Bio Viper (1993)

Happy Halloween! Some folks may ask on this spooky holiday: are there any monsters in the Real American Hero era of GI Joe? Of course there are, thanks to that most wonderfully ridiculous and toyriffic of decades for Joe, the 90s. These weren’t just monsters either, but Mega Monsters. This was the decade of the extreme, after all. As further evidence of the day glo decade, they were even attired in the latest of Body Glove fashions.

The Bio Viper was released as one of two horrific antagonists for the Mega Marines. The other, the Monstro Viper, was a nutty melange of animals both real and mythic. The Bio Viper comes from the Dr. Mindbender school of genetic mutations. Spawned from the ranks of “volunteered” Cobra Eels, this tentacled terror incorporates elements of shark, rock fish, platypus, piranha and squid. Wow, that’s quite the cocktail of craven and creepy creatures. I haven’t seen anything this aquatically awe inspiring since the classic trash film Blood Waters of Dr. Z.

Since the resulting mutated monstrosities were not easily controlled, Dr. Mindbender added computer powered brain implants to tame the Bio Vipers’ terrorific tendencies. According to the file card’s equipment breakdown, the controls are located on the Viper’s right thigh. What’s keeping them from ripping the things off and running wild, I can’t imagine.

The main action feature this time is not Play-Doh based, like other Mega Marine figures and the gut-bomb wielding Monstro Viper. Instead, the figure has grabbing tentacles that are controlled by a lever on its back. The effect isn’t all that great, and the appendages basically just move up and down a bit. This could simply be down to age, and who knows, back in 1993, the tentacles might have been powerful enough to squeeze the Doh out of the Joe team’s bio armored warriors.

Naturally, the figure doesn’t have the traditional o-ring and highly articulated body, but it makes up for the loss with sheer size. It towers over other figures. The detail in the skin texture is also quite impressive, even though it resembles an amphibian more than the shark it’s supposed to represent. Then again, it is just a toy, and I should really just relax.


  • Waitasec–how does a platypus contribute to the ferocity of the Bio-Viper? Why did Dr. Mindbender incorporate PLATYPUS DNA?

  • @Acer–Hey man, a platypus can mess you up, dude…don’t forget, they’re poisonous!

    The Mega-Monsters were really cool. Looking back on it, I think my brother had the cooler one (this one), but as I recall part of our logic was I had Range Vipers (which Monstro-Vipers were before mutation) and he had the Eels, so it made more sense that way. I loved the Monstro-Viper growing up, but I think this one is a bit better. And Rob, I don’t think it’s age, I don’t remember the crushing tentacle feature being that strong back in the day. I think it was just kind of weak to begin with. Though he does make up for it by having a big missile launcher too.

  • @KansasBrawler and Acer

    Playtus’s [not sure what the plural is] are very docile creatures. Dont know what Mindbender was smoking when he thought that their DNA would be useful in a monster?

    My thoughts on this guy is what Timmer said on his show the other week.

    In my neck of the woods, haloween was yesterday. Last night, i was visited by 3 vampires [adorned with glitter],a carebear, Lara croft and 4 Abraham Lincolns. [Stupid kids now think Lincoln stole Vanhelsings job]

  • A great entry for Halloween. It makes sense that the Bio Viper would look amphibian since these guys used to be Eels. That’s probably why they turned out to be biped critters as well.

    The figure itself looks good for what it is. I rolled my eyes at this dude twenty years ago, but like most of the stuff you’ve reviewed here, I’ve learned to appreciate him better. A bit of added nostalgia for anything from the vintage years doesn’t hurt, either. 😉

  • Halloween is Christmas for Satanists 🙂

  • How were you able to get the tentacles to move for that pose? Mine came out of the package all pointing in one direction and I’ve tried to gingerly move them, but I’m always worried that they will break because they don’t seem to want to move very easily. Did you twist them at the base or what? Thanks in advance.

    • Behind the scenes info! Actually, it’s a bit of cheap trickery. I simply pushed the lever all the way down, and applied a little tape to hold it in place for the shot. I did have to bend the top tentacles a bit to get them to curve a little more. Now you know…

  • Nice MST3K reference.

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