Jingle Bells! Jingle Bells!
The SpartanNerd got some new goodies!
First up is a “second”…that is, a second GI Joe Classified figure. (I already had Cobra Commander.). And now, I have Sgt. Slaughter, a figure of a person I actually met in person at the Retro Toy Con in Greenville last year. (Sgt. Slaughter is a real-life character.)
My history with the Sarge. Well, as a child I used to watch GI Joe. But we didn’t have many of the figures. Like Transformers, they were on the more expensive side. Which wasn’t to say we had none. Me and my brothers eventually accrued a small army, but we usually didn’t remember the names of the characters, and some of ours were of the more generic but WAY CHEAPER “Corps” variety. As the older brother, I always gravitated towards Cobra and the Decepticons in these rare but cherished acquisitions. The other issue…my mother didn’t want us to go into the army. I have an uncle who was eventually a colonel. And he of course encouraged us to join up. (Just a note. The character of Sgt. Slaughter would be a Marine before becoming a GI Joe.)
Anyway, Sgt. Slaughter was one of the few official Joes that we had. I remember specifically that he had a removable hat, that I remember specifically getting lost. So most of the time he didn’t have this. Some light research on YoJoe.com tells me that we must have had the version that came with the Warthog AIFV.
But this isn’t all, is it? Sgt. Slaughter was a WWF wrestler. I remember watching him. I didn’t watch wrestling that much. It was what came on after the cartoons on Saturday morning, so…BUT, (Confusingly, the sarge seemed to switch to our enemy Iraq sometime in the 1990’s for his wrestling kayfabe. Nobody’s perfect…). Sgt. Slaughter also appeared as a Saturday morning cartoon host and in commercials for GI Joe toys. And finally, the most memorable thing about Sgt. Slaughter for me was the 1980’s movie appearance. In this version, which I got to see dozens of times because we had it on BETA tapes hooked to our Nintendo TV, Sgt. Slaughter shines most of all. Without using a curse word (unlike Beach Head), he let us know what a drill sergeant is all about. “The only way your going home is in a ditty bag. An itty, bitty, ditty bag.” !!!!!!!!!!
(I asked the Sarge what this meant when I met him at the Retro Toy Con last year. The “ditty bag” is a small cosmetics bag that a soldier stores his razor in. At the con I was SO TEMPTED to get an autographed poster of Sgt. Slaughter saying this to hang in my classroom!)
On to the toy review!
WHAT? SERIOUSLY? I ordered my figure from GameStop…I got an e-mail blasting a sale. And so when I clicked, I saw it at a reasonable price of <$25, and ordered it. Having a Cobra Commander already, I knew this would be a pretty cool toy to display beside him.
BUT NOPE. REALLY!!
I had heard of “windowless” packaging for Hasbro’s toys. I might have seen a Star Wars black series Battle Droid hanging on a tab when I visited the store. I didn’t put it together that THIS WAS WHAT I WOULD GET. No window showing us the figure. I did not and still do not appreciate this. OK so there is virtually no plastic in this package. I guess that’s a win for the environment. But the environment has to take second place. We are talking about serious business here, Hub City Geeks.
What we get is a nice picture of Sgt. Slaughter in different situations. The top left is the GI Joe TV host (I think,), the top right is the comic book appearance. Next on the left is a person holding the action figure who is holding a micro action figure which is an included accessory. The right is the image of the Sarge from the movie. The bottom left is a picture of the toy posed holding the machine gun. And in the center, nice and tall, is a modern illustration of the character. If he seems less muscular in this depiction, this is what he really looks like in real life today, only an illustrated version. When GamesStop advertised that this figure would be Six-In-One, what they meant was the six versions that surround the illustration. And they are counting the micro figure.
The back shows us another picture of the machine gun pose, and also a picture of everything in the box along with a ruler showing us how big everything is in scale. Those symbols…
I didn’t pay that much attention to them on Cobra Commander’s box. I guess I just thought it part of the design. But with Sgt. Slaughter’s box next to it, I see that there is more going on here. Something deeper. These are the character’s stats! You can see a whole page about that here. Finally, it makes sense. Cobra Commander has strong leadership, light weapons, “psyops” (psychological warfare), and a mastered skillset for coercion. Sgt. Slaughter has strong leadership, great hand to hand skills, great strength, and a mastered skillset that is too secret to reveal!
The other side has nice art, comparable to Cobra Commander’s.
BUT…Trying to save the environment by removing the blister is a poor excuse for not getting to see the figure we are getting. AND…it looks dumb next to Cobra Commander who has a windowed package. Hasbro. You deal in plastic. Do it right.
Let’s open this up.
This is what you open. The figure is strapped to the open box with paper rope. The other box contains the accessories.
We get what my son in the army says is an AK-47, but you have to assemble it. The magazine and the flashlight were not attached. A pair of sunglasses. A “baton” (is this the right word?), a whistle, a micro action figure on card WITH BLISTER. Three alternate left and right hands, and that hat I remember so fondly.
I think the only couple of things I would add here are a figure stand and a pistol or grenades. But I don’t miss these that much.
Here I have Sgt. Slaughter posed as best as I could to his comic appearance.
I tried to do the pose of the big image on the box…the problem is that the baton will not stay securely in his armpit. Another one you can’t do is the arms folded. His plastic muscles are just too much!
He looks like an 80’s action star holding his AK-47.
In a future post, I will open this micro figure. Why did they include this? Do the recent GI Joe Classified figures all come with this? I really enjoy it, though!
The sergeant must be taller than Cobra Commander. With another upcoming review, you will see that it must be that Cobra Commander is supposed to be on the shorter side. More research needed, I guess. But I kind of like it if he has a Napoleon complex. Seems fitting. The Sarge looks like he could roll up Old Snake and throw him at some BAT bowling pins.
So what do I rate this GI Joe Classified Sgt. Slaughter? No question. That package is a disappointment. I was underwhelmed when I opened the shipper box. And that isn’t what you want in a hobby that is supposed to be about awesome fun. As a teacher that box gets a D+. The contents are clear and the pictures are nice. Blah blah blah. Less plastic. Blah blah blah. I. Want. To. See. What. I. Have. In. The. Box. for display purposes. I am a grown up. Are kids buying these figures? I don’t think so. They have no connection to them.
As far as the figure, it is excellent. 5/5. Hooray! It is a great representation of the classic GI Joe. He looks cool, is highly posable. Looks good with Cobra Commander. No issues with sloppy paint or anything like that. The joints feel right. The swappable hands kind of worry me, but they work just fine…just be careful.
If the figure gets a 5/5, and the package gets a 2/5, I guess I am giving this a 4/5. Do you agree or disagree, Hub City Geeks? Let me know in the comments!