Beachhead (City Strike) - Pursuit of Cobra Pre-Production (Guest Review by Hawkwinter)
Way back when Hasbro unveiled the first two waves of the 25th Anniversary single carded figures, I was really impressed by Beachhead. To be honest I hadn't really given much thought to the character until then. The original figure way back in 1986 was decent enough but the character never appealed to me. However, something about the 25th version really got my attention. The sculpting wasn’t overly detailed, but the proportions were dead-on and he just looked really, really cool. Just one wave later, and the mold was re-used to create an amazing looking Firefly. It was then that I realized that Beachhead had one of the best molds ever created. Hasbro must of agreed because his mold (in part or whole) was re-used several times and the resulting figures always looked cool. For me, that early mold in the 25th line shone as a shining example of what Hasbro can do when everything goes right.
I would of never believed that right now in 2010, Hasbro is a couple months away from releasing another Beachhead that has completely blown my mind yet again. The body mold itself doesn’t exceed the original 25th Beachhead, but man oh man, what accessories can do for a figure.
Pursuit of Cobra has already gotten a reputation for killer accessories based on pics we’ve seen from toy shows and on the internet, but having Beachhead in hand with all his gear and seeing the amazing detail is something totally different.
Now to be fair, the 25th Beachhead had awesome accessories as well, his vest was cool in its own way and he came with a backpack, satchel with removable ammo clip (very cool), side arm and great gun and crossbow. But there’s just a whole new level of coolness to the PoC Beachheads accessories.
Never in my toy collecting life have I received a toy that I just looked at and could imagine a kick-ass adventure purely based on accessories. Five different guns, including an advanced assault machine gun, scoped rifle, full-on assault rifle, machine gun with silencer and a what looks like a semi-futuristic scoped, laser rifle are complimented by a pair of binoculars, two knives, flippers, gas mask, 6 ammo clips, two gas grenades, a vest with fifteen pouches and some computer gizmo on his leg. This guy is a one-made assault force and he can transform into whatever you need him to be. Got a group of Cobras holed up somewhere? Beachhead is a one-man army that will infiltrate and neutralize any threat.
Bare bones, Beachhead seems to be wearing portions of the GIJoe Reactive armor from the Rise of Cobra movie on most of his upper body. His gloves look like Kevlar reinforced motorcycle gloves, his knees sport heavy-duty gel-cushion knee-pads and there are zippered pouches on his lower legs. Every part of his body looks like its ready for heavy duty combat. There’s enough ammo to keep him shooting for a looooooong time. There are enough accessories and gizmos to make an IMF agent jealous and let you keep Beachhead ready for anything.
I have to say that had Beachhead come without his vest and just a couple guns I would of still thought he was a pretty cool purchase, but the crown jewel here is his vest.
This thing is so amazing I’m still all giddy. The basic vest is fantastic with all the pouches and straps and padding and what looks like some Kevlar showing through. Add to that four ammo clips, within easy reach along the lower part of the vest, right around the belt line. Two placed on the right side, two on the left, making them accessible by either hand, whichever is free. On the top left shoulder Beachhead has a pair of binoculars for surveillance, again placed logically for someone who is right handed. On his right shoulder, he has a knife (which fits nicely and holds in place) which can be drawn with his left hand, when he is holding a rifle. Also, on his lower right side, he has two gas canisters that can also be grabbed by his left hand while he holds or shoots his rifle in his right. As a last ditch tool, there is yet another knife on his back , accessible from the side (also fitting nicely and securely in its sheath) for close combat. In my opinion the vest is worth three times the cost of the figure all on its own.
In addition to all this, Beachhead has some sort of computer device on his left leg, perhaps a scanner of some kind. It’s a great way to make this PoC Beachhead have that little bit of sci-fi feeling to him.
The gas mask that comes with Beachhead is also a terrific piece, showing incredible detail and even a removable filter for even more cool play-time story value. The rifles are all good, solidly sculpted with maybe the exception of the scoped rifle which is very plain, but when you have five rifles to choose from, who in their right mind can complain?
And last but not least, there is a pair of flippers included with blue accents making them look slightly futuristic. Design? Or merely style? Not sure, but they do look cool.
None. No matter how hard I try to find fault with anything here, there simply isn’t any. There is great articulation in all parts of this figure, arms turn to 90 degrees, legs, ankles and wrists all have great range of motion. And that bulky vest doesn’t even limit any of the possible poses. The figure balances nicely on the stand in almost any pose and he can even be positioned to look like he’s drawing that knife from behind his back! There is some limit to head movement once the gas mask (with filter) is on and the vest is kind of a pain to get off, but that’s about all I could come up with.
One other thing worth mentioning is that this figure will ship 2 to a case, unlike some other figures. Honestly? That’s a good thing. With his masked head this figure is appealing to both good guy enthusiasts and also those cheering for the dark side. On the custom front, this figure and its accessories is a goldmine, even at full retail cost. I have two cases pre-ordered and was planning on selling two of the four Beachheads I would end up with, but I won’t be doing that now.
As the first official Pursuit of Cobra figure to be added to my collection (meaning excluding Rise of Cobra cancelled PoC product or TRU exclusive RoC POC figures) this figure has blown away even my admittedly high expectations for GIJoe toys. This figure is what I always hoped for when Hasbro wasn’t doing tributes to the originals. I am proud to display this version of Beachhead next to my 25th version. It’s like looking at Beachhead then and now. Or maybe then, and in the near future.
I cannot recommend this figure enough. It is simply a MUST BUY. No GIJoe collector should be without.
Pre-Order this figure NOW at BigBadToyStore.com!