Cross-Sell Corner: 1988 Vehicle Packs

You may have noticed that the last week has featured more than the usual amount of non-figure reviews from me. That's due entirely to the Great JAD HQ Flood of 2017. My collection is now in a packed-away holding pattern and the photo setup needs to be relocated until insurance takes care of base repairs. Hang tight!Thanks to the regular contributions of KansasBrawler and Past Nastification some figure reviews still get in the mix. You guys rock!

I've covered package art via the Power of Packaging feature, but I thought it would be interesting to focus on how Hasbro has hawked its product via cross-sell advertising. The 80s was a golden age of effective on-package advertising. The Real American Hero era produced some of the most memorable and cleanly design layouts.

The vehicle pack series contains it share of both cool and downright nutty designs. Some appear as if they'd work in real life, albeit with a healthy dose of belief suspension. Others, thanks to their being shrunk to a low price point backpack size, have an alternately cute/ridiculous superdeformed style. Certainly the sight of Joes hunkered over Power Wheels-sized vehicles makes for unintended hilarity if nothing else. The package still goes whole hog in selling the set, featuring photos rather than painted art. I love it.


  • Dreadnok: Spirit

    I can see the Gyrocopter as being a predecessor to the Battle Copters. That and the Scuba Pack are the only ones that don’t look totally foolish.

    • James From Miami

      Speaking of foolish, it’s too bad that we didn’t get to see the photo of the front of this card, which is from the Tank Car, and it shows Spearhead driving the Tank Car, while Muskrat is in front of him driving the ATV. And Spearhead is shooting the machine gun on the front of the Tank Car while Muskrat is right in front of him. Very foolish stuff going on right there on that cover. Too bad that it wasn’t shown. Also, check out Shockwave’s vest, it’s not blue.

  • By showing photos with figures you might already have, it all seems so natural. Of course Shockwave is riding a child’s ATV! Why wouldn’t he? Buy one today!

  • See what happens when there’s not enough navy guys, Hit & Run is assigned to the scuba pack.

    Cobra Rocket Pack makes the least amount of sense. They are all death traps, but that one is like “launch yourself straight into the jaws of death.”

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