1982 G.I. Joe Flash Action Figure Review

By:  Karl Stern (@dragonkingkarl, @wiwcool, karl@whenitwascool)

 1982 G.i. Joe straight arm laser rifle trooper.  code name:  flash

1982 G.i. Joe straight arm laser rifle trooper.  code name:  flash

One of my favorite action figures from the original 1982 straight arm G.I. Joe line is the Laser Rifle Trooper code name- Flash.  Flash was one of the first figures I got as a kid.  While I don't remember the first one exactly it was either Zap, Clutch (with the V.A.M.P. Jeep), or Flash.  Flash stuck out to me because of his bright red paint application and futuristic laser rifle.  

Later on in the line the future-thinking figures and weaponry became a big negative (that and ninja's, of course) but Flash as the laser rifle trooper as depicted in the comic books was not so far fetched.  Instead of firing Star Wars like laser blasts or lasers as depicted later in the G.I. Joe cartoon series, this version of Flash (contemporary with the Marvel Comics depiction) used his laser rifle as more of a cutting tool.

 the laser rifle plugged into flash's backpack.

the laser rifle plugged into flash's backpack.

The figure itself is interesting, especially for a young kid really into the accessories that came with the figure.  This figure and Short Fuse (the mortar soldier) had a glass visor that clipped onto his helmet and the laser rifle plugged into his backpack by way of a molded plastic cable.

The figure shared the same head as Short Fuse and Steeler and the same body (and originally paint scheme) as Grand Slam.  Both Steeler and Grand Slam were only available with vehicles (the M.O.B.A.T. and the J.U.M.P. Jet Pack) while Flash and Short Fuse were available as single figures on the card.

 the clear visor and futuristic laser gun make flash a striking action figure.

the clear visor and futuristic laser gun make flash a striking action figure.

Like all the 1982 G.I. Joe first release figures, Flash had straight arms that would be improved upon in 1983 with the added "swivel arm battle grip" feature that allowed him to better hold his weapon.

Flash wasn't used extensively in the comics.  He did make multiple appearances in the first ten issues but faded away after that and was ultimately replaced by Sci-Fi a few years later.  I was never a big fan of the cartoon series but I don't remember too many appearances by Flash in that series either.  It's too bad, because of the first run of G.I. Joe action figures in 1982 he was one of the most striking.

 Original 1982 flash along side his 25th anniversary update Sgt. Flash.

Original 1982 flash along side his 25th anniversary update Sgt. Flash.