The 8 most ridiculous action figures ever made!
All plastic men are not created equal. Matter of fact, some of them are pretty terrible.
For all of the classic action figures that find a place of prestige in a kid’s toy box, there are plenty of duds that get left at the store, warming pegs before the ultimate injustice of the discount rack.
Always interested in the overlooked areas of wrestling history, WWEClassics.com combed through yard sales and eBay to find Alex Wright's sole action figure, a Headbanger that makes bath time lots of fun and more of the most awkward wrestling toys ever made.
"Power Slam WCW Wrestlers" Dennis Rodman
Dennis Rodman’s late ’90s run with WCW was a landmark event for celebrity crossovers in sports-entertainment. Still, while the NBA Hall of Famer’s in-ring action grabbed plenty of attention, his WCW action figure was all but ignored.
Released as part of the “Power Slam WCW Wrestlers” line in 2000, the figure hit shelves months after Rodman’s final WCW bout against Randy Savage at Road Wild in August 1999. By then, Rodman had shed his black and white nWo colors and outfitted himself in flashy trenchcoats and audacious fedoras, which kind of explains why this toy comes with a feathered pink cowboy hat. Odd accessories aside, it’s hard to mock the figure’s attention to detail. Rodman’s random assortment of tattoos — including fuzzy pink dice, a Harley Davidson motorcycle and a flaming ankh around his belly button — were all captured with perfect realism. But what kid was hoping to learn about "The Worm's" ink on Christmas morning?
"Wiseguyz" D-Generation X
D-Generation X was known for its juvenile antics and crude sense of humor. However, in 2000, JAKKS decided to release figures of Triple H, X-Pac and The New Age Outlaws in a boxed set that reimagined the hilarious degenerates as a group of gangsters from the '30s.
Dubbed “Wiseguyz,” the figures were actually well-made. Each Superstar’s face looked accurate and realistic, but they all had virtually the same body. The only difference was Road Dogg and X-Pac wore sport coats while Billy Gunn and Triple H did not.
This was a great set of action figures if you were looking for a set of henchmen for Batman to beat up, but in terms of recreating the action of WWE, the “Wiseguyz” weren’t too smart.
"S.T.O.M.P. 2: Underwater Siege" Headbanger Thrasher
JAKKS deserves some degree of credit for the unique spins they put on WWE action figures, but just because something is different doesn’t mean it’s better. Case in point: 1997’s “S.T.O.M.P.” line, which reimagined competitors like Brian Pillman and Ken Shamrock as members of a “G.I. Joe”-style mercenary group known as the Special Tactical Operations Military Police — or “S.T.O.M.P.” for short.
The first lineup — which featured Ahmed Johnson with a machine gun and body armor — wasn’t without its charms, but the run went overboard with the second series — “S.T.O.M.P. 2: Underwater Siege.” Slapping flippers and oxygen tanks on figures of The Rock and both Headbangers (!), the line presented WWE Superstars as “Ultimate Undersea Warriors” who sought to bring down terrorists (possibly aliens, according to the packaging) off the coast of Playa del Norte. JAKKS may have been hoping to blow rubber duckies out of the water with these aqua men. Too bad they sank.
"WCW Collectible Wrestlers" Alex Wright
In the mid-90s, WCW tried to recreate the collectible magic of LJN’s classic 1980s WWE figures. For collectors, it was a nice novelty to have Sting or Ric Flair in such a style, but Alex Wright?
It’s true, the only Alex Wright figure — seriously, Das Wunderkind had an action figure — came in the third series of 1994’s “WCW Collectible Wrestlers.” Granted, the line also included Big Bubba Rogers and Sgt. Craig “Pitbull” Pittman alongside Hulk Hogan and “Macho Man” Randy Savage, but they weren’t nearly as ridiculous as the Alex Wright figure.
The German competitor was known for his dancing, yet this figure did not move. It wasn’t even posed in his trademark dance move. Instead, it looked like a generic wrestler in a leather jacket looking to give out free hugs. Even Berlyn deserved better than this.
"Brawlin' Bikers" Diamond Dallas Page
During the late ’90s, the stars of WCW descended on the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally every August for Road Wild, which led Toy Biz to release a series of overpriced action figures on hogs dubbed “Brawlin’ Bikers.” At first glance, fans may have thought it was a great way to recreate the excitement of the annual event, but this toy was not all it was cracked up to be.
Sure, a pair of AA batteries allowed the motorcycle to move in its own, but the novelty ended there. Typically, kids want their wrestling toys to at least be poseable. Not only were the figures disproportionate to other WCW toys, but — save for moveable legs and shoulders — there was no action to these figures. “Brawlin’ Bikers” hit the clearance rack pretty fast, but at least Toy Biz learned. The next series of motorcycle figures — Road Wild Wrestlers — came with actual action figures.
"Ring Masters" Chris "The Lionheart" Jericho
WCW’s “Ring Masters” series started out with a clever conceit — the names of finishing maneuvers would be taken literally and reflected in the character. So Bret “Hit Man” Hart was reimagined as a mob sharpshooter complete with Tommy gun and pinstripe suit. And Goldberg — the master of the Jackhammer — became a construction worker with a hardhat and, for some strange reason, a tombstone inscribed with “Who’s next?”
Chris Jericho — billed awkwardly as “The Lionheart” — was one of the few competitors chosen for the line, but his toy was downright embarrassing. Playing off his Liontamer hold, the figure was given a whip and a chair just like the guys at the circus. But instead of an actual vicious lion, Jericho’s toy came with a little kitty cat. Goldberg gets an implement of destruction and Jericho gets a tabby he has to fight off with a whip? No wonder the guy fled the company.
"S.T.O.M.P. 3: Space Domination" Marc Mero
“S.T.O.M.P. 2: Underwater Siege” may have left JAKKS soaking wet, but the company continued with the series, launching Superstars like Kane, The Undertaker and, for some unexplainable reason, Marc Mero into deep space with “S.T.O.M.P. 3: Space Domination.”
Now Mero — while an undeniably talented performer — was never a favorite of WWE fans. Why he was chosen to be immortalized as a spaceman sent to the stratosphere to battle a rogue band of terrorists for control of a satellite is hard to figure. At least his outfit looked cool, right? Well, sorta. While the snap-on armor was impressively detailed, it fell off the figure with the slightest touch — not exactly suited for an intergalactic rumble. Those unfortunate kids who got a "S.T.O.M.P. 3: Space Domination" Marc Mero probably launched their toy into outer space with a bottle rocket.
"Maximum Sweat" Road Dogg
What the what?! JAKKS’ “Maximum Sweat” line was bizarre from the jump. WWE favorites like Road Dogg and Triple H were molded into malformed little monsters with veiny necks and pained faces that made them look like they were struggling to pass kidney stones. The gruesome designs were bad enough, but the hook of this series was that the Superstars really perspired.
The unfortunate child would fill a vial (labeled “Official Federation Sweat”) with water and then empty it into an opening on the toy’s back. By repeatedly pushing a button, the kid could make the figure “sweat.” It was more or less an answer to those “Baby Alive” dolls that were able to wet themselves, but who was looking for that answer?