Friday, November 30, 2012

Figure Friday: Ahmed Johnson

Ahmed Johnson is famed for his unintelligible promos, massive weight gain, and frequent in-ring wedgies, but you can add one more accolade to that list. Ahmed was the subject of one of the most unrealistic action figures ever created.

This is Ahmed Johnson:


This is Ahmed Johnson's action figure from the STOMP line of Jakks Pacific toys:

Johnson was definitely strong, having slammed a 600+ pound Yokozuna on more than one occasion. One thing you wouldn't call Ahmed is ripped. Bulky, yes, but toned? No. And even before his unfortunate run in WCW as Big T, he was never slim. It's as if Jakks had confused Ahmed for Elix Skipper.

The reason for the unrealistic body shape, I can only assume, was that all of the STOMP figures needed to have the same body type in order to interchange their snap-on gear, such as vests and boots. The same gear that fit Ahmed also had to fit Steve Austin, The Undertaker, and Ken Shamrock.

Speaking of gear, the accessories that came with the STOMP line of figures rank among the most baffling ever included with a wrestling figure. This figure line was based around an "action" theme. While the Hasbro toys of the early 90s, had a whole array of cartoonish gimmicks to draw from, Jakks had to make up new gimmicks for the wrestlers, much like the many themed figures of the Ninja Turtles that saw the four heroes in a half-shell play every sport and engage in every occupation that Playmates could concoct. Thus, the superstars of the nascent Attitude Era were enlisted into the Strategic Tactics Operations Military Police.

I haven't done a whole lot of research, but perhaps any readers with experience as military police officers can fill me in on whether MPs are given such weapons as a chainsaw and a giant caveman club. I know that Ahmed is supposed to be enlisted in some sort of military operation, but the chainsaw screams, "wood sawyer," while the straw hat screams, "Tom Sawyer."

At this point, it's probably not even worth noting that Ahmed never wore anything remotely like the long blue tights that his figure wears. Then again, given that Ahmed's trunks were already prone to wedgies, perhaps it was best for Jakks Pacific to forgo realism in that area.

What is perhaps most troubling about this figure, though, is not the body type, the accessories, or the ring gear. All of those can be explained by a combination of cheapness and gimmickry. No, the aspect of this Ahmed Johnson figure that is most inexcusable is the face, which bears little resemblance to the actual face of Tony Norris.

It does, however, bear a striking resemblance to ET, the Extraterrestrial.

While Ahmed Johnson may never have achieved long-term success in the wrestling ring, his legacy lives on in the form of an action figure that resembled its subject matter in neither body, nor face, nor ring attire, nor gimmick. And you can bet that puts Ahmed in a real bad moon.

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