Friday, March 2, 2012

G.I. Joe 30th Anniversary Sgt. Stalker

Presenting the G.I. Joe 30th Anniversary Sgt Stalker. Note that we've tagged him as the 30th Anniversary Sgt. Stalker and not as a G.I. Joe Renegades Sgt. Stalker because nowhere on the packaging - which you can see below - does it say Renegades.

Sgt. Stalker is Lonzo R. Wilkinson a former street-gang member from the streets of Detroit Michigan before he enlisted in the army. Sgt.Stalker has the distinction of easily being the more recognizable and most visible African-American character in G.I. Joe history and probably one of the only G.I. Joe Characters to have a "trademark" gun - the M3A1-Grease Gun - though now he just has a gun that looks like his Grease gun. He's using a modified FPC Series "Firepit" submachine gun. 

Photo from
I have a strong feeling that the 30th Anniversary G.I. Joe Sgt. Stalker was built after the actor Eamonn Walker who played Radio/Telephone Operator/Grenadier Ellis "Zee" Pettigrew in the Bruce Willis/Monica Bellucci film Tears of the Sun. The only thing missing from the stern Senior Chief Information Systems Technician (ITCS) are the long dreadlocks that Sgt. Stalker now sports - which also differentiates him from his previous crew-cut, well groomed incarnations. 

Sgt. Stalker's blister card reads: "Sgt. Stalker developed his survival skills growing up on the mean streets of his hometown, and sharpened them even more in advanced combat training. He uses his keen intelligence and quick perception to maintain a calm, cool atmosphere in high-stress situations. Quick to react, he moves like lightning: silent, fast and strong."

Not bad for someone who used to run with a street gang. It isn't actually discussed anywhere why Sgt. Stalker decided to enlist and change his life. But that kind of jump just doesn't happen without a major catalyst. 

Sgt. Stalker is listed to have an FPC Series "Firepit" submachine combat weapon as his primary weapon. His gear is supposed to include a rifle, submachine gun, pistol, silencer, machete, tactical knife and anti-armor knife. This list failed to include his battle harness, and an extra pistol. He also does not have an extra rifle, nor a machete. 

What's to like about the G.I. Joe 30th Anniversary Sgt. Stalker? 

The face! He looks like he's ready to kill someone and do so quietly or really brutally.He's almost as cool as Mace Windu - all he needs is a haircut and a lightsaber. And I have to say the addition of dreadlocks is particularly inspiring. I actually wish that you could remove his beret because I think he'd look cooler without it. With the beret and the pony-tail, there's a tendency for his dreadlocks to look like a black bandanna flowing from his beret. I did not even notice that he had dreadlocks till I took him out of his packaging. 

While Sgt. Stalker does not have a "theme" assigned to him i.e. desert, city or jungle like the Pursuit of Cobra figures did, you can't deny that you want to see this Black Panther stalking the jungle - though he works just as well in a concrete one what with the light green camouflage which isn't quite jungle and isn't quite urban. 

Next up to like is all his accessories. Despite missing a rifle as it says in the packaging and a machete, he still has a lot to play with especially when coupled with his fine articulation. I have a few issues with how the Firepit submachinegun fits in his arms. A regular stock would have been much better, but it works well enough:
If he runs out of bullets, or needs to go quiet, he comes with a anti-armor blade - the same one that the Cobra Shadow Tracker uses. If need be, he can fight with just blades:

Or fall back on his pistols. Sgt. Stalker only has one holster unfortunately. The other pistol can be stuffed into his harness. 
He even brings his own silencer into the picture for silent but deadly action:

So What's NOT to like about the G.I. Joe 30th Anniversary Sgt. Stalker? 

Sadly, Sgt. Stalker, save for that exquisite face, Sgt.Stalker is a repaint! He uses the body of the Ninja Commando Snake Eyes (Hasbro had a surplus!!!?) which is obvious from the texture of the body, the knee pads, the gun and knife holster and even the pistol/silencer. 

His battle harness is from the Pursuit of Cobra Jungle Duke - albeit repainted. Which actually raises a new plethora of problems when it comes to this particular figure: Sgt. Stalker is carrying extra ammunition for a rifle other than what he is carrying! Those banana clips are not going to fit into his Firepit submachine gun. Further, the sheath that accompanies the Battle Harness is too short for the anti-armor blade that Sgt. Stalker has. It juts out when you put it in, which makes it impractical, but looks weird when it's empty. (See Erratum)  

So what can we do?

The solution is to comb your collection and look for spare material for him. Happily I found him a really wicked looking knife that fits well into his sheath. The rifle proved to be a tad bit more difficult till I realized that even Duke's modified M4 rifle was a bit off with the clips on his harness which meant that giving Stalker an M4 was a possibility. Though I did not have one that did not have a bayonet attached which looks kinda weird. Though personally I think he looks better with a modified AK. 

I think the Bowie knife makes him even more scary don't you think? With it he reminds me of Captain William Roque from the Losers who had a thing for knives.

I purchased the G.I. Joe 30th Anniversary Sgt. Stalker from Courtside in Trinoma Mall in Quezon City, Philippines for Php 600 (US$ 13.95) He is available on Amazon for US$ 20.95 (Roughly Php 900 plus shipping).

No comments:

Post a Comment