Budo (1993 Mail-In)
The end of the RAH Joe line produced its fair share of hits, misses and oddities. For me, the mail-in international force mail in set from 1993 was an odd, yet fun and eclectic mix of both characters and colors. As a concept, it’s a great idea, particularly after the foreign Joes released in ’91 and ’92. The four figures in the set also sport some subdued colors (including a Night Force-ish Big Bear) along with some odd colors. None of them however approach the eye-gouging color of other ’93 mail-ins like Interrogator and the Create a Cobra.
Big Ben, Big Bear and Spirit represent the UK, Russia and the USA respectively, and Budo is supposed to represent Japan, but is actually from the USA. Oops. I suppose they could have put Skymate on the team, since he represents Australia, but I suppose Budo’s inclusion still works for the set, if you aren’t a huge stickler for detail.
As 90’s repaints go, he doesn’t fare too badly. The only real oddness in his scheme are the bright orange highlights. Like his first figure, It’s in the paint detail where Budo suffers, as his incredibly detailed torso is molded in a solid color with no paint apps. This isn’t surprising at the end of the original Joe line, which seemed to see a reduction in paint apps overall.
The only accessory included outside of his helmet is his sheathed sword, molded in silver. It’s disappointing not to get his other sword, sai or backpack, but I’m not surprised that a mail-in and late release figure ended up light on the accessory count.