Over Kill (2003)


The internet exclusive BAT pack was one of those things I initially thought was going to be a real issue to get. My experience in toy collecting up to that point had been through the 90s, a time when the hobby had grown dramatically, and when the first collector focused toys began to appear en masse. With lines like Spawn and the relaunched Hasbro Star Wars capitalizing on the presence of action figure collectors and also feeding speculators, I was concerned that the exclusivity of this set would cause it to be quickly gobbled up by both parties. I was wrong. It languished online at its retail price for years. Even the Joe army builders didn’t deplete the stock.

Over Kill was the single named character in the set. Based on the Talking Battle Commander mold ( complete with flat back) the BAT leader was rendered in an interesting new color scheme. Not that his original was bad, being rendered in some variation of the traditional BAT black, along with red and gold. Initially, I wasn’t impressed with the new color scheme, but now it’s grown on me. I daresay it’s even funkier than the 90s version.

I’ve often wondered why the first BAT was given rolled up sleeves. This one goes full robot, without any hint of human clothing. Strangely enough, the file card is based not on the 90s version of the character, but the human/robot hybrid version of the 2000s era. It’s odd, considering the bio says that half of his body is replaced with mechanical parts. So where is his flesh? Oops, sounds like someone forgot to do their research. Then again, maybe they figured, oh well, collectors don’t care about such things. Oh, but we do. Some of us even take to the internet each day to lay bare our thoughts and pick over such trivial little details about these little plastic playthings.


  • I got Overkill V1for my seventh birthday. I didnt have him fo very long. Ironically i lost the figure and its cumbersome backpack but still have his tiny chest mounted machine gun.

    As for this version. Honestly i dont mind the colours. He reminds me of an obscure early G2 Decepticon

  • The barrel of his gun looks like a shoulder rest like he’s pointing the gun the wrong way. Interesting figure c

  • For some reason, collectors and kids prefer to army build human troopers more than mechanized beings. The current Hama comic is wrapping up yet another storyline featuring killer robots who act like humans and it’s begun to drag quite a bit even as the series nears its 200th issue.

  • @ Clutch-I absolutely agree! Larry’s used the killer robot motif to death.If you over use robots you take the human element out of it, the moral equivalent of smashing a pocket calculator. Nobody in famdom has seemed to suggest this but Hama’s writing since his return has been subpar, to say the least. The wit, subtle humor, intriguing sub-plots, and interesting dialogue that was prevalent in the original Marvel series is largely absent.The IDW relaunch has been…empty. I hate to say it, but it definitely appears Larry’s coasting on past laurels, he’s just collecting a paycheck.
    As for the figure itself, it’s one of my favorites, but mine is missing the regular right hand.

  • @Clutch
    I think that BAT’s by themselves are a fearsome foe [like in Malfunction]. The cartoon even used this twice aswel. In My favorite things and Once upon a Joe; the lone BATs in that are quite effective and scary [even when decapitated]. Overusing them or using them enmasse is like the Daleks on Dr Who. One Dalek is scary. An army of them is just gun fodder.
    I can see where your coming from in regards to the comics.
    I havnt seen too many of the modern comics. There are so many different series its almost impossible to keep track of but i think the BATS shouldnt have been used after Malfunction. In the Transformers franchise, Simon Furman has long run out of steam. I wont buy any of his newer stories as i know its going to be a whole heap of fanservice for the all-powerful Grimlock.

  • The BAT troop set was too 90’s looking. Back in 2002-2003, there wasn’t much nostalgia for the neon 90’s GI JOE era. Folks wanted early army builders, like Cobra troopers, Vipers, Crimson Guard maybe the original BATS. Transparent red BATs and neon green Overkill were tacky looking and the BAT Mk2 too unfamiliar.

    If they’d led with Cobra Infantry the sets would’ve gone over better. But that would’ve meant new tooling since the Cobra officer/trooper molds were thought missing at the time. They could’ve done Vipers, too. But then, they never fixed the 1997 Viper’s problems.

  • Beware: My fresh off the card Overkill’s chest plate broke at the hinge the first time it was opened.

    The talk about the comics makes me feel better about not reading 155.5 and up. I’m buying em, but have vowed to re-read 1-155 first. That’s been on my back burner for a while!

  • Funny you should mention the new sculpt version, Rob–I think this figure’s color scheme is meant to tie in to that figure.

  • I still think this was a very good army builder pack. It was all bagged figures in a box, just the way I would like these army builder packs instead of the near-8-times as large retail display boxes. Or the 15 figure exclusive sets packed in foam. The packaging was simple on this BAT set and got me what I wanted: the figures and many of them.

    I wanted to buy more sets, but had to be reasonable in spending as always.

    Overall the BAT set high lights for me were the BAT v2 repaints in more classic colors. The old ’86 BATS seemed like old technology to the more streamlined v2 that I had since ’91. The 1991 mold was much more high-tech, lightweight, and made to be a killing machine to me.

    Inferno BATs were cool in their somewhat “glow” that could be achieved, but I would have been happier with these two figures just being more of the other 3 “standard” BATs that were in the set.

    Overkill here has been a source of imagination for me, this one featured became an upgraded third generation of the original Overkill BAT (no more big backpack needed to house components). All robot for me, despite the filecard. Far too expensive and complex for an assembly line build, and to a point even basic use. Overkill became an effective thing on its own, but even with the latest technology it was still a walking and shooting computer.

    That’s where Overkill became less of a next generation BAT or BAT leader, and the whole thing became a somewhat twisted project with the experimentation in cyborg technologies. Some of these cyborgs saw field use in these parts, deadly as the walking shooting computer with a little bit of angry, cruel human underneath.

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