2015 Basilisk (50th Anniversary)

2015 Basilisk (50th Anniversary)

The 2010‘s have been a weird time for GI Joe, mainly because of the movies that were meant to revive the brand, but ended up destroying it instead. The GI Joe design team at Hasbro got gutted, leaving only a handful of folks to work on the 50th Anniversary line while the line died a slow death in the back isles of the now defunct Toy’s ‘R Us. And it’s here, where the Cobra Basilisk came to be in the Dessert Duel set.

I skipped over this set initially in 2015, and I still haven’t bothered with anything past this particular vehicle. Despite that I rarely photograph or write about them, I actually do like the modern GI Joe figures, but my disinterest in the figures in this set has less to do with construction and more to do with the items chosen. The Elite Horseman seems fairly bland, while the Chuckles figure is made up of tooling I saw too excessively back then. That leaves the FOE Striker, which again was a decent repaint of an item I’ve simply seen too much (the AWE Striker). So from the set, the Basilisk was the only item that caught my attention, which simply wasn’t enough to warrant purchasing at retail.

The Basilisk itself is just a repaint of the POC Wolf Hound, which was a retool of the Spy Troops Snow Cat from 2003, or at least I assume. The bottom hull is still date stamped 2002, so at least that part remains unchanged. Meanwhile, the vehicle has seen the addition of a brand new missile launcher unit and Modern Era compatible foot pegs. A vintage loyalist might find the loss of proper foot pegs to be a minor irritation, but personally I don’t fret over it much.

Other than this, I’ve never owned another version of the Snow Cat, so I don’t know first hand what it’s launcher unit was like. Still, I like the changes made to the updated one pretty well. It’s removed the clips on the sides of the unit mount that were highly prone to breakage, and additionally has been given a missile launching gimmick rather than just having the rockets sit there in slots. I think it looks a bit better now since the launcher has a bottom to it and is much less hollow, although the blunt-tipped missiles are a visual down grade over the vintage ones.

But enough about the tooling, what makes the Basilisk interesting? Well, on that end it’s completely subjective. One way you could look at it is that it’s a borderline neon repaint of a GI Joe vehicle as a Cobra one for seemingly no apparent reason. Another way you could look at it is that the Snow Cat is a fairly mundane looking artillery vehicle that, in different colors is more useful once it’s no longer restricted to a certain environment. I’m still up for adding a Snow Cat to my collection at some point, but I think I’ll probably be using this vehicle more than I ever will use the Snow Cat.

With that said, the colors are shockingly bright on this thing. It’s not bad looking at all, but the blue is a much more vibrant color than you typically see on Cobra items. It makes me think a lot of the ‘91 mail-away Ferret, but other than that it barely would match up with anything. The red windshield pushes it a bit in terms of brightness, though I wouldn’t mind this if it were slightly more transparent. Despite it’s appearance, the windshield technically isn’t opaque, but it’s nearly impossible to see a figure through it. I see this as a flaw, though it’s not particularly a major one.

The Basilisk is a weird repaint that most collectors will never covet, much less care about. Right now you can get them around $20, which is a very fair price and for that much the vehicle provides a lot of potential. I imagine in the future the supply of these will continually dry up in line with the 15th Anniversary vehicles and the DTC ones as well, so now’s probably the best time to grab one. Either way, it’s the sort of item destined to drown in the bog of obscurities that GI Joe has been since the mid-2000‘s, but it does provide something different for a collection.

Gi joe cobra basilisk 2015 50th anniversary poc snow cat tru exclusive sdcc
Gi joe cobra basilisk 2015 50th anniversary poc snow cat tru exclusive sdcc

Cobra Basilisk Links:

Yo Joe

Joe Battlelines

Joe A Day

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3 Responses to 2015 Basilisk (50th Anniversary)

  1. A-Man says:

    I didn’t like the near opaque canopy and metallic blue, so I never bothered to get this. Maybe it’s better in person. I still think a Stinger repaint would’ve gone over better.

    If you don’t want snow cats (or tiger cats), get the purple Street Fighter Movie one where it renamed Devastator. No ski-pedoes, but you can get those from the vintage weapon’s pack.

  2. cyko9 says:

    I love seeing those vintage drivers inside! The Basilisk isn’t a bad repaint, but the Joe-vehicle-swiped-by-Cobra bugs me a little. Now, if they’d Pythonized it…

  3. R.T.G. says:

    The Snow Cat is a thing I like more in theory than execution. I assume the Basilisk would fall into that category too. It’s a real bright looking machine, and that windshield is something that doesn’t look like it worked the way they hoped.

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