Figure Reviews

G.I. Joe Classified Series Retro Gung-Ho review

While I didn’t hate the original Classified Series Gung-Ho, he was certainly my least favorite. It was a combination of a lot of things — the handlebar mustache, the more modern vest, the small tattoo, the more traditional cap and a far more tone down color scheme.

That didn’t make the figure bad. It just wasn’t Gung-Ho. Hasbro started to recognize collectors wanted this line to reflect a slightly tweaked Real American Hero style instead of the drastic departure shown in the first two waves. I didn’t mind the others, but Gung-Ho was my immediate choice for a do-over to a more classic style.

With the Retro series, Hasbro makes good on delivering that version of Gung-Ho. Was he worth the wait? I’ll let you know as soon as I finish off this pot of gumbo.

Packaging: Whew. This is rough. Hasbro might have gone with paper density maybe three grades higher than construction paper. It’s flimsy and barely can support the weight of the plastic bubble. Add on Wal-Mart’s “eff it” approach to placing a figure in a box and viola, I’ve got an awful MOC figure.

Thankfully, I open mine so that’s not a problem, but this was really terrible. The package itself is fine. The front features Gung-Ho with the iconic blast effect behind him. There’s some slight tweaking to the original artwork namely the altered tattoo and the added wristbands.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - package bio

I still think Hasbro could have shifted up the plastic window with a smaller one for the backpack instead of placing everything in one long cylinder style bubble.

The back is kinda goofy since Hasbro worked in five languages for a bio that tries to sum Gung-Ho up in cliff notes style.

Likeness: But none of those issues matter now that I’ve freed him from a plastic torture chamber that would make Dr. Mindbender jealous.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - wide shot

This is the Gung-Ho that I wanted from the start and man, did Hasbro deliver!

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - chin scar

First up, the Hulk Hogan tribute handlebar mustache is gone. Back to a regular stash this time. And he’s shaved off the mohawk too with the complete bald head again. And for good measure he’s got a little scare on his chin too.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - no hat

The vest is new, ditching the overly detailed modern version for a more basic look with flared collars and two grenades on either side.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - comparison with classified series gung-ho

Gung-Ho also loses the gauntlet and elbow pad.

The wrist bands from his gloves carry over. His lower half remains intact with an additional holster on his right leg and a sheath on his left shin.


gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - vest detail

Paint: Gung-Ho’s color scheme is much more in line with the 1983 figure with bright turquoise and dark greens for the camo and grenades.

I love the brightness of it as it’s basically Gung-Ho making a target of himself and daring Cobra to come after him instead of his teammates.

The only “issue” with the paintjob is Hasbro still couldn’t do its workaround USMC tattoo for Gung-Ho. At least this time the tattoo is sufficiently front and center prominently on his chest.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - scale with barbecue, breaker and duke

Scale: Gung-Ho still uses the Roadblock mold. I’d prefer him to be a tad smaller than Roadblock, but the toned-down vest doesn’t make him look as massive now. Gung-Ho does still suffer from an abnormally big head compared to the rest of the figures in the line.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review -facing barbecue, breaker and duke

He’s going to be one of the taller Joes in this line, which I guess isn’t an issue when he’s around anyone but Roadblock and possibly Sgt. Slaughter.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - scale with roadblock

Articulation: Gung-Ho’s aesthetic changes didn’t do anything to hinder his fantastic articulation.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - recon mission with breaker and beach-head

It’s a thrill having a six-inch highly articulated Joe line so I can re-enact all of my favorite scenes from the comic book.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - on the run

Gung-Ho has:

  • head
  • neck
  • shoulders (butterfly)
  • elbow (double-jointed)
  • wrist
  • wrist hinge
  • mid-torso
  • torso
  • waist
  • hips (ball-jointed)
  • drop down hips
  • knees (double-jointed)
  • ankles

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - aiming pistol

Accessories: Gung-Ho had a lot of accessories in his original release.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - accessories in tray

This one doesn’t have as much, but what is included makes sense for this Retro release — and bonus, he can store all of his items.

First up is the hat. This has the appropriate pointy edges provided more flair than the original figure and thankfully it’s a snug fit.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - hat detail

Next is his backpack. This is done in the style of the vintage figure right down to the turquoise color. It looks like Gung-Ho is prepared to battle it out in any location for a long time.

And this time he’s got his XM-76 grenade launcher complete with strap so he can sling it over his shoulder. The detailing on the launcher is really nicely done and matches the package art.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - holding grenade launcher

In the original figure, Gung-Ho couldn’t use his sidearm and knife as they were sculpted on so it’s a nice bonus they’re both usable here.

The handgun is a sensible additional firearm for Gung-Ho for more close quarter shootouts.


The knife has a nice length although the sheath being turquoise instead of black seems like a mistake. But that’s not a big deal at all.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - raising grenade launcher

Worth It? The original Gung-Ho was $20. This one was $24.97. The hook for the extra price would seem to be the Retro card, but that was a bit of a disaster. I “almost” feel like it was still worth it to get the version of Gung-Ho I wanted especially since the standard price for the figures now is $24.99.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - geared up

Rating: 9.8 out of 10

The tattoo issue is understandable and there’s no bare arms without gloves yet so ditch the straps. And yeah the turquoise sheath is a bit of an eyesore, but this is the Gung-Ho I really wanted. I’m glad Hasbro put in all the necessary work to best reflect his classic look.

gi joe classified series retro gung-ho review - in action with flint and scarlett

Where to Get It? He’s sold out on both and Hasbro Pulse. Pulse is more likely to restock so keep an eye out there. Otherwise wait for the inevitable resellers on Amazon.