G.I. Joe Retaliation-Budo (loose)

These next couple of days will be Joe-heavy as I’ve recently picked up some  G.I. goodness!Today we’ll be taking a look at Budo from the new wave of “Ultimate” Joes.When I think of Samurai,some favorites quickly come to mind.Soulcalibur’s  Mitsurugi,Samurai Jack and Budo top that list.As a kid,right around the time my love of collecting G.I. Joes began to dwindle,certain figures would pull me back in.There was Spearhead and Max,Repeater,Raptor and Road Pig!Then there was Budo!Now at the time G.I. Joe had it’s fair share of martial artists.Quick Kick,Snake Eyes,Jinx and Storm Shadow.But Budo was a friggin’ Samurai!Are you kidding me?!?!A Samurai?!?!How cool was he gonna look rocking his ceremonial head piece,Samurai sword in hand hanging off the side of my Rolling Thunder! I had to add him to my collection and eventually did.I loved my Budo figure as a kid!When I heard the news about a new ultimate version of Budo figure set to release in the fall,adding it to my collection was pretty much an automatic. I wasn’t about to wait for Budo to hit store pegs either so I hopped online and picked this baby up!Call me biased but imo,this figure truly is a masterpiece.A work of art if you will.The helmet alone looks like something you’d see in the Smithsonian.The Kimono is super detailed and while it takes away from the figures mobility,really pops!Just an amazing stand alone figure.Doubly  awesome is the fact that Budo is a Joe!

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Somewhere there is a poor reindeer wondering what the hell happened to his antlers

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G.I. Joe Retaliation-Flint

I was going to pass on this figure at first,but picked it up anyways and i’m not disappointed.I think alot of  pics were taken of this Flint figure without his web gear,and that didn’t really help it’s popularity much.The web gear really evens things out here and puts the whole figure into better perspective.I love the removeable beret and the head sculpt for this figure is a real strong point.My only gripe would have to be the boots,as they could have been a little higher on the lower leg.I’m glad they opted not to put the Arashikage  sign on this sculpt as it would have been a real turn off. This version will be a nice place holder until the more movie accurate Ultimate Flint hits store shelves.

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G.I. Joe Retaliation-Roadblock

Even before  Retaliation toy concept pics and art started filtering into the internet,I always said that Roadblock would be the first figure that I would pick up from the line.I mean who wouldn’t want “The Rock” as Roadblock action figure displayed  on their toy shelves?I certainly did and couldn’t wait for the Retaliation first wave release.All of a sudden, Retaliation toy previews started to make their way on to the internet and while most of the figures looked pretty cool,there was something terribly wrong with the figure that I most wanted.”What the freak is that inside of  Roadblocks right hand and is it removable?”A question I’m sure all action figure collectors and G.I. Joe enthusiasts asked themselves after looking at the preview pics on TNI as well as other action figure news sites.Flash forward to the present.Since It’s release,this figure has been ridiculed,laughed at and passed up by many a toy collector.I too joined the parade at one point or another and took jabs at the hideous  seemingly surgically attached  clunk of plastic in the right hand of  Retaliation Roadblock, but then began to take a liking to it after  spotting a couple at my local Wal-Mart.The sculpt was bad a@# and the camouflage pants w/balck tank top reminded me of the Triple T tank Sgt. Slaughter figure.I would display the crap out of this figure holding his giant cannon anyways so the black hand attachment  became a moot point.The pros slowly began to outweigh the cons until I finally snagged him up and boy am I glad I did!I absolutely love this figure 🙂 By far one of the sickest sculpts(right hand aside) in the  Joe universe.There is a presence about this figure when you stand him next to other Joe’s,kind of like the effect Sgt.Slaughter had on my 80’s collection as a kid.While this version  is not the most popular amongst collectors,It’s still the first release of  iconic superstar Dwayne Johnson as Roadblock and i am more than happy to add this awesome action figure  to my collection 😉

 

G.I. Joe Retaliation-Storm Shadow

I have to say this has got to be one of the most exciting times for G.I. Joe action figure collectors and toy collectors in general.The buzz created by the Dollar General Joes and Retaliation figures is entertaining the cr#% out of me lol!The stories that I’ve read on forums about people trying to hunt down some of these elusive figures are hilarious!Heck I’m even guilty of walking into my local Dollar General store on more than one occasion only to be disappointed with my findings, or lack there of.Retaliation figures I’m thinking are a little easier to come by, although they are still pretty scarce around my neck of the woods.The other day i was lucky enough to find the Snake Eyes from that line but it was really the Storm Shadow that i was coveting.My searches for 2012 Joe awesomeness  were becoming more and more discouraging to say the least and i ultimately found myself succumbing to the sultan of surplus …Ebay!There was no way that i was going to drop 40 bucks on any of those Dollar General Joe’s so that turned my attention to the more reasonably priced  Retaliation figures.For about 12 bucks($9-$3.50 shipping) i was able to pick up Storm Shadow, the one figure that i really wanted from the Retaliation line.I think this   Storm Shadow dwarves  any of the ROC/POC  versions.One detail that i feel all Ninja figures should have are the split toe(jika-tabi) shoes and this figure has them.They also rock side to side for pose-ability.Although not movie accurate or traditional,I love the sculpt of the figure.This Storm Shadow feels and looks like a Ninja.The head sculpt is great and his eyes have a more menacing look than some of the ROC versions did.If i had to use one word to describe this figure, it would be “Sleek”.The White w/ Gray color scheme really flows and the placement and size of the Cobra insignia is perfect.Retaliation Stormie is solid and if your looking for a futuristic, more updated and less exaggerated version of him then this is the one to get. Enjoy the pics!