Tuesday, November 28, 2023

2010 Convention Flint - Random Photos of the Day

About a decade ago, convention figures were just ignored.  Even the now sought after characters were cheap and unimportant.  Joe characters would sell for under $20.  I even missed the green version  of the 2010 Convention Flint that sold for about $4.  But, the stupid market of 2020 impacted convention figures more than pretty much any other group of Joe toys.  Now, even common, unliked army builders are $50 figures.  And, named characters can run over $700!  That's just ridiculous.  But, guys are hoarding figures, especially those with low production runs and there just aren't any in the market.  They're going to come in the next couple of years, though.  Until then, I'll just watch the insanity.

The parachute drop figures at the conventions were, at best, a mixed bag.  Some were great.  But, many were just outright bad.  The 2010 Convention Flint is somewhere in the middle.  If you have a liking to the character and great colors, he's great.  But, if you hate fun, you also probably hate this figure.  Which is why so few Joe collectors actually use him in any photos.

Content using this figure is pretty sparse.  There was a time when  this Flint appeared frequently enough.  But, that was 12 to 13 years ago.  Now, I can't even find enough content featuring him to fill an Around the Web post.  So, instead, I'll just drop some random photos of this Flint.  I've found he's a great complement to the under-rated 2002 Paratrooper Dusty.  And, he works well with many figures of the repaint era.  

2010 Convention Flint, 2002 Paratrooper Dusty, 2023 Ripcord, Night Force

2010 Convention Flint, 2002 Paratrooper Dusty, 2023 Ripcord, Night Force

2010 Convention Flint, 2002 Paratrooper Dusty, 2023 Ripcord, Night Force

2010 Convention Flint, 1993 Mega Marine Clutch, 1991 Badger, 1994 Dialtone

Thursday, November 23, 2023

2023 Cobra Mothership - Weekly Tracking Week 6

I was on vacation this week and missed a couple of check-ins.  Not much change, yet.  We'll see how it goes over this weekend.  I expect the needle to move some.  But, even if it doesn't, I'm still not convinced that the item won't fund.  Here's the numbers for this week:

11/18/23 - 1438 + 0
11/19/23 - 1438 + 0
11/20/23 - 
11/21/23 - 1441 + 3
11/22/23 - 
11/23/23 - 1443 + 2
11/24/23 - 1443 + 0

5 new backers this week.  Not much moving of the needle.  But, starting next week, pretty much everyone will be within their same credit card statement for the end of the campaign.  So, buying it then vs. buying it the last day won't really matter much.  We'll see if people get interested.

The upside is that, this week, Super7 clearly communicated that the Mothership was compatible with vintage o-ring figures.  They haven't shown pictures...likely because they can't.  But, this is why a quick collaboration with any toy influencer out there would be ideal. That person could show vintage Joes in  the ship and allow the photos/video to circulate online.  So, there's more that could be done.  

Super7, Cobra Mothership, 2023, Haslab, Cobra Commander, Cobra Trooper

Tuesday, November 21, 2023

1989 Downtown - Around The Web

I'll always believe that Downtown started his life as an updated Short Fuse.  The similarities are just too great.  The one difference, though, is that Downtown is a pretty good figure.  He has interesting and unique colors, the sculpt is top notch and his accessories blow away  those from the 1982 Mortar Trooper.  Despite all this, the figure lives in obscurity.  While there's some nice content on the figure out there, you really don't hear much about Downtown or see him as a major character in too many collections.

The figure's quality lends it to photography.  And, you'll see that some folks in the links have really been able to showcase just how awesome Downtown can be.  So, check them out below!

1989 Downtown Profile

1989 Downtown by retroworld_n

1989 Downtown by thedustinmccoy

1989 Downtown by g.i.boyz

1989 Downtown by gijoebarcelona

1989 Downtown by Hit and Run

1989 Downtown by elevatemetoahigherhumanform

1989 Downtown by dantedmc37

1989 Downtown by thedustinmccoy

1989 Downtown by jogunwarrior

1989 Downtown by evilface

1991 Super Sonic Fighters Rock and Roll, 1989 Downdown

Saturday, November 18, 2023

1991 Sci Fi - Around The Web

The 1991 Sci Fi is a rather popular figure.  Really, he solves for pretty much all of the criticisms of the 1986 debut figure.  This later redesign features a removable helmet, smaller rifle and an overall sculpt that is less bulky than the original.  In all, the figure is a strong update to a character who isn't all that high on most collectors' lists.

There's some nice content featuring the figure out there, though.  For many collectors, the figure is their laser trooper.  And, all the figure's gear allows for some cool posing.  You'll see a bunch of these in the photos and content below.

1991 Sci Fi Profile

1991 Sci Fi by viper_space

1991 Sci Fi by evilface

1991 Sci Fi by TunnelRat

1991 Sci Fi by gijoe_c4_panama

1991 Sci Fi by albafica

1991 Sci Fi by Slipstream80

1991 Sci Fi by gvilla74

1991 Sci Fi by cowledcollector

1991 Sci Fi, Super Sonic Fighters Zap

1991 Sci Fi

1991 Sci Fi, 1986 Conquest, 1994 Star Brigade Ozone

Friday, November 17, 2023

2023 Cobra Mothership - Weekly Tracking Week 5

This week, Super7 did some promotion for the Mothership.  Their Twitter account starting posting some new pics of the toy.  It showed just how big the ship actually is.  And, they showed off some of the interior of the ship.  They promoted the 5 figure army building packs.  And, they appeared on a podcast.  The result of all this effort was...little.  After gaining only 4 backers last week.  It gained 7 backers this week: three of those occurring on Friday afternoon.  Not a great return.  But, at least it was free promotion instead of paid shilling.

I missed a day this week.  Just got busy.  I expect the same to happen next week with the holiday.  But, with only 7 backers in a week, the daily totals become less important.  For now, the only real value in the tracking of the numbers is to see if the 10% in the first week and 90% in the last week comes true.  We'll see.

Here's the breakdown:

11/11/23 - 1431 + 0
11/12/23 - 1433 + 2
11/13/23 - 1433 + 0
11/14/23 - 
11/15/23 - 1435 + 2
11/16/23 - 1435 + 0
11/17/23 - 1438 + 3

Next week is Thanksgiving in the US. Typically, the Friday of that week is the biggest shopping day of the year and the day that people often commit to big gifts.  So, I don't expect the needle to move much next week since I'll post an update early on Friday.  But, the week after, that will cover Black Friday and Cyber Monday, should see an uptick from people who want to gift this item to themselves directly or by proxy.  And, we should be within the next credit card statement date for most people, meaning that ordering it over next weekend vs. waiting for December should still get the charges on the same statement.  After that, we'll have about 2 weeks left in the campaign.  I still expect a surge on the final day.  We'll see if it's enough to make this thing come to fruition.

Super7, Cobra Mothership, Haslab

Super7, Cobra Mothership, Haslab

Monday, November 13, 2023

2001 Tripwire

Hasbro had a short break between the death of the Joe line in 1994 and its first reappearance as a collector themed line in 1997.  But, really, 1997 Hasbro was a completely different company than the one that existed in 1994.  The people who had made the vintage Joe line were gone.  In their place were new people who lacked the connection to the brand.  And, instead of trying to find a recipe that would have given them massive retail success, they fell upon a select few, elder members of the collecting community to guide their design choices.  The result is a short era of safe, bland and uninteresting figures whose value is almost entirely tied up in the nostalgic ties that barely repaints evoked among a certain set of adults.  The figures of this era aren't, necessarily, bad.  They're just boring.  They take no chances and don't challenge anyone's sense of comfort when thinking about their collecting habits.  

This was the core problem with the A Real American Hero Collection (ARAHC) that was released in 2000 and 2001.  Too many of the figures blended together.  To uninitiated parents and casual collectors, the shelves appeared to be full of the same figure over and over again.  Nothing stood out: either good or bad.  The figures were, though, relatively good.  Collectors liked them and bought a fair amount.  But, the line couldn't compete with the adult collector driven but still kid supported Star Wars line.  A few figures, though, really did work in the muted color schemes.  Among them was the 2001 Tripwire.

You can make an argument that this is the best Tripwire figure.  (Though, you'd be wrong as the Funskool figure is the best!)  But, it's really not all that different from the 1983 version.  The green is a little darker.  The main difference is that the unique grey from the original version has been replaced by a more common black color.  The color lacks the sheen of vintage black figures who still appeared shiny and vibrant and was, instead, a very flat black.  This was the type of thing that the cool, hip adult collectors of 2001 pretended that they wanted.  And, Hasbro gave us a whole line of figures who were almost exclusively the boring green and black colors.  And, that line didn't last a year at retail.  2002 brought a ton more color to the line and it launched the Joe renaissance of the early 2000's where the brand had retail viability for a couple of years.  

The thing about this figure is that the 1983 Tripwire is pretty much perfect.  His lighter green gives him some distinction from some of his contemporaries.  But, his grey highlights were a rarity in the vintage Joe line.  For that reason, Tripwire stood out.  A relatively boring figure became memorable with just a few design choices.  For the 2001 figure, all of that personality was stripped away from Tripwire.  Were he a lone release of this ilk, that would have been OK.  But, most of the ARAHC was ripping the soul from classic figures in order to appeal to a false sense of "gritty, military realism" that NEVER existed in the Joe line.  It left a line of figures that people like.  But, you don't see them used since, in pretty much every case, the vintage figure that was replaced by the later repaint is better.  And, they are not different enough to warrant using the later design.  It would be one thing if this was the only desert tan Tripwire that was released.  That would have been safe, but also useful.  Instead, it's the same ground we tread before: only 18 years later and not as good.

Of the ARAHC figures released in 2000 and 2001, this Tripwire remains one of the most frequently seen in various photos and dioramas (such as they exist in 2023).  He's one of the few figures who often replaces the original.  I suspect this is because this Tripwire is good enough and it offers the exact same aesthetic to a scene that the original figure provides.  Tripwire is great as a vehicle operator or support figure.  And, his covered head also allows you to use him as an army builder.  (Fun fact, the 1983 Tripwire head looks amazing on a Steel Brigade body if you have some part swaps you want to try.)  So, you can have a couple of them if you want.  But, most people like to use Tripwire as the lead: clearing the way for his team mates to safely navigate a passage.

The ARAHC started strong, gained momentum and then completely petered out in about 8 months.  The first figures popped up in October of 2000 and by the summer of 2001, the figures were backed up all over the country.  By October of 2001, the figures were showing up in discount and closeout outlets.  The final wave was cancelled from retail and only salvaged by two online retailers because Hasbro was so far into the production process with the figure wave.  (Despite the angry retorts to the contrary, I still fully believe the Crimson Viper was planned for Wave V but was pulled from there and moved to the 2002 convention release.)  Tripwire and his terrible packmate, Big Brawler, were staples of closeout stores well into 2002.  But, even at $5 for two figures, few people really stocked up on the set and even the army builders from this final retail wave were easy to find for more than a year if you frequented outlet malls or the offbeat closeout stores that still existed 21 years ago.

One huge upside of the ARAHC figures was that they, mostly, included the figure's original gear.  The Joe design team of the 1980's spent inordinate amounts of time matching characters and their accessories.  So, keeping the figure's paired with original gear worked well.  This Tripwire includes his pack, three landmines and minesweepeer that debuted with the original release.  Sans this gear, Tripwire is useless as a standalone figure.  He can still work as a vehicle driver.  But, Tripwire needs his gear to stand out among the other Joes.  For some reason, I've never actually plugged the 2001 Tripwire's minesweeper into his backpack.  I like the look of it still in its rigid, original form.  This makes no sense.  But, you can still pose the figure without this gear actually plugged into the pack as was intended.

Oddly, Tripwire is one figure that really got utilized quite well.  The original 1983 figure is solid.  He was sold all over the world and there are slight arm chevron variants to track down.  In 1985, Hasbro went nuts and gave us the awesome red and orange Listen & Fun Tripwire.  It's completely ridiculous.  Which makes it awesome!  This darker figure appeared in 2001.  From there, Hasbro sent the mold to India where the amazing Funskool Tripwire was produced.  If you want a realistic Tripwire, you have options.  If you want a surreal repaint, you can get one that fits that criteria.  And, if you want a solidly colored but weird figure, the Funskool is there for you.  Sure, a tan Tripwire would have been nice.  But, you've got 4 distinct releases with two of them being something completely different from anything else in the line.  (BTW, I forgot 2 releases, Blades and the Tiger Force Tripwire - Thanks to JRizzo in the comments.)

Tripwire figures aren't all that desired.  While dealers will try to get $20-$25 for a loose, mint and complete figure, the reality is that you can get a carded set for less than that price.  Open market figures are between $7-$10 with deals to be had by those who are patient.  These days, it's far and away the cheapest Tripwire.  And, as the colors are good, it's adequate for the character unless you want something weirder to represent the team's mine detector.

1985 Flint, 2001 ARAHC Tripwire

Friday, November 10, 2023

1983 Hiss Tank - Around The Web

The Hiss Tank is the single most iconic Cobra ground vehicle.  It is a staple of every collection and is the perfect combo of being a toy and a collectible.  It's been released time and time again.  So, everyone has a shot at it.  Not much else to say other than to check out all the great content that features it.

1983 Hiss Tank Profile

Hiss Tank Diorama

1983 Hiss Tank by steelbrigade

2023 Cobra Mothership - Weekly Tracking Week 4

Last Friday, the Cobra Mothership was coming off of a terrible week in terms of the number of new backers.  Then, this week happened.  Here are the numbers:

11/04/23 - 1427 + 0
11/05/23 - 1427 + 0
11/06/23 - 1429 + 2
11/07/23 - 1429 + 0
11/08/23 - 1431 + 2
11/09/23 - 1431 + 0
11/10/23 - 1431 + 0

Ouch, again.  It's another rough, rough week for funding progress.  Not even a backer per day.  There's a month left in the funding window.  We're halfway through.  But, I don't think this is dead, yet.  Only 4 people backing this week is bad.  There are, though some things that could still be done to goose interest.  And I also think there's one big incentive that could lead to 2500 or more backers in the final 24-48 hours.

It's surprising me, though, that Super7 isn't doing much to promote this item.  While I get that $2,000,000 probably doesn't leave a huge budget for marketing, I do wonder why low cost and free options aren't being utilized.  Super7 could easily do a livestream in one of the large Joe Facebook groups where they show off all the features of the ship in close detail.  This would only cost a bit of time and get a large audience of potential customers.  The video could end up on Youtube for posterity.  None of the big social media G.I. Joe accounts have had anything to say about this ship.  And, even some of the big toy accounts on Twitter and Youtube that have 10's of thousands of followers have done nothing since the day this was announced.  I'd argue that the most recent Black Major figures have gotten more reach than the Mothership has.  That seems like a big failure to me.

The one reason while I'm still hopeful lies in the purchasing error that Super7 made.  If you back a Haslab, your credit card isn't charged until the project close date and then, it's charged only if the item funds.  With Super7, if you back it today, you pay today.  (Thanks to Josh Z for pointing this out.)  Then, if it doesn't fund, you get a refund.  This is a bad model.  I suppose it will cut down on declined charges on the day of funding.  But, that seems a small problem.  Especially when compared to forcing people to pay now for an item that may not even fund.  Because of this, though, I do expect we'll see a huge surge in final day backing.  And, that's why I'm still optimistic this funds...even with the numbers right now indicating (screaming, really!) otherwise.

Super7 O-Ring cobra Viper, 2023, Cobra Mothership

Super7 O-Ring cobra Viper, 2023, Cobra Mothership

Monday, November 6, 2023

The Celtic Boar - 1987 Iceberg Battle Gear Weapon

This profile is a little different.  It's not about a figure.  It's not about any particular release of G.I. Joe ephemera.  It is, instead about a weapon.  Not just any weapon, mind you, but a magnificent weapon around which I developed an intricate story.  The gun itself isn't all that special in terms of design.  Really, the only thing it has going for it is that it's big.  The Joe line is full of lots of large weapons: some more realistic and useful than others.  But, this one weapon had the fortune of being in the right place at the right time.  And, as such, it is one of the very few accessories around which I built a story line.  One of the things that kept G.I. Joe so relevant to me is that I was able to expand or contract the story at any given time.  But, the diversity in the line allowed me many avenues of play to explore.  In the course of that, I developed the idea of the Celtic Boar.

I got Iceberg in the summer of 1986.  He was of little use to me in the summer.  So, he evolved into a high ranking Joe who rarely left the Snow Cat.  When he did, though, he brought out his highly powerful and deadly accurate rifle.  Iceberg's included weapon was comically large.  So, I saw it as something special that few people would carry.  As 1986 turned to 1987, my Joe world took a different tact.  Now, the world was full of criminals and outlaws who were loyal to neither Joe nor Cobra.  But, could be hired by either.  Slowly, these groups formed integral parts of my ongoing Joe saga.  I'd have to come up with various plot devices to involve them, though.  Often, they'd run guns, secret battle plans or stolen money or treasures.  They would build out hodge podge vehicles that were scraps from older, broken toys.  And, the figures would be combinations of releases I didn't care for, figures that were badly worn or broken and kitbashes of various leftover parts from when I made good looking customs that supplemented my Joe team.  These ragtags, though, could be effective.  And, when properly utilized, could do things that changed the course of the Joe vs. Cobra conflict.

This all lead to the Celtic Boar.  It was the name I gave to Iceberg's rifle.  The Celtic Boar was an impossibly powerful and accurate weapon.  It had a range of over two miles: making it an overpowered and dangerous weapon for assassinations.  With it, a person could kill Hawk or Cobra Commander from so far away that they'd get away cleanly.  There were only a handful made before they were deemed illegal and forever forbidden.  Iceberg, being high enough ranked, was able to grandfather in his possession of the weapon.  No one else, though, could.  Soon, Celtic Boars became incredibly valuable contraband.  Cobra wanted them for anonymous assassinations.  The Joe team wanted them off the market.  And, the criminal syndicates wanted them for the well paying work that would come their way with the possession of a Celtic Boar.

It was actually the grey version of Iceberg's weapon that was included in the 1987 Battle Gear pack that gave rise to the story.  The less environmentally specific coloring made the weapon more useful to me.  But, it could be a thumb breaker.  So, I was reticent to use it with my top flight figures.  But, this accessory became a legendary part of my collection.  Cobra was able to murder a few politicians in the US by subcontracting the killings to underworld cartels.  So, the Joes became an investigative unit hell bent on finding the remaining Celtic Boars that were available in the world.  So, for a period of 1987, my Joe adventures entirely revolved around various Joe teams trying to find bands of outlaws who had the weapons in their possession.  Of course, this would end in chases through the city or high speed races on country roads.  The criminals had an advantage in that the Celtic Boar could cripple most Joe vehicles that were capable of any speed.  And, it was deadly should anyone get hit with a bullet fired from the weapon.  (I imagined that if a .357 Magnum could leave an exit wound the size of a frozen pot pie, thanks to Larry Hama's usage of the phrase in the comic, then a weapon like the Celtic Boar would simply blow a person in two or remove limbs if anyone was unlucky enough to be hit by a bullet it fired.)  So, the Joes had to be very careful when chasing down criminals in possession of the weapon. 

The one limitation I put on the rifle, though, was that ammunition for it was also banned and very expensive.  Often times, the possessors of a Celtic Boar did not have the ammunition to fire out of it.  And, if they did, individual bullets cost thousands of dollars.  So, it wasn't something to wantonly waste during their attempted escapes from the law.  Usually, the Joes ended up killing the bad guys in the chase.  But, there were times when the perpetrators were taken alive.  Then, they would go off to prison for the rest of their lives, maybe even be executed as the ownership of such a weapon as the Celtic Boar warranted that type of punishment. More than a few times, nameless characters (such as those portrayed by the Mission to Brazil figures) would perish in their pursuit of a Celtic Boar.  Often, this would give the criminals who murdered them names and reputations.  With that, not even Cobra would touch them based on the heat any association with them may bring.  This would give me some villains that were not Cobra who could stand against my Joes and help keep the conflict from growing stale.

When the weapons were captured or destroyed, they were marked off a list of known weapons that were manufactured.  In an interesting bit of characterization, though, I had a couple of well respected Joes keep one of the weapons that they captured.  Flint and one of my custom characters were both growing older and less involved in field operations were the most prominent.  In my world, they were rich men.  Both of them kept a Celtic Boar for their private collections and kept them under lock and key in their secluded East Coast estates.  (Remind me to some day write about the "Family Antiquities Act" and how that law helped shield rich and successful people like Flint from the same consequences of owning illegal items that ordinary people would face.  Yes, I actually created a different code of laws for my Joe world.  I was/am a nerd.)  So, at times when the Joes needed something like a Celtic Boar and Iceberg was not available or would not go along with the mission, the Joes could get access to one without having to scrape the underworld for one of the missing weapons.

In this story, you can see many of the influences that shaped my world in the late 1980's.  My Joe world featured history and familial patriarchy that was similar to that still found in Europe.  The ability of the rich and powerful to skirt laws were a result of things like Iran-Contra and the financial scandals of the day coming to light.  And, the existence of powerful criminal syndicates were a function of the propaganda spread in the various "Just Say No" campaigns that kids of my age were subjected to.  It all evolved into a rich world full of stories to tell.  If I wanted straight military, I could get it.  But, if I wanted something a little different, the Joe line offered me the flexibility to make it happen.

Today, the Celtic Boar is just a relic of my childhood.  The 1987 grey Iceberg weapons sits in a plastic sandwich baggie with some Sgt. Rock bazookas, Corps! rifles and other, oddball accessories that had accumulated in my collection by the mid 1990's.  Every now and then, I'll see it and am reminded of the adventures which centered around the weapon.  But, neither that weapon nor the original from the 1986 Iceberg retain any real place of importance in my collection.  But, that's OK.  It allows me to remember some fun times.  The dark green carpet of my bedroom remains vivid in my memory.  I can still recall the placement and color of all the furniture in that room, even though it's been 35 years since it existed.  Things like the Celtic Boar remain mnemonic devices to help cement the memories of the mundane.  Just writing out this profile reminded me of various parts combinations who comprised the figures of the various smuggling cartels.  

The upside to the 1987 Battle Gear is that the weapon coloring wasn't terrible...at least for some of the weapons.  This Iceberg rifle is dark grey.  It really doesn't mesh with Iceberg due to this color.  But, the grey is far better for other figures than the white version from Iceberg.  Other weapons in this set that feature the grey color are the 1986 Viper rifle (which quickly found itself with the Motor Viper) and the Beach Head machine gun.  There were some pistols, too, which also found themselves being used by the various bad guys.  There was also brown gear.  Some of this was nice.  And, I used the Leatherneck gear with the Mission to Brazil figure as it both fit and allowed me to give the 1986 a grey Leatherneck rifle that I thought looked great with him.  There's some weird cream colored gear, too.  In the grand scheme of things, the weapons in this set were about as useful as those from other years.  But, the greys, of which this Iceberg rifle is a part, are about the most useful, non-original color that gear like this could use.

Battle Gear weapons remain among the least desired and cheapest accessories to acquire.  You are starting to see 1983 Battle Gear parts gain some appreciation in price just due to their similarity to the originals.  And, for many collectors, these weapons remain a useful way to augment their gearless figures from 1982 and 1983.  There are a few, select parts from later sets that have some popularity.  And, the fact that many of the 1984 and 1985 pieces are useful with factory customs from Red Laser's Army has made some of the helmets and oddly colored visors more desired than their contemporaries.  Generally, though, you can still get these pieces cheaply.  Since the colors tend to clash with their intended figures and not really integrate with other releases of their time, though, most of the gear will never really have the desirability of original pieces.  The legacy of Battle Gear is that it was an innovative concept that probably helped kids get more weapons and assisted parents and relatives who wanted to give a cheap gift.  But, the odd colors and weapon choices left the concept as one that was underutilized and could have been better executed. 

2000 Law, ARAHC, 1993 Night Creeper Leader, 1990 Law, Super Sonic Fighters, 1993 Gristle, 1988 Desert Fox, 1987 Battle Gear Iceberg Rifle

1993 Gristle, 2002 Headman, DEF, 1987 Battle Gear Iceberg, Celtic Boar

Friday, November 3, 2023

1993 Star Brigade TARGAT - Around The Web

When I first found 1993 Star Brigade figures at a KB ToyWorks, there were only Joes on the shelves.  The Cobras were long gone by the time I found the figures.  But, in the late 1990's, it was actually possible to buy carded Star Brigade Cobras for the same $2 price that they would have cost me at the store on that spring day.  It was through these means that I acquired my Star Brigade TARGAT figures.

Once in hand, though, I wasn't as enamored with the Cobras as I was the Joes.  And, it became rare for me to utilize the TARGAT figure as he just didn't really speak to me like many other new acquisitions in my collection did.  That remains the same today.  I rarely use this figure.  And, the last time I did, his knee cracked when I tried to bend it.  So, he's not going to see much additional use in the future.

1993 TARGAT Profile

1993 TARGAT by fosilru

1993 TARGAT by Slipstream80

1993 TARGAT at JoeADay.com

1993 TARGAT by diorama_accessories

1993 TARGAT by 1990s_gi_joes

1993 TARGAT by gen_liederkranz

1993 TARGAT by Slipstream80

1993 TARGAT by thedustinmccoy

1993 Star Brigade TARGAT, Astro Viper, 1985 Trouble Bubble, Flight Pod

1993 Star Brigade TARGAT,

1993 Star Brigade TARGAT, Crimson Guard Commander, Battle Corps

1993 Star Brigade TARGAT, 2000 Rock Viper, 2001

2023 Cobra Mothership - Weekly Tracking Week 3

So, it doesn't look like the complete lack of support for this project last week was an anomaly.  I was really hoping it was.  But, when the counter started moving again, there wasn't a jump.  So, the pace hasn't just slowed down, it's pretty much stopped.

Conversely, Hasbro launched a Ghostbusters Haslab on 10/27.  It was over 80% backed in about 24 hours.  Within a couple of days, the full 10,000 backing number was reached.  The lesson here?  Fanbases will come out in force for products they feel are well worth the money.  This indicates that Joe fans, overwhelmingly, felt the Classified Dragonfly and Hiss were well worth the money and worth backing right away.  The Mothership doesn't fit that sweet spot.  Too many people can look at it and don't feel the overwhelming desire to instantly support it.  

Personally, I feel the sweet spot for crowdfunding projects is right around $300.  Much less, and the product will seem too much like it could have been a retail release.  Much more, though, and you cross a price threshold where the item has to be epic in order to justify the price point.  I'll argue the Mothership is epic.  It's just not iconic.  There's never been a groundswell of fan voices calling for it.  So, that's why it's not funding with the velocity you see in some other projects.

Here's the numbers:

10/28/23 - 1414 + 3
10/29/23 - 1414 + 0
10/30/23 - 1424 + 10
10/31/23 - 1425 + 1
11/01/23 - 1426 + 1
11/02/23 - 1427 + 1
11/03/23 - 1427 + 0

They are dismal.  This thing has slowed down and is not moving.  I do think this will still fund.  I'm less sure than I was last week.  But, I think nothing short of a new Joe Haslab that runs a funding window at the same time as the Mothership will be required to tank this.  The overall number of backers required to reach the funding goal is low.  But, as more and more weeks pass by without any significant backing, the chances of this failing does increase.

Super7 Cobra Mothership, 2023