Wild Bill (2004)
I have said it time and again: I get a lot of joy out of the new sculpt era figures. It started when they hit the pegs back in the early 2000s, and it continues to this day. These figures represent the most fun I’ve had as a GI Joe collector. I get the same kind of sense when I think back to the 1995 Star Wars relaunch. And while the toys themselves may not be regarded as classics on their own merits, the lack of acclaim does not dampen my enthusiasm.
Wild Bill is one of the character redesigns that I truly enjoyed. The design team didn’t shy away from taking well-known Joes (and Cobras) and putting a new spin on them. The result here stays true to the Texan’s roots, and along the way injects style and color in a way that harks back to his Battle Corps days more than the original Dragonfly pilot.
What I dig the most about the figure are the little details. I love functional holsters, and removable headgear, so there’s two marks in the plus column for me. Add in the fact that the holsters are snakeskin, and he’s also sporting western leather-colored gloves, and I’m sold. I don’t care if his proportions are funky—it goes with the territory among these toys.
Is Wild Bill a little goofy and on-the-nose? Yes. He’s so nutty, he could be a member of Megaforce. He’s also a fun, functional figure that gets to the essence of the character.