The Young Bucks LJN Figures!
Fans of this site probably know exactly what LJN wrestling figures meant to us growing up, but just as a refresher:
We had the entire collection growing up (except for one guy - that damned Big Boss Man) and all of the accessories, including the Sling 'Em, Fling 'Em Wrestling Ring and blue Steel Cage accessory pack.
We still have the figures carefully stored in a Rubbermaid Bin in Bulldog's Basement, although the ravages of time and paint wear have rendered most of them not even suitable for garage sale use.
We have celebrated these figures in great detail over the past five years with the (prestigious) Canadian Bulldog's World LJN Wrestling Figure Hall of Fame... which, at the time of this writing, currently boasts more than 40 inductees.
Our very first Wrestling Merchandise and Memories podcast episode was specifically dedicated to the LJN line.
So when Matt and Nick Jackson announced in December 2018 that they'd struck a deal with LJN (yes, the same LJN that gave us rubberized versions of everyone from Hulk Hogan to Demolition Ax back in the day), I was incredibly stoked.
And while this Tag Team set has been out for almost a year by now... I waited to purchase it. This had less to do with my excitement level and much more to do with the fact that I'm a cheap so-and-so who had to wait to buy it at a deep discount.
Confession time: After skimming eBay and the like seemingly three times a day for an entire year... I finally found a situation where Ringside Collectibles was liquidating a Young Bucks package for well below market value because it contained "damaged packaging."
To be honest? I'm hardly a "mint on card" collector and even if I opt to keep The Bucks in their less-than-perfect box, these guys are still in WAY better condition than, say, my Rowdy Roddy Piper figure.
And I have to say, even slightly-scratched, this package is truly a work of art! They managed to capture every last detail from their LJN forefathers, including the stylized "Wrestling Superstars" font reading "Young Bucks" now; the cartoon collection of front row fans on the front cover taking in all the action; and the back cover "trading cards" that are very similar to at least some of the LJN Wrestling Superstars from back in the day.
Collect the entire wrestling line from LJN? I wish there were more I could collect. It can be argued that I already have the entire line with this one box!
The figures themself are very faithful to the original LJN line, with a bare minimum of decoration on each and having them posed in a way that isn't all that condusive to pulling off wrestling moves (other than, possibly, a bodyslam).
The one primary difference is that The Jacksons are made from a harder rubber than, say, Outback Jack was in the day. Not a big deal at all, but the "Twist and turn 'em into different wrestling holds" moniker listed here is kind of bullshit. The good news is, The Young Bucks are roughly the same size as most of the original LJNs, so you can have a Superkick Party all over, say, The British Bulldogs or Strike Force.
All in all, picking up The Young Bucks as LJN figures was not only a shrewd investment move (one would have to imagine that this line is a one-and-done type thing), but it was hugely nostalgic and brought me back to a much simpler time, to when rubberized versions of Paul Orndorff and King Kong Bundy ruled the earth.