The Power of Packaging: 1983 Destro

What can I say about a card like this that isn’t apparent just by looking at it. If I could narrow my list of favorite GI Joe package art down to a single piece (which would be incredibly difficult) Destro would vie for a top spot. There’s just so much going on here that makes this a perfect example of how to sell a bad guy toy. Even with the benefit of Destro being marketed in the Marvel comic and its associated animated TV commercials, this portrayal of the wily weaponsmith demands attention. I’d argue that this card art is a big reason why many kids had Destro on a equal or greater footing than Cobra Commander.

Destro, like Major Bludd, has his own dedicated The Enemy copy burst, a feature that separated these two Cobra affiliates from other official members of old bumper face’s crew. Later figures like the Dreadnoks got the same treatment.


  • Yeah, it’s one of the greats in terms of card art. The back side you show is a later release with the Cobra logo/name on file card, instead of “GI JOE”.

    Hasbro Action Force European version used the digital explosion and had “the enemy” on the file card.

    Destro had enough details to be intriguing but not too many to be a busy mess. If that makes sense.

  • SpiritoftheBeachhead

    I really miss how the site’s old design had suggested, related content (in this case 2-4 other power of packaging entries)…..thanks for all your dedicated work!

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