A.J. has obviously provided a lot of viewers for WWE as well. To the average viewer, Miss Lee represents a crazy, nerdy, "cool" chick with a few loose screws. To many seasoned wrestling fans, she's the first female character to be blatantly portrayed as a "ring rat" or "groupie." In the "PG era" of WWE, it's an interesting concept and perhaps one that wouldn't have been portrayed as well in a more risque product. Whether or not Miss Lee performs the character so well from personal experience, I will leave for you to decide.
A year later and not only is A.J. once again embroiled in top WWE storylines, but she has now had three Mattel figures officially released. The standout of the three is actually just the third female to be included in Mattel's Elite figure line. Following Kelly Kelly and Miss Elizabeth, respectively, A.J. joins the line of higher priced and, usually, higher detailed figures. Again, due to her popularity, it's easy to understand why A.J. was chosen for this line. But how does the figure measure up?
A problem that I've had with some of Mattel's releases creeps up once again here. A.J. simply looks tiny in the Elite packaging. Sure, she is tiny in real life, but at least the previous two females had costumes and/or accessories to fill the void. Instead of re-releasing the very nice figure sized version of the Diva's championship that was included with Kelly Kelly, A.J. is accompanied by...her necklace. The packaging actually proudly proclaims that she "Includes Necklace," as if it's a huge deal. Well, it isn't and it's barely noticeable at that.
As with all of the elite figures, A.J. has extra points of articulation that enable a variety of poses. For limber characters like the Divas, this is welcome here and definitely works to the figure's advantage. A.J.'s facial likeness is pretty spot-on, but not 100% perfect. I can't put my finger on it, but there's something that didn't come across in the translation from Diva to figure.
The body design is actually what scores countless points for this figure. A.J. has very distinct abs that are constantly being shown off thanks to her two-piece outfits. To my knowledge, this is only the second female body design that has yet been done by Mattel. Even the Miss Elizabeth figure used the standard Diva body. With the very slender and slight body of A.J., I guess Mattel figured that there was no way that the standard sculpt could be used this time. It seems as if the basic versions of A.J. also utilize this new mold.
Although they share a body sculpt, the basic versions do not come close to matching the paint design of this Elite figure. While the former have A.J. clad in very basic colors, the Elite includes a striking green, black, and white design complete with "emo" looking skull and crossbones. In addition to the necklace, A.J. has a bracelet on each wrist. Nice details such as these are important to the aura of a figure, but that "Includes Necklace" notation on the package still annoys me.
The Elite A.J. is well done and easily the best representation of the character in figure form yet. It's not one that necessarily makes you feel that you've gotten your money's worth, but that is often overlooked by many when a popular character is concerned. A Diva's championship belt accessory would've been welcome, but Mattel obviously knew that they wouldn't need such an addition in order to sell the figure.
So the nutjob returned to the blog after all. Hopefully she causes just as much of a ruckus as she did the last time that I graced her with a write-up. Light it up!