The Power of Packaging: Winter Rescue

Sometimes toy packages belie their contents. Being a Star Wars and 80s GI Joe kid, I didn’t get exposed to many action figure series that were in window boxes. As a result, opening a box and finding a toy that didn’t live up to its box art was a surprising experience. It was kind of like opening a Cracker Jacks box nowadays and finding a crap sticker or cardboard pencil topper. At least in the 60s and 70s, you could see instantly what you were getting. 

Winter Rescue Action Outfit looks mighty impressive on the box side art. The outfit itself is less so. Basically a white hooded jumpsuit, it didn’t have the bulky look that the painting depicts. On the positive side, it does have a nice fur trimmed hood, and the small first aid pouch is pretty cool.



  • Dreadnok: Spirit

    I always liked when a Joe vehicle that included a driver had the figure displayed in a window box. I like this Winter Rescue art. It’s like an early version of Frostbite.

    • James From Miami

      He looks like Frostbite, but without the M-16. Have you ever seen the head of the 1985 Frostbite prototype figure? It looks much closer to the way that Frostbite’s face looked in the 1985 season one episodes. And it was a much better representation of a man that was born in Alaska. I wish that they had used that more seriously looking face prototype, instead of the goofy happy smile, or laughing, version that they chose to go with. That laughing face does not fit with the serious character that I remember Frostbite portraying in the few episodes that he was featured in season one.

  • Sometimes the package art helps sell the toy and sometimes it doesn’t.
    I remember my brother getting creeped out by the grotesque character art [lots of spikes, fangs ect] on the Transformers Beast Wars toy packages.

  • James From Miami

    You know, they did this same type of winter outfit back in the 90’s, for the 12 inch figures that they were making back then. But it never occurred to them to make a winter outfit for the smaller figures. I’m still waiting for them to make those winter outfits for the smaller scale Joes. And while they are at it, why not also make hazmat suits. And what about scuba diving suits, complete with breathing masks, and oxygen tanks. I’m sure that the Hasbro folks could do it, if they really wanted to. Or if enough fans would ask them, or tell them, to do it.

    • In recent years, Hasbro has made star wars figures with fabric capes, jackets and other removeable items. Surely making little uniforms for ‘4 scale Joe figures which is cheaper than using plastic. I guess its because the Joe brand is only alive in small circles these days and Hasbro cant justify the expense

      • In 1999, Hasbro some really great Episode I accessory packs. They included the standard Star Wars guns, lightsabers, etc. But, they also had some great cloth goods. I use the Darth Maul cloak on the ’88 Stormshadow and the desert poncho on the 1994 Flint. But, they were pegwarmers and ended up clearanced all over the country.

        Aside from the retail malaise that met them, the cloth goods are hard to pull off and still look good. Usually, you end up with ill fitting items that leave the figure too bulky, the head obscured or the figure is so small that it looks terrible without the cloth goods. In the cases where a cloth good was made for a specific figure, the results are a bit better. But, trying to offer something that works on multiple figures usually ends up working on none.

        • No kidding. I used some of those for custom Indiana Jones figures I made a few years ago. I really liked those accessory packs but they did linger on the shelves.

  • I still see, and occasionally purchase, those ep1 acc packs at toy shows and flea markets. They have so many good bits packed inside. The real kicker on those sets is their poor sales caused the amazing second series to get released in extremely limited quantities(the reactor repair set fits inside Amidalas starship -brilliant!).

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