Dial-Tone (2011)

I’m torn. I really like the vintage Dial Tone figure, but I have a hard time liking this one. The old Dial Tone had a very unique look, from his outfit to his weapons and accessories. He was another one of those 80s redesigns that kept life in the line. The concept of a communications specialist that worked so well with Breaker was expanded upon to great effect. This figure presents a representation of Dial-Tone in the more modern style, but the parts choices don’t really stand up to  or reflect the originality of the old figure.

With the exception of the head, it looks a little too much to me like a custom. The Buzzer harness replicates what Dial-Tone wore in ’86, but it still reads to me as part of a Dreadnok’s wardrobe. Why does Dial-Tone need a steel shoulder plate? Finally, there’s the 25th Gung Ho legs. Were they specifically designed to be annoying? It’s almost as bad as the Gung Ho/Duke leg overuse of the 2000s.


  • On that last bit about the Gung-Ho/Duke legs–with the original Duke, only his lower legs came from the original Gung-Ho, while the uppers were from the original Major Bludd. Gung-Ho V1’s ARMS, on the other hand, saw a lot of reuse.

  • I’m going to cop a lot of flak for this but i always liked Dial-tone more than Breaker.

    I really dont like the 25th stuff. The only ones i have are the Slaughter Maraduers and they live in their box because they cant stand up, hold their weapons and they have really awkward proportions [Falcons head is on a tiny body]

    My V1 Dialtone is a centrepeice of my ’86 display

  • I thought the Slaughter’s Marauders set was part of the 30th Anniversary? The only ones that use 25th Anniversary parts in that set are Red Dog, Taurus, and Barbecue.

  • Thanks Acer. I’m a bit scetchy about that whole erra as only small fractions of it was relesed down here and only is specialty shops. It’s a nice set. A pity most of them cant stand up unaided.

  • I like both Breaker and Dial-Tone, although the latter is one of my favorite sculpts in the entire vintage line. I’m glad they finally updated him. But yeah, the shoulder pad is a definite eyesore if you compare his gear to the ’86 original.

    The other thing that bugs me about the figure is how the the Club exclusives used different tones of skin color in the plastic. The Brazil Dial-Tone has much lighter skin whereas this one looks he hangs out with George Hamilton.

  • Yeah, Rob, I have a similar problem with Dial Tone. He was one of my brother’s big figures and so I have a lot of fond memories of that figure as a kid, and this version just doesn’t quite cut it. The Buzzer belt is great, but I hate the shoulder pad (and considering Hasbro used a similar shoulder strap/belt combo on Ripper but didn’t have the real Buzzer torso underneath it, I don’t see why the Collectors’ Club couldn’t have put that belt over a torso that made more sense like a 25th Dusty or 25th Viper) and the lower legs just look awful because of their lack of detail. Add in my second least favorite pair of arms from Airborne because they’ve got that funky built in wrist angle and he really doesn’t do a lot for me. I have him on display, but he’s also towards the back of my case where is issues aren’t nearly as apparent. To be honest, though, I’m also not even THAT thrilled with the head. The mustache is just a tad too small for my taste. I realize that it wasn’t that big on the original but it doesn’t look like it got scaled up with that larger head. Coupled with the fact that it’s just painted on as opposed to sculpted (at least as near as I can tell), and it comes off more as a brown paint smudge than it does facial hair.

  • It was amazing how much everyone reused that Buzzer torso with the oddly placed shoulder pad. Had anyone though to just slice that off (and sand down the random dogtags hanging from the chest pocket), it would’ve been easier to accept as Dial Tone, Leatherneck, etc. Doesn’t look much like a sweater vest here, though. I do like the head, maybe better than Footloose’s.

  • I’m amazed at how bad some of the modern era figures look. I know a lot has improved from 25th to ROC to 30th. You can see it, but there’s not much excuse for some of them, especially recent ones, looking as bad as they do.

  • The original figure was very nice. What I liked about the old line was how the designers re-used an old theme i.e. like a Comms Expert and made a brand new character rather than re-make the same old character with a new look, look at Shortfuse and then Downtown, or Torpedo and Wetsuit, Shipwreck or Topside…now we get multiple Dukes (no wait, he’s dead) so it’ll be Roadblocks, Cobra Commanders, Snake Eyes and Storm Shadows…

    Btw, you never did mail me back about Skeletron…charming. No dice on spilling that bit of history now!

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