It was about five years ago that I lost three banker boxes of toys to a minor flood in one of my closets. It wouldn’t have been so bad if I had noticed earlier, but by the time I did the boxes and contents had mold damage and everything had to go. Among these boxes were the two that housed my entire collection of Sigma 6 figures. It was a sad day. I’ve finally begun not only replacing the ones I’ve lost, but picking up some that I never had that brings me to this week’s GI JOE content. Let’s check out Lockdown…
I’ve got no packaged shot, so let’s get right to the figure, because this guy is one of my absolute favorites, and I’m going to try really hard to not say that in every S6 Feature that I do. While many of the JOES of S6 were re-imagined versions of what we all knew and loved, I believe SWAT officer Lockdown was a brand new character. I don’t recall him ever appearing in the cartoon and he was a rather late release in the line. It was a time when Hasbro was really exploring some great possibilities with this scale and format, but they also unfortunately discontinued the cool foot locker aspect of the packaging. Ah well, those things took up a lot of space anyway. Also, the Centurians-style peg system that let you attach stuff all over the figure seemed to take a backseat to the sculpts.
The angular style and chunky proportions of these figures always reminded me a bit of Kenner’s Small Soldiers figures. It takes some getting used to and in truth it wasn’t until I had one of these figures in hand to play with that they really won me over. But despite the super stylized design, the sculpt on this guy is wonderfully detailed. The uniform includes folds, buttons, pouches, and belts. The blue and black color scheme is simple, but effective. And as with all of these guys, Lockdown features a metal dog tag on a chain around his neck.
The head sculpt is loaded with personality and features a pair of permanent sculpted sunglasses. This guy looks like one tough customer. As much as I dig it, I will probably never display this figure without his kick ass helmet. It fits over the head beautifully and looks so great on him. OK, maybe I’ll display him holding the helmet in the crook of his elbow because that looks pretty great too.
A huge part of Sigma 6’s appeal is the articulation and Lockdown doesn’t disappoint. You get rotating hinges in the shoulders, elbows, wrists, hips, and knees. There are swivels at the tops of the boots and hinges in the ankles. Lockdown can swivel at the waist and he has ball joints in the torso and neck. What’s even better is that every one of these joints is tight and effective making this figure crazy fun to play with. Also, the chunky boats and great balance makes Lockdown really good at holding poses.
Of course, the main attraction of S6 is the gear. In true spirit of the original 70’s JOEs, these guys come with all sorts of neat equipment and weapons. Lockdown’s gear is great, but it tends to lack the customization that some of the earlier figures’ accessories had. Also, there’s not as much interactivity with the figure in terms of being able to attach it to his body, so we’ll have to look for that stuff in a future review. That having been said, there’s some neat stuff here. For starters, Lockdown features a chunky sub machine gun, which he can hold in either or both hands. This thing is wonderfully ridiculous and includes a silver and black deco with some blue and green accents.
He also comes with a riot shield, which is designed to be held or stand up on its own as a barrier. It’s cast from a slab of blue plastic and has SWAT printed across the front.
You also get a pair of handcuffs that work surprisingly well on the figures.
And lastly, he features a huge spring-loaded battering ram for busting down doors. Knock-Knock, Cobra!
It’s so hard for me to play with a figure like this and reconcile the hatred that so many fans have for this line. I like to think it goes back to a time when 3 3/4″ JOE was almost soley available through that Direct-To-Consumer line and longtime JOE fans saw these as weird and unworthy replacements. I can dig that. But as a fan who’s love for JOE predates the Real American Hero revival of the 80’s, I have nothing but love for these guys. Hasbro tried something incredibly original here and as far as I’m concerned it paid off big time. Give me a fun, poseable figure like this, a great assortment of gear, and I’m good to go for hours.