Fresh off of defeating Hulk Hogan at Wrestlemania 6, the sky was the limit for The Ultimate Warrior as the new undisputed heavyweight champion.
With Hogan vanquished, new challengers who thought they’d stand a better chance against the Warrior started lining up and first among them was Ravishing Rick Rude, the only man to pin Warrior in a WWF ring back at Wrestlemania V. Rude would get his shot at Summerslam 1990, arguably Warrior’s biggest match during his reign.
Seemingly eons ago, Mattel gave us a Rude in Summerslam 90 attire and now the first wave in the Target exclusive Hall of Fame series provides us with the Warrior from the signature event. Let’s see if it was worth the wait.
Packaging: There’s no mistaking this for the regular Elite line and I love the little touches that make this stand out. Blue and gold are the prominent colors compared to the Elite blue and grey/silver. We get a decent sized Warrior portrait in the left corner, but I’m curious why Mattel didn’t photoshop the appropriate colors to match the figure.
In a cool reference to Hall of Fame recipients in other sports with bronze busts, the character portrait on the side panel is colored gold. It’s a little thing, but one that helps distinguish this as a Hall of Fame line.
There’s a pretty significant goof regarding the Ring Attire section since this definitely isn’t what Warrior wore at the 2014 Hall of Fame. While I like the portrait, I’d love a picture from the event the attire is based on even more. The bio provides a solid (WWF) career overview, which I’d love to see for all flashbacks.
Likeness: The HOF Warrior features the third Warrior headsculpt. I can almost hear him grunting through another of his nonsensical promos. I’m still partial to the Legends Series 6 yelling sculpt as it captures the Warrior better.
Physique-wise, this body type is ideal for Warrior and looks every bit the superhero come to life as the man himself.
If you’re a real stickler for attire accuracy, Warrior sported more of a cowboy boot instead of the traditional ones Mattel used here. With the plastic overlay they use for the tassels, I doubt the cowboy boot mold would work especially well so that’s my best guess as to why that was changed.
Scale: Warrior was 6’3″ so his figure seems to be just right compared to other figures. Rude was also 6’3″ Animal was 6’2″ and Kerry Von Erich was 6’3″ as well for reference.
Paint: By August 1990, Warrior’s hair was pretty much dirty blonde while the figure features blonde highlights instead. Considering Mattel has no reason to stop cranking out Warrior figures, I wish they’d been more diligent in capturing his late 1990 look better.
Warrior’s facepaint doesn’t seem to be an exact match for the Summerslam match, but since I can’t find a better reference picture for what those smaller details are, I won’t knock Mattel for skipping them either.
One of the things that helped Warrior become so popular early on was his colorful attire and this is one of his best. I’ve always been a sucker for the black with multi-colored accents. My OCD is bothering me with the “Ultimate” being on the left knee pad instead of the more reader-friendly right one.
It’s accurate to how Warrior wore them though. The details on the knee pads is sharp just like the tights. Paint wise this is one of the best Mattel figures I’ve picked up in awhile.
Articulation: Typical Elite articulation so Warrior has neck, ball-jointed shoulders, elbow, wrist, torso, waist, hips, thigh swivel, knees and ankle.
Accessories: Ultimate Warrior isn’t a guy that has a lot of obvious accessories, so he gets the only one he needs for this time period – the WWF title. Mattel went the nice additional mile for accuracy and gave Warrior a blue leather title to perfectly capture his look for the match.
We’ve gotten a lot of the traditional black world titles so giving Warrior a unique belt was a great bonus.
Even better the lettering on the title is sharp and we get a rare blue painted globe. This is easily one of the better title belts Mattel has given us as belt painting has been something they’ve trailed Jakks’ titles consistently.
Worth it? The Ultimate Warrior is a guy Mattel probably won’t ever be able to fully satisfy the demand. Chalk it up to the colorful attires. Not even counting Basics, this is the 5th Warrior figure so it really depends on how big a fan you are if this is worth tracking down. For me, the multi-color scheme, tight joints and special belt make this figure I’m happy to add to my growing Ultimate Warrior collection.
RATING: 9.5 out of 10
Blonde hair or a new expression would have given Warrior a perfect score, but this is a terrific version of the Hall of Famer and a standout in the Hall of Fame line.
Where to get it? The Hall of Fame line is exclusive to Target, but you definitely need to hit the stores up sooner than later as the second wave has been selling through quickly and few will likely restock on the first wave.
If that’s not an option for you, order from Amazon.com here: Mattel, WWE, Elite Collection Hall of Fame Exclusive Action Figure, Ultimate Warrior
[amazon asin=B00RPI1DHE&template=iframe image][amazon asin=B00RH4PK3Y&template=iframe image][amazon asin=B00RUALYL2&template=iframe image]