Chuckles started in "hole-in-the-wall" operations at an insurance group in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where he still works from time to time when he's not doing undercover missions for the GI Joe team. His
affable demeanor puts everyone at ease, allowing him to gain access to whatever group he's been tasked to infiltrate and investigate. His easy-going, good-humored and joking nature could be a facade to disarm targets, or it could be the agent's genuine personality. No one knows, since he always seems to be in the middle of an operation and never breaks his cover.
Perpetually mis-used on the cartoon, and appearing only rarely in the Marvel Comics, Chuckles recently got a big boost in popularity thanks to Cobra, one of the series IDW Publishing started when they got the GI Joe license. After all, unless you give the undercover agent his own spotlight book, how's he ever going to show up in the story? The point is that no one ever sees him or knows what he's doing. This figure is based on the Shipwreck mold, which works decently to create Chuckles' familiar Hawaiian shirt - although the green leaves are tough to pick out against the light blue, and there are no pink apps to make flowers, like the '87 version had.
Chuckles' head is new, and it captures the character very well. The
smarmy yet determined look, the slightly poofy blonde hair... it's the guy we remember. The original version had bare hands, while this version is wearing black gloves, but think of it as part of his undercover work: he's just pulled them on so he doesn't leave any prints on the computer when he goes snooping around. He also has Spirit's odd left hand, with the two fingers extended, but pretend he's flashing a pre-arranged covert signal to his handlers, to tip them to what he's about to do.
He's got the same non-functioning shoulder holster that Recondo did, which is a let-down: in 1987, Chuckles was one of the few figures to have a working holster, but now, 22 years later, he's lost it? Shame. Beyond that, there's a large knife in the sheath on his leg, a brown satchel slung over his shoulder (yet interfering slightly with the knife) and a MARS briefcase with another gun inside.
The figures are arrayed next to one another in a long horizontal box. The backdrop shows the shore of Cobra Island, with a fire burning on the far side of some nearby trees. A Skystriker, two Rattlers and a FANG copter are in the sky. It's a nice enough scene, but certainly not something worth saving the box for.
Being stocked with army-builders as it is, the Cobra set is proving more popular (and thus more expensive online) than its Joe Team counterpart, but make no mistake: this is still a very good set, with a ton of new characters who a lot of fans will want. See if you can find a store selling them as a set, and pick up both sides of the battle in one fell swoop.