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