Toy Review – WWE Ultimate Edition Ronda Rousey from Mattel

I mentioned in my Mattel WCW post that I am only collecting three types of modern wrestling figures at the moment – Retros, the WCW roster, and the Women’s Division. Retros because they’re fun and nostalgic, WCW because that’s my favorite era of wrestling, and the women because they’re more visually interesting than the men and they are providing the highest level of entertainment on WWE TV these days and have been for a while.

Mattel can’t get a Lacey Evans out soon enough.

Ronda Rousey was a big part of the Women’s Division being so superior. Her current status might be inactive and her future might be in  question, but in my opinion she took to the business in a way that no athlete from an outside sport has since Kurt Angle. She had a believable, engaging charism that was unique on the roster and every match she had was at worst very good.

During Rousey’s brief tenure in WWE she was the proverbial Human Highlight Reel, with her every action being notable and a discussion-worthy part of that week’s action. Part of it was a very carefully cultivated program by WWE’s creative team, but even the best-executed writing will fail without a competent Superstar to carry it out on screen. And thanks to whatever magical combination of talent and execution occurred, Ronda Rousey was WWE’s biggest star in 2018-2019.

She might have hit the occasional bump, but this was her first year in the business. I can’t even imagine what she could be capable of if – hopefully when – she returns.

Due to the brevity of Rousey’s tenure and the nature of the action figure business Mattel has only released three Ronda Rousey action figures to date – one Basic, one Elite, and today’s Ultimate Edition. I passed on the Basic, but the Elite was a very good figure for what it was. I’m not the biggest fan of wrestling figures who aren’t in ring gear, but Mattel did such a great job with Rousey’s likeness that I had to grab that one when I saw it.

This Ultimate Edition is an all-new concept from Mattel. Replacing their Entrance Greats line, it is an attempt to deliver everything that wrestling fans might want from an action figure – entrance and in-ring looks, multiple hands, multiple portraits, and ultimate articulation. The first two releases were Rousey and – obviously – Ultimate Warrior. I mean, they had to, right?

Is this Rousey truly the ultimate and a ten dollar step above Mattel’s Elites? Read on and find out! Continue reading “Toy Review – WWE Ultimate Edition Ronda Rousey from Mattel”

WWE – SmackDown Roster Rundown 2019

Way back in November of 2015 I wrote a post about the entire WWE roster at the time and what I thought about each Superstar. I just re-read it and I mostly feel the same way about everyone I covered. Plus I actually enjoyed reading it, so I reposted it here. You might find it fun to compare my thoughts then to my thoughts now.

Roster-wise the WWE is in a golden age. They have never before had so much to-notch talent. I struggle to think of more than a few Superstars that I actively dislike. At the very least I can imagine angles in which almost anyone would be entertaining or appealing, even if WWE isn’t necessarily using them in the best way.

How WWE uses talent is really more of a problem than anything. With such a stuffed roster it’s hard to give everyone the time they deserve and it’s often difficult to become as engaged in modern WWE because a Superstar you like could get lost in the shuffle while someone who may not be to your liking gets the spotlight.

But at the end of the day, it’s all wrestling and there’s no denying that WWE is the gold standard for what is now known as Sports Entertainment.

Read on and find out how my opinions from 2015 have aged and where I stand on the huge amount of new talent that has appeared since then!

I posted my thoughts about the RAW roster last week. You can check that out here.

For your convenience, Superstars that were not around for that 2015 Rundown are listed in BLUE. Tag teams will be listed together unless I feel the individuals need singling out. Continue reading “WWE – SmackDown Roster Rundown 2019”

WWE – RAW Roster Rundown 2019

NOTE: Thanks to a much heavier workload than I had been expecting I only had time to finish the Monday Night RAW portion of my rundown. Check back soon – maybe even before Sunday’s Royal Rumble – for my thoughts about the Tuesday night lineup.

Way back in November of 2015 I wrote a post about the entire WWE roster at the time and what I thought about each Superstar. I just re-read it and I mostly feel the same way about everyone I covered. Plus I actually enjoyed reading it, so I reposted it here. You might find it fun to compare my thoughts then to my thoughts now.

Roster-wise the WWE is in a golden age. They have never before had so much to-notch talent. I struggle to think of more than a few Superstars that I actively dislike. At the very least I can imagine angles in which almost anyone would be entertaining or appealing, even if WWE isn’t necessarily using them in the best way.

How WWE uses talent is really more of a problem than anything. With such a stuffed roster it’s hard to give everyone the time they deserve and it’s often difficult to become as engaged in modern WWE because a Superstar you like could get lost in the shuffle while someone who may not be to your liking gets the spotlight.

But at the end of the day, it’s all wrestling and there’s no denying that WWE is the gold standard for what is now known as Sports Entertainment.

Read on and find out how my opinions from 2015 have aged and where I stand on the huge amount of new talent that has appeared since then! Continue reading “WWE – RAW Roster Rundown 2019”

Repost: WWE – Roster Rundown 11/2/2015

You might have noticed some reposts like this one lately.

It’s not something I had planned to do when I relaunched the All-New, Slightly Different Needless Things, but there have been a few recent instances where it has been a necessity, as was the case with Beth’s older Days of the Dead coverage. Sometimes we need to provide past work for press purposes and since the import is still ongoing, a repost is the only way to do it.

And yes – the import is still ongoing. Ten years of five(ish) posts a week takes some time to process, as it turns out.

I’ve been wanting to write something about wrestling for a while, and in pulling up old drafts I found this roster rundown from November of 2015. I’m working on an update for next week, but I had fun reading this and I thought you guys might, too.

I don’t plan to make recycling posts a habit because the old material will, eventually, be available. But in lieu of being able to link to relevant content this is our only option for now. And I wanted you guys to be able to see a then versus now once the new post goes up.

So for now, enjoy my thoughts on the WWE of 2015; most of which were spot-on and some of which have changed considerably. Continue reading “Repost: WWE – Roster Rundown 11/2/2015”

WWE Hell in A Cell 2018 – 11 Thoughts

Orton Hardy
Picture from WWE.com

SPOILER WARNING – This post contains spoilers for WWE’s Hell in a Cell 2018.

The Needless Commentary Team gathered in the Phantom Zone last night for a group viewing of WWE’s September event, Hell in a Cell. Overall everyone seemed pretty darn satisfied with the matches. I was especially happy because it concluded around 10:45 rather than going up to or past 11 PM.

I had to be up at 3:30 this morning. The combination of little sleep and an early morning has left me with some thoughts to share about the show. Continue reading “WWE Hell in A Cell 2018 – 11 Thoughts”