This thing. Huh.
The Tomahawk has been one of my all time favorite vehicles ever since it was first released. I was a lucky kid, and by and large, I got most of what I asked for during my formative Christmas years. The Tomahawk and Terror Drome were highlights of my 1986 Christmas season and I clung to that damn helicopter for over 20 years. My childhood version of this awesome aircraft finally met its end probably about 10 years ago when I accidentally tipped over a lamp in my garage, which in turn knocked the copter from its perch and smashed half of its rotors. I managed to salvage another Tomahawk from somewhere, and then when Hasbro released the newly tooled version, I finally felt contentment in my need for a fully engineered and capable dual-rotor transport copter.
So, do I really need another one?
Well, no, but let’s be brutally honest here… out of any of your items in your collection, how many do you truly NEED. Collecting is about wants, ain’t it?
So did I really WANT another one?
Again, the answer to that question is probably no, especially at a Convention price point, but a funny thing happens when you end up in a congested line with a few hundred other collectors and see a new and sparkly item for the first time. Your lack of interest suddenly gets flopped around and all of a sudden you become VERY INTERESTED. VERY INTERESTED INDEED.
The Tiger Hawk helicopter obviously uses the same tooling as the G.I. Joe: Retaliation Eaglehawk from two years ago, but with a unique new Tiger Force deco. It is eerily reminiscent of the vintage deco to the point where one might believe this was a vehicle designed back in the 80s aliongside the Tiger Rat. It looks gorgeous. The yellow, black, and faded white are picture perfect vintage throwbacks, with just the right hints of faded red/orange to match the other Tiger Force vehicles.
If I have any complaints about the deco it would be the infamous smiley face that these Tiger Force vehicles all have. The face here looks a bit too far up-turned like a goofy, toothy grin much more than the sneer that is supposed to inspire fear in the Cobra enemies.
Beyond that one odd deco choice, though, the Tiger Hawk is a pretty great looking updated Tiger Force vehicle. It’s got great color matching and style matching with the existing vehicles, and unlike other Convention exclusives, it actually presents something new. Where the Tiger Shark and Tiger Sting are mostly just redone duplicates of classic vehicles, the Tiger Hawk brings something pretty new to the table, you just need to be prepared to pay for it.
I also enjoy how the Club leveraged the Tiger Hawk into a meaningful place within the confines of the Con set. Building the three pack around the helicopter makes sense, with the pilot (Skystriker) and two operatives (Alpine and Frostbite) dove-tailing into the vehicle placement nicely.
At the end of the day, buying the Tiger Hawk is a decision that you have to take seriously, as it’s one of the most expensive Convention vehicles we’ve seen to date. But if you’re a Tiger Force fan, it would be tough to consider your Tiger Force collection complete without this vehicle at the head of the table. It really is executed nicely and would fit in a modern or vintage collection quite well.
One of the all time classic vehicles in G.I. Joe’s Real American Hero history, Hasbro’s recent re-release of the Tomahawk made a Convention item almost assured, even at a steep price. The Collectors Club took that challenge and indoctrinated it into the Tiger Force theme nearly seamlessly. The question ultimately remains of how much is it worth to the average collector. It’s undoubtedly a fantastic piece, but it can be a challenge to justify the price.