanies them now. While some of these stylized figures still hold up well, others are just funny or goofy. That being said, here are five of the best and five of the worst WWE old school LJN characters.
ten Best: Macho Man
Randy Savage remains one of the most iconic professional wrestlers in history due to the way he speaks, the way he wrestles, and the way he looks. His sunglasses, headband and colorful gear make him instantly recognizable to fans of all ages.
Turning the Macho Man into an adorable action figure isn’t that hard of a transformation given how standout he is. Still, although LJN did a great job creating the Cream of the Crop miniature.
9 Worst: Big John Studd
While some Superstars are instantly recognizable, others have a little more trouble standing out when put into minifigure form. John Studd is an example of the latter. This is mainly because his most memorable feature was his height, which effectively became null and void when he was transformed into an LJN figure.
He has his signature colors of red and white, so that’s a big plus. However, the strange face kiss he makes knocks him back a few pegs. That would be a good number to have if you wanted to set up a date for some superstars because Studd is already smooching around.
8 Best: Hulk Hogan
Hulk Hogan is perhaps the most famous professional wrestler of all time. He was undoubtedly WWE’s biggest star for nearly a decade. It wasn’t a number that LJN could afford to mess up (although people probably would have bought it anyway in the spirit of Hulkamania).
This Hogan figure wears his signature red and yellow outfit. He also has the WWE World Title around his waist, which helped his figure stand out even more from the rest of the group. Plus, one of this action figure’s most unique features is his smile. It’s a very friendly expression, perfect for a child’s toy.
7 Worst: “Rowdy” Roddy Piper
LJN’s take on Roddy Piper isn’t a bad figure on its own. For example, the kilt around her waist was removable to allow Piper to enter a match without any potential wardrobe malfunctions.
The major problem with this character is his expression. First, he looks to the side as if he just saw a funny bird. Second, his expression doesn’t quite fit the Hot Rod. It’s almost too sweet. While it’s certainly endearing, it’s probably not the best incarnation of one of pro wrestling’s best heels.
6 Best: Bret Hart
A recurring trend in this article is that wrestlers who have signature looks and/or colors tend to make the best action figures. Luckily for Bret Hart, his LJN figure received both Bret’s signature look and pink and black color scheme. Additionally, he wears a sick pair of sunglasses, which makes the figure even more accurate.
Bret Hart was one of the best wrestlers in WWE, and LJN made sure to make his figure a great one.
5 Worst: Ricky “the Dragon” Steamboat
More than anything, this figure shows a lot of missed opportunities. We previously discussed that wrestlers who have bright colors or recognizable clothing generally make the best action figures. Ricky Steamboat should, theoretically, fall into this category. However, LJN made the very confusing decision to put Steamboat in his all-black outfit. Even his headband, the Steamboat trademark that makes him immediately identifiable, is painted black.
If this action figure featured Steamboat’s gold or red gear, it would have been perfect. However, LJN stripping him put Steamboat on the flop list.
4 The best: Kamala
Kamala is another highly recognizable superstar due to the way he covers himself in war paint before his matches. The Ugandan giant translates very well in toy form, especially in this case. LJN made sure to include the stars on his chest, the signature moon on his stomach, and the lines of white war paint on his face.
3 Worst: Adrian Adonis
While this figure is, in a way, a fairly accurate likeness, it’s still highly debatable. The posture of the figurine is not at all suitable for the fight; Normally action figures are designed so kids can recreate the matches they watch on TV in their own living room. This Adrian Adonis figure, however, doesn’t seem to have his head in the game at all. Plus, he has a funny kissing face.
2 Best: Iron Sheik
The Iron Sheik is a fan favorite, despite being a hooker for the vast majority of his career. This figure does him justice and captures his essence very well. He looks very macho and confident, much like our Sheik in real life. His mustache is almost as flawless as in real life.
LJN also decided to dress The Iron Sheik in his blue outfit, with his red and green boots. His colorful gear helps set him apart even more from the other characters and was surely very eye-catching when he was on the shelf.
1 Worst: André the Giant
With all due respect, this action figure is atrocious. First of all, it doesn’t look like André at all. His face is completely off and he looks too thin to be the giant we know and love. This articulated figurine has also aged a bit, since it represents André in a trunk when he is undoubtedly much more known for his one-shoulder swimsuit.
Andre The Giant was sports-entertainment’s first gentle giant, and here are some photos that show him in a different light.
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