1982 GI Joe Product Catalog – Part 3
Here they are, the original single carded lineup. And they are lined up, to an extent. The horizontal structure of this page of the catalog is even stronger than the previous entries, and the landscape format allows for the largest possible photos of the individual figures.
The figures are placed in the best action poses that could be achieved considering the limitations of the arms. I suppose one could catalog the range of poses possible within the Real American Hero figure construction. In fact, as I’ve been photographing toys for the blog, I’ve come up against an issue that I’m sure the layout artists of this catalog faced; how to create a dynamic pose while showcasing as much of the item as possible.
The key word once again is prototype. Most notably among the differences on the figures are the heads. Maybe it’s just the photo, but the face sculpts look a little more angular, and the eyes seem more detailed than the finished product. Grunt and Zap in particular look more chiseled than their final versions. The Cobra figures look even more different than their GI Joe counterparts.
With all of the collectors out there picking up prototypes and the like, I wonder if these figures are sitting out there in a collection somewhere. If so, maybe they’ll surface someday, and we can see some close-ups. I’ve heard opinions on both sides of the issue, but from a historical perspective, I find it a shame that many pre-production and other rare GI Joe items have yet to see the light of day. Who wouldn’t buy something like a book about the creation and background behind all these wonderful toys?