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The wrestling action figure landscape changed in January 2010. WWE’s 14-year relationship with Jakks Pacific came to an end as Vince McMahon and company signed a lucrative deal with toy giant Mattel. Jakks didn’t want to get out of the wrestling toy business, so they began producing TNA action figures.
The TNA figures from Jakks were generally well received by fans, but they didn’t sell especially well. Some figures hung on pegs collecting dust at stores like Toys R Us, Target and Kmart for several years until they were clearanced out at reduced prices. Production slowed down after the first two years, and the final series was released early in 2014.
But 10 years later, the TNA figures have found a loyal audience. Collectors generally agree that there were far more good TNA Jakks figures than bad. Several figures command big bucks, especially the online exclusives that were sold at RingsideCollectibles.com and ShopTNA.com.
Here’s a look at five of the best – and four of the worst – TNA action figures from Jakks Pacific.
- Raven Legends of the Ring. In a 2018 PWTorch Collectibles Column interview (LINK: https://www.pwtorch.com/site/2018/05/04/collectibles-column-raven-talks-action-figures-comics-and-the-raven-effect-podcast/), Raven quipped about this figure, “That leather jacket was enormous. It was like I was wearing my dad’s coat.” With all due respect to Raven, collectors disagree. This is one of the most sought after Jakks TNA figures, commanding around $60 loose complete with leather jacket and as much as $150 in package. Although the figure was released around the time of Raven’s EV 2.0 run in 2010, it looks remarkably like Raven during his peak ECW years, except for the braided hair.
- Hulk Hogan and Sting Ringside Collectibles Exclusive Legends of the Ring Two-Pack. During an episode of TNA Impact in the early days of the Hulk Hogan-Eric Bischoff regime, babyface Sting attacked babyface Hogan and left him bloodied in the process, apparently turning heel. Except it wasn’t really a heel turn, because Sting knew all along Hogan and Bischoff were bad dudes planning on stealing TNA from Dixie Carter. Did you follow all that? No matter. That convoluted angle produced a couple of really cool action figures. Hogan has a bloodied face and is wearing red and yellow tie-dyed pants, with removable Hulkamania T-shirt, bandana and weight belt. The Sting figure is the real gem of this two-pack, sporting a really cool purple, black and red removable trench coat, along with the TNA World Title belt and a black baseball bat. Recent sales for packaged figures have ranged from $90 to $175, and complete loose figures sell for about $70-$90 for the pair.
- Jeff Hardy Full Metal Ringside Collectibles Exclusive. Remember that brief time in 2012 when Jeff Hardy was wearing a weird metal helmet that looked something like his Willow the Wisp character? No? You’re probably not alone. But Jakks made one really cool figure out of it, which featured Hardy in a removable cloth T-shirt and plastic mask. In addition, the colorful packaging for this figure was die cut into the shape of the mask, and the back featured some text detailing Jeff’s TNA career. Like many of the other TNA online exclusives from Jakks, this one is tough to find today. A complete loose figure sells for about $40, and sellers can almost name their price for a packaged figure. The only active listing on eBay right now has a buy it now price of $179.99.
- Motor City Machine Guns Cross the Line Series 2 Two-Pack. Chris Sabin and Alex Shelley were a phenomenal tag team, and to date these are the only action figures of the two ever made as a team. (Note: Sabin also had a single figure in TNA Deluxe Impact Series 12, and both wrestlers appeared in the earlier TNA toy line from ToyBiz.) These figures are incredibly tough to find, with a loose pair selling in the $75-$100 range and packaged figures selling for upwards of $175.
- AJ Styles Legends of the Ring Legends of the Ring ShopTNA.com Exclusive. There are lots of AJ Styles figures out there today, including some pretty cool ones from Mattel, Jakks, ToyBiz and Figures Toy Company. But this figure is a favorite of collectors because it presents AJ from his early TNA days as X Division Champion. The figure has a removable hooded vest and a really nice painted X Division Title belt. It was sold exclusively on ShopTNA.com, with signed and unsigned versions available, and only 3,000 total figures were produced. Unsigned figures regularly sell in the $75-$90 range, with signed figures going for around $150.
- Samoa Joe Genesis Series 1. Jakks never really put out a quality Samoa Joe figure, but this one is the worst of the worst. The Genesis line was sold at discount retailers like Big Lots as a cheaper alternative to the larger, more expensive Deluxe Impact figures. The Genesis figures have the same heads as the Deluxe Impact line, but they’re placed on skinny little generic bodies. The whole line is bad, but the Joe figure is truly terrible. If you really want one, you can find one for about five bucks.
- Dixie Carter ShopTNA.com Exclusive. Absolutely nobody was asking for a Dixie Carter action figure in 2013 – probably not even Bob and Janice. But Jakks went ahead and made one anyway, which basically looked like a new head sculpt stuck on an old Stephanie McMahon body. Signed and unsigned figures were sold exclusively on ShopTNA.com, and for many years Dixie’s was the only figure available for sale on the website. Figures usually sell in the $15-$20 range, signed or not.
- AJ Styles Deluxe Impact Series 11. Styles somehow morphed into TNA’s version of the Crow Sting in 2013 as TNA and Aces & Eights battled for his affection. Styles’ look began to change; he began growing out his hair and added a beard, looking more like the Styles that WWE fans recognize today. By 2013, Jakks had all but given up on the TNA line, so rather than sculpting a new AJ head, they simply repainted his 2010 Deluxe Impact Series 1 figure and added a really bad beard. Loose and packaged figures can be found today for under $20.
- Suicide TNA Impact Series 1 Walgreens Exclusive. OK, this figure is actually is pretty darn cool. This is more of a dishonorable mention because Jakks and TNA decided to market a toy of a guy named Suicide. These basic figures – sometimes referred to as “Ruthless Impact” because of their resemblance to Jakks’ previous popular WWE Ruthless Aggression line – were sold exclusive at Walgreens. So while mom and dad were waiting for prescriptions to be filled, the kids could pick up a toy of a guy named Suicide. Jakks obviously knew this was a bad idea, as Suicide’s name doesn’t appear anywhere on this or any other Jakks packaging. It’s simply replaced with the Batman-like logo featured on the character’s chest.
What are your thoughts on Jakks Pacifics TNA action figure line? Share your thoughts on Twitter with PWTorch Collectibles Specialist Michael Moore (@MMooreWriter) and others, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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