Ever wonder what the chain of command at GI Joe is like? The fact is almost the entire team is comprised of enlisted service members. Out of the hundreds of action figures, only 37 are listed as officers, and I’m including the Warrant Officers in that category. GI Joe undoubtedly has always had hundreds of support staff that you pretty much never see. The flight crews, administrative personnel and so on.
Note: Chris Piers did the captions and picked the guys out. Commentary below any images is provided by Vincent.
An important note. I’m basing this off of the file cards that the Joes had from the 80s and 90s. If we revisited GI Joe today, I bet half of their team would be IT people and drone pilots. The Joes might have been able to get by with just Mainframe back in the mid-80s but today he’d probably be a Lt. General! I also moved Hawk up from Colonel, his initial rank, to Major General, his last rank in the initial toys (he had several versions released over the years).
Read on to see the images of some of the lamer GI Joes that people like Snake Eyes and Roadblock would be obligated to salute.
1. Vice Admiral Keel-Haul, USN
Keel-Haul was a rather rare figure considering he only came with the huge U.S.S. Flagg playset. I bet the above figure came from Hasbro employees saying, “Let’s make a cheap figure. What molds we got that haven’t been used in awhile? Oh hey, we got this Navy guy with a mustache. Perfect.”
2. Major General Hawk, USA
Fans that grew up with the comic recognized Hawk as the leader of the G.I. Joe team. Cartoon kids grew up with Duke as team leader. I grew up with the cartoon, so it was kind of confusing when this guy shows up and starts bossing Duke around.
3. Brigadier General Flagg, USA
Well… not to pick on Chris’s joke, but the U.S.S. Flagg is named after him, not the other way around. Yeah, I know I’m a ruiner of jokes.
4. Colonel Payload, USAF
Payload is a rather rare figure, at least the white suit version of him is. I want one for my Defiant but he’s so expensive! Nerd problems!!
5. Colonel Courage, USA
Not much to say about this guy, except it’s a little obvious that the top brass is all white dudes and they only let a token black guy in. Boo.
6. Lt. Colonel Skystriker, ASAF
I think Hasbro ran out of names by the time this figure came out. Or they just didn’t care anymore.
7. Major Ghostrider, USAF
In the comics the big gag was that nobody could remember him. One of the rare instances of the G.I. Joe comics being incredibly stupid.
8. Major Storm, USA
I have to give it to Major Storm. He drives the impossibly large General mobile assault fort. Cool toy, but completely ridiculous in real life.
9. Major Bullet-Proof, USA
That’s a pretty damned boastful name for a soldier. Talk about bringing bad luck upon yourself.
10. Captain Ace, USAF
Ace has got a cool name, but it could also be used sarcastically against him. “Hey, nice shooting ace.”
11. Captain Maverick, USAF
The ironic thing is that Battleforce 2000 didn’t make it to the year 2000.
12. Captain Countdown, USAF
I think that the G.I. Joe team ends up in space when they are getting really desperate. It happened when the original G.I. Joe toy got axed in the 60s. Space adventures for G.I. Joe = Death of teh Line!
13. Captain Doc, USA
Who doesn’t love Doc? Dude brought Duke back from the dead in the original G.I. Joe cartoon movie like Jesus.
14. Captain Claymore, USA
Captain Claymore comes from the Mission to Brazil set. Have fun in Brazil, bun boys!
15. Captain Windmill, USA
Windmill. Kind of a normal dude, but then India makes his life a living hell.
16. Captain Grid-Iron, USA
Football! Why did G.I. Joe need this guy? They had the Fridge!
17. Captain Rapid Fire, USA
Fun fact, this dude was modeled after an executive at DiC animation. You know, the Animation studio that made the truly abysmal G.I. Joe cartoon series after Sunbow lost the rights.
18. Captain Updraft, USA
I really like this figure actually… anyone want to sell me one?!
19. Captain Gears, USA
The only notable thing about this guy is that he drove a space mech. I guess that’s pretty cool.
20. 1st Lieutenant Slipstream, USAF
Another fighter pilot. This guy flew the Conquest. I didn’t get how toy selling worked when I was a kid. I wondered where all the Skystrikers went and all of a sudden there’s this new jet that everyone is flying. The answer was: It was the one available in stores.
21. 1st Lieutenant Dogfight, USAF
Dogfight piloted the Mudfighter. Which makes me think of poop. I can’t be the only one here.
22. 1st Lieutenant Falcon, USA
Falcon was the coolest character that wasn’t Flint. If you want Flint light, you pick Falcon. Falcon: Almost The Same Great Taste, Less Filling.
23. 1st Lieutenant Psyche-Out, USA
Psyche-Out is certainly a strange character. I admire him in a certain aesthetic sense, but he’s not really for me.
24. 1st Lieutenant Super Trooper, USA
25. 1st Lieutenant Sub-Zero, USA
26. Lieutenant JG Cutter, USCG
27. 2nd Lieutenant Steeler, USA
28. 2nd Lieutenant Thunderwing, USA
29. Chief Warrant Officer 5 Wet Down, USN
This figure seems very similar to another one… just can’t place it.
30. Chief Warrant Officer 4 Wild Bill, USA
Remember when Wild Bill went on a kill crazy rampage?
31. Chief Warrant Officer Torpedo 4, USN
Wet Down… Torpedo… no they’re nothing alike…
32. Chief Warrant Officer 3 Flint, USA
You can’t any cooler than Flint. Not only is does he have great card art, a great “outfit”, but dude is a Rhodes Scholar!
33. Chief Warrant Officer 2 Lift-Ticket, USA
I loved Lift Ticket when I was a kid. I was lucky enough to have the Tomahawk. I know some of you guys and gals are Wild Bill fans, but Lift Ticket is where it was for me.
34. Chief Warrant Officer 2 Major Altitude, USA
As Chris points out, he has brass balls for putting “Major” in his name, but he also has them for flying that crazy contraption that looks like it’s more likely to hut your head off than anything else.