Sunday, February 26, 2012

Real Adventures of Action Figures

Before Action Figure Adventures: The Series was a concept, the creators started a website called Obscene Newg. They posted articles, stories, pictures, and other odd things to the site. One of the original articles told the story behind several GIJoe figures Kevin lost while playing in the yard as a kid.  This article was originally posted here: MIA: GIJoes in the Back Yard

MIA: GIJoes in the Backyard 

Army toys all decked out in camouflage have got to be some of the best toys to play with outside as a kid. When I was a kid, that meant GIJoes. And what better place to play with them than the Vietnam of my backyard? I liked to throw them up into the air and pretend they were parachuting to the ground. The biggest problem was that I always played under trees...
With that, we venture to the Island of Lost GIJoes..
Spirit: One bad-ass injun
I have had SPIRIT for a long time, and he has always been a favorite, mainly because of his pet eagle FREEDOM. All of the GIJoes that came with pets got heavy usage in my yard. One day while my GIJoes were on a mission in my back yard by a maple tree outside my bedroom window SPIRIT and RECONDO were called in as reinforcements. I pitched the two of them up into the air as high as I could and watched them plummet back to earth. RECONDO bounced off a few branches and landed at my feet. SPIRIT on the other hand hit a big branch and stopped falling. I was very distraught over the loss of SPIRIT. A few weeks later when I was tromping through puddles in my back yard after a storm I found a muddy SPIRIT laying face down on the ground. I was so excited I let out a loud laugh and raced inside to wash off the hero.

Charbroil "replaces" Blowtorch
BLOWTORCH: Welcome to the team rookie. It'll be nice having a partner.
CHARBROIL: Partner? What are you talking about 'ya old fogey?
BLOWTORCH: Huht-pht-pfff?
CHARBROIL: I have the same freakish orange hair as you, the same flamethrower, the same flame retardant underwear...
BLOWTORCH: wha…? Um… erg…
CHARBROIL: *Fires off a quick burst from his flamethrower*

The Easter Bunny and Santa liked to give me toys off the bottom of my list... ones I don't even remember asking for. CHARBROIL was one of those figures. I played with him, but he was never a favorite. One day I was playing GIJoe out side under another big maple tree in our front yard with a kid I knew named Taylor (a.k.a. The Seamstress). He was never very gentle with his Joes, he smashed a lot of his figures so we did not play with to many of my old figures. SHOCKWAVE, SPEARHEAD, MUSKRAT, and HIT & RUN were battling the Cobra PYTHON PATROL. CHARBROIL and some members of Tiger Force were called in to give the Joes and edge. CHARBROIL, BAZOOKA, and FROSTBITE were tossed up into the air and CHARBROIL never came home. The traumatic incident with SPIRIT flooded back into my mind. Since CHARBROIL, wearing orange and red, was lost in the branches of a Norwegian Crimson King Maple there was no way of spotting him high up in the tree. I think that was the first time he ever camouflaged in with anything. The Seamstress and I climbed the tree, shaking branches and looking around hoping to find him. Fortunately, like SPIRIT, CHARBROIL eventually came back down with time and nature's help.

Not just the president, he's a member too!
SERPENTOR: Emperor of Cobra was riding on top of Cobra's newest secret weapon (a Thunder Cats big wheel) when he slipped off and smacked his head on the ground. His helmet cracked off to reveal his ugly bald scaly head. I was shocked at how dumb and ugly he was with out his helmet. I made him wear RIPCORD's black helmet after that, but he could never command the same respect from the Cobra VIPERS after that. Then a few months later when I picked up a new SERPENTOR at a yard sale, the old one became the perfect candidate for a beating. I broke very few of my toys on purpose as a kid, and I was not trying to destroy SERPENTOR, more of just abuse him. I tied a piece of string to his one foot and began to swing him around. Suddenly he hit the side of my porch and exploded. The shaft in his chest were the screw goes through completely broke out making every part fly off. I recovered all of his pieces but his head. Man, I wish I found that head so I could show everyone what an ugly mug he had. I have seen a lot of SERPENTORs at yard sales over the years with broken fangs and things, but I still have not seen another helmetless one.
Lt. Falcon sits pretty

LT. FALCON: star of GIJoe the movie was also put on the missing in action list after being left outside overnight. A friend of mine and I searched the yard the next day with no luck. Camouflaged figures are really tricky to find when you don't know were you lost them. Amazingly enough my Dad found FALCON just before he mowed that area of the yard.

Max and Max shoot craps
  MAX: of the famed SPEARHEAD and MAX duo was lost in the weeds on the dirt pile in my backyard left over from when they dug the hole for our pool. He had been lost for a really long time… the dirt from the pile has had to have been cleaned up at least 6 years ago and I lost him way before that. Some time in 2001 my Dad brought into the house a mangled piece of sun faded plastic and asked if I was mine. Sure enough it was good old MAX. Perhaps he was hit by the rototiller that ripped the weeds out of the dirt pile before the dirt was gotten rid of or maybe the mower was responsible for MAX's injuries. The again, perhaps each of them got their little dig in.

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