We are happy to bring you the new GI Joe Cobra Commander vs. Duke Retro O-Ring In hand review and vintage figure comparison! These new O-Ring figures are a grand slam and a must have!
Yooooooo Joe! The nostalgia juices are flowing all over the place with this new G.I Joe Cobra Commander vs. Duke Retro Collection O-Ring 2 Pack! It is absolutely everything we could have asked for in a new G.I Joe O-Ring release! Hasbro has totally knocked it out of the park on this set! Not only are the new figures color schemes’ inspired by the Sunbow cartoon series, but the massive bevy of accessories that come with these new O-Ring figures, are straight out of GI Joe The Movie animated feature film! The quality of the figures are top notch. No more broken thumbs, cracked elbows or figures laying in half on your shelf! The improved plastics and figure construction along with the food grade silicone O-Rings will eliminate all those issues and make these the perfect new O-Ring figures we always wanted! The G.I Joe team at Hasbro is really start to listen to fans as they have improved the thickness and quality of the card backs for those MOC collectors out there! Keep it coming Hasbro, you are doing a spectacular job!!! We are going to take a deep dive into this new GI Joe Cobra Commander vs. Duke Retro O-Ring 2 pack review! How many of you are singing the theme song in your head right now? I know I am “G.I Joe… A Real American Hero…. G.I Joe is there…. G.I Joooooeee….. ”
The new G.I Joe Cobra Commander and Duke Retro Collection O-Ring 2 Pack comes loaded with a ton of G.I Joe the Movie inspired weapons and accessories so you can recreate those amazing scenes from the opening sequence of the film, as you can see I (the Toy Sorceress) have done with the fun image above! For the first time, we get cartoon accurate colors schemes on both Duke and Cobra Commander and I think they both look spectacular! With the array of accessories these guys come packed with, you can have tons of fun setting up various displays.
GI Joe the Movie Influences
The G.I. Joe: The Movie was released in1987 and was an animated film spin-off from the 1980’s Sunbow cartoon series G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, picking up where the cartoon series ended. These new Retro O-Ring figures are heavily inspired by this movie in their color schemes and included accessories. In the opening sequence of the film, Destro hands over a bomb and detonating device to Cobra Commander which he plants with his Cobra CLAW. Then Duke flies in on his jet pack and disarms it, then is seen flying up to the Statue of Liberty, carrying the American flag and meets the rest of the GI Joe Team! Duke includes the jetpack, chest straps and American Flag he is seen in this opening sequence. As well as Cobra Commander comes with the bomb and detonating device that Destro hands him. All we need now is the Cobra CLAW and we will be all set!!! Below are fun photos with my vintage Cobra CLAW…. hint hint Hasbro, give us a CLAW!
You can watch the opening sequence here and see how many of the new accessories you can spot in the video! We also have still images for your reference below.
According to Wikipedia:
G.I. Joe: The Movie (also known as Action Force: The Movie in the UK) is a 1987 American direct-to-video animated military science fiction film produced as a sequel to the animated series G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, based on the original Hasbro toyline. It was produced by Sunbow Productions and Marvel Productions and was animated in Japan by Toei Animation Co., Ltd.
Created at the height of the G.I. Joe craze in the 1980s, G.I. Joe: The Movie was intended as a theatrical release to be closely followed by The Transformers: The Movie. However, the G.I. Joe film encountered unexpected production delays which allowed the Transformers feature to be released first. Due to the poor box office performances of The Transformers: The Movie and My Little Pony: The Movie, G.I. Joe: The Movie was instead released direct-to-video as well as aired on television in syndication, first in feature-length format and later split into a five-part miniseries format as part of the series’ syndication package.G.I. Joe: The Movie – Wikipedia
The new G.I Joe Cobra Commander and Duke Retro Collection O-Ring 2 Pack comes packaged in a similar faux action figures case just like the Cobra Officer & Trooper GI Joe O-Ring and the Snake Eyes & Storm Shadow O-Ring 2pack sets. This time in a grey colored package, the art work features Cobra Commander sporting his famous “hair dryer” gun as jet pack wearing Duke comes flying down in an homage to the G.I Joe the Movie opening sequence. The back of the box features the same art work and safety information in multiple languages. The bottom portion of the box is a weapons cache that is spilling over with a ton of incredible weapons and accessories which we will cover below.
The inside contains both Cobra Commander and Duke packaged on individual card backs with a very retro design featuring stunning vintage inspired artwork on the front and cross sell images on the back. Both figures are packaged with a limited amount of accessories on the bubble which is fine because this allows Hasbro to maintain a clean look for the card backs and they can package an arsenal of accessories in the weapons cache in the bottom of the outter box. The file cards on the back still have limited information since these are sold internationally and this saves them from having to print the card backs in multiple languages, which is unfortunate because it limits the amount of information they can include.
This new G.I Joe Retro Collection O-Ring Duke figure is absolutely stunning in his Sunbow inspired colors! The card back features the vintage style art work of Duke with the classic burst explosion. It also includes the classic G.I. Joe A Real American Hero red white and blue logo on the front. The back of the card back features Duke’s file card and cross sell. Featuring his real name Conrad B. Hauser, the brief file card description says that Duke’s role is that of First Sergeant. His primary specialty is an Airborne Infantryman. His secondary specialty is artillery, small-arms armorer, and his birth St. Louis, MO. Duke graduated at the top of his class at airborne school. After running four different Special Forces schools, he turned down a commission to serve as acting First Sergeant of G.I Joe.
Given that the file card has multiple languages on it, they were able to put a decent amount of information on it, so that is an improvement. Also it seems that Hasbro has finally answered the concerns of it’s consumers, and made these new Retro O-Ring figures on a thicker quality card back. This should be a welcome relief to mint on card collectors.
Unlike his vintage counterpart in more muted tans and greens, this new Duke figure is dressed in Sunbow Cartoon inspired colors. He is wearing a yellow military shirt with dark green pants. He has a brown chest strap with grenades and pockets on it. His shirt has gold wings and red shoulder accents. He is wearing a brown belt and has a brown side arm holster on his right leg. He is also wearing brown boots with a brown knife strapped to his left ankle. Duke looks amazing sporting all of his GI Joe The Movie inspired accessories. We will get into further detail on his accessories below.
Duke’s head design is an all new sculpt, although very similar to the vintage action figure. This new retro version of Duke sports a combed back hair do and blonde hair. His skin tone is also darker than the vintage figure. Here you can see Duke has a smile on his face, but one glaring issue this new figure has is that his right eye and eyebrow look mis aligned to the ones on the left side on his face. It’s not just this sample as I have seen several reviews, all with the same issue. I don’t know if this was intentional or a manufacturing error. Perhaps they were trying to give Duke a raised eye brow look, like the image on his card back but it is coming across as a paint app error. In any case, besides the wonky eye, his head looks great.
Chest & Back
Duke’s chest sculpt matches the style of the vintage action figure, but has a lot more interesting design given it’s paint apps. His shirt has 2 large pockets and he has a set of gold wings pinned to his chest. He is wearing a brown leather like looking chest strap with several pockets and a grenade. It has a nice gold painted buckle on it as well, which is a nice little added detail. His back is rather plan, with just a couple seems from his shirt, and you can see the hole in his back from his back pack and screw.
Arms, Legs & Waist
Duke’s arm design matches the vintage figure and is rather plain. He does have red accents on his shoulders and folds in his cuffs. But the interesting thing here is that with the Storm Shadow Snake Eyes retro set, there were reports of cracked elbows, but with Duke, it looks like the used the same flexible plastic from his hands all the way up to his elbows so that we shouldn’t have that same elbow cracking problem. This is a vast improvement and it seems that Hasbro is getting better and better with each retro set release.
He is wearing dark green pants with a brown belt and gold belt buckle. He has 2 pockets on his rear side and is wearing a brown side arm holster with a molded black gun in it strapped to his right leg. He has on brown boots with a knife strapped to his left ankle
Here we can see images of his waist and legs from all sides. Another great improvement to Duke is his knee articulation. Some people complained that they could not bend the knees 90 degrees on the Cobra Trooper & Officer figures. Well it seems that they have corrected that problem with Duke.
Duke comes packed with a ton of accessories They are a mixture of vintage inspired accessories and G.I. Joe The Movie inspired accessories. Let’s take a look at what Duke came packed with.
His accessories include:
- black rifle
- green machine gun
- green helmet
- silver jet pack
- silver jet pack chest straps
- black binoculars
- green bazooka
- American flag with flag pole
- silver GI Joe themed figure stand
If you recall the opening sequence of the G.I. Joe The movie, Duke can be seen using a jetpack with silver straps on his chest, and he carries the American Flag up to the top of the Statue of Liberty. So these accessories are inspired by this scene in the movie. Then Duke comes with his vintage style green machine gun and his artwork inspired black rifle. Then it seems that Hasbro has an affinity for these big green bazooka’s so they packed that in with him as well. He also includes his vintage style green helmet and black binoculars.
Unlike the rest of the retro O-Ring figures, Duke comes with a G.I. Joe 25th anniversary stand. It includes a hole on the right hand side to place the flag pole into so this is a nice added feature. The only issue with the reuse of this stand mold is that the foot peg holes are too far apart for you to place both of Duke’s feets into at the same time. You need to use on or the other. Not a big deal, but that I would point that out.
Our beloved Supreme Leader Cobra Commander makes a triumphant return in the new G.I Joe Retro O-Ring Collection. Dressed to the nines in his Sunbow inspired colors, this new version of Cobra Commander is spectacular! The new paint apps, brighter colors, better plastics used and new construction make this the ultimate version of our beloved Coco! Hasbro knocked it out of the park on this one and nailed it when it comes to his package design, figure color scheme and the crazy amount of both vintage and GI Joe the movie included accessories! Let’s get into it!
Cobra Commander comes dressed in his G.I Joe the Movie Sunbow bright blues with additional new paint apps that just make this new action figure pop! He has the cartoon looking head that includes the white stripe on his helmet. His bright blue outfit is accented by the light blue shirt and various accented paint applications on his lapels and belts. He is now outfitted with complete black gloves rather than just black hands like the vintage figure came with. And he includes a ton of fun accessories to pose Coco in all sorts of fun ways! I just love the newly included yellow snake staff and Cobra branded binocs!
Cobra Commander’s head is a very simple design as it has always been. Styled after the vintage chrome dome, this Coco’s head design is very similar to the vintage but with the silver face mask and blue helmet, but they have added the white stripe across the top as he is seen in the Sunbow cartoons and G.I Joe the Movie. The paint apps for the most part are nice and clean. Most of the vintage figure examples usually have wear on the face, so it’s nice to get a fresh clean Coco with a nice shinny face!
Chest & Back
His chest design is also inspired by the vintage figure. Although his outfit colors are inspired by the Sunbow cartoon. He is wearing a light blue shirt underneath and he has accents on both his shirt lapels and his jacket lapels. The jacket lapels have silver accents, while the shirt lapels have black accents. He has a bright red Cobra insignia tampo’d on his chest and he is wearing a white belt strap around his waist as he does in G.I Joe the movie.
His back features the same molded hair dryer gun stow away feature as the vintage figure and has some molded accents. You can also see some white backpack straps painted on his shoulder and waist areas.
Arms, Legs & Waist
Cobra Commander’s arms are a simple design and are molded after the vintage figure. Here however he has on black gloves, rather than just black hands like on the vintage. Both arms are a symmetrical design. Here to they used the same pliable softer plastic on the hands up his forearms to his elbows as to avoid that pesky elbow cracking issue. Great move Hasbro, bravo on that one!
Besides the white belt strap on his upper waist, he is wearing a black belt with a silver belt buckle and red accent. The belt has a couple pockets molded on to it as well, same as the vintage figure, except slightly different paint apps.
His legs are also modeled after the vintage figure, but here is does not have the red stripes on his pants, rather just blue pants and black shoes. He does have the black dagger strapped to his left leg just like the vintage action figure. He also has 2 small pockets on his butt checks…. Ya I said butt!
Cobra Commander also comes packed with a ton of accessories They are a mixture of vintage inspired accessories and G.I. Joe The Movie inspired accessories. Let’s take a look at what Coco came packed with.
His accessories include:
- “Hair Dryer” style vintage black gun
- black rifle
- golden yellow snake staff
- detonator device
- gray pistol with red accents
- Cobra branded binoculars
- black figure stand
Cobra Commander comes packed with both vintage inspired accessories and G.I Joe the Movie accessories. Cobra Commander can be seen in the opening sequence of GI Joe the Movie with a pair of binoculars, a bomb and remote detonator device, and gray pistols. His snake staff is from the Sunbow cartoons and GI Joe the movie as well. And of course Coco came packed with is vintage style “hair dyer” shaped pistol that plugs into his back. He also includes the standard black figure stand that the other retro figures come packaged with.
Vintage Figure Comparisons
These new Retro O-Ring figures are beautifully sculpted and a stunning homage to their vintage counterparts! Hasbro did a spectacular job in recreating the charm and nostalgia of the vintage A Real American Hero figures with this new 2 pack and then they cranked it up a couple notches!
Vintage Duke vs. Retro Collection Duke
The original version of Duke was released in 1984 as part of Wave 2. The 1984 Duke figure only included his green machine gun, light green helmet, tan backpack and binocular accessories. you can see the new GI Joe Duke Retro O-Ring 2022 release is packaged with a black rifle rather than the green machine gun, and his dark green helmet. This is an odd choice for Hasbro since he came packed with the rest of his vintage inspired weapons in the cache box. The art work and logo on the new the Retro version resemble the vintage very closely and it’s hard to tell if it is the same artwork but just cleaned and brightened up. You will also notice that they have omitted the white piping around the edge of the card backs. The new card back is of a thicker and nicer quality than previous Retro O-Ring releases so that is a welcome improvement!
The new Retro O-Ring file card has multiple languages on it as this is sold globally, but they were able to put a decent amount of information on it, so that is good to see. Featuring his real name Conrad B. Hauser, the brief file card description says that Duke’s role is that of First Sergeant. His primary specialty is an Airborne Infantryman. His secondary specialty is artillery, small-arms armorer, and his birth St. Louis, MO. Duke graduated at the top of his class at airborne school. After running four different Special Forces schools, he turned down a commission to serve as acting First Sergeant of G.I Joe.
The vintage file card of course gives us much more information and back story. First the date points are the same except on the vintage file card we get to see what grades Duke completed E-8 (Master Sergeant). They also mention all the languages he was fluent in. We get to see the name of his airborne school; Fort Benning. He specialized in Asian dialects and worked with tribe men in South Vietnam. And then it includes a quote after he turned down his commission. So it was neat to see all this additional deep dive information on the characters that the new file cards just don’t give us. But we get the basic information on them, so at least that’s pretty good.
This new version of Duke has a vintage sculpt with a Sunbow color scheme. This new color scheme is a vast improvement to the vintage figure’s rather light and drab colors in my opinion. Don’t get me wrong, there will always be a special place in my heart for the vintage Duke action figure, but he never looked like he did on the cartoon series we all grew up with. The new Retro Duke looks like he stepped off the TV screen and into our collector’s cases! He has a brighter skin tone, blonder hair and much brighter yellow and green pants. The vintage figure features a tan shirt with green under shirt green grenades and drab green pants with no additional paint apps and brown boots. The new retro Duke also includes additional paint application accents on his shirt, belt and gun holster as well. They even changed Duke’s hair do a little, as the vintage had a part on his left side and the retro version has his hair combed back. The only issue on the retro Duke as we mentioned above was the wonky right eye. It’s nice to finally get an O-Ring Duke that looks like his cartoon counterpart!
Vintage Cobra Commander vs. Retro Collection Cobra Commander
The original swivel arm version of Cobra Commander was released in 1983 as part of Wave 1.5. A re-release of the Wave 1 version, this 1983 figure included the new revolutionary swivel arm design! The 1983 Cobra Commander only included 1 accessory which was his infamous “hair dryer” gun. As you can see the new GI Joe Cobra Commander Retro O-Ring 2022 release is packaged with a larger machine gun rather than the hair dryer gun, which was an odd choice for Hasbro, as they could have easily packed the correct gun on his blister pack and put the larger rifle in the weapons cache box. The art work and logo on the new the Retro version resemble the vintage very closely and it’s hard to tell if it is the same artwork but just cleaned and brightened up. They also included the famous “Cobra Enemy” logo on the front of the package as well.
Cobra Commander’s file card gives us a glimpse into the Supreme leader’s past. Featuring his role as Enemy Leader, the brief file card description says his primary specialty is an Specialty Intelligence. His secondary specialty is Ordinance, and his real name is CLASSIFIED! Cobra Commander is a fanatical leader who rules with an iron fist! He demands absolute loyalty and his main objective is world domination based on revolution and chaos! This retro file card only gives us a brief look at what makes Coco tick. but the vintage file card gives us much more information and back story. First the date points are the same except on the vintage file card we get to see that Cobra Commander’s Secondary Specialty also includes experimental weaponry, which is why he is always making Destro cook up all those cockomammy weapons of mass destruction! It also goes on to mention that he has led uprising in the Middle East, Southeast Asia other other trouble spots around the world. He has kidnapped top leaders and scientist with the goal of making them reveal their most trusted secrets!
Dressed in a traditional darker blue outfit, the vintage 1983 Coco did not directly resemble the cartoon color scheme but was rather his own design. He included a red stripe down his pants legs and they omitted the white stripe on his helmet as seen in the cartoon. His outfit was a more muted darker blue and he had on a black shirt under his jacket. Both waist belts were also black. But as we mentioned above the new Retro Coco is dressed in his Sunbow inspired bright blues with additional paint apps that make him look like he stepped right out of the cartoon!
In conclusion, this new Cobra Commander vs Duke Retro O-Ring Collection 2 pack is spectacular and I absolutely love love love them! I can’t say enough great things about this retro O-Ring set! From the improved plastics and figure construction, to the vintage & G.I Joe the Movie inspired weapons and accessories to the Sunbow inspired color schemes, these new figures are everything I wanted in a new O-Ring release! The only tiny issue was Duke’s right wonky eye, besides that, I would say that these were perfect in every other way! So for that reason I gave this set a 6.75 stars out of 7.0! Nearly perfect!! This is a must have for any G.I Joe O-Ring collector!
Where to Buy:
You can still get this Cobra Commander & Duke Retro Collection 2 Pack on Hasbro Pulse.com!
For all you O-Ring collectors out there, be sure to check out our new GI Joe Vintage Shopping experience! We have carefully organized and curated links to find all your favorite figures and vehicles from the A Real American Hero line from 1982 thru 1990!