The first retaliation version of Flint looks away, unable to gaze at his future greatness, ashamed of his own failures and limitations.
There's a reason I've never reviewed the first version of Flint from the Retaliation line. Basically, he sucked. And yet, I bought him. The primary issue with the 1st version is not the lack of articulation or the crazy, bizarre rope thingy. He just looks goofy. True, he doesn't have the web gear in the picture, but the unpainted jungle Duke gear just didn't work with the figure.
Plus the head sculpt is just too dang big for the small frame of the body. Decent weapons, a great head sculpt, and the beret - that's the best elements of that 1st Flint figure. I think the body may work well with a smaller head sculpt, maybe one from the 25th era.
This new version, this Ultimate Flint, really kicks ass. Everything just clicks with this figure. The excellent head sculpt, great vest, great paint apps, and a great assortment of gear. He even comes with a parachute based on the designs from the one that came with the first RET Cobra trooper, except it is now in green.
The range of motion for Flint really excels on this figure. He can be easily posed in a two-handed firing stance and even can match some of the moves that DJ Cotrona went through in the movie.
The paint detailing on the pants is excellent. A gray MARPAT pattern that is ultra detailed. You can really tell when Hasbro puts some extra work into a figure.
It would have been nice if the beret was also included in the ultimate version, but he can snatch it from his previous incarnation.
Lady J and Flint together - at least in the movie world. Perhaps there is a hint of a beginning relationship that may be developed later. We'll see if that happens in GI Joe 3.
The side by side picture highlights the huge difference in skin tones used for these two figures. No big deal, but it really makes it difficult to do lazy head swaps with the darker skin tones of Flint. Budo has been the closest skin tone so far.
Based on all of the wave 3.5 figures that I currently own, Ultimate Flint ranks as #1. There is so much "right" with the entire figure. Everything just works. I suppose I would have liked more gear than the parachute, but you've got to think about the kids. As long as the figure actually makes it out into the brick and mortar stores and some kids actually buy him.
Flint had to scam Kwinn's shotgun to get properly geared up.
The biggest issue that I have is purely personal. Is this guy really Flint in my twisted GI Joe world? I really like the Resolute version of Flint and he has been my default Flint since that time. I don't know if I'm ready to make that change. The same holds true for Lady J. Is the movie version really Lady J or does the boxed set version still remain as my default version?
I don't have an answer to these pressing questions right now. Hell, does it really matter in the broad scheme of things? Nope.
Just enjoy the toys.