Before heels got too concerned with being cool, The Honky Tonk Man arguably was the best in the post Rowdy Roddy Piper era of the WWF. He couldn’t match up to superior athletes like Randy Savage or Ricky Steamboat and wasn’t as savvy as Jake Roberts, which made his stranglehold on the Intercontinental title even more frustrating. Mattel first tackled Honky way back with Elite Series 21 in his alternate red attire.
But for most fans, Honky’s signature colors were blue and white. It didn’t help that Mattel made a Basic in that signature look. Thankfully we got another shot of the last Honky Tonk Man figure we’ll need with the GameStop exclusive RetroFest figure. GameStop has been a godsend in creating a retailer outlet for alternate looks for Flashback figures that aren’t just Randy Savage and The Ultimate Warrior. Let’s see if this figure has me shaken or ready to roll.
Packaging: I still love the RetroFest line arcade game presentation. As far as boxes go it can get a little tricky finding one not beaten down if you’re a MOC collector.
I love that his bio has eye rake as one of his signature moves. It’s so true.
Likeness: Mattel actually went the extra step in sculpting a new head for HTM, which has a bit more of that cocky swag than the smiling happy version we got with the original head sculpt.
That’s the big change with the figure that’s otherwise a repaint of the previous Elite figure, which is fine as that base was solid and far less flattering than some 80s stars.
Scale: HTM was 6’1” putting him the same height as Macho Man while looking down at the 5’11” Ricky Steamboat. The 6’5″ Jake the Snake should be a tad taller, but the overall scaling is fine.
Paint: I rarely worry about Mattel’s paintwork on their figures as that’s been one of their hallmarks since gaining the WWE license and there was no problem there either.
Articulation: HTM was a basic punch, stomp and kick style wrestler so the Elite body works just fine for him.
You won’t have any problem hitting the Shake, Rattle and Roll finisher or clobbering someone with the guitar.
Honky’s arms are a little short making sleeperholds tricky, but that’s my only issue.
WWE RetroFest Honky Tonk Man has:
- ball-jointed shoulders
- wrist hinge
Accessories: HTM comes with another of his trademark Elvis-inspired jumpsuits. My preference to blue aside this is a big improvement over the first one, which was far less intricate. The only weird thing is Honky had a custom HTM belt on this attire.
Initially I thought it was left out over some sort of licensing issue, but it’s featured prominently on the side. I doubt I would have noticed it if Mattel didn’t include it in the package. Even with that omission it’s hard not to be impressed with the work done on this jumpsuit. That’s why it’s so hard figuring out who Mattel decides warrants the all out presentation and who can get the just OK treatment.
Of course his other accessory is his signature guitar that’s ready to break the moment it crashes into someone’s head. I wish Mattel started alternate hands here as HTM could use hands that could hold the guitar better.
Worth it? Right now, you can get HTM for $18, but GameStop tends to have a number of sales and I’d wait out to get him cheaper. Not because the value isn’t there, but because there’s no need to pay full price when you can get another figure with the savings price. I bought him too early as GameStop just had a sale where HTM was $5. Ugh. The roller coaster ride of collecting.
Rating: 10 out of 10
This was the iconic version of Honky Tonk Man that I’d wanted all along. Mattel really delivered with this one from the exquisite jumpsuit to the new head sculpt. I really like this figure.