Big Jim’s PACK: Comic Ad
In 1973, while the GI Joe line was well into its Adventure Team period, competitor Mattel introduced Big Jim, a less militaristic adventure and sports based 10 inch figure, as an alternative. Unlike Joe, Big Jim from its beginnings incorporated action features into the figures. The toys’ biceps bulged when arms bent at the elbows.
In 1975, Big Jim’s image was changed, and he became a super agent. For me, this is where the line really takes off. Its inclusion of colorful team-oriented characters and crazy, over-the-top villains brings to mind the later GI Joe Real American Hero concept, and Mattel’s own Masters of the Universe. Speaking of MOTU, there are quite a few connections between the two brands, and you can see familiar character concepts and action features popping up throughout the series. Check out this site for a breakdown.
The rebranding of Big Jim into the PACK saw a ton of coverage in the form of cross-sell comic book ads. Comics legend Jack Kirby provided some wonderful package art, and the prolific John Buscema worked on a tie-in comic. Exciting stuff for a toy and comic geek.