G.I. Joe: The Pursuit of Cobra Jungle B.A.T.

My name is Justin...and I really don't like B.A.T.s.

Yes, it is confession time, and I know while many Joe fans out there are wild about the whole Battle Android Trooper concept, it's never been something that really excited me. I prefer character, and I prefer human on human interaction, and the B.A.T.s always seemed like a concept that never really resonated with me.

That being said, I can't argue that Hasbro has done some awesome work on their modern style B.A.T. figures, really cranking up the detail and doing some cool things. And as much as I hate to admit it, they did a pretty good job with this figure, too, even if I'm not ecstatic about the concept behind it.

The B.A.T. has been a staple of the G.I. Joe lexicon since 1986, and I'm somewhat surprised that it never really occurred to Hasbro until now to make them a bit more environmentally specific. I guess since their robots, they don't really need different uniforms depending on where they're operating, but putting them in specific camouflage does make a certain amount of sense, especially when you're talking about a jungle environment.

There really is nothing new tooling-wise with this version of the venerable Battle Android Trooper. From top to bottom, it is a repaint of the regular 25th Anniversary B.A.T., but all told, it's a pretty impressive repaint. Instead of the typical black and yellow, we get a nice forest green with some very elaborate camouflage patterns worked into the entirety of the figure. Where there isn't camouflage, the colors retain a nice dark black shade, which further camouflages this figure into a jungle setting. This is an idea that seems shocking in its simplicity, especially considering that Hasbro has not ventured into this territory before. Now, I've already established that as a concept, I'm not a fan of the B.A.T.s...but the execution of this figure is really nice, and I'm finding it hard to dislike what the designers were trying to do here. Taking the Battle Android Troopers and configuring them for brainless jungle warfare is a great idea, and I can totally see Cobra going this route.

But really what appeals to me most of all about this figure is the feeling of abandonment I get. If that doesn't make sense, think about it this way... Cobra doesn't want to spend time, training, and money on jungle troopers in the perimeter when they can just equip a squad of B.A.T.s, drop 'em and forget 'em. And as I said, abandonment is the feel I get here. These B.A.T.s have been out in the jungle a loong time. The metal is all worn, rusted and dinged up. The chest shield is smashed, and if you use the alternate head, even the head is all banged up. I really dig this idea for some reason. Then, when something comes down, the Jungle Vipers or Range Vipers go out, round up the beat up remnants of the B.A.T. squad and use them against the enemy. Even with my distaste for the B.A.T.s in general, I think that's a neat concept.

Now beyond the paint alterations and the twist on the B.A.T. theme, these guys come with a bunch of different gear. First and foremost obviously is the massive chain gun that was introduced with the City Strike Destro Rise of Cobra Heavy Duty (oops -ed). The figure can hold this weapon well, and I think it suits them well as a powerful offensive weapon. Cobra can just line these guys up and let them loose. He also has an AK-47, and the typical hand attachments that we're all used to at this point. The end result is a B.A.T. that actually improves on the concept, in my opinion, and is actually an Android Trooper that might fit into my narrow view of the G.I. Joe: Pursuit of Cobra universe.

All told, the figure is great, and builds upon an already excellent base figure. The new paint scheme and additional accessories add value and cool factor, and I end up liking this guy a lot more than I thought I might.

Like what you see? Buy this figure now at BigBadToyStore!