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One of our own, A.V.A.C. is down in Florida attending the G.I. Joe Collectors Convention!

The Fighting 1:18th visits JoeCon 2011!

These are truly fond and powerful memories of childhood for me. Brochures are no longer the Joe collectors’ harbinger of things to come; perhaps the internet has replaced their usefulness. Seeing “the new stuff” offered by Hasbro and the Gi Joe Collector’s Club at Joe Con for the first unveiling every year, replaces that childhood wonder and excitement I used to feel at the beginning of each new “Joe Year”. Sometimes it’s still hard to dial my phone when I first see the new upcoming product. Though, that’s usually due to the fact my phone is more complicated now and there’s typically no cell phone or internet service on the showroom floor, rather than my shaky collector convulsions.

Its true, the first unveiling begins before the convention starts, with the revealing of the con set and its theme. However, the suspense culminates Thursday night in the much anticipated GI Joe Collectors Club glass display, showcasing the weekend’s exclusives. The red, black, gray, and yellow Python Patrol theme was quite nice this year, and reinvigorated my interest in it. Try finding a complete vintage Python Patrol Asp to pull behind your Python Stinger now. For those turned off by the lack of tactical merit of the color scheme, you have to admit, the Cobra Stinger and the Water Moccasin have a shiny dealership quality that’s quite sexy.

The next unveiling came together as a threesome throughout Friday and Saturday with new products, collector’s pieces, and awesome diorama’s that typically pertain to the con’s theme and Hasbro’s upcoming products.

Despite the lull in product, cancellations and Rise of Cobra’s disappointments, the upcoming products look quite promising. In fact, the figures and their gear are truly amazing and quite exiting to see in arms reach. Most of these will be sought after in my opinion, hard to spot a peg-warmer. To name just a few, Law and Order, Airtight, Lifeline, Sci-Fi, Cobra Zombie, Techno-Viper, Hazard Viper, Data Viper… Let’s not forget about the retooled Sky Striker with ACE. I was hoping for more in the vehicle department, but the jet is a great start.

Another thrill is seeing the collector’s community collection. Hasbro and attendee’s bring various rarities, grails, exclusives, cancelled items, pre-production pieces and gather them all together for a nicely lit mix-match of Joe through the years. This is how i like to display my collection; combining era’s all together as a celebration of the hobby, well, with the exception of GI Joe Extreme. I’ve never contributed to one of these displays due to transportation fears. Just how does one travel comfortably in an airplane with a MIB Sears Dreadnok Ground Assault and a Night Force Boomer at your hip?

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