1995 GI Joe Sgt. Savage Battle Bunker

1995 GI Joe Sgt. Savage Battle Bunker Review

This is a review of the 1995 GI Joe Sgt. Savage Battle Bunker with Battle Command Sgt. Savage set. It’s properly billed as just ‘Battle Bunker,’ but I thought I’d mention the figure’s name at least once. I’m probably never typing that full thing again. 

This toy was given to me a couple years ago by my friend Pat, who has been featured and mentioned on this website many times. Thanks, Pat!

I finally got around to opening it this week, as I thought reviewing something completely new and different might help to stave off some amount of burnout. I’d never handled any Sgt. Savage toy before this one, so it seemed like it would at least be interesting. 

And what I found surprised me, at least a little bit. The “battle command” Sgt. Savage figure itself was pretty much what I expected, but the Battle Bunker itself is actually kind of exciting. 

This is a toy you don’t see around very often. You sometimes see the Sgt. Savage Grizzly SS-1, P-40 Warhawk, and IRON Panther around in photos. But this little bunker remains obscure, even though (as I found out) it’s perfectly compatible with ARAH-era GI Joe figures. 

If that doesn’t get you to click the ‘read more’ button below, then nothing will. 

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1991 GI Joe Septic Tank

1991 GI Joe Septic Tank Gallery and Quick Review

Hello there. Today I’ve prepared something small for you. It’s mostly a photo gallery, but I’ll also be sharing some brief thoughts on the toy with you.

The toy in question is the 1991 GI Joe Septic Tank, part of the Eco Warriors sub line. It’s not a toy I owned as a kid (though I did own the Eco Striker), but it is a toy I have an affinity for. It’s certainly not a popular toy– it’s probably one of the most hated items in the vintage ARAH GI Joe run. Most hated by people I generally don’t care to associate with, anyway.

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1994-1995 Hasbro Mortal Kombat Ninjas

1994-1995 Hasbro Mortal Kombat Ninjas Review

Today we’re looking at Hasbro’s Mortal Kombat Scorpion, Sub-Zero, Reptile, and Smoke from 1994. We’re also looking at the Mortal Kombat Movie Editions of Scorpion and Sub-Zero from 1995. They all use the exact same mold (with some cloth embellishments), so I figured I’d do them all in one go. Even if I spread them out over the course of a couple years, I feel like the reviews would get redundant. 

This post is meant as a resource as much as it’s meant as a review. There’s not a ton of good info out there on these, other than some grainy archival photos and eBay listings.

Plus, once you look at the mold, you probably know which figures you do or do not want. The colors are the main difference between the figures, and the accessories are pretty much generic. 

After you finish reading this, hopefully you’ll be able to choose your favorite flavor (it’s lime, right?) and frown really hard at eBay prices. 

Get over here!

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Botbot of the Day

Good Things: Botbot of the Day!

Hello and welcome to the Dragon Fortress! Today I’m kicking off a new feature called Good Things. It’s pretty simple– I’ll interview someone whose work I like, and it will almost always be toy related.

For our first installment, I’m talking to Jason, who runs the Botbot of the Day! account on Twitter.

Jason posts beautiful and energetic photos of Botbots every single day. And his captions for each Botbot are both hilarious and incredible! Here’s an example of something you might see on his Twitter account.

Botbot of the Day

Jason posts something at least this good every single day, and each of his Botbot profiles make me happy in a way that few other things do.

I enjoy the way he takes the lighter side of Transformers seriously, as far as writing level and photographic composition go, but also remembers that his subject matter is silly as heck.

I’m excited for you to get to know Jason if you don’t already.

So please read on for  our full interview and plenty of fun photos!

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Transformers Buzzworthy Bumblebee Worlds Collide Blackarachnia

Transformers Buzzworthy Bumblebee Worlds Collide Blackarachnia (Original Toy Colors)

Transformers Buzzworthy Bumblebee Worlds Collide Blackarachnia

Last week, my good friend Pat sent me a big box in the mail. It was the new Target exclusive Transformers Buzzworthy Bumblebee Worlds Collide (ugh, I hate typing that) four pack, minus Fangry and Bumblebee. Which is perfect for me, since I only wanted the Beast Wars themed figures in the pack. He also sent me the entire-ass box, which was quite a flex.

If you don’t know Pat, he wrote my favorite post that’s ever been published on this website. He also helped me review a Batman toy from 1992.

Pat and I go way back and he is one of my dearest friends on the entire planet. So, thanks Pat! I also haven’t really been buying toys lately, so this was an extra nice surprise.

I was fiddling around with the Blackarachnia from this box set and noticed she inspired me to take a lot of photos. And that I just couldn’t put the toy down. So I figured I’d better write something about the figure, and compare it to both the original Beast Wars Blackarachnia from 1996 and the Kingdom Blackarachnia from 2020.

It’ll be fun, I promise.

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1990 GI Joe Sonic Fighters Viper

1990 GI Joe Sonic Fighters Viper Review

1990 GI Joe Sonic Fighters Viper

Last Sunday, my friend Mike T. (and a few other people) posted photos of various Vipers for the #CobraSunday hashtag on Instagram. These photos inspired me to take a Viper photo, and for some reason I decided on the 1990 Sonic Fighters version of the figure. The photo turned out okay and is embedded somewhere in this review.

But taking the photo made me remember how much this figure means to me and how it was a big part of my childhood. The years of 1990, 1991, and 1992 were my most formative GI Joe years. While I had several figures from before and after that time period, those years marked the time when I felt most aligned with the toy line and felt like it was being made specifically with my tastes in mind. 

There’s no shortage of content on this figure available on the web, but I wanted to throw my hat into the ring. Both because I have some history with the figure and because I think Sonic Fighters have an unearned bad reputation. People make fun of the “oversized backpacks” all the time, but those people likely weren’t kids when these toys came out. They’ve always looked at Sonic Fighters through adult eyes. 

Sonic Fighters and Super Sonic Fighters were a big part of my childhood GI Joe experience, though. They were sometimes the best way to get figures of older, legacy characters and they almost always had interesting colors and accessories. The Viper is no exception. 

No one says the Sonic Fighters Viper is a bad figure, but I do think they unfairly deride the figure’s gimmick and the SF sub-line as a whole. 

Here’s my opinion, based on both my childhood and the present day. 

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2001 Jack in the Box Kids Meal Max Steel Toys

2001 Jack in the Box Kids Meal Max Steel Toy Review

2001 Jack in the Box Kids Meal Max Steel Toys

In 2001, I was going to Jack in the Box a lot. Not only did one of my friends work there, but it was also the New Hotness in town. Previously, we only really had McDonald’s, Burger King, Subway, Wendy’s, and some regional-type places like Arctic Circle.

In 2001, there was also something of a 12″ doll renaissance going on. The Toys R Us shelves were packed with Action Man, Max Steel, GI Joe, 21st Century Toys, BBI, and The Corps! in Barbie Doll scale. I would browse those toys every time I visited, but I never bought any.

Action Man and Max Steel also had pretty prominent Saturday morning cartoons at the time. When I saw the commercials for the cartoons (or, rarely, even caught the shows themselves), I liked the designs. I also thought the toys had some good stuff going on. But I never bought any, as I was much more into 3.75″ scale dolls and dolls that transformed into either vehicles or techno-organic beasts.

But, one day at Jack in the Box, I noticed they had a Max Steel Kids Meal toy line going on. I purchased one of the toys along with my traditional two tacos and Big Cheeseburger (how I miss that menu item).

A couple years ago, I got some of the other toys in the series, both because they are cool and because they aren’t really documented anywhere on the internet.

So here’s a quick review of (most of the) Jack in the Box Max Steel Kids Meal toy line from 2001.

GI Joe fans, you might actually be interested in this.

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1997 Transformers Beast Wars Claw Jaw

1997 Transformers Beast Wars Claw Jaw Review

1997 Transformers Beast Wars Claw Jaw

Hello and welcome back. Today we’re looking at a Beast Wars toy.

Beast Wars is one of my favorite toy lines ever, so it’s funny that this is only the third proper BW figure I’ve reviewed on this site, alongside some Happy Meal toys. I guess GI Joes are just easier for me to photograph. I am pretty pleased with how most of the photos in the post turned out, though. Some of them were maybe overly ambitious, but I’d rather try something cool and not quite pull it off than always do the same old thing. 

So let’s look at 1997 Transformers Beast Wars Claw Jaw, a Basic Class Maximal that Hasbro released under the Kenner brand. 

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2018 Funskool GI Joe VAMP Repaints

Hello there! Today we’re going to take a look at two of Funskool’s repaints/remolds of the venerable GI Joe VAMP, which were both released in 2018. It’s possible that Funskool is still making these today, as well.

Update: 9/7/21: Rony informs me that Funskool has been making the MRF and Police Jeeps since the early 00s and that they’re releasing a black Army Jeep soon. See Tweet below. 

Ostensibly, these both fall under the “Giggles” imprint, which is where Funskool releases its preschool and early childhood toys. Only one of the two VAMPs has any Giggles branding on its box, but eCommerce sites seem to list both of them as Giggles releases. 

My friend Rony (YouTube, Twitter, Instagram) sent me the Army Jeep (green one) and I bought the MRF Racing Jeep (red one) from eBay while prices were still reasonable (around $20 shipped). I did also order the Police Jeep (blue one), but it never showed up and the seller deleted their own account. So I possess neither the Police Jeep nor the money I spent on the Police Jeep. It’s sadly too expensive for me to even consider buying one now. 

This post will be done in more of an image gallery/mini-review format. I didn’t want to write a full review, but I did want to share the toys with you. Also, I used my photo tent for these pictures, and I’m still not an expert with it. You’ll notice some of the background colors, saturation levels, and brightness levels are a bit inconsistent. So please forgive me. Regardless, I think the photos are good enough for you to get a good feel for the toys. 

Let’s get to it.

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