TARGAT (1993)

The second iteration of TARGAT is missing two essential elements of its initial version. First, they’re apparently no longer affiliated with the Iron Grenadiers (at least it’s not mentioned on the file card) the TARGAT troops nevertheless make a welcome second appearance. Most everything else remains the same as far as the troops’ function. The specialty makes a lot of sense to incorporate into Star Brigade, considering they’ve always operated at the edge of space. Which brings me to their second missing element: accessories. The ’89 version of course had a great bulky swept wing jetpack with attached pistol and a most unique handgun that clipped to the figure’s wrist. I suppose you need keep your weapon strapped tight if you’re going to turn yourself into a human meteor. All the original gear is sorely missed here, and the replacements, though done up in a lovely shade of neon pink (that matches the details on their suits) don’t measure up.

If the sight of the gold plastic head of the Star Brigade Astro Viper made you nervous, the prospect of a figure made almost entirely of the historically fragile material may cause you to pass out from fear. I bought mine on card when it was new in ’93, and opened it soon after. Maybe that has something to do with the fact it hasn’t yet lost an appendage or crumbled to dust. Then again, maybe I’m just lucky.



  • The accents are actually neon orange, if you take a closer look.

  • Gold plastic decays no matter how well its looked after. I saw a guy once try to review a Transformer [Skyhammer] and it started crumbling as soon as it was out of the box

    By the way. Anyone else seeing dancing ponies where their avatars should be?

  • When Destro was made a Cobra or an ally again in 1992, the Iron Grenadiers were sort of retconned out of existence as far as the toyline went. TARGAT and Metal-Head made the move with Destro. Metal-Head was easy since he was mainly a toon character and the IG’s never existed on the cartoon.

    It was a shame, they sort of flushed away Cobra’s internal power struggle, 1991-1992 was a reset button. The only mention of conflict was Dr. Mindbender’s battle corps file card, mentioning him being buried alive (rare comic book nod at the time since Hama was no longer writing the file cards).

  • I loved my original TARGAT (and it was sorely in need of a replacement, I don’t remember how it happened–my guess is trying to put it on a vehicle–but he was missing a significant portion of his foot) but the lack of the original’s accessories was a pretty big dealbreaker for me. It was a nicely detailed mold, but it just seems silly to not give him at least the big jetpack. And I have to say, it’s probably a good thing I didn’t snag him back in the day. I’d never known about gold plastic syndrome, but it really would have bothered me if my replacement TARGAT had broken because of the gold plastic decay.

  • @Skymate: The ponies are still there as of 12:55 AM PST. Did we get hacked or is Hasbro sponsoring an April Fool’s Day stunt? Are we all Bronies now?

    @Naga: Excellent and informative post. It’s curious how Hasbro noted Mindy’s comic resurrection on his Battle Corps file card. Maybe they did it to explain the new version’s cyborg appearance? It would have been easier than adding something new to the canon that was exclusive to the toy line. Incidentally, Grunt’s ’91 file card sounds like it was based on his temporary return to the team in issue #78 of the comic. It was also released right after the Trucial Abysmia story arc when the team would, indeed, be in need of him.

    @KansasBrawler: I once had a carded ’83 Major Bludd’s feet and waist piece shatter in pieces right after I opened his card. There was water damage on it and the figure was 20 years old at the time, so the plastic could have turned brittle?

    As for the ’93 TARGAT, the gold plastic works for me much like the black paint on the ’89 version. What I usually do with Battle Corps repaints is seek out the original’s accessories to complete the figure. The weapon spruces help is they’re black or white in some cases, but TARGAT here isn’t the same with those funky neon orange weapons.

  • Due to the time delay [or something like that] it didnt occur to me that it was an April fools joke.
    When it comes to ponies, i much prefer MY LITTLE JOENY “Frag grenades are magic”

  • The dancing ponies could be Trojan ponies?

    Felix Baumgartner wanted to be a TARGAT trooper.

    The Rocketeer was favorite film for Destro, too.

    Ok, all are not true.

  • I love the TARGAT mold,I was just finishing the paint job custom of a Streethawk using the 89 (?) version. I took my Star Brigade out of his mint-on-card prison not too long ago, and so far he’s standing proud. I, too,was deeply concerned with the rainbow unicorns considering the esoteric occult symbolism being fostered on an otherwise innocently ignorant populace.

  • The above statement was written by me. What’s wrong with this site?

  • T.A.R.G.A.T. version 1 is way better!

  • Gold and purple looks nice together, though not with a creamsicle gun. I’d agree, the huge jetpack (and the visor) were what made the original T.A.R.G.A.T.

    Astro-Viper v2 & T.A.R.G.A.T. v2… do they have a swirl to their gold plastic? Thats the telltale sign of gold plastic syndrome. Going in their favor is these figures are 20 years old with few reports of GPS. Going against them is the fact Star Brigade wasn’t very popular and so many of the sales seemed to be from collectors keeping them unopened.

  • I’ve never seen any sort of plastic decay on gold-molded G.I. Joes.

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