Thursday, June 9, 2011

REVIEW: GI Joe Rise of Cobra - Heavy Duty (Jungle Camo)

Produced by Hasbro | Released 2009

Heavy Duty combines brains and brawn to support the GI Joe team with tactical expertise and muscular might. He knows the optimal weapons to use in any situation and will never stand down until every last Cobra is defeated.

Packaging Shots

Heavy Duty (Jungle Camo)
Regular readers and GI Joe collectors may recall we Reviewed the Reactive Impact Armor version of Heavy Duty earlier this year. How does this version measure up? Read on and find out!

The overall sculpt is pretty good, but not without its problems (more on that later.) Starting with the positive, the figure uses a character-specific sculpt, with Heavy Duty being sculpted as a huge, imposing and muscular figure. It's nice to see this body-size variation and it immediately gives the figure some extra presence.

Heavy Duty is clad here in a more lifelike outfit of t-shirt, (removable) vest and combat pants. The sculpting is solid, both in terms of capturing Heavy Duty's imposing size but also in terms of detail, with some nice tucks at the top of his boots, side pockets and hemmed edging on his shirt. I also like that he has a custom ''HD'' belt-buckle to match the backpack (more on that below.)

His exposed arms are a little bit of a letdown. Although his upper-arms feature some musculature detail, they appear fat rather than buffed. And his forearms are particularly undefined. A bracer on his left wrist adds some detail but his right arm - lacking such an accessory - connects poorly to his hand and has a definite ''sleeve'' to it. Which looks wrong, given his arms are bare.

The head sculpt is very good, though, with some excellent detailing and a very lifelike look.

Articulation is good, on the whole. However, the added bulk of his thighs makes it quite difficult to get him to kneel. There's also no tilt to his head, which is a shame, as that's always handy for adding expression to poses. Everything else is fine though.

Paint is very nicely applied and well designed. The muted greens and browns of the jungle camouflage work well and the pattern is cleanly applied. His knee pads are picked-out in different colours (for some reason - I'm sure military fans can tell me why) and this adds a nice asymmetrical look to his paintwork that helps make him appear more lifelike. His custom belt-buckle is picked-out in a green-ish gold and is cleanly applied.

The facial features are very cleanly painted, with his earring being picked-out in silver and his eyes and hair all being very accurate apps. There's also a very cool tattoo on his left bicep - which looks suspiciously like a Decepticon logo...

Heavy Duty comes with a removable vest (pre-attached) and his own base. In terms of weaponry, the package includes a sci-fi like pistol and an assault rifle, both cast from a realistic black plastic. The former is a little difficult to get him to hold (thanks to the size of his hands) but the assault rifle is a nice fit and can easily be held in one or two hands.

He also includes a backpack (again, with his ''HD'' branding on it - perhaps he's hoping to launch his own fashion line) and an ammo belt.

OK, time to address the elephant (gun) in the room.

I applaud Hasbro for attempting to make the launching weapon accessory part of the figure's main arsenal (rather than simply being something in the pack most collectors will store instead of use) but as a weapon, it's utterly impractical. Yes, Hasbro has included a shoulder-strap to help hold it in place (and make it seem plausible) and yes, Heavy Duty can be posed holding it (just) but it's simply too large. As a play accessory it's fine and I'm sure kids will love firing it at the baddies, but for collectors it's just a little too much.

Still, it's certainly well-detailed - much more than the usual firing weapons - and, as I say, you can display Heavy Duty holding it, so I appreciate that Hasbro did at least attempt to do something more practical with the de rigueur spring-loaded weapon. And before you ask, that's not perspective making it look big. It really is about the same height as Heavy Duty.

Final Thoughts
Heavy Duty (Jungle Camo) is a solid addition to the line. Whilst I prefer this more lifelike look over the Reactive Impact Armor Heavy Duty, I do feel the latter is the better figure of the two. It has a more solid feel to it and the accessories are a little more practical. That's not to say this isn't a very good figure - it is - and if you're looking for an extra camouflaged Joe to join Double-Clutch and Ripcord in the VAMP, then this is an excellent choice.

Like yesterday's Sgt Stone, he's a good ''army man'' figure and I could imagine kids having a lot of fun taking him on adventures, especially if he's armed with the oversized chain gun. But I could also see kids being a little frustrated with it - the weapon doesn't quite sit as well as it should and always feels as if it's going to pop out of his hand or fall off his shoulder and when the ammo belt is connected there's a feeling that it too is going to spring out at any moment. It's odd that a piece so big can also be so fragile.

Still, kids will enjoy the sheer lunacy of the oversized weapons and collectors will, I'm sure, find the assault rifle a more than adequate replacement when displaying him. Personally I'm going to equip him with the spare grenade launcher from his Reactive Impact Armor incarnation, as it just seems much more of a Heavy Duty-esque weapon to me, but what you get here is fine, too.

Overall then, the Jungle Camouflage Heavy Duty is a very addition to the line. With a little extra in the way of accessories he could have been awesome but as it stands, he's a very solid ''very good.''

Production QualityB+
Final ScoreB+

Image Gallery


  1. Heavy Duty kicks heavy booty! lol. Great figure and the one figure from this line those Big Guns work for.

  2. He's really good, a few minor quibbles aside. The gun really is crazy-big though!


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