Monday, January 22, 2024

Wrapping Up 2023: Buzzer from G.I. Joe: Classified Series by Hasbro


   The end of 2023 was just absolutely filled with G.I. Joe: Classified Series figures, including two more Dreadnoks for the collection. Today I'm checking out the first of the new Dreadnoks I managed to get: Buzzer. I never had Buzzer as a kid as he was a 1985 figure and I wasn't older enough for G.I. Joe figures until 1986 (though I did end up with Barbecue and a Snow Serpent), so my Dreadnoks were the later figures like Zarana, Zandar, Monkeywrench, Road Pig, Thrasher, Zanzibar, and Gnawgahyde. Buzzer, Ripper, and Torch are definitely the three main Dreadnoks (besides Zartan) and I'm a little surprised it's taken them this long to show up. Despite being a fairly prominent character in both the comics and the Sunbow animated series, there haven't been that many Buzzer figures made. I believe the last one was the 2007 G.I. Joe: 25th Anniversary Collection Buzzer that I reviewed at MWC Toys! How crazy. Overall, this is a really good figure of Buzzer, but the glasses are a pain. Fair warning! Let's check out the former Richard Blinken-Smythe, now better known as Dick Blinken or just Buzzer, after the break...


The Facts:

Height: 6 3/8th inches

Articulation: Swivel/ hinge ankles, boot swivels, double hinged knees, swivel thighs, ball jointed drop down hips, ball jointed waist, mid-torso hinge, butterfly pecs, swivel/hinge shoulders, bicep swivels, double hinged elbows, swivel/hinge wrists, ball jointed neck base, and a ball jointed head.

Accessories: Chainsaw, bladed chain, knife, sheath, pistol, holster, baseball bat, and glasses.

Non-Scalper Price: $25 dollars

The Positives:

* When it comes to the Dreadnoks and most named Cobra villains, it doesn't feel like they need to be updated much to feel like modern fighters. That goes for Buzzer; while he's a better, more detailed take on the 1985 original, he still looks perfectly fine wearing a tan button-up shirt with the sleeves yanked off and some faded jeans. Timeless. He's excellent with lots of stuff hanging off of him like grenades, a badge of some short, and some random dog tags. He has a lot of visible chest hair, too so you know he's a manly man. Mix all that together with a metal skull and crossbones belt buckle and you know you don't want to mess around with Buzzer.

* There's a lot of character in Buzzer's face. That's something I feel like I say often about this line, but it's true. Hasbro's Joe team really gets to add a lot of personality and character into their sculpts, probably more so than folks trying to capture the look of an actor or a superhero with a well established look. The hair definitely makes this recognizable as Buzzer, but the face and stubble really convey a guy living a new lifestyle that's clearly taking a tole on him. He's quite gaunt, and looks to me a bit like a younger, thinner Guy Pearce.

* Buzzer went from being a left-wing sociology professor at Cambridge to being part of a group of Australian bikers. That's a lifestyle change! Do you think he's always had the long hair and ponytail or is that a "new" part of his Dreadnok identity?

* From the back you can see the really cool way Hasbro made his ripped sleeves a separate part from his biceps. He's also sporting a wicked cool studded belt. 

* How exciting can the arms of a bare armed figure be? When you're sporting a heavy duty watch like ol' Dick Blinken here, have a plethora of arm hair, and a cool tattoo with a serpent and a knife, the answer is plenty. That watch is removable, too. 

* The articulation on the Classified Series figures is always pretty solid, so I don't have any issues with Buzzer there. He moves well, can take a great variety of poses, and interacts nicely with most of his accessories. These are really sturdy, durable figures that have some of the best articulation out there. He's quite fun to pose in various crazy chainsaw maniac poses.

* I really like Buzzer's chainsaw. It's not a straight up rehash of the vintage chainsaw, nor is it just a standard modern chainsaw. It's something different that looks a bit more powerful than what you'd pick up at Lowe's or Home Depot. There's actually a paint app for the chain and an exhaust pipe which can hold one of the smoke firing effects from some of the other figures in the line.

* Buzzer also comes with his unusual axeblade on a chain, kind of like a chain flail axe, I guess. It's pretty cool, though I imagine wildly impractical. Like that would stop a Dreadnok, though, right? 

* Surprisingly, Buzzer comes with a pretty normal pistol. It looks kind of like an FN but with some material wrapped around the handle. It's an excellent sculpt and has a hollow barrel for utilizing firing effects. 

* Buzzer's armored thigh pads also help hold his weapons. The holster on his left thigh carries his automatic securely.

* He's also carrying a very standard knife. 

* Just slide that into the sheath on Buzzer's right hip! Smooth like butta'.

* Last up is a baseball bat that has been equipped with blade halves and a big pointy spike on top. It loos like just the kind of over the top weapon that a Dreadnok would use to show off in front of his buddies. 

The Negatives:

* Unfortunately, it's quite rubbery. It also looks a bit undersized, though it's possible that Buzzer used a little league bat or something. 

* I like the glasses Buzzer is wearing but they do not fit on his face securely at all. The Baroness' glasses have been pretty good, but they fit under her hair. Buzzer's are too gummy and just don't clasp tightly. I've tried some eat to mold them a bit more but I might have to really boil them or something. I'm reluctant to use superglue, so maybe I'll have to find some alternate glasses. Removable glasses are a real gamble and these ones didn't pay off at all.
* You know what? Despite those glasses that don't fit, I still really love Buzzer. There are so many cool, unique things going on here. The incredible chainsaw, the superb pistol w/ holster, the watch, his tattoo, an excellent headsculpt, that axe on a chain, and those ripped sleeves for starters. For a $25 dollar mass market retail figure, he's really quite loaded, and he's still a pretty cool figure even without his sunglasses. Hot glue might be a good solution. They look fine. He's a Great and a 1/2 figure, but not my favorite of the two Dreadnoks recently. Stay tuned for Ripper, coming soon!

Looking for more of Buzzer, also known as Richard Blinken-Smythe/ Dick Blinken? Check out my review of the G.I. Joe 25th Anniversary Buzzer at MWC 

For more Classified Series reviews check out the following:


  1. That is definitely the sort of haircut you could get away with as a lefty uni lecturer as much as a cartoon villain biker gang. At least one of my film lecturers had that sort of hsircut

    1. Someone on a Reddit group compared him to Dee Snider, and I totally see it.

  2. maybe try some tiny bits of blu-tack to keep the glasses on too if you can stick it on in a way that's not too visible.

    1. After the review I did go back and put the goggles in a metal mesh container and heated them with a hair dryer until they were quite pliable. Then I molded them to his head and left them stuck in place, holding them on with my fingers until they cooled. They look a lot better and have been staying on quite nicely. I imagine pulling them off might "warp" them again, but for now I'm quite content.

  3. Are there any other figures with glasses that might fit better on him? Duke has a couple, maybe he can let Buzzer borrow a pair ;) Either way, good looking figure. The dreadnoks are are a huge part of why I loved GI Joe so much growing up. My first Dreadnok figure was Monkeywrench!

    1. I'm debating using Elsa's goggles from the Indiana Jones Adventure Series if my current setup fails in the future. The strap seems a little short, but I think some heat will make it more pliable.

  4. he looks so damn good, just a shame his glasses don't fit

    1. I know, right? Two portraits would have been ideal here.


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