Bombardier (BFTB Exclusive)
I’ve said this many times over the history of the blog: I miss o-ring GI Joe figures. While I don’t have a problem with the modern figure construction, I simply prefer the style and sensibilities of the older guys. Some of the allure is nostalgia, since they’re the Joes of my childhood and some of it is an appreciation of the figures’ design and the idiosyncrasies of the appearance of o-rings and rivets. The exposed elements of the toys’ articulation is as much a part of their charm for me as my memories of play. That sounds like a lot of phony-baloney gobbledygook, but I can’t help myself sometimes. I was an art major and had to spout a lot of this sort of mumbo-jumbo in art history papers.
The figure now known as Bombardier was once a mystery figure, but now its origin is known. I won’t go into the details, as you can find the story at Blood for the Baron. BFTB is an amazing resource for all things Action Force, and recently they partnered up with Commander Hood, Vintage Star Wars Collectables and Red Lasers Army, and released an o- ring version of the famous figure.
The collectors club has also visited the concept in its figure subscription service, produced in the modern GI Joe construction style. While that figure was a cool homage, I’m more excited to see it here in the original format.
This figure is an accurate reproduction of the o-ring swivel-arm Flash mold, with his signature laser rifle and backpack. Like other unofficial figures, the plastic is of a different quality than Hasbro vintage. The plastic of the helmet and laser rifle aren’t as robust as their counterparts, but work fine for display. Some pieces (like the forearms) appear to be hand-painted rather than spray masked. Overall, it’s a nicely done figure, and I’m glad to have the opportunity to pick up a copy of an interesting bit of Action Force/GI Joe history.