Until the recent Toys R Us product, the Rise of Cobra seemed to have been the last great gasp of GI Joe store exclusives. I was figuring that when Retaliation hit last year, there would have been the usual run of repaints, repacks and multi-figure sets at Target, Walmart and Toys R Us. Such was not the case. Too bad. Movie tie-ins like the Rise of Cobra Walmart two-packs from 2009 were a great opportunity for Hasbro to get some obscurities and homages into the regular retail mix. I find that sort of thing invigorating as a toy collector. After all, the Collector Club is expected to cater to the fandom, but when Hasbro pushes out something off the wall through retail, it seems sweeter.
As much as I’ve bagged on the 25th Anniversary figures’ articulation and playability, I have to admit that detail-wise, some of the sculpts had moments of greatness. Copperhead’s helmet is a prime example. There’s a lot of character in just that quarter of his exposed face. The texture on the pants is still pretty amazing too.
I find the paint scheme the most interesting aspect of the figure. Its was nice to see a few deviations from the formula of re-creating the 80s in modern form. And while there were official modern figures based on the original and the Python Patrol repaint, for me this color variation eclipses it. I know that’s faint praise considering the 1989 Python Patrol’s eyeball-ache inducing hues, but nonetheless this Copperhead stands as a decent repaint. It’s just too bad a modern version hasn’t featured a removable helmet. Maybe his mug is just too ugly.