email thomas





By Thomas Wheeler

One might initially think there's not much reason to get excited about yet another coloration of the NIGHT ATTACK CHOPPER, upon which the new Crimson Command Copter is based. After all, there have already been two versions of that vehicle, one in green-and-black camouflage, and the other in desert colors. And as excellent a helicopter as it is, do we really need a third one?

Well -- maybe we do, especially when it's been assigned to Cobra and when enough changes have been made to the fundamental vehicle to make it sufficiently unique within the framework in its "story".

In the SpyTroops DVD, Cobra captured a Night Attack Chopper and altered
its color scheme and some of its details to transform it into the Crimson Command Copter. That history is related on the package to this vehicle.

Furthermore, Cobra has long been in need of a decent large helicopter. Over
the long history of the G.I.Joe concept, Cobra has come up a little short in the chopper department. They've had three versions of the FANG, and the Cobra
Mamba in 1987. As interesting as that large helicopter was, its design was more than a little fanciful, and it was clearly intended as a fast attack copter,
not something that could readily be used for troop transport.

A large transport copter was occasionally shown in the comic book, but unfortunately it was never translated into a toy.

While the Crimson Command Copter has limited trooper space, it clearly has
more capability for such than the Cobra Mamba, and it's also a more plausible-looking helicopter.

As for the changes in details, the canopy and propellor blades are the most obvious alterations, given a disticntly reptilian appearance. What such changes
would do to the aerodynamics of an actual helicopter (and believe it or not, the Night Attack Chopper is more plausible from this standpoint than you might think), I have no real idea, but it does make the CCC look more menacing. Similarly, the tail rotor has been altered, as has the tail fin, side panels, and
the CCC is also equipped with a different-style nose gun.

In essence, while the core copter remains unchanged, all of the various separate parts have been redone, and the end result is surprisingly

As with its G.I.Joe counterparts, the Crimson Command Copter sports several
sound and light features, and a trigger in the back to activate the propellor. It also has missile launchers. These mechanisms are unchanged. The Crimson Command Copter has been given a red and black camouflage paint job, making it look that much more different from its G.I.Joe counterparts, as well as distinctly "Cobra-ish" and certainly threatening.

The only downside is that the vehicle comes with new-style figures of Tomax and Xamot, and unlike previous traditional-style versions of the "Crimson Twins", which were distinct figures that were mirror images of each other, this
Tomax and Xamot are two versions of the same figure, just with one having a scar planted on its face as is appropriate for Xamot.

A friend of mine has commented that the coloration of the Crimson Command Copter screams "Python Patrol", and I think he's got a good point. If you have acquired this superb Toys "R" Us exclusive set of traditional-style figures (and if you haven't -- do so), then I recommend assigning the Crimson Command Copter to them. Still, the two figures are a minor point in an otherwise excellent
helicopter, that I most highly recommend. Cobra has needed a really good large-size helicopter for years, and with the Crimson Command Copter, they finally have it!