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Special Police Units, Old and New

1929 and 2000+

In the old days, there was no such unit as 'SWAT.'  Larger departments might have a tactical unit, but that was the extent of it.  Most special units were formed for countering specific types of crimes and criminals.  A famous unit was formed in Chicago in the 1920s to enforce Prohibition and put the brakes to the corruption and criminal gangs.  Known as 'The Untouchables" from a book by the unit's leader, Elliot Ness, the unit became fodder for movies and a popular 1960s television series.  The Louis Marx Company made a playset to accompany the television show, and thus came a range of figures.

Modern special units engendered shows of their own.  An early television show about "Special Weapons and Tactics" aired in the early 1970s.  It introduced the new type police tactical and emergency units.  SWAT was a popular theme for adventure movies, and gained even more popularity for its anti-terrorist role in the early 21st Century.  Unlike the old-time special squads, SWAT is not aimed at a specific kind of crime or criminal.  It is a tactical emergency response unit capable of employing commando-style tactics, and having available military-grade weaponry.  Naturally, a few figures have appeared depicting SWAT agents.  (There is another section of SWAT figures covered on this website..) Most of the SWAT figures come from obscure companies.  Those shown below are very recent.

Figures based on the "Untouchables" television series.  Figure at extreme left is criminal in handcuffs.  Note policeman with Thompson submachine gun with 50-round drum!  

Second from left, a man draws a shotgun from a golf bag!  Figure to his right is a prohibition Agent with pistol and axe.  Axes were used to smash kegs of illegal alcohol.

To left - rear view of handcuffed man, and another view of the "axeman."

"Dead guy" turned on end at left, man getting hit with bullets at right.  This set was supposed to represent government agents, cops and criminals.

Modern SWAT / anti-terrorist type policemen.  This set is very, very much like the 6" Police Swat figures in the section on 6" soldiers.

Plenty of firepower here!

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