LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever?

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures – The Best Wrestling Toys Ever?

Great toys demand to be played with. Look at almost every LJN WWF Superstars figure released between 1984 and 1989 and you'll notice something common among nearly all that survived—they've got lots of playtime evidence. One of the most popular products during the WWF's massive growth, these wrestling figures bucked a lot of the action figure trends at the time.

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever? 1

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures History

While Star Wars and G.I. Joe led the charge for small action figures, LJN's wrestling figures went big. Standing about eight-inches high, they're about twice the size of the average G.I. Joe figure from the time. Also, most action figures could bend and came with a growing number of accessories. LJN  WWF Wrestling Superstars are as stiff as a King Kong Bundy punch. Most figures came without accessories save for maybe a hat or cane.

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever? 2

Basically, these are inaction figures.

Yet the LJN WWF figures were wildly popular at the time. Now they can be very collectible as grown adults get nostalgic for a time when Hulkamania meant something.

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever? 3

Despite their shortcomings in the articulation department, these wrestling figures were actually a lot of fun to play with. LJN did an excellent job of capturing the likenesses of the wrestlers and WWF personalities. They might not have the same level of detail as today's McFarlane figures or those put out today by Mattel, but it's still easy to tell who the wrestlers are.

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever? 4

Figures came packaged with small posters. These were rolled up and stored in the base of the packaging. Also, the packages had a file card on the back, similar to those found on G.I. Joe figures from the same period. Many people collect these today as well.

Today, LJN WWF figures can command big money on the secondary market, particularly for unopened mint figures. Some of the most valuable figures came at the end of the line's run, which is often the case for figures and toys as the decreased popularity means smaller print runs.

Shop for popular LJN WWF Wrestling figure auctions on eBay.

The final series came out in 1989. They were actually made by Grand Toy in Canada and not LJN. The figures switched to a new black card and were a mix of a few new figures and several repackaged wrestlers from earlier lines. These black cards are much tougher to find than figures from previous releases. As a result, they are generally much more expensive than those WWF figures found in other series.

By their very nature, LJN WWF figures were played with hard. Understandably, paint wear is a very common trait among the toys. This limits the value a lot of these figures might otherwise have.

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever? 5

Besides the figures, LJN also released the Sling 'Em-Fling 'Em Wrestling Ring and a Cage Match Accessory add-on.

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever? 6

Below is a checklist of all the LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars figures released between 1984 and 1989.

1984-1989 LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures Checklist

 

LJN WWF Figures Set Checklist

1984 Series 1
Andre the Giant
Big John Studd
Hillbilly Jim
Hulk Hogan
Iron Sheik
Jimmy "Superfly" Snuka
Junkyard Dog
Nikolai Volkoff
"Rowdy" Roddy Piper
1985 Series 2
Andre the Giant
Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake
George "The Animal" Steele
Greg "The Hammer" Valentine
King Kong Bundy
"Mr. Wonderful" Paul Orndorff
1986 Series 3
Bobby "The Brain" Heenan
Bruno Sammartino
Captain Lou Albano
"Classy" Freddie Blassie
Corporal Kirchner
Davey Boy Smith
Dynamite Kid
Jesse "The Body" Ventura
Jimmy Hart
"Macho Man" Randy Savage
Magnificent Muraco
Mean Gene Okerlund
Mr. Fuji - with cane
Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat
Special Delivery Jones
Terry Funk
Tito Santana
1987 Series 4
"Adorable" Adrian Adonis
Billy Jack Haynes
B. Brian Blair
Bret "Hitman" Hart
"Cowboy" Bob Orton
Elizabeth
Hercules Hernandez
Jake "The Snake" Roberts
"Jumping" Jim Brunzell
Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart
Ken Patera
Kamala
King Harley Race
Koko B. Ware
Outback Jack
Ted Arcidi
Vince McMahon
1988 Series 5
"Adorable" Adrian Adonis
Bam Bam Bigelow
Demolition Ax
Hacksaw Jim Duggan
Honky Tonk Man
Hulk Hogan
"Lucious" Johnny Valiant
One Man Gang
Referee
Rick Martel
Slick
Ted DiBiase
Tito Santana
1989 Series 6 (Black Card)
Andre the Giant
Big Boss Man
Demolition Ax
"Hacksaw" Jim Duggan
Honky Tonk Man
Hulk Hogan
Randy "Macho Man" Savage
"Ravishing" Rick Rude
Ultimate Warrior
Warlord
Tag Teams
British Bulldogs
Dream Team
Hart Foundation
Killer Bees
Strike Force
Iron Sheik & Nikolai Volkoff
Hillbilly Jim & Hulk Hogan

 

Ultimate LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures Checklist (1984-1989)

Use the eBay links below to show for specific wrestlers or check completed sales values. 

Series 1

1984 LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures Series 1 Checklist

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever? 3

Andre the Giant - long hair

Big John Studd

Hillbilly Jim - with hat

Hulk Hogan - no shirt, with title

Iron Sheik

Jimmy "Superfly" Snuka

Junkyard Dog - with dog collar, and black, red or silver chains

Nikolai Volkoff - with hat

"Rowdy" Roddy Piper - with kilt, red or brown boots

Series 2

1985 LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures Series 2 Checklist

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever? 8

Andre the Giant - short hair

Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake

George "The Animal" Steele

Greg "The Hammer" Valentine

King Kong Bundy

"Mr. Wonderful" Paul Orndorff

Series 3

1986 LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures Series 3 Checklist

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever? 9

Bobby "The Brain" Heenan

Bruno Sammartino

Captain Lou Albano

"Classy" Freddie Blassie - with cane

Corporal Kirchner - no beard, stubble or painted

Davey Boy Smith

Dynamite Kid

Jesse "The Body" Ventura

Jimmy Hart - hearts or no hearts on megaphone

"Macho Man" Randy Savage

Magnificent Muraco

Mean Gene Okerlund

Mr. Fuji - with cane

Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat

Special Delivery Jones - Hawaiian shirt or red shirt

Terry Funk - with hat and branding iron

Tito Santana - purple trunks

Series 4

1987 LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures Series 4 Checklist

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever? 10

"Adorable" Adrian Adonis

Billy Jack Haynes - with hat

B. Brian Blair

Bret "Hitman" Hart - pink or purple tights

"Cowboy" Bob Orton - with hat

Elizabeth - gold or purple skirt

Hercules Hernandez

Jake "The Snake" Roberts - with Damien

"Jumping" Jim Brunzell

Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart - pink or purple tights

Ken Patera

Kamala

King Harley Race - with crown

Koko B. Ware - with Frankie

Outback Jack - with hat

Ted Arcidi

Vince McMahon

Series 5

1988 LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures Series 5 Checklist

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever? 11

"Adorable" Adrian Adonis

Bam Bam Bigelow

Demolition Ax

"Hacksaw" Jim Duggan - with 2x4

Honky Tonk Man - with guitar

Hulk Hogan - red or white shirt, with title

"Lucious" Johnny Valiant

One Man Gang

Referee - blue or white shirt

Rick Martel

Slick - with hat

Ted DiBiase

Tito Santana - white Strikeforce trunks

Series 6

1989 Grand Toys WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures Series 6 (Black Card) Checklist

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever? 12

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever? 13

Andre the Giant - black strap tights

Big Boss Man - with nightstick

Demolition Ax

"Hacksaw" Jim Duggan - with 2x4

Haku

Honky Tonk Man

Hulk Hogan - white or red shirt, with belt

Randy "Macho Man" Savage

"Ravishing" Rick Rude

Ultimate Warrior

Warlord

Tag Teams

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Tag Teams Checklist

Each tag team set came packaged with two figures and a pair of belts.

LJN WWF Wrestling Superstars Figures - The Best Wrestling Toys Ever? 14

British Bulldogs - Davey Boy Smith and Dynamite Kid

Dream Team -  Brutus "The Barber" Beefcake and Greg "The Hammer" Valentine

Hart Foundation - Bret "Hitman" Hart and Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart

Killer Bees - B. Brian Blair and "Jumping" Jim Brunzell

Strike Force - Rick Martel and Tito Santana

Iron Sheik and Nikolai Volkoff

Hillbilly Jim and Hulk Hogan

 

If you know of any others, please let us know in the comments below.

 

Top eBay Listings

Related Topics:

Ryan Cracknell

 |  E-Mail Author https://www.cardboardconnection.com
Ryan is a former member of The Cardboard Connection Writing Staff.   His collecting origins began with winter bike rides to the corner store, tossing a couple of quarters onto the counter and peddling home with a couple packs of O-Pee-Chee hockey in his pocket. Today, he continues to build sets, go after inserts with cool technologies, chase Montreal Expos and finish off his John Jaha master collection.

User Comments

  1. i have a PAUL ORNDOFF with hogan card on back is there more of them?

  2. Good list. I believe I have seen a 1989 re-issue of Big John Studd in other places with a black card.

  3. A guy brought me 30 carded LJNs at a toy show in Orlando 1998. Among them was Harley Race and a black carded Jake the Snake Roberts. They had been sitting in a pawn shop. I got an instant collection.

  4. i have a ted dibiase ljn in the package but ‘it’s a mistake cause the cardboard and poster read mr fuji. it’s not been altered or anything. is it worth much?

  5. The Strike Force tag team set came with black championship belts. Great list.

  6. I do believe that Adrian Adonis has an 1989 black card reissue.

  7. As the top Google listing, you should be careful to point out that the Fling-em-Sling-em Ring was recalled because too many kids got impaled by the ring posts… I don’t know how many is too many, but just one punctured organ would be enough for me to put out a serious warning to would-be collectors. That said, anyone got a ring to sell me?

  8. You’re missing dozens of small variations: Jesse Ventura with Red Hair, Blond stash or Blond Hair & Stash or Red Hair & Stash; Capt Lou with Red Painted Lapels on his T-Shirt or Plain White; Bobby Heenan with Scrolls detailed on his shoulders or not; Mean Gene with the WWF logo on his Mic; Classy Freddy in plain yellow or in a nicer goldish colol; Strike Force figures with or without their nice lightning bolt logos; etc, etc…

  9. Brutus Beefcake, Adrian Adonis, Big John Studd and Ted Dibiase all had black card re-issues.

  10. Not forgetting the G.I Joe mailaway only Ljn figure of Sgt. Slaughter. Uncarded

  11. Are you sure those dates/lineups are correct? I vividly recall then first coming out in April’85 after WrestleMania 1. That original line up was, Andre, Hulk, Studd, Superfly & Sheik. (Those are the ones even shown in the first comercial circa 1985). Piper, JYD, Hillbilly, etc came afterward. Anyway, thanks for listening

  12. Where is the Smash figure? I remember when I bought Rick Rude they showed all the new figures coming out with the new Black line But some of the figures didn’t seem to get released like both Powers Of Pain etc.

  13. The Killer B’s came in 2 versions. One with masks on and one without

  14. No Smash figure. In 1990 – Smash, Barbarian, Bushwhackers, Brother Love were supposed to come out but LJN lost the licence. And out came the Hasbro’s.

  15. I have been looking at eBay for blackcards. It’s VERY misleading almost every Andre has 1986 stamped on his rump. Are they all fakes? It’s crazy. Also what is the diff between 1988 hacksaw and 89 hacksaw?

    Leave a Comment: