TBM 2012 Arctic Cobra De Aco

TBM 2012 Arctic Cobra De Aco

The Black Major’s run of Cobra De Aco figures are probably among some of his least popular releases, next to the Night Stalkers he made. In the case of Cobra De Aco, many of the colors he chose, along with the quality of the release was fantastic, but the figure was made from straight-arm tooling, hence the limited interest from the collecting community.

I have mixed opinions on the choice personally. On the one hand, I think it’s very nice to own a reproduction of the authentic Cobra De Aco in colors and tooling that’s as close to the genuine article as possible. I’ve gotta admit though, the figure’s usefulness is a lot more limited because of the straight-arm tooling, and the choice certainly dashed collector interest.

There’s two white-colored Cobra De Aco’s that were made: One that’s a stark white and matches TBM’s arctic Cobras, and this one that’s more of an off-white color. The off-white plastic strikes me as being a tad more interesting, and I even think it looks like something Hasbro would use (it’s very similar to the tone of the ’89 Track Viper).

Another feature of these Cobra De Aco figures I really appreciated was the alternate heads they included. There’s a gasmask head from the comic-pack Cobra Officer, a Chrome Snake Eyes head, and the third option, Flash’s head with a brown, South-American skin tone. It’s a neat inclusion that seems like it could have a lot of life away from this figure, though I don’t believe I’ve ever seen anyone make good use of it.

The quality of this release was almost impeccable. The joints, paint, and construction is all a step above the typical fare of a “factory custom”. I think I didn’t get a single figure with issues from the entire run, and I ended up with a pretty big collection of these since they were so cheap and plentiful for the longest time.

The Cobra De Aco’s include Flash’s original gun and backpack, though sadly it also presents the only real quality issue with the figure. Almost all of TBM’s Cobra De Aco’s came with guns that weren’t really flexible enough to be used without the cord breaking. Some of mine also seem to suffer from flaking paint, which is a little weird. It’s a small thing to look over, though it does mean that most of the De Aco’s lack decent weapons.

gi joe cobra de aco custom bootleg steel cobra

These Cobra De Aco’s are old and tracking down a specific color scheme can be tricky. Collector interest hasn’t picked up that much for them though, and after enough hunting you can get about any version you want for around $20. That’s a lot more than I paid for most of my De Aco’s, and I’m not sure I’d pay that much for them now, but it’s not too much if you only want a few.

gi joe cobra de aco custom bootleg steel cobra gi joe cobra de aco custom bootleg steel cobra gi joe cobra de aco custom bootleg steel cobra

TBM 2012 Arctic Cobra De Aco Links

Reproduction Cobra De Aco at Forgotten Figures

Photo by Cyko_9

Photo by 00zxcvb

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3 Responses to TBM 2012 Arctic Cobra De Aco

  1. General Liederkranz says:

    I had never seen or even heard of that darker-skin-tone head for the de Aco until now. IT does seem really useful for customs. I wish they were more obtainable–whenever I’ve seen de Acos for sale, they just have the gas mask or chrome head, no spares.

  2. Mike T. says:

    BM went kind of dark for a while after these De Acos and the Night Stalkers came out. I wonder if the poor sales were a factor in that. The straight arms were a terrible decision. And, then, Red Laser did the same damn thing! To date, there is still not a swivel arm De Aco available.

    The cobra blue and red figures he did were inspired. And, the Gas Mask Trooper heads on the body would have been an awesome army builder. I suspect there is still some good pent up demand for De Aco repaints if they had swivel arms. But, it seems like that boat probably sailed with the demise of Red Laser.

  3. R.T.G. says:

    I really like this colour scheme, it’s probably my favourite version after the original. It’s such a neutral tone that it can work in any scenario, without being out of place. The variations in red or black COBRA logos is a nice thing to look out for, too.

    As Mike T. said, the lack of a swivel arm De Aço is a shame. I don’t have too many issues with the straight arms, but it would be nice to get the figure in a construction style that matches 99% of the rest of the O-Ring Joes.

    The first batch of De Aço’s are probably the highest quality factory custom figures ever produced. The second batch, which used a different type of plastic was pretty weak, I remember The Black Major was definitely not happy with them. Though the second batches rifles didn’t flake if you looked at them funny. I think there was also a change to the back screw port too, I know I’ve got various TBM Flash backpacks that have different size pegs, though that’s a mystery I’ve got no interest in solving or even looking into.

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