1991 Quick Kick

1991 Quick Kick

I’ve sometimes questioned the criteria fans use to determine what is a “new” figure and what counts as a “variant” of an existing figure. Quick Kick is an interesting example of that, where six years apart from his original release, he was sold as a mail-away figure. The mail-away figure however, has different colors, a new file-card, and is made in Brazil, compared to the ‘85 release that was made in China. It’s usually considered a variant, but by that logic it isnt’ much different than considering a ‘22 Retro Cobra Officer a variant of the ‘83 Cobra Officer, is it?

Quick Kick is a character (and figure) I don’t really think about a whole lot, which feels kind of unfair to him, as I don’t really hate him either. I think he just comes across as being a bit too silly for being a barefoot figure, and also lacking the extensive ninja-lore built around the Arashikage. Neither of those are really bad things though, as he’s a pretty good “silly” figure, and there’s enough of the Arashikage ninjas to make me sick. Other than that, I think the main reason he’s absent from my mind most of the time is just because he shares an original release year with Flint, Footloose and Dusty, and several other classics that mostly overshadow him.

‘91 Quick Kick amounts to being an Estrela figure, complete with having way more vibrant plastic colors as a trade-off for being slightly more brittle than the plastic Asian factories typically used. There’s a very fine, hair-line crack on one of the thumbs on my copy, which I purchased for the parts and mint paint. Got ‘em for nothing back in the early 10‘s, and thought I’d just swap the bad arm for one off another cheap, incomplete Quick Kick, only to quickly discover that the two figures were virtually incompatible. At the time, I didn’t know about the “variant”, and the figure I bought was just listed as 1985 Quick Kick, so I didn’t realize until later that the two were so different.

The flesh tone isn’t even just slightly different on this figure, the change is almost parallel to the difference between Falcon and Red Dog. The ‘85 figure was already a fairly odd skin-color for his time, which was probably intended to help make him appear Asian compared to his contemporaries. It’s a fairly ghoulish color, being so pale and kind of sick looking. The mail-in version is way more saturated and tan, an almost peachy color. His belts and pouches are also slightly brighter, though not nearly to the extent of the skin. Of course, something that probably helps exaggerate the difference once again comes back to the Brazilian plastic formula, which is less prone to discoloring than other Hasbro plastics.

For accessories, he comes with the same katana, nunchucks and backpack as before, just now with slightly flimsier plastic and other slight differences. Always thought the nunchucks on this figure especially (and to a lesser extent, V1 Storm Shadow) looked a little too small for me to take them seriously, but I suppose that’s the rare downside to the tiny-accessories era. His sword on the other hand is great; it’s nicely scaled and even stores in his backpack. It’s really too bad we never saw this part more at any point.

You can easily get one of these, often still sealed in his bag for $20 or less. To a certain extent I feel like this mail-away version is easier to find than the original figure, which might just be an effect of how much overstock went into the hands of collectors as opposed to spending their lives getting beat-up in the back of mom’s Chevette. It also probably doesn’t help that Quick Kick feels like the forgotten Fast Draw of what’s otherwise probably Joe’s most popular year, but either way I’m glad that a good version of a classic character remains cheap in current times.

1991 Quick Kick Links:

Forgotten Figures

Attica Gazette

3D Joes

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3 Responses to 1991 Quick Kick

  1. Mike T. says:

    The old YoJoe really had no standards when it came to variant vs. version. That’s why we now have version 1.5 on figures. But, collectors can’t agree on the definition. And, 25 year old websites can cement pre-conceived notions all too well.

    The Hasbro/Brazil connection was always weird. Why would they go to Estrela for just Quick Kick? What about that character made the endeavor worthwhile? These are the questions no one will ever ask the old Joe team. But, we’ll let them change their stories on a toys’ origin a bunch of times over the decades with no pushback….

    The Estrela thumbs and crotch will be more brittle. There were lots of these made available through the overstock sellers of the 1990’s. It’s good that they’re still cheap. It’s another figure that’s kind of on the list, but not really as I don’t really care for Quick Kick.

    One of the Funskool promo figures put Budo’s head on Quick Kick’s body. For some, that look works for me way more than his actual visiage.

    • A-Man says:

      They also went to Estrela for mail-in Rampage (Heavy Metal) and for 1993 Arctic Team’s Dee-Jay, too. Oddly Rampage replaced Steeler in the special missions driver set (which I never ordered), even separate Rampages had a note saying Steeler had been reassigned or whatever. (Which I do recall, as I did get Rampage later when offered singly.)

      The Arctic Dee-Jay is Strange because it was likely not offered in that country in those colors. But that’s not the first time, as all of the Marauders were made in Brazil but half of them not sold there. Another thing that no one asks the Hasbro people. Why were the Marauders all made in Brazil? Who cares, let’s ask why Snake-Eyes V1 had no paint or go ask Hama about issue #21 for the millionth time.

  2. R.T.G. says:

    I like this figure a hell of a lot, and it has been a figure that’s made me still interested in taking photos, than most figures in the line have ever done for me.

    Love the photo with him and Ripper, too.

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