I’m a self-confessed vintage toy nerd. I collect vintage wrestling action figures from the 80’s & 90’s. I started purchasing some vintage toys out of nostalgia. Well, WWE and Mattel sucked me into their new stuff. I now buy a few figures a month. You can view photos of my collection on my Instagram account.
The lineup in WWE Elite series 54 is the second series in a row without a single flashback figure. It’s a smart move by Mattel, since there are plenty of other elite lines that they could throw old school wrestlers in these days. Walmart’s ‘Then, Now, Forever’, Target’s ‘Hall of Fame’ and even the Toys R Us ‘Network Spotlight series can be used to do just that.
The WWE Superstars included in Elite 54 are Charlotte Flair, Rich Swann, John Cena, The Usos and Bray Wyatt.
We give our thoughts on each figure and include some pictures.
First, I’d like to point out the new packaging. It looks slimmer and more compact, which is ideal for retail. Also, the elites once again come with stands and a background, but this year the background is a painting by Rob Schamberger. I added pictures with the pieces that come with each figure.
Charlotte Flair – It’s about time Charlotte got an elite. Sasha Banks and Bayley have each had two elites released. I believe this figure was slated to be a Defining Moments figure, but was replaced by either Wrestlemania III Macho Man or Ric Flair’s retirement attire. This is a solid figure and will go great with the rest of the ‘Women’s Revolution’ figures.
Rich Swann – This is only the second Cruiserweight elite released by Mattel. The first was a T.J. Perkins ‘Network Spotlight’ Toys R Us exclusive. This figure looks a little too much like Kofi Kingston, but it will still sell well as a ‘First Time in Line’ elite.
John Cena – I don’t know what it is, but I’m a sucker for a John Cena elite. Mattel knocks them out of the park and the fact that 85% of them come with a cloth shirt is a bonus. This will sell well and will be under many kid’s Christmas trees this year.
Bray Wyatt – This is Bray’s first elite in quite awhile. I believe the last one was all the way back in Elite 36 over a year and a half ago. This elite has his updated braids in his hair. I know some basics have came with them, so it’s nice to see an elite finally catch up.
Jimmy & Jey Uso (The Usos) – It has been a very long time since the Usos were made into elites. You have to go all the way back to Elite 31. It’s been a long time since elites came in those ghastly blue boxes. It’s nice to see the attire update as well, since the last Uso elites were the neon green trunks and facepaint.
Elite 54 should be found at retail in late-November or early-December.
Elite 55’s lineup has already been officially announced and I will be posted something about that series next week.
You can pre-order everything at RingsideCollectibles.com. I’m not getting paid to plug them (although it would be nice to get a nice discount – wink wink). I just recommend them. I’ve been pleased with every purchase. You can also check out WalkOutWear.com for pre-orders with free shipping.
I should also add TheyreActionFigures.com to my recommendation list. Awesome prices for WWE, Marvel and other toy lines. I’ve bought from them numerous times. A trusted seller and treats buyers well with great prices and fast shipping.
Bobby Roberts (otherwise known as Sweetbob) is the creator of ‘America’s White Boy’ and contributor at Project Shanks. His writing has been featured on ESPN’s ‘SportsNation’, Sports Illustrated’s Hot Clicks, Guyspeed, and various other sites. You can follow him on Twitter at @Sweetbob.