REPEATER v.4 (2013)
I recently wrapped up my reviews of the 2014 G.I. Joe Convention Set figures. Each year the G.I. Joe Collector’s Club hosts a convention and each year they release a box set of figures available exclusively to Con attendees and online Club members. I have purchased the sets for the past 3 years. The 2012 Oktober Guard themed set “Operation Bear Trap” was my first, followed by 2013’s Night Force themed set “Nocturnal Fire”. Both were excellent sets but I only got around to reviewing a figure or two from each one. With 2014’s “Zombie Initiative” set I decided to review all of the figures right away, over the span of about 2 weeks. After that flurry or reviews I was a little burnt out on writing about action figures, especially G.I. Joes. I intended to take a little break from Joes but then a reader suggested that I finish my reviews of the previous 2 box sets, especially the Nocturnal Fire set. His reasoning was that many of the figures from that set (5 of them) are being re-released with new paint decos as part of the Club’s upcoming Figure Subscription Service 3.0; which you’d know if you read my Convention News post. He suggested a review of those figures would be helpful to people on the fence about buying the upcoming repaints. I’m always happy to oblige a reader so here we go…
The 5 figures slated to get new paint jobs are Repeater, Muskrat, Psyche Out, Hit & Run, and Spearhead. All of those characters were originally released in 1987/88 and then rereleased in darker Night Force colors in 1988/89. When the Nocturnal Fire set came out in 2013 none of those characters (with the exception of Hit & Run) had been released in the modern style; this made them a highly sought after bunch. But, even though the characters were in high demand, and pretty well constructed for the most part, I was a little disappointed to be getting them in their Night Force colors. When we were kids my brother Doug and I owned the original versions of all those characters. We never owned any of the repainted Night Force 2-packs (we didn’t know they even existed until years later) so I have no nostalgic connection to the darker uniforms. If I’m being honest, some of the Night Force costumes look better and more realistic but I’m a sucker for the brighter original colors. I’m betting there are some fans out there who passed on the pricey 2013 set, even though they may have really wanted updated versions of those characters, simply because of the Night Force decos. Those who skipped the set were probably banking on the Club to eventually release the figures in their original colors. And, as we found out last month when the FSS 3.0 line-up was announced, those people were right.
The Night Force versions of these characters have grown on me over the past year but I am happy to be getting classically attired versions soon. I’m most looking forward to the version 1 styled repaints of Spearhead and Psyche Out. That’s probably because their black and brown Night Force colors are considerably different than the orange camo and neon green versions I grew up with. The FSS repaint that I’m least looking forward to is Repeater.
Repeater is a fine character. The original 1988 toy was a pretty straight forward looking military figure. He had no zany quirks or animal sidekicks. His relative plainness paired with the fact that Doug owned the original, not me, has left me with barely any memories of the character. Before prepping to write this review, if you had stopped me on the street and asked me to describe the original Repeater figure (happens all the time) I don’t think I could’ve done it. I remember he wore a cap and had black hair but that’s about it. I couldn’t even remember what color the original figure was. I was thinking green but it turns out I was confusing him with Leatherneck. I can still match up the guns and backpacks to most of my childhood Joe figures (Doug’s included) but for some reason I barely have any recollection of Repeater. Maybe I had a bad Repeater experience at one point and chose to go through an “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind”-like memory erasing procedure.
My lack of connection to the character aside, the 2013 Convention Set figure was awesome. This figure consists of a repainted Roadblock body with a new head on top. But with the removal of the leg holsters, the change in skin color, and the different web gear, you’d barely notice those 2 figures had the same body. The vest comes from an entirely different version of Roadblock and when placed on this body does a very good job of simulating the look of the original Night Force Repeater figure. Using a Dwayne Johnson Roadblock body as the base for this figure gives Repeater some serious girth. He’s a big imposing dude when displayed with other Joes. I love how modern Joe figures have different body sizes, it really adds to a character’s uniqueness.
The newly sculpted head is fantastic in it’s simplicity. He’s got a neutral expression and a great looking RANGER cap. I like that they didn’t give him the big Jay Leno chin of the original. My only gripe about the head is that they changed his hair color to a light brown.
For accessories Repeater has a display base, a knife that can be sheathed on his ankle, a big ammo case backpack, a belt of ammunition, and a 2 piece steady cam gun which as an absolute monster of a weapon. It’s no wonder that Repeater beefed up so much since the 80s lugging this beast around.
The original Repeater wore a tan outfit with olive green highlights and a tetris-eaque camo pattern. That’s the version we’ll be getting in the FSS later this year. This version has brown pants, a black shirt, and a green vest and hat. In this case I think I prefer the Night Force colors. I can’t imagine the FSS version being an improvement over this one but we’ll find out soon enough. If you don’t have this figure you really should track it down on ebay or consider buying the repainted version once it’s available. Had the original Repeater figure been this good I never would’ve forgotten him. 8 out of 10.