Tuesday, December 15, 2009

GI Joe Rise of Cobra: Bad Ass Duke!

No, he's not the version of Duke who just got a sack of 10, a large fries and chocolate shake at White Castle--he's Infiltrator Duke!

This bad-ass comes in set 2 (of 2) from the Rise of Cobra
5-pack sets packed with a M.A.R.S Industries Officer, a M.A.R.S Industries Trooper, an Elite-Viper, and a Neo-Viper. (Set 1 is a desert camo theme featuring Zartan [with additinal Joe trooper disguise head], Dial-Tone, Law & Order, Repeater, and Footloose.)

Now since Joes have been going on clearance recently worldwide, I didn't think I'd see new stuff come in and be on clearance. But on a routine visit to Toys R Us (at Vivocity) with the Rangerlord and I chanced upon the 5-packs sets for only S$34.90--that's like S$7 a figure. Woohoo! Rangerlord got the desert Joe themed set, while I immediately snagged the bad guy troop builder (Infiltrator) 5-pack because of one man and one man only--Duke!

Well, Duke is my favourite Joe, but I really didn't like him in Rise of the Cobra. I was really lukewarm about the Desert Camo Duke and I thought Reactive Impact Amour Duke was way too thin, especially in the arms. That version of Duke looks more like Christopher Lambert (custom time!).  So what's got me jumping up and down with this Duke? Review and more pics after the jump!

Like: The black infiltrator suit! It makes him look sleek and combat-ready, unlike the previous dedest camo version, which has a vest that makes him look a little fat and squat. Funny thing is, that the body is a repaint of Rolbar from the Snarler Cycle set with Beachhead. Not that rollbar isn't cool, but it's amazing what a different paint-job and a few new highlights can do.

Like: The new, more blond, more bad-ass Duke head. Even the scar under his right eye is more "blonde." Being blond makes him more comic book/cartoon accurate and closer to the original.  It also somehow gives him more of a no-nonsense scowl. Also this shade of blonde is also a more realistic hair colour than the brown they were using originally for his previous figures. You actually do see people with this sort of blond hair, especially when cropped short.

But splicing Channing Tatum's likeness into this figure is a good way to hook Duke fans like myself into buying more Rise of Cobra Dukes.  It's the little details like these, I guess, that make the figure appeal to me much, much more than any of the other previous incarnations.

Check out these other details like the gold caribina and grenade, the darker grey air drop harness around his hips, the pant-leg pocket compartments, and the folds out his pant leg into his boot!
Like: His working holster!
Like: Duke comes with relevant accessories that fit, and can all be equipped/stored on his person if desired.  And most times this is the difference from having a single working holster to having none.

Duke equipment: Infiltrator vest, assault rifle, handgun, helmet with nightvision goggles, gas mask, backpack, and figure stand.
And when you put any of his headgear on, he fits right in with the rest of the COBRA troopers (which I will review as a bunch soon!) More pics of Duke in disguise below. Hey! That's a cool name for him. Duke in Disguise. Kinda like Robots in Disguise but only way more organic, fleshy and squishy. Perhaps even more badass! ;)

Dislike: That his head has limited movement.  He can look down slightly and turn to the left and right no problem.  But I had to file away a little bit on the inside of his head so he could look down more. Bot that didn't work, and strangely, instead he could look up better.  His head also tilts to his left better, so you're gonna get more attitude from him if you decide to srike up a conversation while standing on his left.

Dislike: That his fingers donn't have any separation.  I mean the forefinger for the gun triggers was molded together with the other fingers despite being sculpted in a trigger-pulling position. Good thing is was a slight problem for me, and I just used an exacto knofe to make a slight cut and viola! All better. So I guess this becomes er..a Like? :)


Aesthetics: 9.5/10 - The sculpt is awesome, the paint is quite good.  He loses points for having a giant slop of paint on the right side of his forehaed that I couldn't spot in packaging. But I've also removed that with a little Dettol. (Thanks for the toip Rangerlord!) But his plus points are the excellent sculpted frown and the well-painted eyes.  Oh yes, and his cool blond crew cut!

Poseability: 9.5/10 - He's got your standard 22 points of articulation for a Joe, but he works great either posing mask-off with Joes, or with COBRA Troopers (with any headgear on).

Fun: 9.5/10 - If you like original Duke, you'll like this guy.  If you like movie Duke, you also like this guy.  If you like original Duke AND movie Duke, you'll love this guy. Heck, I don't even like movie Duke that much and I love this guy!  He'll look good hiding among the snakes in the grass (pun intended) like the 'troopers or even Baroness and Cobra Commander, since they've all got the black thing going. And he'll look great next to Joes with elements of black in their costume too. General Hawk, Bench Press (of course! Always have the guy with the chainsaw ON your side...), Snake Eyes etc.  Goodbye Desert Camo Duke, hello Duke in Disguise!

Value: 10/10 - He may not be in the class of $1 Indy figures I found (see previous post, actually I don't think anything will beat that anytime soon), but at S$7 he's well worth it.  That's almost have the price of the single-packed figures on clearance here in Singapore. The only thing singles have on him is the BFG.  And who needs that shiznat??? ;P

Overall: 9.65/10 - Infiltrator Duke is fantastic and perfect example of how a great sculpt with the right paint job can make a regular figure an awesome one. I'd recommend getting this 5-pack for sure, if not to build your COBRA forces, then for the Bad-Ass Duke-in-Disguise!
*Can anyone guees which bad-ass from the Wild West Bad-Ass Duke-in-Disguise (B.A.D.D.) is quoting?
*No cheating, Rangerlord!


  1. Erm... Killy the Bid?

    Thanks for the review, bro. Almost makes me want to go out and get him. But will wait to crack open my City Strike Duke and see if he matches up. Funny how Roll Bar's body is such a great base for the Joes. Can Duke wear the mask and helmet at the same time?

    Also like the head swap with Roll Bar who looks cooler with the black night infiltration gear. Duke also looks pretty spiffy in urban camo.

    But of course, Beachhead owns them all!


  2. That's cheating! Lol.

    Nah, duke can only wear one hat atta time. And yeah, I also thought Rollbar looked awesome in the infiltrator gear, and I bet Beachhead would be extra cool in it too.

    But dude, Beachhead is just Beachhead. Duke is B.A.D.D.

  3. The Undertaker I believe. I think the most "famous" use was against DDP?

  4. @updatedude

    Could be right, but Rangerlord cheated, cuz we used to (and still do) reference Emilio Estevez' Billy the Kid from the Young Guns movies. So he knew right from the start. Lol.

    But you're right, I think I've heard the Undertaker use it against Dallas Diamond Page. I wonder what happened to him?

  5. That is fucking AWESOME! His utility belt is out of this world! Oh Em Gee!


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