G.I. Joe: 25th Anniversary Lady Jaye
Lady Jaye has been one of the most popular and iconic G.I. Joe characters in the mythos regardless of her gender, so it only makes sense that she appear in the 25th Anniversary line. One thing I would have thought, though, is that Hasbro would have taken advantage of this fact by giving us a really media-accurate Lady Jaye, but instead they gave us a pretty straight remake from her '85 version, hat and all. I won't lie when I say that this a serious bummer to me, but thankfully most of the rest of the figure does make up for that. If Hasbro can find a way to retool a hatless head, I would be thrilled, but as it stands, that just takes something away from the potential of the figure.
One of the shortfalls of the first few releases of the Anniversary figures in my mind were the females. Both Scarlett and the Baroness were sculpted VERY well but neither of them had great articulation, function, or movement. They both seemed a bit stiff and immobil, and just weren't a whole lot of fun to play around with. Scarlett had a lot of pluses, but the Baroness really didn't. Lady Jaye, though, improves on most of that straight out of the box.
The figure over all is sculpted VERY nicely. Slender limbs, a proportional body, and a female-type sculpt (which is saying something based on what we've seen from this line in the past). Her overall appearance is quite reminiscent of the original, but is nicely updated and looks like she really does belong in the more modern day. She has all of the great elements of the '85 version, yet has a ton of great updated form and function as well.
The head sculpt should be covered first, and really, it's a shame that the all too familiar hat was sculpted to the head here, because this had the potential to be a great "be all, end all" Lady Jaye figure. Don't get me wrong, both the hat, the hair, and the overall facial sculpt are excellent from a quality standpoint...all of the right seams, wrinkles, and smooth detailing gives you a determined female look, that is more than just a pretty face. But if they had somehow found a way to sculpt her head without the hat, this truly would have been a Lady Jaye we've all waited many years for. Considering we just got our vintage sculpt hatless Lady Jaye a couple of years ago, I hope it doesn't take another twenty-three years to get another one.
With that complaint aside, though, the rest of the figure really is pretty spectacular, and this is coming from someone who did not have his hopes the least bit up after seeing the figure at SDCC.
As I've already mentioned, the sculpting on this figure is terrific, from the seams of the flightsuit to the medal on her chest, rolled up sleeves, and even her trusty miniature pistol and knife clipped securely to her boots. She looks really, really great from a design standpoint, very much like her original version. I'll try to refrain from comments about her... upper body proportions... but I do have to say for the most part, I am impressed with the quality and execution of the sculptor on this one.
One slight downside with the other females in the line, in my opinion, were the knee joints. Lady Jaye, thankfully, as those trusty double-hinge knee joints, allowing her great range of motion. Her hip sockets are at least somewhat restrictive, but a heck of a lot better than both Scarlett and the Baroness' were, yet it doesn't affect her overall appearance in the least. She cannot sit down perfectly, but it's definitely a step in the right direction. I find myself really drawn to how her boots are sculpted, too, with the weapons in pouches just as they were in the '85 version. That is a terrific touch.
Around her waist she's got a belt with holster, which unfortunately isn't removable, but is packed with some great detail work. It fits her pistol perfectly and there's a nice row of ammunition in the back that adds a nice spark as well. About the only limitation I can come up with is that she unfortunately does not have swivel wrist articulation, which kind of stinks. Rumor around the Convention was that some sort of mishap at the factory fused her wrist joints shut and they couldn't quite get the issue worked out in time for production...whatever the reason, I really wish she did have the wrist articulation, but it isn't the end of the world that she doesn't, and the figure still looks really nice without it. Combining the nicely updated sculpt with a deeper, darker green and black/brown trim gives us a fantastic update to the Lady Jaye character and a true 25th style homage. Very nice work, and I'll tell you right up front, I was NOT a fan of this figure when she was first shown. I didn't like the head sculpt, I didn't like the body sculpt...she just seemed "off". Now that I have her in hand, I am very, VERY impressed.
Accessories here are very well done also, though again, I would have loved to have seen some cartoon elements work their way in here. Maybe a sheath on her back with removable javelins or something of that nature. Instead we get a newly tooled javelin launcher, which is very reminiscent of the classic one, but using multiple paint applications and great detail. Not wild about the weapon choice, but the execution is very, VERY nice.
She's got a great belt/holster combination with a removable pistol and a very nicely detailed backpack with actual straps that fit over Lady Jaye's shoulders. The gear is nothing amazing or incredible, but the execution of her accessories is terrific. Very nice detail, very nice paint applications, and that makes a big difference.
As I've already said a couple of times in this review, at first I was not at all wild with how Lady Jaye looked, but now that I have the figure in hand, I am incredibly impressed. Very nice sculpting, well-detailed flightsuit and nice accessories, too. There are a few minor articulation issues, and I'm not crazy about the hat being on the head, but besides those minor issues this figure is really, really nice. Good job on this one, for sure.