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Scrap-Iron & Anti-Armor Drone

GI Joe Classified Series
by yo go re

Usually, blowing up the boss' son isn't the best way to prove your worth at work. Usually.

Scrap-Iron is an anti-armor specialist and weapons designer whose passion for precision drove him to develop his own munitions. His remote-controlled drone is his latest development for Cobra.

Scrap-Iron was one of the characters planned for release from the beginning, which you can always tell by who got a bio on Hasbro's website before they took it down because CEO Chris Cocks felt like laying people off to make himself look good to the investor class. The site told us his stats (Ordnance Specialist 3, Launcher 4, Anti-Armor 3, Weapons Development 2) and described him as "a fanatical perfectionist with an ego to match, Scrap-Iron is a designer of next-level anti-armor weapons for MARS Industries and Cobra. His smart weapons seek out their targets with such precision, they border on the self-aware."

Like Copperhead, Scrap-Iron was introduced in 1984, a helmeted character who could have been an entire class of soldier, but was instead decided to become a singular character. This version has something no Scrap-Iron has ever had before: a removable helmet! The G3 version could take off his goggles, but this time the full thing comes off, allowing sculptor Fred Aczon to really flex his muscles and show off.

Generation 3 Scrap-Iron had a scar on his chin, one on his left cheek, and then a large scar running all the way up the right side of his face to a blank white eye. This version still has a lon scar on the right side, but that eye is fine and it's the left that's now blanked. A shorter scar runs directly over the left eye, and a small one goes over his lips. A pair of scars run along the right side of his scalp, while the left side, from the jaw up, is deeply burnt, just a pink mass of scar tissue.

Scrap-Iron wears a fairly utilitarian uniform: it's basically a set of dark blue coveralls and a padded red vest for protection. Now, your average mechanic doesn't usually have a pistol holstered on his leg, or grenades strapped to his chest, but your average mechanic also doesn't have to worry about the world's angriest Village People dropping in through the ceiling and opening his thoracic cavity to the night sky, so some precautions must be taken. The pants have a different texture from the shirt, and the pads on the vest look nice and puffy.

If you don't count the removable helmet, his only accessories are the small pistol and a pretty neat remote control. That's basically a rounded black box with a screen in the center, thumb sticks to the sides of that, and a pair of antennae sticking out the top. It really is an awesome little piece that adds a bunch of flavor to the figure.

In 1984, Scrap-Iron included a small, standalone missile launcher, which fit with his role as the weapons developer. Well, the figure himself may not have been updated very much, but the launcher has: where once it was just a black box on four legs with two red missiles, it's now mounted on tank treads, making it much more mobile! Sadly, the treads don't actually move, but at least they look really neat. In a perfect world, all four of them would be individually articulated, which is what the sculpt is trying to show, but Hasbro would have to be willing to pay for that. The box itself is the same style as the old accessory, though this time there are cameras sculpted on the front, and tail lights on the back. It's such an awesome upgrade to the old piece! The missiles are red, with white lettering on the side that identifies them as being "lazer-guided" [sic]. That doesn't seem like a mistake someone as meticulous as Scrap-Iron would make.

To up the value of the set, we get a bunch of blast effects. First, there are exhaust plumes to make the missiles shoot out of the launcher. They're translucent orange where the rockets plug in, and fade to white smoke at the far end. They are two different lengths, so it looks like one fired before the other, adding some dynamism to the display.

There's an angled piece that looks like it would go next to squealing tires, and a cloud of smoke with a half dozen orange flames spiking out of it. The most ornate pieces, though, have to be the two large flares that jut up from the ground at an angle, with a large, central cone and a flame swirling around it. You really get the feeling some heavy explosives are going off all over the place with these extras!

Scrap-Iron without any weaponry would have been a boring release, so making him a deluxe set was definitely the way to go. The Anti-Armor Drone is an outstanding update of an old accessory, and all the effects pieces just make it even cooler. Plus, this is one of the rare sets you can actually find in stores! Target got it in as one of the ones they immediately put on clearance, and Walmart has stacks of them hanging around. Neither of which is great for Classified, but it does mean you can still go get yourself this awesome pair with no hassle right now.

-- 02/02/24

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