Monday, November 28, 2011

WWE Elite, Kofi Kingston (Series 9) - Review

Boom! Today I'm reviewing my first ever Kofi Kingston action figure. I can't say I'm a huge fan of his, but he's nonetheless a very talented Superstar and consistently delivers great in-ring entertainment. His WWE Elite Collection debut came in series 4, but I wasn't too crazy about the headsculpt, something I thought would be improved on a future release. Apparently that was wishful thinking on my part. Let's jump into this review and see if we'll need to send an "S-O-S" to Mattel.

Kofi Kingston
WWE Elite Collection Series 9
Mattel/ 7" Scale

Just like his first Elite release, Kofi only has one accessory in the box: his windbreaker pants worn during his ring entrance. This are yellow and black to match the deco on his ring attire. They're made out of a nylon-type material, very similar to what you would find on actual windbreakers. They feature an elastic waistband making the removal process just a matter of sliding the pants down his legs. The pants are definitely in the realm of "highly-detailed" and make Kofi on par with other Elite figures that just include a t-shirt or jacket. That's a way better value than just getting a microphone (Elite 4's Chris Jericho) or nothing at all (E10's Yoshi Tatsu).

Once Kofi is done with his entrance dance, he's ready to cause "trouble in paradise" with his yellow and black ring attire. The design is cool thanks to it's randomness in the way it cuts across his boots, knee pads and shorts. The only element that's consistent is the placement of his logo and name. I should point out that the knee pads are molded in yellow plastic and the design team did a great job of matching the yellow paint used on his shorts and boots. I'm not sure what the designs on the outside of his boots are, but they look much better on this figure than they do on the newer WrestleMania 27 version. On that figure, those coiled, spring-like images look like pink turds. This figure defines them better thanks to a thin outline in the opposite color.

I thought this newer Elite figure would nail his likeness, but I'm disappointed in how it turned out. Apparently Mattel hasn't perfected the transition from 3D scans to 3D action figures, because this Kofi looks awfully Asian to me. Maybe it's one of those shading issues I mentioned before, but this isn't a great likeness. The other issue I have with this figure, albeit a much smaller one, is his torso. The design team reused the sculpt we first saw on Randy Orton in Elite series 2, which works for the most part. However, if you've ever taken a good look at Kofi when he's on-screen (or in-person), you'll notice his pectorals (chest muscles) are oddly separated, giving him a much more distinct look compared to most of the other ripped Superstars on the roster. I know Mattel avoids tooling new parts for figures that can easily reuse existing parts, but they did it for Sheamus, so I don't think it's that much of a long-shot.

I can look past the torso sculpt, but the head really brings down the value of this figure for me. I ordered him off of Mattel for $15.99 with free shipping when I ordered a couple of other items. That's on par with Walmart and just a little cheaper than Toys R Us, but truth be told, I don't think he's worth more than ten bucks. Unless you are a true fan of Kofi Kingston, you'd probably be better served by his previous Elite release, or a future version. I may try to scoop up a cheap Basic release with the other headsculpt and just swap it on to this one.
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