Dart (2003)

While some small Joe collectors are lamenting the fact that there doesn’t appear to be much mass retail GI Joe presence on the horizon, I have to feel even worse for those large scale figure collectors, who have already been without much in the way of new product. Even the latest film didn’t generate the traditional highly articulated twelve inch Joes. I suppose it’s just the sad state of the market today when Hasbro releases even large figures with limited articulation. Just a few years ago, it wasn’t so. The twelve inch Joes continued in some format, albeit movie tie-ins. A separate series of real-world large scale Joes hit shelves in 2010, but didn’t last long.

The big guys also got their due during the early 2000s relaunch. Granted, there were some cost-cutting measures employed along the way, like molded shirts in place of cloth, but I think the run generally acquitted itself well. There were also a few real gems among them. I’ve been intruiged enough to go back and pick up a few that I had missed along the way. The usual big name characters were present as expected, but some of the newly created Joes and Cobras made the journey to the twelve inch scale as well.

Dart was interesting to me not only due to his background as a Native American character, but also for his design. His 3 & 3/4 inch version was one of the earlier relaunch figures whose proportions weren’t too wonky. He also had a nice, nondescript uniform that didn’t beat the viewer over the head too much with iconography. This version follows the same restraint. I assume much of the reason for the lack of Dart’s particular cultural imagery is due to his being made up of a variety of reused parts. The head mold is new, and features some impressively sculpted long hair. It’s the sort of thing you don’t encounter often in the large scale GI Joe lines.

Sometimes these later large figures come across as more than a little slapdash, but Dart at least brings something new to the twelve inch table. The only things really out of place are his ill-fitting helmet and his rather eastern looking arm guards. Maybe they’re on loan from Kamakura.


  • Is this dude supposed to be Spirit?

  • @Dreadnok: Spirit
    Nah, they did Spirit the following year.

    I can’t help but notice three things: 1) the helmet looks familiar–12″ Bazooka’s maybe?, 2) the missile looks familiar, like it originated mold-wise from Battle Corps, and 3) the gun looks like a large version of Helix’s weapon.

  • Thanks. The helmet looks like the one that came with the Basic Training Grunt from the early ’90s.

  • His hair and face sculpt reminds me of Lynn Kyle from Robotech [yes, thats what i called it]

    On the subject of ’12 figures. I wonder if Hasbro is going to reissiue the same original Joe dolls i mean figures like what they did with the 40th annivesery. Or will the 50th anniversery solely be internet exclusives?

  • @Skymate
    Almost–he doesn’t have Kyle’s bangs. (Also, surprised you made a Robotech reference.)

  • The PoC Spirit actually looks more like Dart to me (and yeah, Billy from Predator) now that I’ve seen this larger version.

    There was a lot of buzz today about Hasbro announcing their plans for the 50th Anniversary at Toy Fair. I would expect it to be 12″ inch related and probably limited to exclusives, given how both the 12″ and 4″ ranges are in retail limbo at present. But then again, TRUs is the only chain still carrying Joes at this point so anything in the wild could be considered limited.

  • @Acer
    It is my favorite cartoon of all time. Anyway i have it on the brain at the moment as i’m watching the whole series [again] as i’m making customs of the figures Matchbox never did. So far i’ve done Rick and Max in their standard uniforms. Scott and Ben are on the way. Dainia and her squad presents a problem. Think for them i’ll have to use clone troopers and greenstuff them up a bit. I have no idea what to do for the “Bridge bunnies” when i get to them

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