Micro Force Grunt
By Past Nastification
“Deformed” toys typically hold little appeal for me. Star Wars Galactic Buddies, or whatever they’re called… The cutesy Marvel figures with oversized eyes… Anything ever made by Pop… I just don’t get the adoration.
So imagine my self-loathing when I discovered that I liked the GI Joe Micro Force mini-figures from 2012. Micro Force was one of Hasbro’s attempts to make GI Joe into a kid-friendly battle game. One of my friends, a devious monster, gave me a dozen or so as a stocking stuffer. At first I despised them, not understanding why Hasbro couldn’t just put the time and effort into making real action figures. But somewhere along the way I gave in and embraced them.
It was at least one avenue to get new characters, many of which customizers have realized in 1:18 scale. After the ’07 Modern Era re-launch, Hasbro largely gave up on creating new characters. Micro Force blessed us with 10 or 12 completely original characters, depending on how one chooses to interpret them. Many of these new characters were ninja.
Most of the mini-figures, though, were based on existing figures/characters. Snake-Eyes and Grunt were the only OG13 Joes to make the cut. Snake-Eyes, of course, had several versions.
Grunt only had one mini-figure. It was a solid representation not directly based on any of Grunt’s previous figures. Sage green fatigues topped with a tan tac vest, the design was true to the spirit of Grunt’s utilitarian character. It also had one quirky element: two pair of goggles. One already on his face (arguably meant to be sunglasses) and a larger pair perched on his helmet. Grunt dutifully holds his rifle, looking like a soldier’s soldier.
I guess if Vipers can wear goggles over a full face shield, Grunt wasn’t going to be left out. I prefer the old pack-in micro figures to these, but they’re better than the Loyal Subjects not-quite-action-figures, but not-quite-POPs. If you want a GIJoe to put on your desk, why not just use a GIJoe figure? Funny how Hasbro canned the line, but 2-3 other companies are producing GIJoe stuff.
I much prefer the original micro figures from ’88, too.
Those are the best, because they at least, look like real people. These look like funny looking cartoon characters. Like the ones from The Super Hero Squad Show. You know something? Now that I’m thinking about it, it would be great if the Hasbro folks reissue those 1988 micro figures, and perhaps even create some more micro figures based on the classic characters.
Micro Force made some unmade 4″ figures canon, mostly a lot of oddball ninjas…Ghost Ninja, Beast Ninja, “Snake Master”, :Thunder Ninja, Gold Ninja…yay. And Cobra Commander Z…for zombie. Is that a different character or has CC become undead?