Monday, June 11, 2012

REVIEW: GI Joe: Retaliation Ninja Dojo Beachhead

Produced by Hasbro | Released May 2012

Ninja Dojo Beachhead
Today we're back on-track with our GI Joe: Retaliation three-pack figure Reviews, with the Ninja Dojo Beachhead standing front and center. Just how does the team's Ranger compare to his pack-mate, Night Ops Roadblock?

Sculpt and Design
Unlike many other Joes, Beachhead has always been a fairly serious, no-nonsense character. Even at the height of the Real American Hero Saturday morning cartoon capering, he was one of the characters who seemed to retain his dignity (unless I missed the episode where he donned drag and took part in a song and dance routine...) And the same could be said about this figure's sculpt. It's not a flashy ''look at me'' kind of design, but is instead a somber, thoughtful and dignified rendition of the character. Which, of course, is exactly what you'd expect from Beachhead.

Like many figures in the GI Joe line-up, Beachhead borrows a few pieces and elements from other figures. The silencer/pistol holster, ribbed sweater, balaclava-ed head and knife sheath will be familiar to collectors of the line but in all honesty, each piece is so well-produced and tooled, their reappearance here isn't an issue, thanks to the superb detailing and functionality of each.

Design-wise it's also a very nice update to the character. As mentioned above, Beachhead is very much a no-nonsense, get-the-job-done kind of guy and the design of the figure captures that well. It's open to debate as to whether he becomes a little too generic or not, though and I could see collectors Army Building this figure, as he'd make a great Steel Brigade/Joe Trooper Mark II figure.

Everything you'd expect from a Pursuit of Cobra/30th Anniversary GI Joe figure is present and correct, articulation-wise - including tilt-able wrists - and there are no issues of mobility or poseability to report.

Beachhead's sculpt does nothing to restrict mobility and the tilting wrists - both of which are up/down tilts, rather than any combination of the two types - are a particularly nice touch. It's surprising how such a small addition can add so much to the figure's poseability.

Joints themselves are firm but not overly so.

This rendition of Beachhead is sporting a somewhat different color-scheme to the usual green/brown/camo look normally associated with the character. I'm not entirely sure how to categorize his look, as it's not quite desert camo but it's not jungle camo either. Some kind of mountain camo? I don't know. But frankly I don't care, either, as it looks very cool.

The app itself is very cleanly done, with no splashes or mis-applied blobs of color to mar the design and the flag tampo on his arm is particularly cool (and no, it's not reversed.) 

Again, it's not a particularly flashy or showy app but it works well for the character.

Extras and Equipment
Of the three figures in the Ninja Dojo pack Beachhead is probably the best-equipped, sporting a removable webbing vest, an assault rifle, two SMGs, a pistol, a silencer and two combat knives.

The accessories are all cast from the same light khaki/tan of his pants, so there's a sense of continuity between the figure and his gear (although personally I'd have preferred to see darker tones used) and each sits well in his hands. The accessories that can be stored (such as the pistol, silencer and one of the knives) fit well into their respective holsters/sheaths, so although he may sport a fair amount of gear he can also carry a fair selection of it - although obviously, he can't hold all three guns at once.

Like all GI Joe: Retaliation figures, Beachhead does not come with a stand.

Final Thoughts
The Ninja Dojo Beachhead is a very good Beachhead figure. And that's simultaneously his strength and his weakness. Fans of Beachhead will really dig what Hasbro has done here, as the figure captures his no-nonsense character perfectly. But if you're not a fan of the character or you prefer your Joes with a bit more sparkle then you'll probably be left cold by this figure.

Personally I'm a fan of the character of Beachhead, as I've always liked his more serious approach and attitude, so for me this figure not only captures that perfectly but also provides the perfect counter to those who argue that the Retaliation line is only filled with toys for kids. This is a serious, no-nonsense, gimmick-free GI Joe straight from the Pursuit of Cobra line-up.

An excellent execution of a solid, stoic character design.

Final Score: A-

Image Gallery


  1. I love this guy, hands down one of the better figures from the movie line, well that and snake eyes, red ninja, slice, storm shadow, the joe trooper, kamakura,3 pack storm shadow, 3 pack rockblock, the movie line is chock full of good figures.

    1. Yeah, I think a lot of people look at the lack of bases, the articulation changes and silly stuff like the Battle Kata hands and think the entire line is just terrible, which clearly isn't the case.


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