Red Laser’s Army “General”

In the Marvel Comic Book, my favourite overall storyline runs between issues #12 and #18. The story doesn’t drag, there’s just enough going on for everyone to have something to do, and by the end, there’s some actual resolutions. In my overall favourite story #13’s “Last Plane From Rio Lindo” there’s about 6 panels where Hawk is wearing a black commando sweater. If Hasbro had done the Comic Packs in a way that wasn’t that ridiculous “Chronological Order”, that Hawk colouring would’ve made a decent comic pack figure. Almost a decade and a half later, that figure was made, by Red Laser‘s Army.

G.I. Joe has been a fairly moribund brand for the last few years, and it’s been even mores for longer for the Vintage Style. This has allowed the factory custom market to move more into good guys and characters, than just strict army builders. Since this figure is obviously designed from my favourite G.I. Joe comic book, I’m quite a big fan of this figure. In fact the first thing I did with the figure was re-create the scene where he sets up the rescue mission with Grunt, Scarlett, Doc, Torpedo and Rock ‘N Roll.

Last Plane To Rio Lindo.JPG

As a character, my opinion of Hawk has changed over the years. As a kid, especially, Hawk was the fearless leader, who’d go out in the field when he needed to. As I’ve grown older and more in touch with the real world, Hawk’s appearances in issues #6 and #7 really began to hold more weight with me. In those two issues he’s doing some weird double dealing, and uses his own team as pawns. I now see Hawk as a man with distinguished, and decorated service, he’s just realistic and knows that if he’s the man to take down COBRA Command, he’ll be able to get into the Whitehouse in 1988 (I might have been influenced by those old Ollie For President t-shirts). However I don’t want to solely portray Hawk as a shadowy careerist, as a person from a “Real Loaded” background, like his, usually wouldn’t be working Artillery, and would instead be in Intelligence. John F. Kennedy was an officer in the ONI prior to his transfer to the Pacific where he was on a PT Boat.

So Hawk is now more of a character obsessed with his men getting results. Now it’s more a question of “if” it’s done, rather than “How” it’s done. Which is a different take on Hawk than usually seen, I think it is a thing that’s important to do. As sometimes motivations other than “It’s their job” or “service to the country” is lacking on the G.I. Joe side.

It's Not How It's What


I’m glad that this figure was made, it’s a nice color scheme and design that allows the Hawk character a unique figure that isn’t quite as wishy-washy as the original glorified Short Fuze that came with the MMS. This Hawk still has the classic v1 look, but now can stand beside some of the more dynamically coloured Joe figures from later on and not look out of place. This design works well with the 82-84 vintage line, as well as the other factory customs and the 1997 G.I. Joe line.

GeneralIssue #13 Hawk



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11 Responses to Red Laser’s Army “General”

  1. A-Man says:

    Hawk most sketchy moment in that arc comes when he insists on putting 3 Cobra prisoners in the fake modular HQ building, including (over Doc’s objections) a comatose Baroness who should be ICU. Bludd kills General Flagg, escapes with Baroness and leaves Scarface to die. All that’s on Hawk!

  2. My take on G.I. Joe in general is that Generals Austin and Flagg incepted the team in the late 1970’s. The entire purpose was to create another military man who could become president. He would lead a public team against evils like Cobra so that he would have the clout to run for office and win and national election. They actually created 3 unique teams, so they had backups. One of the teams quickly failed. The second ended up doing all its work internationally and, eventually, merged with Joe. Of course, Hawk had no idea this was the reason why the team was created and he was chosen to lead it.

    However, once Reagan was elected, their need for a military president diminished and the team remained covert.

    As for this figure, it is one of my favorites. He needs a helmet, though. I chose the Tiger Force Starduster helmet from Black Major as I didn’t have any spare green ones that matched up with his colors. I would have liked a more diverse accessory offering from Red Laser, too. I still haven’t found a good weapon that looks nice and won’t snap his hand off.

    I’m really looking forward to the Red Laser releases coming for this year. But, it looks like they’re going to release 50 or so figures all at once. That’s just overkill and you lose the quality in all the noise. I’d much prefer them dropping down to 4 a month with a steady stream. But, I suspect the factory scheduling plays a part.

  3. I loved reading everyone’s takes on Hawk! This is a really cool figure, and one I’ve considered buying. I already have plenty of Hawks though, with the 91 being my go-to, followed by the talking battle commanders repaint. The blonde comic pack version of the 86 mold is also pretty nice. But, as I’m acquiring more early 80s-style figures, I see the appeal in having a more classic Hawk. And this one is probably my best bet.

    As to Mike’s point about weapons to use with him– I’m betting he’d look good with one of the vintage Corps! black pistols, and it probably wouldn’t snap his thumb since they have thin grips.

  4. my only gripe with the figure is a factory issue, I wish Red Laser could get the factory to address the “Battle Grip” as it is, I’m stuck using old remco rubber weapons so I don’t break the thumbs.

    The figure is solid as it’s called “General” I look at how he stands out next to the other 1983 figures and just belongs! As addressed Red Laser will be releasing 40 figures this year, but only half will be a summer release and the other shortly after. I am a huge o ring fan, and these figures are expanding the original mythos of the brand.

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