I took the afternoon off from work and went to Space Oddity in Amsterdam, one of the very few brick-and-mortar action figure toy stores in the Netherlands. I left with 2 bags bags full of goodies. One of them contained a MOSC (mint-on-sealed-card) WWF Rowdy Roddy Piper action figure. I went inside intent on picking up some vintage Star Wars stuff (which I did), but then I started looking around and found a bunch of WWF action figures from Hasbro, including Roddy!
Roddy was just 7.50 euros, so there was no good reason I could think of not to buy him. The bubble is still firmly attached to the backing card and although there are some minor creases on the card, it still looks fantastic as does the action figure itself.
Looking at the back of the card we can see the range of WWF action figures that were available at the time Rowdy Roddie was released. Million Dollar Man Ted Dibiase, Andre the Giant, Brutus “The Barber” Beefcake, Hulk Hogan, Big Boss Man, Hacksaw Jim Duggan, Honky Tonk Man, Jake “The Snake” Roberts to name but a few. Damn, I remember fondly watching these wrestling “superstars” in the 1980′s on Sky Channel when I was a little kid. The old school WWF logo really takes me back.
Hasbro took over the WWF license in 1990 and Rowdy Roddy Piper is part of the 2nd series of WWF action figures, released in 1991. Hasbro went on to release a total of 11 series of WWF action figures until they lost their license in 1994. All figures have a cartoony look to them and they all had some sort of signature move. As you can see from the photographs, Roddy’s signature move is the “Piper Punch”. If you pull back his right arm and then release it, it will swing forward punching out any unlucky wrestler standing in his way!
Judging by the sticker on the back of the card, this particular toy seems to have been released in the U.K. (“Distributed by Hasbro Bradley UK”). I initially suspected that this is simply the U.S. version of the toy with a sticker slapped on its back to qualify it as official Hasbro UK product, but it seems the U.S. version has a collector card inside, which this release doesn’t, so I’m not so sure anymore.
What a nice find. I have a sneaking feeling that this won’t be the last WWF action figure I’ll add to my collection!