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By Thomas Wheeler

This is the other new G.I.Joe that, along with the Green Beret figure, turned up at the tail end of 2002. Found him at Target. The package card for each figure makes mention of the other, so obviously they're an assortment unto themselves.

There's been no shortage of SWAT figures from G.I.Joe and everybody else in the 12" military world. Some of the figures are impressive, others less so, but after a while, they all tend to start looking a lot alike. So, why did I decide to purchase this SWAT Team Sniper? Well, to me, anyway, he looked a little different. He was also a little more basic, and I appreciated that. Some of the SWAT figures that have been available have been so over-accessorized that even assuming you can de-package all of their equipment and then get it on the figure, it's doubtful that the figure will even be able to move.

The G.I.JOE SWAT Team Sniper manages to look both impressive and police-like without looking like a reject from "Starship Troopers". Here's his profile:

Many civilian police departments across the country have special operations teams as part of their overall organization. These teams are called in for highly volatile and risky situations including histage rescues, snipers, barricaded suspects, search-and-arrest warrants and illegal substance raids. Often called SWAT (Special Operations and Tactics) teams, these units consist of regular police officers who have been trained in the use of adapted military tactics and technologies, to form an elite force within the civilian law enforcement community.

Each person in a SWAT team carries out a specific function. Snipers perform the job of delivering accurate, long-range fire. They also scout the area and report their observations to the command post, including what the target is doing, prominent features, entry points, electrical box and telephone wire locations, and much more. Every detail is critical to the entry team that will be going into this hostile encounter. Snipers must know how to select a concealed position and then be able to remain there for hours, alert, unmoving and prepared to take their shot when they get the green light to fire. Their rifles are outfitted with a high-power scope for a clear view of the scene and a bipod to steady the weapon. Extensively trained and constantly practicing to further refine their skills, snipers watch and wait, ready in an instant to help resolve a dangerous situation.

This G.I.Joe is excellent. His outfit is a uniform dark blue, with the initials SWAT on the cap and shirt pocket. He comes with sunglasses, a very intricate rifle and pistol, binoculars, knee pads, and a duty belt with what I thought was an amusing feature. The buckle is a scaled-down but fully functional version of the three-pronged snap-lock plastic buckles that one might expect to find on full-sized fanny packs or backpacks.

The figure does not use the Super-Articulated body, at least the one I bought didn't (see references to this in the review for the Green Beret G.I.Joe) and the neck isn't especially loose. If you're going to own a SWAT figure, then this G.I.JOE SWAT TEAM SNIPER is the one I would definitely recommend.

I seem to recall that there were a couple of 12" G.I.Joes that turned up at the tail end of 2001 that went rather quickly and were never heard from again. I believe they were Wal-Mart exclusives. I have no reason to believe that the Green Beret and the SWAT Team Sniper are Target exclusives, or that they won't be fairly readily available throughout 2003. On the other hand, if you're interested in them, and I do recommend them as being two of the more distinctive and interesting G.I.Joes I've seen in quite a while, then I wouldn't delay in buying them when you see them, either.