Ahhh 1995… Lets give away 23 LJN WWF figures and the Wrestling Ring! It was a decision fuelled with passion and kindness. I don’t regret those reasons for letting go of them. Besides, I was supposedly grown up. Well, that’s what they told me. A man who does not require toys lying around, especially the wrestling ones in a plastic bag outside in the shed. I bought into in this “Adult thing” for 5 minutes, but even that short time, it was too late… the figures were out the door. Over the recent years, I have missed them dearly. Finally, late last year, some proactive steps surfaced to numb the pain associated with the loss.
You know, my wrestling figures were the last sessions of Motion Pictures 4 Figures culture, until forced adolescence deemed it inappropriate and I left behind the innocence. Yet, I could always pick a couple up in my late teens and have a wrestle.
Seeing these LJN figures for the first time was a memory to cherish. They were an interesting scale too. Up till then, I had used 3.75 inch figures to simulate wrestling action. Lobot even became Hulk Hogan, complete with fine yellow cotton hair, meticulously attached. As good as those games were, the 3.75 were shoved aside with pleasure as I welcomed the real thing. The solid rubber construction of the WWF figures was at first, seen as a handicap, but quickly became an advantage. Using a hollow wood table (later the Wrestling ring) I was able to get a wondrous THUD! when those heavy rubber bodies hit the canvas! Or when I simulated the stomping to get that sound effect when I was hammering away! Throw in some Vince McMahon & Jesse Ventura commentary impersonations for the icing on the cake.
My wrestling figures even found a career outside of the ring. A number of them starred in bizarre films and a group of them joined Action Man in the costumed crime era of early 1989 and became The Mutant 9.
However, all this was nothing but memories after I gave them away….
Time revealed the cost of retaining these figures was high.. too high for a former collector to consider. It was only in 2018 that I found a Corporal Kirchner at an acceptable price tag. Most fitting as Kirchner was the first wrestler I got back in ’88! I didn’t know who he was back then but selection was limited and I had to get my first wrestling figure. Alas, Kirchner became mine again! It was wonderful to bend that rubbery mass once again. His paintwork was quite run down, so in true crime against collector mentality, I gave him a repaint. My color matches were off but he looks sensational!
Kirchner’s fisted right arm always served well for body slams and hip tosses. Jesse “The Body” Ventura joined my collection just recently. I like having just the two of them on display… but who am I fooling?