In a fitting pairing for its WWE Battle Pack line, Mattel puts Wrestlemania 30 combatants Daniel Bryan and Triple H in a set recalling a key moment that led to their fateful encounter.
I’d been eyeing this set for awhile and when I came across a great deal, I rushed to grab it. So let’s see if this set was worth the wait.
Packaging: It’s no different than a super-sized Basic package, but I like the Battle Pack. Mattel always comes up with a cool pose to make them stand out a bit more from the standard figures while giving MOC collectors a little something special.
I really wish Mattel would put more effort into the back package even if it’s just a quick paragraph to explain why these two figures are paired together.
Likeness: Mattel still has gotten Bryan’s likeness down yet. At times I question Mattel’s decision to make a portrait of the wrestler so prominent on the packaging as it provides a perfect reference for how the figure should look. Bryan is a case where that works against Mattel.
The figure’s eyes lack Bryan’s focused intensity, but the biggest issue remains the hair. The Mattel sculptors can’t work in every strand of hair, but the beard looks too neat and the hair isn’t nearly as disheveled as Bryan typically keeps it.
Triple H fares much better. The head sculpt reflects the more stern, corporate Triple H and not the smirky, cocky bastard he was in the ring. You’re not going to hear a lot of people put this at the top of their lists, but this is definitely one of the better head sculpts Mattel has done.
Scale: At 6’4″ Triple H should stand a few notches taller than the 5’10” Daniel Bryan. Without breaking out the ruler, the figures look to be right in scale with each other. I say this in just about every review, but effectively capturing the varying heights and weights of the wrestlers is one of the best things Mattel has done with the line.
Paint: Similar to my major issue with the Wrestlemania 30 Daniel Bryan, the head isn’t cast in the flesh color plastic used for the rest of the body and is painted on.
The skin tone doesn’t match up well and makes Bryan look pale and sickly. With Mattel releasing so many Daniel Bryan figures it’s frustrating that this continues to be an issue with the line.
The rest of the figure features an outstanding paint job, which is especially impressive considering how complicated the flame design is on these tights and boots.
Triple H has far less paint issues to be concerned with since he’s mostly covered in a black suit. There’s no red overspray on the tie and the eyes, eyebrows and beard are painted very cleanly.
Accurately capturing the Authority-era Triple H hairstyle is all contingent on the paint apps, which can only do so much since Mattel doesn’t do any shading or paint washes in the hair sculpts. If you’re willing to play around with the colors to better simulate his buzz cut, you could enhance the sculpt a lot.
Articulation: Daniel Bryan is your average Basic figure. He’s got neck, ball-jointed shoulders, biceps, elbow, wrist, waist, hips, knees and ankles. As always, the omission of the torso and ball jointed hips is the biggest hindrance in being able to simulate most of the moves.
The standard Mattel suit body surprisingly has more articulation than the regular Basic body mold so Triple H nearly has Elite level articulation. He’s got neck, ball-jointed shoulders, biceps, elbow, wrist, waist, hip hinge, thigh swivel, double-jointed knees and ankles.
Accessories: It’s rare for the Battle Packs to be so specific to one incident, but this pack directly references the March 14, 2014 RAW episode when Triple H beat down Bryan with the help of some handcuffs.
The handcuffs aren’t anything special. I figure having real chain links wouldn’t be cost effective, but I wish Mattel went with a darker grey as the lighter shade plastic used really makes it look like a toy. The value of the Battle Pack accessories wildly varies from pack to pack, but this is a very useful one.
Worth it? I got this during a Toys R Us sale where the Battle Packs were $15 so in essence, I got the Elite Authority version Triple H I wanted for $5 cheaper and with handcuffs and a Daniel Bryan figure thrown in.
Rating: 9 out of 10
On his own, Triple H would warrant nearly a perfect score himself if Mattel could’ve gotten the hair buzz cut down a bit better with regards to the paintjob. A better Daniel Bryan headsculpt/paint job all around would have raised the set to a 10.
Where to get it? This is one set you can find pretty much all over from Toys R Us, Target to Wal-Mart. A new Battle Pack series has hit shelves so you may want to grab it before waiting a few months down the road.
Amazon.com currently has the best price for it: WWE Battle Pack Series #32 – Daniel Bryan vs. Triple H Action Figure (2-Pack)
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