I met one of my best friends, Andy, back in 1986. We went to the same church and eventually were in the same class in 5th grade. What brought us together was a mutual love for GI JOE toys. Fast forward almost 25 years later and we're still obsessed with The Real American Heros. Yup...we're still brought together by plastic soldiers all these years later.
At some point in the early years of our friendship, we decided that we wanted to, not only play with and enjoy GI JOE toys, but we wanted to create and design them as well. So we spent hours drawing up new, cool vehicles and figures in hopes that Hasbro would see the potential and hire us for their design department. We even went so far as to list a suggested retail price for some of the designs should Hasbro decide to produce them. It was fun to dream back then. What was kind of eerie was that alot of our ideas were about resurrecting old characters and vehicles with repaints and putting them on a special team called the Lightning League ( a name stolen from Wheeled Warriors) and then years later Hasbro actually did just that with the likes of Tiger Force, Python Patrol, Night Force, and Slaughter's Marauders. Could they have been spying on us and stealing our ideas? I'd like to think so.
Below are a few examples of our super-awesome ideas.
I had drawings taped all over my walls and even my door when I was a kid. My obsession with GI JOE was even displayed on that door in the below drawing of DUKE.
This final drawing was done, most likely, during one of my classes, I'd guess in the 8th or 9th grade. It was during that time that I really got into collecting the comic books and was die-hard for the back issues. My first GI JOE figure ever was FLASH, the original Laser Trooper, so I proudly depicted him leading the charge in this one.