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A Very Special Greatest Toys Never Made – 6-inch “Original 13” G.I. Joe Box Set


What do you get when you cross a Real American Hero with one of the best toy ideas that was implemented in the past umpty years? You get pure unadulterated joy.

I love bazookas, but I never had Zap. I did have Bazooka. What a world.

The idea of 6-Inch G.I. Joes has been kicking around for a long time, almost as long as Marvel Legends themselves Those of us who want such a thing to come to pass have looked to the Star Wars Black series as a symbol of things that once may have seemed impossible that have become reality. If the SWBS taught us anything, it’s to hold on to those toy dreams. Well, I’m no MLK Jr., but I have a dream of my own.

When I think of 6-inch G.I. Joes, I naturally start prioritizing who I want, and how fast I want this character in comparison to this character, and so forth. I quickly realize I’m just really impatient. While I can easily imagine a neat four figure intro-wave comprised of two Joes and two Cobras, followed by a second wave a few months down the road, and so on and so on… it’s a little painful to think about just how much patience fuel I’ll use up waiting for the next wave and the next and the next. I’m already tired of waiting for the idea itself to exist; I don’t want to compound the waiting on top of waiting on top of waiting. Despite the amount of times I punch clocks, I’m not getting any younger.

So what’s my solution?

Legion of Superheroes.

How does that relate to G.I. Joe? Well, anybody who’s into Joes knows that there is heavy reuse going on with the original 13 G.I. Joe members that were released in 1982, which were then re-released with swivel-arm battle-grip in 1983. There was a lot of lower body reuse for sure, a lot of arm reuse, helmets, a handful of chests that were shared, with a few unique parts, and Scarlett, who, for obvious reasons, had no reuse.

That obvious reason is because she was a girl. Girls are not like guys. That’s science.

Moving on…

Anybody who was into DC Universe Classics knows that there was heavy reuse going on there. The Legion of Superheroes set used a lot of stock bodies with extra sculpted parts to give us thirteen brand new characters comprising a huge chunk of the team all at once. Just rolling open that package was a glorious moment in the annals of toy collecting.

So imagine if you will, that idea applied to G.I. Joe. Picture a cardboard foot locker, with the G.I. Joe logo on top. You open it up, and inside are the original 13 G.I. Joe members in full 6-inch scale, each with their signature weapons. That’s the entire original G.I. Joe team, all at once.

They’re not all on this cover. Some of them were getting snacks.

For a refresher, that includes Zap, Short Fuze, Stalker, Rock n’ Roll, Snake Eyes, Scarlett, Hawk, Grunt, Clutch, Breaker, Grand Slam, Flash, and Steeler. Those thirteen characters formed the bedrock beginnings of the toy line and the principle players of the G.I. Joe comic. Many never had a huge role in any media, and many were replaced by flashier players down the road, but these were the first salvo in a line that has lasted through several decades and generations. Despite their reuse, each of them were distinct characters fleshed out by a few simple words on clip n’ save bios on the backs of their packages.

A proper line could start after this initial burst, filled with all the other heroes and villains we’re all familiar with, but this would be a great way to pay respect to that first line and the way they exploded onto the toy aisles and made their indelible mark on the landscape of action figures and the ’80s.

I can picture this set now. I can almost smell that plastic smell, and can imagine that first time I pose all thirteen G.I. Joe members together. These are the Greatest Toys Never Made.


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7 thoughts on “A Very Special Greatest Toys Never Made – 6-inch “Original 13” G.I. Joe Box Set

  1. given how star wars black now exists one can only hope some day hasbro will expand the thing to a gijoe black line. though six inch versions would mean certain assessories due to cost would have be dropped like timber with a second snake eyes or zartan being able to change color but the idea would be cool .

  2. I see your dilemma you will deff have no where to display these so called 6in joes,, you have a pretty nice collection/display nice work

  3. your wish list is nice and all, but if i dont get a Cobra Commander in the first series or set they release I’ll have to kill all humans

  4. i’m a 4″ guy. but man i’d have to buy. especially since the modern 4″ og13 tooling is all horribly outdated now

  5. Why would you put that dream into my head??? That set would be fairly pricey I’d bet. I’m already chomping at the bit for the Gentle Giant 12″ Joes. Could I afford all of that??!!! The 6″ would fit in with my legends, but I don’t know if I could display them near my 3 3/4″ and have them look right.

  6. I’m not a Joe collector, so I don’t know what’s going on with the toys these days. Is there anything outside of movie toys and convention/club exclusives? I’m guessing sales of the smaller Joes would dictate whether or not a larger scale is produced.

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