Barrel Roll (2005)
Barrel Roll was the case of a figure whose update was a pretty far cry, design-wise, from the original. The first figure looked like a young hotshot character, and his uniform supported that idea. Outfitted in a loose fitting uniform, done up in blue and grey, he seemed to be geared more towards the pseudo-military/adventure side of GI Joe. He even had his sleeves rolled up.
Enter the DTC version from just few years later. This time, the military aspect comes through more clearly. He’s still obviously both a sniper and a pilot, but he appears to have become a bit more button down, at least in the way he’s outfitted.
Barrel Roll’s face sculpt seems older as well. The previous figure was more fresh faced, with styled hair. This version looks older and more stoic, and he’s gotten a pretty severe haircut. He looks like a man who has spent a few years gaining experience with the team. That’s not a bad thing, just different.
The uniform and gear is also different, this time reflecting a paratrooper look, with flight suit, helmet and web gear. I still can’t get past the helmet however. I know it’s based on a real helmet, but the way it fits on his head is strange, like it’s on backwards. I also can’t help but think of a bowling ball when I see it. The sculpt of the figure tends toward realism, a change seen in other DTC figures, and a harbinger of the new style to come with the 25th anniversary series. The construction also hints at this new era, with hidden rivets and extra articulation.
The rifle is the only thing that’s a little out there in terms of its look. Obviously a high powered sniper rifle, it’s also quite hefty, and the figure has a bit of trouble holding it in a realistic position.