Sgt. Slaughter (1988)

Holy cow! It’s the Sarge without a tank top and whistle! And he’s wearing a removable hat to boot! Awesome! With this figure, Sgt. Slaughter finally looked more like a Joe than a wrestler. His military look brings to mind his few appearances in the Marvel comic, in which he was outfitted in simple camo fatigues, and was also shown hatless at times. Granted, he didn’t exactly look like this figure, but it did make me remember his very non-Sunbow (i.e. not a Mary Sue) comic portrayal.

On the hatless subject, this figure also incorporates the “give ’em more hair” philosophy frequently employed by Hasbro sculptors of the time when working from real models. Well, he doesn’t get away with a full head of hair and sports a kind of hair peninsula under his hat.

The file card incorporates Sgt. Slaughter’s drill instructor mentality into his role as a driver of the AIFV Warthog. He beats the vehicle into the ground as he puts it through its paces. At least he’s consistent. I also get a chuckle thinking of him berating an inanimate object like a raw recruit: “I think the best part of you leaked from an impact wrench, ran down a crack in the assembly line ramp and ended up as a brown stain in the grease pit!”


  • Most collectors I know prefer this version compared to the other Sarges. The removable hat and detailed vest certainly improve his look, as does the fact that he’s manning a far cooler vehicle this time around. I remember thinking about switching the torso for Armadillo/Rumbler’s since the Rolling Thunder driver is wearing a similar ammo belt during his first appearance in G.I. Joe #80. So, even if you’re not a Sgt. Slaughter fan, this figure still offers lots of customizing potential.

  • Oh man, a few months ago I found this figure still in its bubble at an antique shop for $15! It’s my first-ever Sgt. Slaughter figure. I gave him the VvV Duke rifle from the Hulkbuster Squad 2-pack since a grey version (that was collapsible) came with the Sarge from the 2006 convention.

  • This is my least favorite version of Sarge. Though, that’s likely a function of the fact that I actually called the 1-900 number to get the “secret” code that saved me a mail away ticket so I could get the mail away figure sooner. And, I always viewed the black TTT version as closer to his appearance in G.I. Joe #51. (Which is why I always gave that figure Rock and Roll’s M-60.)

    But, this is a pretty solid mold and would have been a great repaint: even for any other character just to reuse the torso.

    I think a huge quantity of overstock Sgt. Slaughters are out there. He is very easy to find MIB and, a couple of years ago, unopened figures could be had for under $5 on Ebay. So, he’s probably easier to find than his earlier figures.

  • My best version of the Sarge!

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