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By Thomas Wheeler

I tend to only buy the G.I.Joe figures from India, that are manufactured by Funskool, if they are sufficiently different in color scheme from their American counterparts. My two most recent acquisitions in this area were Tripwire and Windmill.

However, when one seller in the Dealer's Room at the G.I.JOE Convention showed up with a huge tub of Funskool Joes in their little factory shipping baggies for $2.00 apiece, I decided to see if anything particularly caught my eye. Two of them did.


The Tracker figure uses the same molds as the original Tracker figure from 1991. These molds turned up most recently as Action Man in the Night Force 6-pack. This Tracker bears quite a few similarities to his original American version, but there are differences.

The Funskool Tracker has black hair, not tan. Oddly, this makes him look more like Action Man. The shirt is still a fairly bright red, although it lacks the athletic-gear numbers that the original version had. The pants are bright yellow, but the formerly white socks are now silver -- a rather odd choice. And although the sneakers are no longer purple, as they were on the original, I'm not sure that the blue-and-yellow sneakers with the red laces are much of an improvement, although you have to admire the detail work. Whatever missions this guy is sent on, I hope they don't include Covert Ops.

Then we have BIG BRAWLER. This was a character first introduced into the Tiger Force line, and was sort of intended as a replacement for Outback, who could no longer be used, most likely because of the name of a certain Steakhouse chain. Big Brawler used the 1991 Low-Light head and the Salvo body, and was actually a very cool figure.

The Funskool Big Brawler is a completely different piece of work. He uses the Ambush head, the Outback torso and arms, and I'm honestly not certain whose legs these are. He has black hair, a bright yellow shirt with red trim and letters reading "ARMY" on it, and camouflage trousers -- and given the shirt, you wonder why he bothered with the camouflage on the trousers.

No accessories or file cards came with these little baggied versions, but really, for $2.00 apiece, I'm not going to complain. I believe that full carded versions of both of these figures can still be found at SMALLJOES.COM, the best outlet for Funskool Joes around, and I certainly recommend both of them!