City Strike Destro
I’ve made no bones about my love of Destro. Any of you who have listened to the Second Anniversary Podcast know that. While the Iron Grenadier version remains my favorite, the Pursuit of Cobra City Strike Destro is a very close second. I like being able to use Destro on the battlefield and this version of Destro is perfect for that. I know he’s hard to find and I’m very excited I found him on a Wal-Mart run while I was researching at the Truman Library in the Kansas City area, and honestly, had I not been dragged out there for my thesis, I never would have found him. I only ever saw that figure on the pegs that one time in Liberty, Missouri. Remember kids, sometimes research pays off…in toys!
I’ve already talked about how great this mold is in my Field Report on the Pursuit of Cobra Iron Grenadier. It’s a nice set of well-designed, heavy combat-oriented gear. Everything looks appropriately protective and bulky while not venturing into the realm of science fiction like Battle Armor Cobra Commander does. If you want a full recounting of this mold, take a look at the Pursuit of Cobra Iron Grenadier Field Report. His only different piece is his head, so I’ll spend a little time talking about that. First of all, I think all Destros should have vac-metalized heads. That’s the way they did it in 1983, and I don’t think they should change it up. I like my Destro’s head shiny, thanks much. This head sculpt has a nice stern gaze and that’s just what Destro needs. It looks really great sitting on top of this great body. I know it’s shared with the Pursuit of Cobra Arctic Assault Destro, but I’m not sure if it was also shared with SDCC Rise of Cobra James McCullen Destro or not. I know they had trouble with movie-likeness figures in the early part of the Pursuit of Cobra line, but SDCC Destro was a pretty nebulous design. Having seen Christopher Eccleston in Doctor Who and Heroes, I thought I could see an element or two of his face there, but it could have just been me, as someone familiar with his work, seeing something that wasn’t actually there. Either way, it is a good Destro head and I’m glad they’re still using it. It looks just a little more realistic than the versions they used in the 25th Anniversary line.
This version of Destro’s paint scheme is great. The base color for his field suit is a nice dark red and he’s got a dark gray camouflage scheme on the rest of the field suit. I’m not sure where a red and black camo scheme would be really effective, but it is a very striking look. You’re not going to mistake Destro for anyone else on the battlefield in this color scheme. His blast vest is a dark gray with some black detailing and his shin guards get the same color. Much like the Pursuit of Cobra Iron Grenadier, my only complaint is that I kind of wish he was rocking the Iron Grenadier logo in the four spots he’s got Cobra sigils (chest, shoulder armor and both shin guards). This version of Destro feels more like a Destro that’s working on his own rather than being affiliated with Cobra. All in all, though, this is a great color scheme for Destro and works well for a more battlefield-oriented Destro.
Finally, we have to talk about Destro’s accessories. While on paper it doesn’t look like much, they’re all quite large and work very well here. The main event is Destro’s massive chaingun and support system. The mechanical arm hooks into his vest and helps steady the massive cannon. Destro’s gun is impressive, there’s no other way to describe it. It’s a great new mold. Hasbro could have easily just recycled the chaingun from Rise of Cobra Heavy Duty and called it a day, but Destro brings some brand new tech to the table. It also has an ammo bandolier. Unfortunately, it’s just a little too short to be useful. It can’t quite reach back to the slot in the Pursuit of Cobra Iron Grenadier’s second backpack which was originally supposed to come with this version of Destro. Destro’s other accessory is his briefcase full of money. I know a lot of fans liked to draw parallels between this version of Destro and the Sigma 6 Bank Robber Destro, and I agree, the ideas are similar. A heavily armed and armored Destro with a briefcase full of money is a pretty new thing to see in the smaller scale, and I have to admit, Bank Robber Destro was one of the few Sigma 6 figures I was tempted by getting back in the day. Having a Destro in my preferred scale make reference to it is a nice touch. It’s been a while since I’ve opened the briefcase because not only does one side of the briefcase have money molded in it, but the other side is open and there are a few loose stacks of US dollars and Euros that can be removed. They’re small and I don’t want to lose them, so sorry, I didn’t take any pictures of them. As I recall, they are also amazingly well detailed. The design team really did great work making them look like actual bills and I appreciate that attention to detail being given to such a small accessory.
Even if I hadn’t won the Destro lottery and actually been able to run down this guy at retail, I would still be a big fan. I’m glad to have him, considering how scarce he is, but I’m more glad to have him because he’s a neat new take on my all time favorite character. I see this Destro in two different ways. This is either Destro demonstrating his newest product in the field to a corrupt general and receiving payment for it, or it’s Destro on the run (possibly from both the Joes and Cobra), hoping to slip away with enough money on hand so that he can go to ground and plot his next move. I love getting figures that instantly spark a story in my mind when I get them. It took a lot of self-control not to bust into this guy’s packaging at the hotel the night I got him because he just looked so fun, but I didn’t want to misplace any of his parts. However, you can bet the moment I got back to my apartment, Destro was out of his package and making some sort of nefarious plot.