G.I. Joe: Retaliation - Joe Colton

I spent many an afternoon in my younger days using G.I. Joe figures in roles they weren't designed for. They were Spider-Man, they were Murtogh and Riggs, and yes, they were John McClane. Even when I was younger it drove me nuts that there were few (to none) toys reflecting movie properties, and even when there were, they pretty much sucked. Nothing could match the articulation, detail, and flexibility of G.I. Joe.

If you told my younger self that we'd finally be getting an authentic "almost" John McClane G.I. Joe figure, I would have flipped my lid. Now, at almost 40 years old, I'm a bit old to flip, but it's still pretty cool having Bruce Willis standing amongst my G.I. Joe characters. I've been hearing and reading a lot of complaints about the eye painting for this particular figure, and I've seen photographic evidence of its flakiness. Thankfully I think I got relatively lucky. Colton's eyes are a bit wonky, but certainly servicable, which is all I can ask for.

The head sculpt itself (aside from the sometimes wacky eyeballs) is amazingly well done. This looks like Bruce Willis himself stepped out of the TV screen and landed in plastic form on our display shelves.

The torso is from the Pursuit of Cobra Recondo, which is a minor point of consernation among the fandom, as its previous use relegated the head on top of the neckball to look at a downward angle almost all of the time. Examination of this torso shows that the actual torso was clearly modified from its previous incarnation. The collar is removed on the Colton torso, and the neck is clearly at a more upright angle. There is still the issue of the sculpted suspenders, though. Normally I have no real issues with the torso break on the modern figures, but with Colton here it is pretty glaring. The torso break completely separates the suspenders, and while it's not noticeable so much on the original Recondo (since there's a vest over it) you really can tell here. Ultimately a minor issue, but one wonders if Hasbro invested the money in new tooling for the torso, why didn't they just give Colton something unique?

One thing I'm not sure of is how film accurate this particular figure is. In various trailers and clips so far we haven't really seen him in a traditional t-shirt with camouflage pants, but I suppose this generic appearance works well enough. He's got a plain white t-shirt with green suspenders and some nice little details. The buckles are blue and he's got a multi-colored watch on his left wrist. Speaking of wrists, it appears that he's using Kwinn/Footloose arms which give him the improved wrist joints. A great addition.

I believe the legs are from Jungle Assault Duke. The figure ends up being a pretty imposing, yet relatively generic looking Bruce Willis/Joe Colton, which works well. His articulation ends up being very good with the improved arms and the nicely sculpted legs. Interestingly enough, he only has one kneepad, but this is apparently normal practice in the military, and is not all that unusual.


For better or worse, Joe Colton comes with a wide variety of accessories. He has the same huge rocket launcher and gun attachment as the Wave 1 Duke came with, which promptly went right into the weapons bin. The great shoulder holster that came with Rise of Cobra Hawk is also there, though I wish there was some way to make the gun removable. Two pistols and a shotgun finish out the weapon allotment. The shotgun is the same one that is destined to come with Kwinn, I'm struggling a little bit to find out if it was released with a different figure yet, or if this is the first time it's hit mainstream retail.

Obviously the giant launcher, ripcord, attached gun, and four rockets are more or less disposable. I was quite happy with the other weapons. Colton has separate trigger fingers, so he can hold all of them very well. I especially love the non-revolver style pistol. That's a great one that many figures have come with previously.

Bruce Willis. Joe Colton. John McClane. This figure can go by many names, but the important thing is that it's a fun figure and a great addition to your G.I. Joe: Retaliaton cast of characters. I managed to find one with good face paint, but I know that's not always the case, so you may want to either pick and choose or study them carefully. This particular figure isn't amazing, but he works well enough, and I'm psyched to get Bruce Willis in a 4" scale.