Ric Flair is among a handful of wrestlers that doesn’t really need an introduction. In his prime he was responsible for many of the best matches in the 80s and still managed to deliver some quality ones well into the 90s. Now Flair makes his debut in the WWE Ultimate Edition line.
Let’s see if this is the defining, ultimate version of The Nature Boy.
Package: Wave 9 features the standard Ultimate Edition red and white color scheme. The red backdrop works much better for figures with contrasting colors like Flair.
The package art is so odd as the image is literally the exact outfit Flair wore in that promo shot, but for some reason it looks like it got put through some weird filter that makes it look like it was Photoshopped. On the back we’ve got a shot of the figure with the robe on and the other picture features Flair in action with this attire.
Copywriter Robert Rudman crafts another strong bio and shows why he’s the best in the business.
Likeness: Flair comes with two head sculpts. Both feature great likenesses with nice flowing hair although they’re lacking in showing a good range of Flair emotions. The default portrait features a semi-cocky smile.
That would be fine if we had an angry/serious head sculpt. I guess I can swap out for one of the Elite Flair head sculpts, which offer different expressions?
The torso choice is right as it’s not overly defined, but reflects that Flair did work on his physique and cardio to some extent. He’s got the smaller sized kneepads, which I appreciate since they won’t interfere with his movements.
Scale: Flair was 6’1″ the same height as his principal rival, Dusty Rhodes and he should be looking up at his other rival the 6’2″ Sting. Man, I wish Mattel had gotten around to getting Sting in the Ultimate Edition line before he left to go to AEW.
The hair makes Flair a little taller than he should be, but it’s definitely not a case of the new format suddenly making him drastically out of scale.
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Paint: Of the various colors Flair wore, the purple with white boots was my favorite. Naturally, Mattel decided to go with pink boots. There’s precedence here as Flair wore this combination at Bash at the Beach 1994 when he lost the WCW title to Hulk Hogan. Of course, Flair had much shorter hair for that match.
Flair wore the purple and white combination in some of his more memorable matches including the first Clash of the Champions against Sting and his return to action match against Terry Funk at The Great American Bash 1989.
So far Mattel hasn’t made a Flair with white boots with the purple lettering. The closest we’ve gotten is a Flair with blue lettering in a Basic pack with Charlotte. Still, I wish I’d grabbed that set now.
The first one they do I fully plan on swapping out with these boots. My style preference aside, the paintwork on the figure is very nicely done. As usual, the laces are kinda inconsistent but mostly line up properly.
Flair’s initials are applied neatly, which is impressive since the white lettering often needs multiple applications to avoid bleed through. The Nature Boy’s hair is good capturing his platinum blonde hue just right. It would be nice to see Mattel add Flair’s hairy arms.
Articulation: The standard Elite articulation already allowed for a great Figure Four.
The addition of butterfly shoulders aids with chops and overall just making for a smoother, better articulated figure.
I appreciate how Mattel has stepped up their game to improve poseability.
Ultimate Edition Ric Flair has:
- ball-jointed shoulders
- butterfly shoulder
- elbows (double-jointed)
- knees (double-jointed)
For Flair the butterfly shoulders help with the assisted Figure Four.
Accessories: The Nature Boy comes with an alternate Woooo-ing head. That’s pretty specific although that makes perfect sense for Flair.
We’ve seen Mattel add two alternate heads to other Ultimate Edition figures. That wouldn’t have been bad for Flair considering the figure lacks a true neutral/focused expression.
He comes with the WWE version of The Big Gold Belt. I know it’s an extra expense, but I would have loved if Mattel added a Ric Flair name plate on it.
Flair gets two other swappable set of hands — one set is the index finger for the infamous Flair Wooo-ing strut. The other is a 4 Horsemen hand. Hopefully, we’ll get a Barry Windham and Lex Luger to match since Arn Anderson and Tully Blanchard are still with AEW. They can double for chop hands as well.
Finally, Flair has one of his signature robes. It’s the pink version one to match with the Ultimate Edition Charlotte. I wish Mattel went with the deep purple one instead, but it looks fantastic with a nice amount of fur and the excellent tailoring to get the sleeves down right.
Worth it? I grabbed Flair for the usual $30 price tag. He’s got enough accessories to be worth a few more dollars than the usual Elite figure although I really wish he had another head to truly add extra value.
Rating: 9.5 out of 10
I’m dinging this for the choice of the pink boots and the lack of at least one neutral head, which should be the norm for this line. The robe is fantastic though and the accessories really do make this a nearly definitive Flair figure. I definitely wouldn’t mind Mattel revisiting this mold relatively quickly like the UE10 Rock and Cena.
Where to get it? The Ultimate Edition figures tend to be hard to find in stores, but they’re just starting to trickle in now. Target seems like the best bet although you can order Flair online from Amazon or Target.