Wild Weasel (1984)

If the Joes got their top pilot in 1983 with Ace, Cobra followed suit the next year with Wild Weasel. The two even had a very memorable dogfight in the pages of the Marvel comic. However, that’s not my first memory of him. I first recall seeing him in Marvel issue 25 during the swamp battle with Zartan. Seeing a pilot in an unlikely situation like a swamp was very odd, and makes me wonder if it was a Hasbro mandated appearance. Why not someone more fitting, like Copperhead instead? Regardless, Wild Weasel looks a bit different than the figure in this first appearance, with a partially open faced helmet and a mostly blue flight suit.

I picked up the figure along with the Rattler as part of my Christmas 1984 haul. It was a huge year for Joe gifts, and the first holiday in many years that wasn’t 100% Star Wars gifts. The Rattler was an amazing vehicle, and Wild Weasel was a perfect pilot. He was menacing, with his entirely crimson flight suit and distinctive helmet. I still find this figure to be one of the best pilot molds of the era, even considering that it came early in the line.

Small details like the maps on the front of the thighs are the sort of thing that separates the 80’s Joe line from its contemporaries. Amazing touches like this serve to enhance the toys by adding something extra that your mind can grab onto while playing. Those little quarter inch squares didn’t need to be painted, but by doing so, the designers helped bring us as kids even farther into the story and the connection between figure and vehicle. Like I’ve said before, the drivers weren’t usually just any old figure thrown in to the package; a lot of thought and care was given to their look and purpose. Drivers were the coolest extra you could ask for in a toy. Think about this: when you bought an X-Wing or TIE Fighter, there was no pilot in the box. Remember most toy commercials? “Figure Sold Separately”. Not so with Joe.


  • Believe it or not, the first Wild Weasel figure I ever got was the 2004 Night Adder pilot version at a thrift shop. This and the 25th Anniversary version are ones I hope to obtain someday.

  • A truly great figure for it’s time and a damn fine aircraft too. Do you think the designers ever thought there would be websites saying nice things about their work almost 30 years later…

  • A definite classic and the standard for all Cobra pilots to follow. I never had the Rattler as a kid, but Wild Weasel quickly became one of my favorite Cobras based on his legendary sky duel with Ace. The guy earned my respect for life after that one outing.

    The figure was highly innovative, from his helmet to the scarf to the highly detailed maps. Easily among my top ten Cobras of all time.

  • The “Manfred Albrecht Freiherr von Richthofen” of Cobra.

  • This was my first favorite figure for the Cobras after Destro. I got him in 1984 after falling in love with the design of the Rattler (A-10) and I did everything to keep mine in top shape because he was a favorite. He’s still one of my all-time favorites because of the comic and the awesome character design. I loved how the red set him off and made him special amidst the blues of the rest of the Cobra forces. Combine him with the Rattler and you have the best Cobra plane/pilot combo out there.

  • Think about this: when you bought an X-Wing or TIE Fighter, there was no pilot in the box. Remember most toy commercials? “Figure Sold Separately”. Not so with Joe.

    Whereas I see it as “Aggggh I’ve got to buy a vehicle to get the figure I want”

  • The Wild Weasel mold is awesome. I even bought the Funskool version as he’s a bit different than the original. This mold, with a Thunder head also looks awesome as the figure called Skystriker. His brownish helmet, with a clear Thunder visor and headphones are very difficult to find.

    • I agree, Skystriker is awesome. The WW/Thunder parts combo works great together.

    • Funskool release has one key thing the American one lacked, a parachute!

      He also make a good non-Wild Weasel rattler pilot, because who wants all Rattler pilots to dress just like Wild Weasel?

  • Umm Why has he got a map of Tasmania on his left leg?

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  • Dreadnok: Spirit

    Easily the best looking Cobra pilot figure. Nice colors, good details. I really like this one a lot. This mold is a huge reason the Skystriker figure is so great.

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