Our buddy Carson over at 3DJoes has just released the premier episode of 3DJoes Cribs which takes a look at the home of Admiral Josh Snackbar and his nicely displayed toy room.
The video is really well produced and edited and was a very fun watch! You should check it out on YouTube, and don’t forget to hit up 3DJoes.com for their fantastic take at the history of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero.
It’s been a little while since the fine folks of the What’s on Joe Mind podcast have blessed the G.I. Joe community with their presence, and in the past few months, a few things have changed with WOJM.
I’m thrilled to report, though, that the WOJM crew is BACK and bringing fresh audio gold to the masses. Mike is joined by cosplay master Joe Colton and 3DJoes mastermind Carson, tossing out two brand-spanking new episodes! One of them recaps the final JoeCon and the second is from the floor of Ohio Toy & Comic Show. It’s fantastic to hear the guys (and girls) of WOJM back and you should absolutely give them a listen. Also, make sure you’re following along on Facebook for the latest news and info about the podcast!
What’s on Joe Mind 2018 JoeCon Wrap Up Show
What’s on Joe Mind Ohio Toy & Comic Show Spectacular
Once again – fantastic to see everyone back behind the microphone, check out the latest episodes right here and now! Good stuff from the fine folks at What’s on Joe Mind.
So, when Hasbro has very little presence at JoeCon and there’s no real new product reveals, beyond the toy dealers, what is there on the sales floor to garner the interest of the fandom?
Turns out, there’s a whole bunch!
The sales floor this year was pretty amazing, actually, with a plethora of excellent dealers and a TON of G.I. Joe product (among other things). As always, I didn’t get a ton of time to walk around, but the time I did spend was pretty incredible. Chris Neal’s booth was astounding as usual, and I got a chance to have great conversations with Robert Atkins, Marauder John and Carson from 3D Joes.
Perhaps the most welcome and pleasant surprise, though, was the new product reveals that WERE there. No, nothing G.I. Joe related, but several companies had a presence on the floor, introducing new product and upcoming releases. Even if Hasbro themselves had little to share, for fans of 4″ scale action figures, there was still a LOT to love.
RagingSpoon had their brand new Complex base building kits on display and available for purchase, and by all accounts, they were exceptionally popular. I saw folks buying all weekend long, putting things together, and really loving what they’re doing. The diorama was amazing, and they also introduced a new “catwalk” addition that is in production phases now for a series 02 release. Complex base building kits are still available for pre-order on SmallJoes.com and should be shipping within the next few weeks! You can also check out my review of the Complex building kits right here on GeneralsJoes.
Yes, it’s been a while since their Kickstarter was funded, but I’m happy to say things are moving right along for Eagle Force. They had paint masters on display at the Dime Novel Legends booth and they’re looking pretty awesome! I don’t have a precise time table for shipping yet, but it’s always cool to see the physical product out there in front of you. It makes it a little more real.
Marauder Task Force
I was fortunate enough to get a chance to talk with Marauder John for a few minutes at the booth, and it’s always a huge pleasure. He also had his amazing JoeCon exclusives on display along with test shots for the Exo-Suit, the K-9’s and some of the upcoming World War II Kickstarter figures! Always a highlight of JoeCon to me.
Dime Novel Legends
Some physical samples of the upcoming Dime Novel Legends cowboy figures were also on display at the Chicken Fried Toys booth, and things look like they’re coming along very nicely there, too. Things are still in the midst of the production process but it seems like they are moving right along.
Animal Warriors of the Kingdom
Also at the Chicken Fried Toys booth was the latest samples from Animal Warriors of the Kingdom (Deluxe Wave up on Kickstarter now!) which featured a nice mix of samples of their Deluxe product as well as more regular releases as well. Great stuff for 1:18 scale fans.
Okay, this blew me away! An amazing project that looks to take a well-designed schematic and make “build to order” sets for the Venomous Sea Serpent, a COBRA-themed aircraft carrier/attack boat. It looks like a spectacular display piece and it was great talking to the folks behind it. More information can be found right here as well as in the Facebook group.
I need to take a moment to talk about JoeDeclassified as well, even though I couldn’t take any pictures of their fantastic booth. Pete Hubner was there with his 2-up collection and it was IN-SANE. Dude even had a Hit & Run 2-up. As always, the DeClassified guys were very awesome, had a fantastic freebie, and always a steady stream of people in and around their booth. One of the highlights of JoeCon for sure.
All things considered, the sales floor was pretty amazing this year, full of great product, access to awesome Joe-lebrities and some really cool new reveals to keep things interesting.
I will admit it up front – I enjoy the seminars and panels, but they’re not necessarily always my priority. There are so many friends to catch up with and so many things to do, that sometimes panel attendance is sacrificed to make room for other things.
This year, the G.I. Joe Collectors Club (and, more importantly – the fans) really pulled out all the stops to put together some amazing panels, many of which made the trip worthwhile.
I’ll say this up front – if you didn’t make it to JoeCon, do not despair! The Full Force has the hook up for pretty much every single panel that happened at JoeCon. Hit up The Full Force Facebook Page to check them all out. The YoJoe.com Facebook page also has the majority of the panels available for viewing as well.
On Friday there were a number of panels, and Phil over at YoJoe did an AMAZING job chronicling them with images over on the YoJoe Facebook Page. Definitely go check that out.
Panels on Friday included ’95 and Beyond, which gave us a really fantastic look at what was planned for G.I. Joe’s future after its demise in 1994. We got some great perspective on art and concepts from Battle Corps Rangers, Star Brigade, Manimals, X-Soldiers and more, and as a huge fan of the 90’s, I was eating this up. Perhaps the best perspective came from Kirk Bozigian, who advised that their strategy in the 90’s was to combat any potential competition. They truly saw G.I. Joe as an “umbrella brand” of sorts, which could do battle with any other action figures on the shelves, whether it was Star Wars, Power Rangers or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
We also got a great look at the history of the G.I. Joe Collectors Club Comic with a look back at the ongoing storyline from its start, all the way up through present day. While I was a little put off that the Club neglected to mention the three-year Dio-Story that I wrote which appeared in the newsletter as a precursor to the actual comics, what the presentation contained was very informative and it was really interesting to see the way the comic evolved over the years.
Saturday is always full of panel-related excitement and this year was no different. By far the highlight of the Saturday line up was Behind the Scenes of G.I. Joe’s first Micro Movie, which was simply amazing. Never before seen behind the scenes footage of the 90s commercials with captivating perspective from Kirk Bozigian and flawless presentation by Carson from 3DJoes. I will remember this panel for a very, very long time. Thankfully Carson also posted it up on his 3DJoes YouTube Page.
This panel was simply amazing. Every single minute was filled with joyous nostalgia and some awesome nuggets of information (when Kirk was brought back to the Joe line in the late 80’s it was because Hasbro was concerned that sales of Real American Hero had dropped to EIGHTY-NINE MILLION DOLLARS). Yes, DROPPED to 89 million. Kirk was able, with the help of these landmark live action commercials, bring sales back up closer to 120 million dollars, numbers that are, frankly, staggering to me considering the landscape of today’s action figure world.
Seeing Wren Roberts and all of the other live action contributors jumping around through awesome sets, riding shotgun on a life sized Battle Wagon, with COBRA Commander screeching into the camera while squeezing slime was just way too cool, and I can’t give Carson and Kirk enough props for bringing that to the masses. Pure gold.
Saturday was also filled with panels about the Adventure Team, Classic Collection 12″ figures as well as some terrific insider knowledge on vehicle prototyping and design work. In the afternoon, I also joined Bill, Don, Jim and Derryl in the Kindle Worlds panel, talking about being a G.I. Joe author and how that has changed my life, allowing me to dovetail my love for G.I. Joe with being an independent author and creator.
Day two of JoeCon was a whirlwind as it always is, running from one event to another, trying to consume as much raw energy as possible, and this year really did not disappoint in that regard.
The third day of JoeCon in any given year is like day two, only with two less hours to cram it all in. Again, this year was the same deal. There were a handful of great panels to round off the final convention, including IDW artist extraordinaire Adam Riches talking about his artistic endeavors, and WOJM co-host (and cosplay wizard) Joe Colton talking about the beauty of G.I. Joe cosplay. There was also a 12″ oriented panel and of course… the already infamous “Last Panel”.
The last panel. Saved for the end of the final day of JoeCon, Brian, Dave and Lanny hosted one final panel that was a mixture of everything. They launched the panel by announcing some new figures they hope to release before the end of the year (you can see my recap of that information here) which elicited a terrific response from a certain British person in attendance. Plus – TIGER FORCE HIT & RUN. BOOSH.
But perhaps the most impactful moment of the entire weekend came in that final hour when Brian went through a presentation of every single JoeCon from start to finish, showing cascading images of attendees, which brought back some really terrific memories. He also brought up some long time attendees to speak to the crowd, which included two of my co-hosts from What’s on Joe Mind, as well as folks from the 12″ and 4″ crowd.
It was an emotional moment for sure, an emotional moment that built upon a weekend full of them. You can check out the full video of the last panel at both The Full Force Facebook Page and YoJoe on Facebook (Part 01, Part 02, and Part 03) as well.
I’ll be honest – there have been times at JoeCon when the panels didn’t necessarily “wow” me. A lot of it is information I’ve heard before. But this year, the presenters really killed it and provided a wealth of terrific content that added both knowledge and emotion to the entire JoeCon experience.
I’ve been going to JoeCon for a long time. My first visit was in San Francisco in 2003, and I’ve been going, more or less, ever since (besides three or so shows that I missed along the way).
The panels and panelists all deserve a huge amount of credit for taking time out of their busy schedules to talk to fans and provide information that isn’t always available elsewhere. Every once in a while, too, a panel appears at JoeCon that completely changes my perspective and entertains me in a way that I haven’t been entertained recently.
The Behind the Scenes of G.I. Joe’s first Micro Movie was one of those panels. Carson from 3DJoes spent the entire panel with G.I. Joe marketing guru Kirk Bozigian, showcasing never before seen behind-the-scenes footage of the making of the 1990’s live action commercials, all interspersed with other information about the commercials, while making sure to show the actual commercials along the way as well. The result was a panel chock-full of laughs, cheers, and a real appreciation for the work that went into making G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero the landmark, retail-altering brand it was back in the 80’s (and 90’s).
There was fantastic insight from Kirk Bozigian himself, unbelievable behind the scenes footage, and so much great stuff along the way. I can’t give Carson enough props for what he worked hard to put together. This was one hell of a way to celebrate JoeCon’s last harrah, and I truly hope there’s more to come. Carson has put a terrific video up on YouTube. You need to stop what you’re doing and go watch it right now. It’s just incredible.