This is the Sit-Rep, soldier, the Situation Report! It's here where we get the intel on the new troops, talk to the big brass, and generally do anything else
that isn't in an archival capacity! So what are you waiting for? It's time for your debriefing!
When I first saw the Wave 12 figures, I was immediately scratching my head. Unlike many Joefans, I'm not necessarily married to the packaged figures. Granted, I've got a small collection of MOC figures on display, but really, collecting is more about the fun of the toy and less about the nostalgia. I don't need to have all of my favorite characters on single cards, as long as I get the characters and figures I want. They can be comic packs, 5-packs, 3-packs, whatever.
I do understand that I don't necessarily share the same view as many Joefans out there, though, and lots of them prefer single carded figures, and I'd imagine the Dreadnoks rank pretty high on that list, since they first appeared in a Comic Pack. So I suppose from that perspective it makes sense for Hasbro to re-release them, especially in a reported "bonus wave", which this wave is. However, for those of us who like to open our toys, Hasbro also went a little extra and gave us a different Ripper, a figure that is much more cartoon accurate, and has some much welcome structural changes as well.
My biggest pet peeve with the original Anniversary Ripper was definitely his arms and hands. Re-using Buzzer's substandard parts really continued to harm these figures, as they cannot grip their weapons properly and the arms moved kind of funky. Those issues really left me a bit cold with that figure, but I'm happy to say that these issues are fixed with this current version of the figure. Instead of Buzzer's arms and hands, Ripper has the Crimson Twin's, which is pretty much the perfect choice, in my opinion. It gives him his sleeveless look, yet we get arms and gripping hands that are 110% more functional than the originals. I LOVE these new arms, they make this figure a lot better than the original, I'm glad to see them.
Another way Hasbro makes this figure stand out from the original is putting him in a more cartoon accurate color scheme. I've heard him called the "Fred Flintstone" Ripper, and while that's humorous, you can't argue with what Hasbro was going for. Ripper appeared in the cartoon in this more yellow and black camouflage scheme, and I like that Hasbro went that direction with this figure, it makes him stand out a bit more, and I'm a HUGE fan these days of figures that resemble their animated counterparts, so I really love seeing this.
Ripper comes with the same gear as the original, only all colored in black. I'm thrilled that these new arms and hands make his grip on his jackhammer a LOT tighter and a lot better over all, which makes the figure instantly more functional. I thought this version of Ripper would leave me very cold, but I'm happy to say I'm way more impressed than I thought I would be. He's a drastic improvement over the Comic Pack version, and I find myself quite happy with him. Much happier than I thought I would be. There's nothing new or mind-blowing here, that's for sure, but the various minor changes all add up to a pretty cool new version of my favorite Dreadnok.