Just recently the San Diego Comic Con wrapped up its 2013 adventure and I was without this year’s G.I. Joe exclusive that I wanted ever so badly, the last in the series of Transformers inspired G.I. Joe sets. The reason was simple, this year’s set included a Skystriker that was redecoed to look like the Transformer Jetfire. And while it didn’t transform, it still had that iconic look that I love and even better, it had a booster jet pack that to complete the look.
I didn’t have any clue as to how I was going to get one. I was very tempted to try to buy one loose on eBay… but then a hero came through! Poe from PoeGhostal.com managed to get a hold of the SDCC G.I. Joe Transformers Jetfire set and he sold it to me at cost. What a wonderful human being. So in return I have decided to write my in depth thoughts on the thing over at his site, so be sure to check out PoeGhostal.com for that!
I have some further thoughts for all you royal readers and it pertains to Jetfire himself. If you’re at all familiar with 80s toy properties you will instantly be reminded of Robotech when you see the Jetfire toy. I also love the original Robotech vehicles and since Jetfire was based on the same toy mold that birthed Robotech, it was a win win. However, Harmony Gold, the company that licensed what became known as Robotech in the U.S. wasn’t exactly happy because they sued Hasbro over this SDCC Exlusive set. This is rather complicated (click here for a better explanation), but basically Hasbro and Harmony Gold both had a toy that looked the same. Well, this is the first time that Hasbro has released something that looked so close to the original Jetfire that Harmony Gold decided to take action.
It is hard to ignore how similar the two vehicles are even if one is an F-14 Tomcat and the other is based on the same vehicle, yet updated to look more futuristic. When I first posted pictures of it on Twitter and Facebook the majority of responses were, “Robotech!” and they weren’t being ironic about it. Still there’s some major differences that are worth noting.
1. This version of Jetfire is an F-14 Tomcat. The Robotech Valkyrie Veritech is simply based on one. The Valkyrie takes its cues from the Tomcat, but that was the dominant look of jet fighters at that time.
2. The engines (they’re actual engines and not feet that double as rockets) and there’s no big antenna things sticking out from the bottom due to a lack of a head. In fact, the SDCC Jetfire is much thinner than the Valkyrie.
3. This version of Jetfire doesn’t transform at all. He’s just a jet. That’s a major difference between a Robotech vehicle and a G.I. Joe toy.
4. The boosters are much shorter (my Veritech doesn’t have the boosters, if you want to hook me up with a set, please do). They also are a separate vehicle on the Jetfire now, especially since you can hook the rear tail wings into it.
Basically, the current version of Jetfire is different enough to me from the original G1 toy that Hasbro might have a fighting chance on this one, while at the same time being so close to the original that fans who are nostalgia junkies like me are happy.