By the mid 1970’s, GI Joe, the pioneer of action figures was in a tight spot. Kids were turning their attention to bionic men and Superheroes. Despite trying to emulate this trend (Bulletman anyone?), GI Joe’s sales were slipping and Hasbro needed to revamp the concept.
Enter SuperJoe, the 8″ Mego like figure with the “1-2 Punch”, this new Joe was some sort of outer space explorer/hero/ranger type (Hasbro was always vague with things like this) and he had a series of cool friends and enemies.
Despite a cool light up gizmo and some nice package design, Superjoe was a dud.Looking back as a kid, I remember the line was kind of “sexless”, I got the Shield as a “shut up” toy in a department store and once his flashlight battery burned out, so did i.
As an adult I discovered that Superjoe ain’t much fun to collect. His body much like the GI Joe muscle body, breaks apart meaning MOC figures often are just in pieces, so intact figures demand high prices and some of the human figures are uber rare.
What’s interesting is that Hasbro pimped this body out using other company names (Like Aviva with their Space Academy figures) and for foreign lines like Ceji.
Super Joe fizzled by 1978, even the popularity of Star Wars (and the lack of product) couldn’t make this line fly but as we know, it wasn’t the end of Joe.