Yay! We get to finally kick 2020 to the curb Seth Rollins style. But before we do that, let’s celebrate some of Mattel’s best offerings for the legends/flashbacks section of its WWE line. I had lofty plans of doing a best of WWE in general, but my legends preference meant they cut the line in most cases. And with more than enough options, it was easy to do a Top 10 WWE Legends figures.
My rule was simple: I had to receive and review the figure in 2020 so a figure like the Ultimate Edition Hollywood Hogan likely would have gained a top spot, but since I didn’t overpay to get him early he’s going to arrive in 2021.
So let’s see who made the final cut.
10. Freddie Blassie — The Fashion Plate kicks us off with the first of several managers/seconds on the list. I’m a big fan of the WWF manager roster and getting this bridge from the 70s to the 80s was a big key. Blassie isn’t the fanciest figure, but Mattel executed him perfectly with the cloth sparkly ring jacket, diamond rings and his trusty cane. Now if we can just get Slick, Captain Lou Albano and Mr. Fuji…
9. Miss Elisabeth (Elite 77) — Mattel already released two Miss Elizabeth figures and the third feels like the clear model for any future versions. Elizabeth gets a better head sculpt and just as important, a much improved hair sculpt. Commemorating the first SummerSlam main-event, this figures has a bonus with the ability to show off Liz’s itsy bitsy bikini.
8. Jake the Snake Roberts (Legends Series 8) — Jake is a character that’s had some great figures from Mattel, but this one tops them all with an amazingly lifelike head sculpt. This figure also had a chase that wasn’t hard to find for collectors who preferred the green color scheme.
7. Stunning Steve Austin (Elite 81) — Austin just made the cut as he arrived December 30. I’m glad he did though as this is a sweet version of one half of The Hollywood Blondes. The head sculpt is terrific and this is the first figure with the vintage WCW tag team titles. Maybe the only thing that held him back from not being higher on the list was an accompanying Flyin Brian figure.
6. The Ultimate Warrior (Legends Series 8) — Of the numerous Ultimate Warrior figures Mattel has made this is easily the most subdued, but it represents a historic moment in the history of the WWE. This figure captures Warrior from his final appearance on Monday Night Raw with a promo that with the benefit of hindsight almost foreshadows his death hours later.
Mattel did outstanding work on the older head sculpt and included the necessary accessories like the airbrushed trench coat and Warrior mask. This is truly a fitting final Warrior appearance from Mattel.
5. Eddie Guerrero (Legends Series 8) — Ironically this is another figure representing the last few days of a wrestling icon. This features Latino Heat from his I’m Your Papi storyline as Eddie begins one more run at the WWE title against his pal Batista.
With the most accurate head sculpt with a touch of mischief that really drives home Eddie’s personality, a great paint job and worthwhile accessories, this was an easy Top 5 choice.
4. Mr. T (San Diego Comic Con exclusive) — Mattel always delivers with its SDCC exclusives and this was one of the best. Mr. T was a major factor in the WWE’s ascension in the early 80s and Mattel did him full justice with a gaggle of gold chains, bracelets and cameo jacket presented in the style of a classic WWF VHS tape.
The only reason he’s not higher on the list is due to Mattel’s decision to go with blue tights instead of his Wrestlemania 1 red tights.
3. Chyna — For too long the WWE acted as if Chyna didn’t exist. Fortunately, Chyna is being hailed as the trailblazer she was during the Attitude Era and Mattel is seizing the opportunity to deliver multiple looks of her career. Thankfully they went with a relatively close to debut appearance that embodies her stint as Triple H’s tough backup.
The attention to detail is strong with this figure and Mattel even implemented some unique articulation for Chyna easily making for the most articulated female figure that’s not an Ultimate Edition.
2. Superstar Billy Graham — I usually can find some worthwhile issues with any figure and in some cases, I’ll overlook them because the rest of the figure is so well executed. I didn’t have to do that with The Superstar as he is one of the absolute best figures Mattel has cranked out over the last 10 years.
His 70s presentation was enough but Mattel went the extra route and took advantage of his ring attire to make a 2 in 1 figure to include his late 80s WWF look. That was a super bonus and made an already great figure one of the year’s standouts.
1. The Rock (Ultimate Edition) — It took The Great One going ultimate to dethrone Superstar. I’ve been a big fan of the Ultimate Edition line and The Rock represents one of the best offerings of that line so far. The three headsculpts offer so much more in terms of posing options.
The yelling head sculpt might be one of the all-time most versatile alternate head sculpts Mattel has done. The other accessories are great and it all comes together with the most articulated Rock figure we’ve gotten from Mattel yet. This was a close one given Superstar is functional in two displays, but The Rock is one of the WWE’s biggest stars and one of my all-time favorites so an excellent figure of him gives him the nod…or the eyebrow.
Those are my Top 10 WWE Legends for the year. What were some of your favorite Legends/Flashback figures from Mattel in 2020?