Monday, January 28, 2013

Plastic Piledrivers: Sargent Slaughter

In our recent discussion of action figure economics, we determined the basic principle that 2 wrestling figures would always beat a single GI Joe. But what if a GI Joe was a wrestling figure?
Sarge never did much for me as a wrestler, but I think he doesn’t get nearly the credit he deserves as a cultural icon. He took a giant chin and a fairly straightforward military wrestling gimmick and ended up becoming a breakout star in arguably the 80’s most popular cartoon show. Wrestling fans loved him, and GI Joe fans loved him, and while there was likely a pretty big crossover there, he covered an amazing amount of ground for a guy named “Slaughter”. And that doesn’t even take the action figures into account.

Cobra Clutch: Slaughter debuted in two separate figure lines when he was initially released.
While I never had the LJN version of the figure, the GI Joe version remained an absolute favorite across all toy lines. Sculpted with much heftier biceps than your average Joe figure, my Slaughter spent his days delivering monster pile drivers to opponents off cliff edges (sofa armrests), and I can assure you, nobody kicks out from that. My fandom likely peaked around the GI Joe animated movie, picking up the Slaughter’s Renegades 3-pack (shout outs to Mercer!), but that didn’t stop me from picking up his pretty awesome Hasbro figure a few years later, made for his 90’s comeback, post-Iraqi heel turn.

A lifetime of Slaughter: Interpretations of the Sarge over the years
The WWE will still trot the old bastard out whenver they need a nostalgia pop, and while he still looks great for his age, I'd much rather remember him as the psycotic drill sergeant who repeatedly elbow dropped Nemesis Enforcer in the stomach while losing his mind. At ease, maggots.

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