1985 Torch

1985 Torch

My opinion on Dreadnoks tends to come and go, as sometimes I find myself greatly appreciative of their place in the line, and sometimes I feel they’re a bit overplayed. Of course, that’s true of most themes you find in GI Joe, as GI Joe rarely had a good idea it doesn’t completely wear out (ninjas, faceless army-builders, ect). Regardless, Dreadnoks are generally a staple of the GI Joe line, and usually the older ones like Torch, tend to be the better ones.

Of the original three Dreadnoks, I didn’t go for Torch until I already had Funskool Buzzer, and an ‘85 Ripper. That generally reflects my views on the three, where Buzzer is the best, closely followed by Ripper, and then Torch is more of an afterthought. Nothing about Torch really makes him a bad figure, on the contrary, he’s actually nicely done in several ways. As a character though, he doesn’t really stand out apart from the other two, and starts to just seem forgettable, over time.

In some ways I’ve grown an appreciation for his lack of uniqueness, along with other bland Dreadnoks like Monkeywrench, after contemplating him less as an individual, and more so as a mook with a backstory. I won’t be army-building Torch (although I do have two), but thinking about him less along the lines of Zartan or even someone like Copperhead, and more as something of a less anonymous Viper, seems to open more doors for him and other Dreadnoks in my head.

Torch is the guy in the lot who wears a leather vest, and surprisingly, that’s a motif Hasbro didn’t really reuse much despite them being a biker-gang. Almost every other Dreadnok is either completely shirtless or wearing some small and insignificant piece of cloth, which makes a lot of them look more like homeless people and less like bikers in my mind (though, Ninja Force Zartan wears a leather vest too). His sculpt is covered in the typical amount of golden-year details that bring him to life, though my favorite thing about his look, is that it’s very apparent what he represents without really having to know anything about him. I would’ve liked a figure like this a lot as a kid because of that.

For parts, you get his signature welding-torch and a backpack in connects to. It’s sort of weird he didn’t have an extra weapon when Buzzer had an ax and Ripper had a rifle, but Torch just comes with two parts. It’s also weird that his torch connects via a plastic cord on the weapon itself, much like the breakage prone gun with Flash and older figures; while Ripper used the black hose that became standard after this point. Makes me wonder if Torch was designed a little earlier than Ripper.

The median price of a Torch right now seems to be around $20, which isn’t bad, but is still a little more than I expected. This guy used to be lot fodder and one of the cheaper Dreadnoks to get, but now a decent one will run you at least that much. Still, he’s a cool enough figure that if I didn’t already have one, I wouldn’t mind paying that much for him.

1985 Torch Links:

Forgotten Figures

Attica Gazette

3D Joes

Joe A Day

Half the Battle

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One Response to 1985 Torch

  1. Mike T. says:

    Torch is definitely my least favorite, too. Yet, he was also the first Dreadnok I bought in December of 1984. I don’t remember why I chose him. Though, I did get the other two as presents for my brothers.

    He quickly became a faceless goon for me. He’d be some random biker or civilian who’d get caught in the crossfire of either Joe or Cobra. I did find use for his gear, though. And, I’d often have the torch be used by Joes to rescue people trapped in crashed tanks or planes.

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