For decades, professional wrestling has provided an incredible blend of energetic performance art and highly athletic sport. While there have been various toys and figures representing wrestlers, Mattel really upped the game with their WWE figures and accessories. For that maneuver, the Mattel WWE series is now a member of the Pop Culture Hall of Fame.
The Mattel WWE (Worldwide Wrestling Entertainment) includes highly sculpted display figures with realistic features, as well as more posable, more rugged, more tossable play figures. The toys are designed to take a beating, with kids mimicking all kids of moves including turnbuckle dives, piledrivers, and suplexes. There’s also a line of fashion dolls, compatible with Barbie, including the women of WWE in their civilian clothes.
But the range goes well beyond figures of the wrestlers. Ringside announcers, referees, even shady promoter types get their own figures. And best of all, there is a set of wrestling rings with props including folding chairs, breakaway tables, and other things to throw or be thrown into. Quite a few older legends are represented in vintage. Mattel also offers a series of wearable championship belts so kids can strut their stuff before and after matches.
The massive crossover appeal of stars like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and John Cena have certainly boosted WWE’s popularity of late. Cena, in addition to increasing his profile in movies (some of them definitely adult fare), has also appeared in various animated shows aimed at kids. As long as the sport continues to entertain, Mattel will continue to fuel kids’ imaginations.