I don’t really like Road Pig. He’s a well designed figure, but a little too Mad Max, for my liking. G.I. Joe in the late 80s started to have a real identity crisis, the COBRA figures all became super villains, while the Joes became less personality driven and had more military inclined designs. It’s a bit of an inverse of the 85-86 era.
Road Pig, like the rest of the Dreadnoks got far too much use in the late 80s run in the comic book. They started becoming less of a sideline distraction and being the entire focus of stories. It almost seemed like the Dreadnoks started to get use because it was easier to use cartoony characters, especially as the Comic started to obviously bide time for the oncoming big reveals (Snake Eyes’ new costume, COBRA Commander coming back). I feel the G.I. Joe comic suffered somewhat from an unwillingness to flesh-out characters that weren’t the author’s favourites. The Dreadnoks were obviously a Hama favourite, likely because they were one dimensional, and easy to write. Road Pig’s got two things that are going to be easy to write, he’s big and strong, and he’s devoted to Zarana.
The sculpting on the figure is incredibly well done. He’s big, muscular and dumb looking, the flat-top hair is something else, but it’s not the Kid ‘N Play style you’d see a few years later on Bulletproof and Static Line. It’s more like Billy Idol.
The Funskool Road Pig isn’t too different from the Hasbro version, the colouring is for the most part the same, and the only real missing detail is the lack of the Anarchy tattoo on the left arm. The Black, Silver and Brown colours work well, and since he’s a figure that features a mainly flesh tone upper body, the chance for sloppy paint apps diminishes greatly. I only picked this version up, because he was fairly cheap, and I’d had no luck finding a Hasbro Road Pig (Though, I hadn’t really looked too hard)
I didn’t really have a lot of use for Road Pig, until I realized how well he matched up against Quick Kick. In the last year or so, I’ve found myself changing my once highly negative opinion on Quick Kick, to be much more positive. Being able to take some more hand-to-hand combat oriented pictures is a fun change of pace from “Guys hanging out beside the Tomahawk” or “COBRAs standing around” . Road Pig works well for these kind of photos, since he’s a good colour match and doesn’t have a lot of extraneous weapons sculpted on him.
I see Quick Kick as a member of the Joe team with one fairly specific objective, assassination. So Road Pig, has kind of been thrown into a role of a different assassin, tasked with the elimination of Quick Kick. It’s definitely a different style role, and pairing him up with Quick Kick might have been inspired by Fist Of The North Star, but that’s just how it goes sometimes, when trying to make a use of a figure that you don’t really care about.