The Mega Marines were a part of the sub-line mania that swept through GI Joe in the 90′s, a part of Hasbro’s strategy of varied gimmicks intended to stoke kids’ interest in the Real American Hero. Of all the extra features added to the line, Play-Doh armor was my favorite, as it allowed extra playability that didn’t detract from the figure molds themselves. When you’re done, you can just pull the stuff off the figure. Since it’s not a water based gimmick, there are no rusted screws to worry about either. As far as molds go, I find the Mega Marines figures to be some of the best of the late line figure designs. You just have to see past the colors, although I also confess to finding them fun anyway.
Even though I’m a lover of all things GI Joe and all things colorful and wacky from the 90′s, I admit that I hadn’t tried out the moldable bio-armor aspect of the Mega Marines toys in a while. I’ve even covered a few of them on the blog, but hadn’t broken out the Play-Doh lately. Mostly this was due to the fact that I didn’t have any of the stuff lying around, and the original cans had long dried up (they are almost 20 years old after all). I started to take my usual couple of pictures of the figure, without accessories, then remembered that I do have some Play-Doh in the house. “I’m sure my two and a half year old son won’t mind if I borrow his can of bright orange for a bit,” I thought as I gathered together Clutch’s armor mold and missile launcher. I was impressed with the results, and the bright orange I had was a pretty good color match. The Play-Doh warhead missiles are an added attraction, although you have to smush the end of it down when locking the missile in place.
So how did Clutch end up in a group of Marines? I don’t know. I assume he was wedged in simply because the group needed a driver for the Monster Blaster APC, and Clutch is the highest profile ground vehicle driver the Joes have. It’s a shame that the group never saw any action in the comics, as I can see Clutch, a man with no worries about speaking his mind, having a few choice comedic words about his group, their mission, and most definitely their outfits. He probably would have wanted to at least pinstripe, flame out, or chop and channel the Monster Blaster.
I think I prefer Clutch’s armor over the other Mega Marines, though Gung Ho is nice as well. Of course, a lot of this mold was reused for the convention exclusive Slaughter’s Renegades. Hmm, maybe I should try giving those three some bio-armor at some point.
I’m here to tell you, if you have any of the Mega Marines figures, and you happen to have some Play-Doh around the house, you simply must at some point load up the bio-armor mold and stick it on the figure. No matter how you’re feeling, I bet that at least some part of this process, whether it’s pushing the doh down into the mold, opening it up to see your handiwork, carefully removing the excess and rolling it up in little balls, or giving the armor a satisfactory smush from a Play-Doh tipped missile launcher, might just put a smile on your face.