Crimson Invasor

 

Invasor Portrait

After the initial deluge of Cobra Troopers, The Black Major branched off into figures based upon the South American exclusive Cobra Invasor and Cobra Mortal figures, while not quitethe army building phenomenon of the Trooper, it was a very nice way to bolster the early COBRA High Command. 

The figures were the v1 Snake Eyes mold, with swivel arms and the straight arm waist. Not sure why the bulky waist piece was used, but it does help the figure stand out. Of all of the various colour schemes available, I think that my favourite was likely the Crimson. The deep red combined with black and the silver COBRA logo grinning at you in the middle of his chest made for a highly original use of the Snake Eyes mold.

Red Invasor

Quality wise, I’d say the Invasor figures were leaning towards the better end of the spectrum, which of all The Black Major figures released, the highest quality was that of the Cobra De Aço. The Invasor’s have very tight arm swivels though the hands are somewhat thin, like most factory customs, so not every weapon fits them, safely.

In South America, the Invasor was a generic army builder, who in the second series was given the Cobra designation. That doesn’t work too well for me, as the Cobra Trooper is such a utility figure, and has so many variants nowadays, that another generic is almost overkill. So I use the Invasor as mid tier COBRA operative.

The Invasor has the look and feel of an early Cobra figure, but isn’t a distinct enough figure where he can stand tall amongst the named Cobra figures. So you’re left with a classic, combat ready character, who could possibly be a bodyguard or assassin, but if he were to vanish, no one would miss him and Cobra’s activities wouldn’t be slowed in the least.

Red InvasorRed Invasor copy 2

 

 

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$2.99 I’ll Never Get Back!

I go to thrift stores frequently. All sorts of dumb things I like (JFK Assassination books, button up shirts from the 70s) are for sale there! Occasionally I’ll find a G.I. Joe item, once I found a mint VAMP mk 1 for 2 Dollars.

Usually I find this kind of junk! IMG_20180116_165059

Yes, I spent 3 Dollars on a 1984 G.I. Joe Zartan Paint-A-Figurine. That had ALREADY been painted. Who knew Zartan looked like E.T. without the face paint.

 

 

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Copperhead

 

G.I. Joe is a line where when they nailed a figure, no matter how niche a specialty they may have, people will find a use for them. Copperhead, the Water Moccasin pilot is one of those figures. He’s bright, he’s wearing a wifebeater, and officially, he’s nothing more than a speedboat pilot, yet collectors will find a way to work him into fairly prominent positions, even if occasionally it’s hokey as all hell stuff like “Copperhead: Cobra Navy Commander”

From a mold point of view, Copperhead is a behemoth. He’s got a larger, thicker frame than most figures of his era (even 1986 figures don’t make him seem small), and he’s got some added height to him as well, though not as much as Destro. Copperhead’s mold almost seems like it would be a better fit for Roadblock based on how the media presented the ‘Block. A missed opportunity for a repaint, had molds and creativity been available in 2002.

His mold has a lot of the strong detailing later 1984 figures seemed to have, a lot of ridges and loops. Though he doesn’t have the musculature of Ripper or even Gung Ho, despite the large frame. He also appears to be wearing women’s underwear over his own pants. An odd and usually ignored detail!

As I said, Copperhead is a figure that people will try and find a use for. He’s a very well done figure, and has enough of an established backstory, I know a lot of people tend to use him in association with the Dreadnoks, which is a fairly good use for him, as the characters have similar ties and appearance (His colours and the Sears Ground Assault are a great match!). I tend to use him in a body guard role. He’s big, he looks good with a Cobra Officer AK, and his rambling gambling man persona makes him an ideal dumb muscle character. Plus, with the amount of backstabbing and cut throat characters in COBRA, I think the real power players would have protection a cut above the rank and file troopers.

1984 Copperhead had two variants, the dark green and the light green. The dark green removes the neon on his head and arms, which darkens the figure, but also removes a lot of what makes him such a dynamic figure. The light green gloves make for a figure with far more depth. The fact this variant makes for such a different looking figure, than the typical eyebrow or camouflage colour variants, it’s almost as if it’s a Copperhead version 0.5

 

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Moved To The Coast And Became Quite Weird For About Three Years

Footloose

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Mutt

Mutt POrtrait

Everybody had a figure that was their ultimate hero/villain. For me, it was Mutt, there was something about the figure and the character that really did it for me. He was armed to the teeth, had a mean dog, and the line in his filecard about “He’ll bite your leg off” and when Zap said in issue #25 “Look who’s wearing the muzzle” really gave Mutt a personality to me. Plus I liked the idea of Duke making him wear the muzzle to save the Joes from war crime convictions.

Mutt copyWhen I played with Mutt as a kid, he was the baddest guy on the block. I haven’t read any of the late era G.I. Joe comics since the scans were posted on Cobraaa.com, but the meme of it becoming the unstoppable Snake Eyes show, was kind of how I used Mutt. Since he had an overpowered gun (WITH a suppressor) and a club, he was capable of unprecedented violence against Cobras. Plus, as a kid I liked having Junkyard chase the enemy into a trap, the trap being Mutt.

His figure being one of the later 1984’s, gives him the high quality sculpting from later in the line, but the military accuracy that was all over the place in the 1982-1984 era. If you compare his torso to Leatherneck, from 1986, you’ll notice they’re actually based on very similar equipment, just the sculpting with Mutt is a lot easier to determine what the hell it actually is! He also had some cool scars on his face, and his mouth almost looks like he’s growling.

Mutt

Since I used the hell out of Mutt as a kid, I shied away from him as an adult collector for a long time. Partially not wanting to ruin memories, as some figures I liked didn’t age well, and sometimes figures people are biased towards can become a pretty easy thing to figure out. I like to keep people guessing!

If you’re looking for a really good story starring Mutt, go to Blood For The Baron, and read the Action Force comic “The Hacienda Hit”. Action Force was really good at spotlighting figures in a way Marvel never accomplished.

http://bloodforthebaron.com/comics/baf/045/index.html

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Short Fuse

Perhaps the biggest criticism of the 1982 G.I. Joe line, was how similar everyone looked. On the surface that does appear to be the case, but there are nuances between figures that tend to override that opinion the second you look at all the figures as a group. Though there is one exception, the Mortar Soldier; Short Fuse

Short fuze
Short Fuse is definitely the most bland 1982 Joe. He’s probably in the top 3 for bland Joes in the history of the line. Short Fuse is pretty much the same figure as Hawk, but with Zap’s torso (and brown boots). Hawk was a boring figure, but he at least had unique silver highlights. Short Fuse had a character, that of rage-a-holic, hence the codename, but that didn’t even get him much use in the assorted Joe media. Though in G.I. Joe #1 he was a Patriotic rage-a-holic.
Maybe Short Fuse was boring as hell, because he was loaded with accessories. His two-piece mortar, is a fairly cool weapon, but there’s not a lot of fun to be had playing with artillery in the action-packed world of commando adventures. He also had the ever popular clear visor, and a missile backpack. The early Joe line did specialty specific accessories very well.
There’s three variants to the Mortar; Closed Handle, Thick Handle and Thin Handle. I’ve never seen a Closed Handle in my life, but I’ve seen both the Thick and Thin variants. The Thick Handled one is a thumb destroyer if I’ve ever seen one,  especially when paired up with the Straight Arms. A Thin Handled Mortar is useful enough, as it can actually held by Short Fuse.
Short Fuse, is a depth character and figure. The G.I. Joe line was built on depth. I personally look at Joe from a dio perspective, so figures like Short Fuse really come in handy. He’s a solid enough figure, who is plain enough, he can be used as a stand in as a vehicle operator/passenger or computer operator, and the 1984 Battlefield Accessories are also good options for Short Fuse. Nondescript roles for nondescript figures!Short Fuse
Idle Chatter.JPG
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Sings To Him Like A Mother Soothing A Troubled Child

Sings To Him Like A Mother Soothing A Troubled Child

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