Cobra Commander (1994)
I’ve said this before: I’m a big fan of the 1994 assortments of GI Joe. To me, there’s a little something to appeal to different tastes within its offerings. If you enjoyed the vibrant color schemes, action-featured accessories and sci-fi leanings, there’s plenty to be excited about. If you were more interested in the series’ early 80s origins of near-future military, there were elements of the past sneaking back in.
The second assortment of Star Brigade figures are much cooler than the first, mostly due to the use of new molds. Cobra Commander was the beneficiary of such. His scale-like armored space suit is appropriate for the leader of an evil space force. The suction cup harness however is another story. It’s a neat idea, and works as advertised, but leaves the Commander in an awkward looking position. I can’t imagine a man like him being willing to jump into this thing and fight.
It would take the last year of the Real American Hero series to finally see a small-scale unmasked Cobra Commander. The Hall of Fame series presented one in 1992. The two figures share a similar look for the un-hooded Commander: slicked back hair and a bandana mask covering his lower face. The features of two are even similar, down to the Spock-esque arched right eyebrow.
I always wanted to pick up another copy of this figure to swap the head with either the battle armor or Battle Corps version of the Commander. Speaking of which, I’m surprised that the modern era series never attempted to homage the unmasked version of old bumper face.