What’s the matter with me? I’ve been writing this blog for over four years, and I haven’t covered the original Beachhead figure until now. We’ve looked at the mold in many of its repainted versions, from Funskool to Club exclusive and even a modern Toys R Us offering. My memories of this version center around my feelings for the 1986 series in general.
By most accounts, I was getting a bit old to be playing with GI Joes by 1986. However, I didn’t feel much pressure to stop buying them, as many of my collecting and trading buddies at school were still into it as well. My feelings toward Joes and other toys didn’t start to change for me until the next year. Getting a car to work on before hitting age fifteen was a big motivator to put away childish things. (I’ll have to expound upon teen Rob and his car project some day.)
In 1986, the latest GI Joe toys were exciting to me. After seeing Serpentor on the shelves, I wasted no time in picking him up. That’s right, I liked Serpentor. A Cobra Emperor was just about the coolest new thing a kid could want in his enemy army. It’s interesting to think of the juxtaposition of the new additions to the Joe team that year. Figures like Beachhead, Low Light and Leatherneck contrasted with Cobra’s latest band of weirdos. I was sold on Beachhead from the tiny pic on a cardback, as I had been many times before. The guy just looked like a no-nonsense, straight-up ass kicker. Add in the masked head, and he was an instant member of many a backyard or living room mission.
Issue 47 of the Marvel comic further stoked my interest in the figure. After reading the Cobra Island battle, and the inclusion of new figures and vehicles, I was heavily into the new product. I wanted to re-create that battle in my living room as soon as possible. Within a few weeks, I had grabbed up a Devilfish and Hyrdo-Sled along with the new Hawk and Wet Suit. I hadn’t really recalled that particular Joe memory until I started this article, but my recall is vivid now that I’ve got it back in mind.
I think I just surprised myself with this entry. At times, this daily pursuit gets to me a grind, but Beachhead reminds my while I still find joy in doing this blog, and connecting with my toys. Now I need to pull out more older Joes to jog my aging brain cells.