Comandos Helicóptero (2009)
Wrapping up four days of convention vehicle coverage, it’s one of the items that I was most pleasantly surprised to see during my years of buying the Collector’s Club exclusives. The Comandos Helicóptero was part of the 2009 offerings, and the whole set is special to me, since that year’s con was held in my hometown of Kansas City. My amazing wife even attended with me, and we had a great time, making JoeCon a part of a stay-cation that year.
The main set from 2009 caused a bit of a stir in the collecting community, as it was a modern construction style update of the popular 2002 Crimson Strike Team. Unexpectedly, a few famous international 80s GI Joe characters were put into the mix as attendee exclusives. The concept was also extended to a couple of the vehicles, and the 25th anniversary FANG was repainted in Action Force colors as well as this throwback to the Argentinian figures. The silver and blue color scheme is similar to the old Glenda figure, and the copter serves another purpose, giving 25th Glenda–I mean Pilot Scarlett–something to do. I wonder if the international theme among the add-on exclusives was a preemptive strike to answer any complaints about a rehash.
An interesting little detail is the phrase on the side of the vehicle, “ad astra per aspera,” meaning “through hardships to the stars.” It’s not only the motto for a unit of the Argentinian Air Force, but also the state motto of Kansas. A happy coincidence, I’m sure, but if an intentional tribute to the con’s location, not entirely correct. The con was in Missouri, not Kansas. Dangit, why can’t people get that right? Regional Nerd Rage!