This Duke was a turning point for me in my opinion of the modern construction’s ability to be playable. Not only did the figure live up to the super poseable description given since 2007, it also improved on the already likeable notion of removable gear. Nothing got in the way of anything else, and the vest didn’t look bulky or obtrusive. Also, as you can see, I was able to put Duke into a two handed rifle pose, always a huge plus for poseability in my book. Improvements like these continued through the movie line, Pursuit of Cobra and 30th anniversary. I’ve often been hard on the 25th anniversary figures, and it’s only because I wanted them to be better toys. Thankfully, they did get better, and I think figures like this were the start.
I wasn’t thrilled with the Resolute animated special when I finally saw it. Although it was more adult than the GI Joe animation we were used to, I found it to be a rather joyless affair. While the Sunbow series regularly trotted out crazed plotlines and often featured the ridiculous villains and one dimensional heroes that were hallmarks of the 80’s, there was also a charm and humor to the old ‘toon that I missed in this modern adventure of our Real American Heroes. Resolute was pretty to look at, but looks only get you so far.
I generally liked the character designs from Resolute, as it wasn’t too hung up on simply copying the old looks, but put some spins on the established character designs. The Resolute Destro was one of my favorite figures inspired by the animation, and this Duke ranks pretty high as well. It’s certainly light years better than another 2009 Duke, from the Greatest Battles DVD set.