JoeCustoms Custom Celebration – The GeneralsJoes Sigma 6 Project Final Day!

It’s been quite a week of custom fun with the JoeCustoms Custom Celebration, and I’m finishing off the week with my last two Sigma 6 themed customs.

Okay, I purposefully saved these guys for last…well…because I kinda love them.  It’s not often that I really get involved and drawn in by my own work…after all, I saw it in its messiest form, and even when something is relatively final I can’t help but think back to one of those late night work sessions where paint was slopped everywhere and I never thought I’d get it right.

Hi-Tech uses the head from the Renegades Duke that I’d torn apart for Long Range’s legs.  I had cut apart a few more metal plates from another vest and used Blackout’s goggles to build up that strange goggle contraption for his head.  PoC Beachhead torso and arms again, but I went with PoC’s Firefly’s legs because they look a bit more cybernetic.

Then I took two of those strange technical devices from PoC Beachhead and put them in assorted places on the figure as well.

The accessories were where I really felt like I had to go above the rest of these entries.  For his backpack I used the PoC Duke rocket launcher backpack with a Data-Viper radar dish attached.  Then… there was HOUND.

I honestly can’t quite remember how HOUND came together…I took two Data-Viper torso armor pieces and reversed them, then glued them together.  I cut up some of the long drone launchers and used those for the feet.  The head is a Data-Viper helmet and then the two Data-Viper missile pods with guns glued into them.  Honestly, I wish I could say it was some calculated project, but I really just cut up a bunch of stuff, mashed it together and added some super glue.

And here is Lt. Stone, my favorite Sigma 6 character, and one of my favorite G.I. Joe characters of all time.  My first Sigma 6 custom ever was Lt. Stone, but it was just a Reactive Armor figure and Retaliation Zartan arm.  I needed something better than that.

I tweaked the Marauder’s Falcon head, trimming down the eyepatch strap, and putting him on the PoC Beachhead torso.  For the left arm, I once again used quite a bit of Retaliation Zartan, but then added the forearm from Retaliation Firefly with the translucent green arm.  Using acetone and sand paper, I scraped off the layer of paint to reveal the green underneath, then cut up more of Zartan’s arm and glued certain segments to the plain arm underneath.  Added some paint, and the result was a nicely bulky cybernetic looking robot arm that worked infinitely better than I thought it might.

When I first started this project, I honestly wasn’t sure where I was going with it.  I wanted to make a few figures at first, but it expanded to nine total figures, and I have a number of recipes rolling around in my skull for other figures.  I don’t know if I’ll ever get to them.

For now, here’s a couple of team shots to show how these figures all work together.

I have to give some huge thanks to the guys from JoeCustoms for letting me bounce ideas off them and work through this project.  A bunch of friends very nicely provided me some parts, and this was a really fun project to work on.

Again, I realize the project isn’t perfect and it isn’t as clean as I’d like.  My ultimate goal was a ragtag team of renegade characters who were on the run from an overpowering Cobra force, yet managed to stumble upon a research laboratory of next generation technology.  So in ways, the hacked-together mentality works.

Hopefully folks have enjoyed this look at my Sigma 6 custom project, and I really hope everyone has been checking out the JoeCustoms Custom Celebration, they were an inspiration throughout this process!

JoeCustoms Custom Celebration – The GeneralsJoes Sigma 6 Project (Day 4)

So far in this JoeCustoms Custom Celebration project, I’ve covered five different figures from the Sigma 6 world.  Today, I go a bit darker and cover a couple of guys I see as being on the black ops side of the Sigma 6 universe.

Spirit I ended up quite happy with in some ways, but seeing a need for improvement in others.  I used the PoC head sculpt and the familiar PoC Beachhead (well… 50th Low Light again) torso.  I chose the bare arms from PoC Jungle Duke.  Speaking of the arms, I’m not especially happy with the tattoos, and am considering using waterslide decals.  I have no experience with them, though, and didn’t really want to get my feet wet with this particular project.

His legs, by the way, are Resolute Snake Eyes.

LongRange-01

As one of my all-time favorites, I wanted to do Long Range right.  I used the Retaliation Flint head sculpt and PoC Beachhead torso, but went with Paris Pursuit Snake Eyes arms.  I considered using the trenchcoat from that same figure, but I much preferred the dramatic motion sweep of the Renegades version, so ultimately I chose that one.  I went with Renegades Duke legs, and one of my 50th Anniversary Low Light’s sniper rifle w/ case.  By the way, he does have a ponytail attached to the back of his head as well.

I found the biggest challenge with Spirit, Long Range, and Snake Eyes was that they all used variations of gray/blue and I wanted them each to look considerably different.  I think it was successful all told.

Join me tomorrow for the final two members of my custom Sigma 6 team!

JoeCustoms Custom Celebration – The GeneralsJoes Sigma 6 Project (Day 3)

As part of the JoeCustoms Custom Celebration, I’ve been showcasing my Sigma 6 custom project… Duke, Snake Eyes, and Scarlett have already been shown, so  I tackled the comedy relief next.

I stuck with the PoC Beachhead torso again (actually I think this one was technically a 50th Anniversary Low Light), but used Rise of Cobra Reactive armor arms and upper legs.  For the lower legs I used Rise of Cobra Desert Duke, who had notoriously short lower legs, so I could maintain a sense of small stature for the demolitions expert.  For his head I used a unmasked Storm Shadow 25th Anniversary Tomax head with Low Light’s knit cap cut and transplanted via super glue.  If you didn’t realize, the Sigma 6 Tunnel Rat came with a small sled that he could sit back on, so I approximated that look with the G.I. Joe: Retaliation Firefly’s battle luge and made sure to lather on the dirty paint wipes.

Heavy Duty was a tricky one, though only because he was one of my first, and I didn’t do a great job of splitting the torso.  I used Battle Kata Roadblock for the majority of Heavy Duty, though I gave him the armored upper arms and legs from Rise of Cobra Reactive Armor Heavy Duty.  His head is also that same Heavy Duty with the top half cut off and the top part of a Cobra Combat ninja head acting as the bandana.

His torso was also a challenge.  I took an exacto and carefully cut out the armor plate from an Agent Mouse vest, then glued those armored plates onto the smooth torso from Battle Kata Roadblock, to replicate some kind of Sigma Suit.  It’s not the exact same look as the rest of the line up, but it works well in a crunch, and allowed me to go a bit bigger with this one.

JoeCustoms Custom Celebration – The GeneralsJoes Sigma 6 Project (Day 2)

Yesterday I kicked off my small part of the JoeCustoms Custom Celebration with a look at Sigma 6 Duke.

The second figure in this Sigma 6 custom project is Snake Eyes

I kept the theme of PoC Beachhead for the torso and upper arms, going with Retaliation Snake Eyes for the forearms and the legs.  Those arms and legs kept the sleek feel for the Sigma Suit, but were more “ninja-like”.  I built his tonfa sword using a Renegades Cobra Trooper nightstick and random katana.

Joining her two male compatriots is Scarlett.

Scarlett-01

Scarlett provided the most challenge for me, because I couldn’t find a look that really matched her cartoon appearance.  Ultimately I used Agent Helix’s head with the hair from a 25th Anniversary Baroness and two inner thigh pads from the modern figures for her goggles.  Resolute Scarlett made up the torso and legs, though I’ll be honest, I don’t quite recall what the lower arms where.  Perhaps they were Helix as well?  From there it was some creative painting to get the feeling of the Sigma Suit, though I also managed to trace the pattern of the uniform, too.  I ended up pretty happy with this one.

JoeCustoms Custom Celebration – The GeneralsJoes Sigma 6 Project (Day 1)

How’s that for a post title?

Every year the fine folks over at JoeCustoms.com take a week and devote it to a JoeCustoms Custom Celebration.  This year is the landmark ninth year of this event, and it continues to go strong.  I love the folks at JoeCustoms and consider many of them some of my closest friends, so when they asked me to feature a project with them, I could hardly say no.

I’m not what you’d call a prolific customizer, but I get in the mood to do some customs sometimes, and I’ll dive into a project for several weeks in a row.

So was the case with this particular project.

I think most folks know how much of a Sigma 6 fan I am, but even as much as I love that era of G.I. Joe, I also realize the stylistic and scale differences, and sometimes lament the fact that they didn’t integrate with our larger 4” G.I. Joe universe.

With this latest project, I decided to see if I could work around that.

In some ways I tried to stay true to the look and feel of Sigma 6, but I also tried to bring more Pursuit of Cobra elements into it as well.  Essentially a “what if” Sigma 6 8” universe and the Pursuit of Cobra 4” universe slammed into each other kind of thing.

By and large, I’m pleased with the project.  In looking at these images there is a LOT of clean up that has to be done, but I wanted to get these posted for the JoeCustoms Custom Celebration, so here we go.  I’ll be posting the figures all throughout this week.  Some of them will be one a day, sometimes two.

Of course, we’ll start with Duke.

Duke’s inspiration came from the PoC Beachhead torso (which ended up being the crux of my own “Sigma Suit” technology) and the Resolute Duke head sculpt.

I will say one thing I’m not a big fan of with this figure is the vest.  It’s too bulky and doesn’t flow with the rest of the figure, but it does look somewhat consistent with the larger version, I suppose.

It’s also evident the work I did to make up his customized weapon system, and it looks pretty sloppy.  You can see the glue lines and change in texture.  All that being said, he has the look and feel for the character, and I think makes for a good jumping off point.

More to come.

Preview of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero from Comic Book Resources

Okay, now that my brain has stopped exploding from the combination of awesome witnessed in this preview, I can write a little post about it.

CBR sat down and chatted with Larry Hama about his run on G.I. Joe comics, and looked towards March and the release of G.I. Joe #200.  We get a little insight into what to expect with this landmark issue, but best of all, a few preview pages are shown including the best image I’ve ever seen:

SL Gallant + G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero + Sigma 6 themed Cobra Commander.

My soul is smiling.

Check out the whole article right here, and brace yourself for some great images of a Cobra army of HISS Tanks preparing to face off against the G.I. Joe team with some truly great old school vibe to it.  I’ve mirrored one image below, but the rest are over at CBR.

cbr_GIJoe_200

Early seeds of “Rise of the Robots” G.I. Joe theme from 2005 revealed

There are pluses and minuses to the social media explosion throughout the Internet, but when it comes to getting access to industry insiders and hearing some great behind the scenes intel, I can think of no better resource than a place like Facebook or Twitter where you can get direct access to these people.

In many cases its merely a side conversation between a few industry guys, as what happened between animation veterans Will Meugniot and David McDermott, who apparently were involved in some early production work for the G.I. Joe animated series “Rise of the Robots” that never got produced.  Those of us who were around and active during the new sculpt era have fond memories of the “Robot Rebellion” title (which apparently was a derivation of Rise of The Robots), a theme that was supposedly slated to take off after Valor Vs. Venom’s departure.  Let’s not forget back then G.I. Joe was much more solidly built around a specific story.  Each year’s line was complimented by a direct to DVD animated feature, and figures were a mixture of new concepts and really new versions of old characters.

As many folks now know, the seeds of The Rise of the Robots” were sewn into what would eventually become Sigma 6, much to many G.I. Joe fan’s chagrin.  I know I’m exceedingly vocal about my love for Sigma 6, and it’s going to be one of my favorite era’s of G.I. Joe for the rest of my life, I imagine, but that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t have also wanted to see what would have come through The Rise of the Robots.

Well, both Will and David were just having one of those awesome “hey, remember when Hasbro trashed that animated series we spent months developing?” conversations, and some great images and details emerged about the beginning of The Rise of the Robots, and ergo, Sigma 6.  Some rough art was shown, which looks very much like Sigma 6, but also with some great new elements as well (Jinx FTW!).  It’s really cool to see this, especially for many folks who have spent years hypothesizing what “might have been” after Valor Vs. Venom.  Certainly the Direct To Consumer line took some of those elements (namely the Rhino, ROCC, and HISS Tank vehicles) but a lot of the central themes of this new iteration ended up in an 8″ scale.

Check  out the mirrored images below, and if you’re on Facebook, take a peek at Will Meugniot’s photo album where he reveals some neat details surrounding the doomed animated series.  Big kudos to Andrew Franks for sharing this in the G.I. Joe Discussion Group over on Facebook.

G.I. Joe coverage continues on BrainFreeze.be – Interviews and Analysis

Throughout the crazy week of G.I. Joe: Retaliation prep and reaction, pop culture fan site BrainFreeze has been posting some great updates to their G.I. Joe themed articles!  These include interviews with some collectors (including yours truly!) and a great look at the animated series, review sites, and more.

It is really cool to see a site like this putting so much effort into pushing and publicizing G.I. Joe!  I have posted links below to all five parts, you need to check them out, they are really entertaining reads and a great look at some folks within our hobby and some aspects that make our hobby great.

  1. Introduction – “Knowing is Half the Battle”
  2. “There is a place called Kokomo” – Interview with Kokomo Toys
  3. Interview with Gary “Gyre-Viper” Goggles
  4. Interview with Toy Reviewer yo go re from OAFE.net
  5. A look at the Sunbow animated series
  6. Interview with G.I. Joe “Specialist” Justin Bell (hey, that’s me!)

There are much more to come, but these six articles are pretty fun reads!  You should check them out.  A big thanks to Axel for taking the time to get this all together and to get it all translated!  A great effort.

SPOILER ALERT – Is there a connection between G.I. Joe: Retaliation and… Sigma 6?

Some folks may consider this a spoiler, so I will preface this by saying continue reading if you want.  I don’t think it’s a significant spoiler, but it concerns the character of Firefly in the G.I. Joe: Retaliation film.  A recent issue of Total Film magazine featured an article on G.I. Joe: Retaliation.  They spoke with Jon Chu, Lorenzo Di Bonaventura and Ray Stevenson.  Comic Book Movie was kind enough to get this information out there and posted on their site.

Click the read the rest of the story link below for the full (potential spoiler-ish) details:

Continue reading

Sigma 6 Adventure Team Dusty pre-production item hits eBay

This may very well be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for any Sigma 6 collectors out there.  As Sigma 6 aficionados know, the Adventure Team series of figures was canceled after the first wave, but some very low quantities of the Dusty pre-production sample have been found in the wild.  By “very low”, I mean three.  Out of those three, one of them has been listed on eBay.

Check out the auction right here.  This is a great, very rare and limited pre-production item.  Check it out.

This is not my auction, by the way, just bringing some attention to a great Sigma 6 historical item that might appeal to some folks out there.