While the onslaught of G.I. Joe Retaliation figures will soon be upon us, there are still some cool non-movie figures to be found – provided you have a good ‘dollar store’ nearby. This so-called “Basic Line” isn’t a dollar line, but I think you’ll agree they’re worth the price of admission.
Images of this “Basic Line” first hit the net about a month ago on JoeDeclassified.Com. While it wasn’t entirely clear what these were, the folks at GeneralsJoes.Com did a little digging and discovered this would be a sixth market line aimed at dollar stores. So far, these are only being found at Dollar General (at least here in the states), but that doesn’t mean these can’t show up at other dollar stores in the future.
This wave is a six-figure assortment that features a mix of 25th, ROC/POC, and Renegades parts to create some great repaints. Included is an update of 1991’s Snake Eyes v4, 1992’s Ninja Force Storm Shadow 2002’s Shipwreck v5, Duke in an original Joe uniform, and both Cobra Commander and a Cobra Trooper in black uniforms.
I hit up ten Dollar Generals on my search yesterday and found one case each at two of the stores. One store had been picked over with only Duke & Storm Shadow remaining, but I found them case fresh at the second store. It was an accident, I found the second set though, I was checking out a Legends Class Starscream and dropped it. When I reached down to pick him up, I saw the corner of the new packaging sticking out from underneath some other toys. I felt very lucky as I would’ve completely missed them otherwise!
I opted to leave the all-black Cobra Commander behind so he won’t be featured in this review. I left him for a variety of reasons – the hooded version of CC is my least favorite, I’m not really big on him wearing all-black, and I’ve never been terribly fond of Hasbro reusing the Crimson Guard body for CC figures.
If I recall, the figure is a black repaint of the one that originally came in the Tripwire 2pk minus the cape, but with new lower limbs. He does include the cool cobra-handled sword in silver, but this was still an easy pass for me.
I did end up picking up the all-black Cobra Trooper, however. If I’d seen two, I might have gotten both as an army builder, but the mark on his helmet does identify him as an officer. I know, I could still troop build officers, but it turns out I didn’t need a lot of push to save the $6. If these end up hanging around as long as the last time there were dollar store Joes however (there were still plenty of the 2008 sixth market Joes at the stores) , I could see myself ending up with some sort of black ops unit.
The all-black Cobra Trooper is a repaint of last year’s Cobra Trooper v15, but with officer’s webgear (and the officer’s rank on his helmet). I love the color scheme; the silver decos really make the figure pop on the shelf. The only thing that I didn’t like about this figure was the lack of accessories. He’s sporting Snake Eyes v54’s legs which give him a sheath for a knife and a holster for a pistol and silencer, but unlike the blue version this guy only totes around his favorite rifle.
Oh, and before I forgot all of the “Basic Line” figures shown here included the appropriate G.I. Joe or Cobra stand that we’ve gotten used to over the last few years, but the stands don’t feature names for the specific characters.
Duke was another one that I wasn’t quite sure I’d be buying. I’d already bought and sold a “classic” Duke, but seeing the head sculpt close-up got me thinking of him more as a random greenshirt. The figure is pretty much a straight update of that v27 Duke I sold some years ago, but he’s now completely using the same build Hasbro used for Zap v5 and a POC Dusty head.
Lucky for me, I didn’t buy that Dusty. I don’t mind when Hasbro re-uses masked heads, but it’s hard for me to overlook character-specific heads. The actual 25th Greenshirts drove me little nuts because they were known Joes with their hair dyed. This is technically the same situation, but since I missed out on Dusty, I’m not as bothered. Plus, this head just doesn’t say Duke to my either so he makes for a good random trooper.
Duke is sporting some borrowed webgear, but I couldn’t tell you from where as well as a rifle and a pistol for one of his holsters. This does leave him one pistol short, but unlike the specific gear that’s not included with the Cobra Trooper, I know I’ve got a gun that will fit in that holster around here somewhere.
While I had reservations about the figures on page, not so for the three figures featured on the next page. Those were the guys I went searching for on my toy hunt. Continue to Page 2…