Super Trooper (1988)

It’s been a long time getting here, two years in fact. Last year, my first anniversary post covered the 30th anniversary Airtight, a new version of the first figure I ever covered for the blog. This time, I’m looking at a figure that I’d intended to showcase since the beginning, but that had been pushed back time after time. I’m glad to see that I’ve finally come to this point, of two uninterrupted years of daily GI Joe blogging. What better way to commemorate the occasion than with a shiny action figure?

As a kid, I gravitated toward the usual figures that most Joe fans count as favorites. When I came back into GI Joe collecting in 1991, I had an immediate affinity for the odd and unusual, and as time has gone by, I’ve become fascinated by the more toylike figures and vehicles. I suppose you could say I’ve regressed in my adult years. I haven’t gone as far back as chewing on toys however, but only time will tell.

One of the first figures I bought when I returned to toy collecting was the distinctively strange Tracker, who remains a favorite. What’s not to love about a figure that includes a tiny inflatable raft? It makes me want to play Joes in the tub again, but I don’t want to deal with rusty screws in my collection.  Anyway, as I dug deeper into the figures I had missed during my hiatus, there were so many that piqued my new interests. But a certain individual stood out from all the others: the Super Trooper. Where do I begin with him, other than to say he certainly looks super, what with his chromed accoutrements. Considering his name and look, one might take him for a super hero, but the file card simply paints him as an extremely capable soldier. The mini-comic from his offer booklet and the TV commercial portray him in a more superhuman light.

He’s one of the more heavily promoted mail-ins, which started all the way back with Cobra Commander in ’82. There were later offerings, but Super Trooper was boldly publicized with stickers on the front of figure packages. The cynical might say that the mail-in concepts got progressively goofy over the years, going from classics like the hooded Cobra Commander and Duke to the likes of the Fridge and this guy. But I think there’s a spirit of fun to Super Trooper, not unlike the cereal prizes of old.

Made up of parts from four different figures, he’s a patchwork of a Joe that only really comes together because of the unifying effects of chromed plastic. Even his gun is chromed, an effect that wouldn’t be seen again until the Funskool pastiche version of Cross Country.

Yes, he’s gaudy and ridiculous, a crazed chromed commando of epic proportions, but he can have a place in a GI Joe collection. Use him as a morale booster, a sort of rallying point for the troops. That’s what he’s been for me. When it’s gotten hard to write and at the times I’ve wanted to pack it in, I’ve thought,”No, I won’t give in yet, because I still need to cover Super Trooper.”

Well, here he is, and here we are. Two years. I’m amazed. Here’s to two more, or as many as I can manage. Finally, Super Trooper, you can enjoy the fleeting spotlight of Joe A Day. It’s your time to shine.

21 comments

  • Very nice. Congrats on the second year of JoeADay!

    I’ve always kinda wanted to track this guy down because even as a kid, I’ve always liked the weird stuff, but I just don’t really have the time to hunt down the old stuff anymore…which is kind of a shame. However, I would have to disagree with you on one thing, Rob…considering he’s chromed, it’s always Super Trooper’s time to shine. 😉

  • Super Trooper would later be repainted, sans shield, as 1990’s neon-armored Rapid-Fire.

    It’s fitting you mention the Funskool Cross-Country, since giving Super Trooper his arsenal would be a great addition to both his shield and gun.

    I see Super Trooper as the Joe team’s National Guard representative–anyone else think that might be a good specialty? (Since he lacks one on his file card.)

  • Needless to say, Happy Second Anniversary!

    I never sent out for Super Trooper as a kid even though I’ve always loved shiny chrome toys. I was slowly phasing out of Joe collecting in 1988, but Super Trooper eventually landed a spot in my collection several years back. He’s cool in his own way despite the lack of media support given to the character except for an issue of Action Force which gave him an origin. It was later reprinted in the U.S. during the latter half of the European Missions comic’s brief run.

    Given his shiny appearance, I was disappointed to see the figure recycled a mere couple of years later as Rapid Fire. It just goes to show what the power of chrome can do to a toy. Still, there’s a good dio story about the Knockdown Triplets hidden in there somewhere. 😉

  • @Clutch
    I have a way that could distinguish all three–give Rapid-Fire a soul patch, and give Super Trooper a moustache.

  • He could almost move into Hak heaven with that armour.

    I’ve been thinking lately, whilst spending many hours reading my bible [Bellormo’s book] that maybe Supertrooper and Colonel Courage could be in universe fiction. They are comic book and cartoon characters which the Joes read and watch “Hope this battle ends soon, Super trooper comes on at 4:30” or they could be the team mascots and go to schools and show kids that supporting Cobra isnt cool.

    In regaurds to the figure does the chrome rub off with ease?

  • Dreadnok: Spirit

    Congratulations on the anniversary!

    I never had this figure and I don’t know why I didn’t just order it. The shiny chrome on this figure and accessories definitely appealed to me. Thank God I was able to get that Fridge figure!

  • Happy Anniversary! Thanks for being there every day.

  • Do you ever have Rapid Fire tagging along with Super Trooper? Rapid Fire is as close as I have come to a Super Trooper figure. I always wondered if a new fictional story line could come about from that elite training program they went through? It sure wasn’t the Slaughterhouse, what ever it was!

    I wanted to remove the vest armor on my Rapid Fire, but I was told it was sonic welded… (with glue)…, after actually doing that in a factory…., I decided against trying…. Has anyone ever done, or seen, the armor removed on Super Trooper?

    Style-wise, think this figure served as construction inspiration for the modern 4″ figures…., ya know…, mixing up parts, covering the torso with a vest and giving them a name?

    …..Two Years!? Excellent!!!

  • I just thought of something funny i should have said in my first comment about Super trooper.

    Okay. Here goes.
    He walks into a toystore and see’s Jimmy, a local little boy hurring towards the checkout with his arms full of Renegades Stormshadow’s “What are you doing, Jimmy?” he asks

    “Stormshadow is my favorite” replies Jimmy

    “Oh really to me it looks like your buying them all so you can later put them on ebay at an enflated price. This is called “scalping” and is wrong” says Super trooper

    “Gee i dont want people to call me a scalper. Guess i’ll put these back” says Jimmy
    “And now you know scalping toys is wrong” says Supertrooper

  • congratulations on making it 2 years without ever missing a day. that is staggering and impressive. also, Super Trooper is just awesome.

  • At first I was wondering, why is that man carrying a shield? Can’t be very “Super” if he doesn’t realize modern warfare is done with bullets.

    Then I realized that half of Cobra’s roster consists of sword-wielding ninjas and/or Road Warrior rejects with cinder block sledgehammers.

    Good call, Super Trooper, good call.

  • Super Trooper is one of my favorite figures in my collection.Conrgatulations on two years.This is one of the best blogs on the web.

  • You overlooked (or forgot) that 1988 was the G.I. JOE brand’s 25th anniversary (1964-1988), so chromed Super Trooper was Hasbro’s Silver Jubilee.

    Super Trooper is an example of a character where Action Force comic came through. He was never seen in Marvel’s GI JOE, but Marvel UK’s title devoted a story to him.

  • @Clutch – that Action Force originstory really saved this figure for me, I t was a great little bio-piece. I do still think he’d have been a better character if his chrome parts were camo.

    @Rob – congratulations, keep marching on…!

  • Without this blog, i’d still be ripping my hair out whilst playing the worst game Lucasarts ever created [force unleashed]. Force unleashed is now propping up a loose shelf. And i look forward to this every day

  • Congratulations to JoeaDay on the 2nd Anniversary !

    I love to read JoeaDay and interest to look back to the earlier Post of the first year.
    It would be great if an archive section can be reach on the sidebar,
    I lost all the bookmark link ( of my favorite Joe) when the blog renewal the interface.

    Thanks Rob!

  • I hear Super Trooper got his chrome armor by beating up a Cylon in hand-to-hand combat back in 1980.

    I remember his promotion. Big silver sticker on the front of many cardbacks. Of course, The Fridge & Sgt. Slaughter similarly stamped the fronts while Cobra Ninja stealthily hid inside non-descript inserts (what one would expect from ninjas). 87-88 was a busy time for mail-away figures. There was The Fridge, Starduster, Steel Brigade, and Super Trooper. After Super Trooper, it was a while before the next mail-away figure appeared (Ninja Viper in 1992?). 1993 was a boom time for mail-aways though.

    Rapid-Fire, who came in neon green, came with the outrageously overpriced VHS tape on cardback (was there ever a non-outrageous VHS tape, besides blank VHS tapes that is?).

    @ Clutch… I didn’t find it odd. Rapid Fire likely had a very small production run for a carded figure because of the price. I can’t remember, but even as a kid I found it obscene. You could get a good sized vehicle for that price. He came out later in the year, like Sept IIRC.

    @ Nega. Nice catch there.

  • @LittleBoa. I remeber buying a crash dummy action figure back in ’93 which came with a video tape featuring the cgi crash dummy cartoon. I remeber he was the same price as the others.

    Didnt Rapid Fire come with Revenge of the Pharo’s? Apart from his real name being that of an executive at DIC i’m pretty sure he had nothing to do with that episode

  • OMG, Super Trooper looks like a buff George Takei!

  • The head is huge, and kind of ugly.

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