Well what an interesting day I’ve had, through a series of serendipitous events I have all new blog fodder directly related to my last blog post about He-Man and my childhood toys in general. After posting the previous blog I went to run some errands, one of which was picking something up from my cousin’s house. When I got there I found both my cousin and her husband doing some hardcore spring cleaning, pulling things out of their garage and shed and tossing anything that was taking up too much room. After chit chatting with my cousin-in-law for a bit he snaps his fingers and tells me he has some stuff I might be interested in, some of his old toys, namely some old G.I. Joe stuff including “The Cobra headquarters.”
“What?!? The Terrordrome??” I asked agast. To my delight he climbed up into the rafters of his shed and handed down a couple of huge boxes which we promptly cut open and started sorting through. As promised the first thing we pull out is the one and only enormous Terrordrome, from my initial inspections the Cobra base seemed to be completely intact, a great find. As we continued to look through the boxes we pulled out tanks, jeeps, planes, choppers, artillery, various Joes and Cobra goons, but then we started pulling out flat wall and floor pieces, ramps, more walls, and various other building type pieces until I realized we were looking at the G.I. Joe Headquarters Command Center! Hotchi Motchi! Double rainbow! Although it wasn’t as assembled as the Terrordrome the Joe HQ also seemed to have all its parts at the ready for reassembly. Most the vehicles weren’t as lucky when it came to completeness, they clearly had seen some action, most of it full of heavy fighting.
The only downside to all of this is that the huge boxes that were storing the toys had also been home to some rodents at one time, with plenty of evidence for the rodent residency in among the Real American Heroes. My cousin-in-law tells me it’s all mine if I want it, he wants to get rid of the stuff and clear things out, and would probably just wind up tossing it all eventually. He of course knows this stuff is right up my alley, and I was more than happy to take it off his hands. He has two daughters, neither of which seems that interested in the ongoing battle between G.I. Joe and Cobra, so I packed up the goods and hauled them back home to unload and inspect them in my garage. Among the cool things I found, were three awesome G1 Transformers in great shape and an original Boba Fett figure, which I of course already have but a great find nonetheless.
I of course had a few G.I. Joes growing up, you’d be hard pressed to find a guy in my age range who didn’t, but they were never one of my main toy universes. I however loved the cartoon but because I never sought out any of the vehicles or accessories for the Joes and Cobras in my possession they didn’t ever see much action aside from cameos in my Ninja Turtle adventures or in some quick skirmishes in my backyard where inevitably one of their comrades would be buried. That’s not to say I didn’t think the toys were cool, I particularly liked all things Cobra especially the B.A.T.S, the Cobra vehicles, and Cobra Commander himself. I however was content with what I had, and though I might have swooned over some of my friends cool G.I. Joe swag, it never went beyond envious stares and a few hours of letting my lonely figures mingle with the better equipped platoons. The toys I now have in my garage are items of childhood mythology, only whispered about, and once thought to be only speculation. I have spied these treasures however and I am going to restore them to their former glory.
Now what all this means for me, and you loyal readers (ha ha!), is that I have a new ongoing project to tend to which I am calling Terrordrome Renovation 2011! A project that will consist first and foremost of a thorough cleaning of everything to remove the grime and gunk from its storage in the rafters. I’ve already started with this project by gathering up all the small arms, missiles, helmets, backpacks, and other miscellaneous accessories I found and gave them a good scrubbing with a tooth brush, a dunk in a bleach/water mix, and a good rinse. I scrubbed the Transformers with the tooth brush as well, skipped the bleach with them, gave them a good rinse and dried them well. Normally I wouldn’t be so anal with this type of thing, I’d just swiffer them off and be done with it, but there is some real ghastly stuff on some of the parts and when it comes to cleaning off things that have lived with mice, I don’t fuck around.
So here is my two part strategy as of now, first the cleaning. Dust, wash, and sterilize every part. It will be fairly easy with the vehicles and larger stuff but the small parts from the bases are gonna be time consuming, like I said it’s an ongoing project. Second, the restoration. Putting all the parts together with the correct vehicles and bases they go with. Luckily I do have the instructions for the Terrordrome which should help, but pretty much everything else will have to be referenced from the internet in order to put it all together. I will be posting my progress here and showing pictures of the fully restored goodness. Some folks restore historic cars or polish antiques I plan on restoring a few historic toys. Long story short I will be in my basement playing with old toys if anyone needs me and if anyone wants to lend a hand come on over and grab an old tooth brush and lets clean up Cobra!
That is all!