Friday, 31 January 2014

50th Anniversary Day 31: AT Headquarters

This is it, the final (new) entry for this project. The original Adventure Team Headquarters was released in 1972. The Adventure Team was at the height of its popularity. The original set was made from hard plastic and soft vinyl (for the walls). It was designed to fold up into a carrying case. Its features included a central ‘’elevator’’, a working searchlight and a sliding front door. It was divided into 4 main areas:

- The Map Room that had a table, maps and printed control stations

- The Equipment Room containing storage spaces and a rack to store clothing and gear

- A central area connecting the other three areas

- A second Story Command and Control room

My custom is made from a few different components. I kept the layout of the 4 sections. The front 2-story part is made from an Animal Planet Dinosaur compound set. I removed the outside elevator, added a few controls and repainted everything to match the original. The Map and Gear Rooms are Playmobil garages. I added the accessories and furniture and painted everything in vintage colors.

The Adventurer included with my HQ is a nod to the ‘’Life-Like Body’’ GI Joe that was released in 1975. Also, if you look closely, you’ll see an Adventure Team helicopter backpack… Ok, you don’t have to look that closely.



Thursday, 30 January 2014

50th Anniversary Day 30: Training Center

Released in 1972, the Adventure Team Training Center was a giant 36+ inch tower with a zip-line and a bunch of accessories. Properly set up, it was a base where Adventure Team member could go for physical training, target practice, medical help or just zipping down a rope really fast. It included the tower, zip-line, rifle stand and rifles, targets, survival cave, snake, tires, barbed wire and medical kit

This is the custom that pushed me the farthest out of my comfort zone as it is almost completely scratch-built. It’s not perfect, but I’m pretty proud of it. Going forward, I would like to improve the crane, add a rope ladder and add some details to the top of the tower.

The custom Adventurer is a nod to the ‘’Jungle Survival’’ equipment set that included a camouflage shirt and khaki pants.



Wednesday, 29 January 2014

50th Anniversary Day 29: Big Trapper

Big Trapper was released in 1976 at the tail-end of GI Joe’s original run. By that point, The Adventure Team had grown to include characters such as Major Mike Powers and Bullet Man. That year, in an effort to increase Joe sales, Hasbro created a new enemy for Joe to fight: The Intruders. These super-smart aliens resembled cavemen and had a ‘’bear hug’’ feature that allowed them to trap Joe in their powerful arms.

Big Trapper itself was built on the same frame as the Mobile Support Vehicle and was designed as a vehicle to trap and transport the Intruders. It was equipped with a laser cannon and a cage that had bars that could ‘’bend’’ allowing the Intruders to escape.

For my custom, I used the Captain America 6-wheeled tank as a base. I attached the cage to the back, removed the main turret and re-attached the gun. Rather than making it a ‘’laser’’, I opted for a harpoon. I found scans of the original stickers online. I printed them and added the control panels in the back section as a nod to the original. The end result is more an interpretation than slavishly vintage looking. When I put together my modern Adventure Team, this Big Trapper will probably be one of their vehicles.

I opted to include the Man of Action with Big Trapper. The original Man of Action had flocked hair, so my custom is not 100% accurate. However, the original 1964 head works pretty well in a pinch.

For the Intruders, I decided to have a little fun. I used Marvel’s Puck figure as a base and swap the head with something I had in my fodder. It’s not 100% accurate in that the Intruders should be a bit taller and have some armor. Maybe these are baby Intruders?