Friday, April 1, 2011

REVIEW: GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra - Scarlett (Base Camo)

Produced by Hasbo | Released July 2009

Shana ''Scarlett'' O'Hara is the GI Joe team intelligence specialist and is fluent in at least half a dozen languages. She's also a powerful fighter, expertly wielding her high-tech crossbow and applying Martial Arts moves learned from Snake Eyes.

Packaging Shots

Scarlett (Base Camo)
This is the second Scarlett figure released as part of the GI Joe: Rise of Cobra line (sadly I narrowly missed-out on the other version just a few days ago but that's another story.) For the purposes of this Review (and to get it straight in my head) I'm referring to this version as the ''Base Camo'' Scarlett, as she's wearing the camouflage fatigues worn by the Joes in the Pit HQ.

The sculpt is pretty good. Like Baroness, Scarlett definitely has a female shape to her form and it's nice to see Hasbro's designers feminising the women without overly-sexualising them. Overall Scarlett has a realistic female form and proportions.

Unfortunately her uniform is a little plain (but hey, that's why it's called a uniform!) What details there are - such as the collar and belt of her outift - are well-defined, though. It's just a little lacking and could really do with some extra pouches or something to make it pop. However, it's not the fault of the figure and it's unfair to criticise it for being accurate to the movie.

Speaking of accuracy, it's a shame the head sculpt isn't as close to the movie version as it should be. She not only looks nothing like Rachel Nichols (I assume they didn't get likeness rights) but she's also sporting a ponytail. In the movie I believe she wore her hair loose. This version is more akin to the 25th Anniversary Pilot Scarlett than her movie counterpart. The Desert Ambush Scarlett (in Reactive Impact Armor), however has a hairstyle closer to the character's on-screen look. I'm not sure why Hasbro switched the heads. Anyway, head-swap issues aside, this is a pretty good sculpt, with Scarlett looking feminine without looking like a supermodel and it's good to see a more practical look given to her.

Articulation is great. Scarlett's body sculpt may be simple but it allows for a wide range of movement, thanks to the lack of sticky-out parts or extra layers. The joints are tight enough to hold poses but not so as to feel as if they're going to break. Although her ponytail sometimes gets in the way, it's flexible enough to be moved aside to accommodate most poses.

Paint is nicely applied, with the camouflage pattern being at the correct scale - in other words, it's clearly a camo pattern and not just random splodges. The top of her undershirt is picked-out in white cleanly and her facial details are well-applied.

As well as the obligatory oversized (and impractical) weapon, Scarlett also comes with a fair amount of gear that's actually useful.

Starting with the firing weapon, in this case the designers have latched onto her weapon of choice (the crossbow) to produce an oversized super-crossbow. It's impractical and silly but the blue... energy bolt? looks quite nice.

Speaking of crossbows, Scarlett comes with her signature weapon. It's cast from an odd silvery-grey metal (the other weapons are in black plastic) and is a single piece, rather than the two-piece constructions we've seen before with the Joe range. There's also a bullpup assault rifle, a pistol, a short Ninja sword and a backpack. The latter includes a slot into which the sword can be clipped and a rear port allows the crossbow to be carried here when not in use. Sadly Scarlett doesn't have a holster and the backpack - although hollow - is too small to hold her sidearm.

One minor annoyance about her crossbow and sword is that both were - at least in my pack - bent when I removed them from the packaging. Hopefully they'll return to normal now they're no longer restrained.

Scarlett also comes with her own stand and a GI Joe: Rise of Cobra colour sales sheet.

Final Thoughts
Scarlett (Base Camo) is a very good figure. I like her a lot. She's got a good overall look that's feminine without being a caricature, there are just enough weapons to keep her interesting and there's nothing to stop her from being played with and posed. The only thing I'm not sold on is the head sculpt. Whilst there's nothing at all wrong with it, I'd have liked to have seen her with her hair down, as she appears in the movie. It's just a minor point I know, but given that the other release features this and we've seen this same look on Baroness, it would be a good way to further differentiate her from the male Joes.

So whilst it's not the most detailed or visually-engaging toy in the line, it's certainly a very good display piece and plaything, which is good enough for me.

Production QualityB+
Final ScoreB+

Image Gallery


  1. She seems pretty solid and one i might have to get if the price is right. : )

  2. I got her - with another five Joes - for $5 a pop. Sorted.


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