When my husband and I first started dating I was aware of his interests in the horror genre and Michael Jordan, he had almost every Jason Voorhees action figure and pair of Jordan brand shoes imaginable. What I was not prepared for was the addiction to GI Joe action figures that was to come shortly after our wedding vows were complete.
Not too long after our “I do’s,” Hasbro began their release of 25th Anniversary GI Joe action figures and I entered into the world of GI Joe hunting with my husband. Each series of a release, called a wave, includes anywhere from four to eight figures, luckily we did not have to have every figure, unluckily we did have to have all of the Cobra figures and I was about to find out how hard some of these figures can be to get your hands on. Within the waves there are some figures which you only need one of, such as a Cobra Commander, because he is a single character, however other figures are army builders and apparently you need to have a plethora of these figures to fight off the GI Joes of the opposing side.
You would think that these are easy to get, they are toys that are sold at Target, Walmart and Toys ‘R Us to name a few places, however this is not always true. I have come to learn that there are many GI Joe hunters out there and the supply of the figures does not meet the demand of their adoring fans. There are a few figures from each series that are easy enough to find, those are called “peg warmers,” because no one wants them and they will no doubt end up on the clearance rack for next to nothing. The popular figures go faster than you can imagine once word gets out that they have been spotted in the stores, mostly through one of the many GI Joe fan blogs or sites. We have spent many nights going to Walmart right before they close to see if the pallets of toys are out on the floor yet. My husband would light up like a child on Christmas morning if he saw that brown box with a purple stripe that says toys and is marked Hasbro, he would stealthily sneak around to see if the box stated GI Joe Action Figures and then become ecstatic. To be one of the first to spot the new wave in store and know that you are going to able to find the newest BAT (Battle Android Trooper, and I have come to learn that the BAT is also a favorite of many other men who grew up in the 80s) or Storm Shadow or Destro is a giant rush.
Getting the figure that you want and are looking for is fabulous, but then there are also variants, oh yes. No not only do you have to look for the new Snake Eyes that has his white dog Timber, now you have to find the variants with black Timber as well. It is imperative that you have the full collection. And not only do you need the full collection, but in most cases you need at least two of each figure, one to open and one to keep in its bubble on the card to properly display.
When we brought our house we bought a three bedroom house so that my husband could have a room just for his toys and they were not supposed to leave his room. Somehow I still manage to come home work and find one, or five, staring at me in the kitchen, in the living room, and even in the bathroom. They are everywhere!
I love my husband, and all of his specialness, and he tells me all the time that he is thankful to have me because I knew about the addiction to horror figurines and his Air Jordans, but the GI Joes have been an extra layer of addition that was thrown upon our marriage.