Dr. Mindbender (2009)

If a GI Joe toy line has needed someone to fulfill the role of all-around mad scientist plot catalyst, the good doctor is always standing by. He’s been connected to things like the creation of Serpentor, the BATs, mutated monsters, venomized DNA modified troopers, and even a quick reference in the Rise of Cobra film. He’s become almost as ubiquitous as Destro within the Cobra organization. That’s coming a long way from being a follow-up to Marvel comic favorite Dr. Venom, the first doctor on the Cobra payroll to muck around with minds. Heck, Venom’s Brain Wave Scanner is still being used to this day in the Hama-verse. Just ask Snake Eyes. He’s taken a ride on that thing more times than the Ninja Lightning.

It’s hard to believe that there have only been six small scale action figure versions of Cobra’s dentist turned mind control specialist. Four of his appearances have been based on variations of his original look, a supremely goofy get-up showcasing a shamelessly shirtless theme augmented with stainless steel suspenders. My favorites have been his wild and wacky bionically bolstered 90s version, as well as the more traditional lab coat look of Valor vs Venom. I understand the popularity of the first version, but this more modern interpretation of it leaves me wanting a little more.

On the plus side, the doc has a new head, and a nice set of suspenders that match his old set. The new head is nice, but the ‘stache just isn’t quite as epic as his über-Selleck from ’86.
The legs are lacking, and just too recognizable as the Crimson Guard mold. I can see the reasons for using them, and for putting the new parts budget into the head and web gear, but below the waist, he’s just lacking in the all-over flair that made his original 1986 figure so distinctive.

Mindbender is equipped with his cape and electric prod, although that too is lacking. There’s no hose or generator to connect it. Oh well, at least I have a half dozen or so of the things hanging out in my parts box. Overall, although being a must-have in terms of members of Cobra’s heinous hierarchy, Mindbender is the weakest entry in the Defense of Cobra Island pack. Maybe someday he’ll show up in another lab-coated or bionic version.



  • If I had been in charge of the figure selection and figure construction for that set, here’s what I would’ve done with the Doctor:
    -Keep the head, webgear, arms, cape and prod.
    -Use the Quick Kick torso mold.
    -Use the upper right leg of Gung-Ho (with a new holster) and the upper left leg of Duke.
    -Use the lower legs of the Viper, but with the feet of the Crimson Guard and the knees of Snow Job painted black.

  • Wow I had no idea how expensive the Defense of Cobra Island pack has gotten. No mediocre ME Drs for me!

  • I cant remeber the title of the episode; but in one of the Sunbow 2nd season cartoons, his trousers are miscoloured to match his skin tone, giving the impression he is only wearing a cape and iron codpeice.

    I also noticed somwhere that Mindbenders origonal filecard stated he was vain, thats why he wears no shirt

  • I was glad to see this figure squeezed along with the other Cobras in the seven-pack since he missed a single card release for the 25th. The head sculpt is okay but his skull reminds me more of a shriveled garbanzo bean for some reason.

    I’ve grown used to this classic look since Mindy keeps going back to it for some reason. The lab coat is classier and far more suitable but this character is all about bizarre which is why I think the shirtless look has remained in vogue.

  • The Battle Corps Mindbender figure had so much more aged personality with a hint of back from the dead grit for me.

    While always iconic, Mindbender has the potential to be even better. While I miss it, it’s not 1986, and this is one iconic look that I wouldn’t mind going by the way side this last final time.

  • I don’t remember Dr. Mindbender being so svelte. Did Commander reinstate daily exercises at the Cobra compound?

  • The GvsC headsculpt was better than the 2009 figure. Going back to a solid sculpted, silver-painted monocle? Step backwards.

  • Cobra’s go-to mad scientist, this guy can build anything! I actually like the Mindy-Destro relationship in Renegades better, Destro has the mechanical engineering, the good Dr. provides the bio-engineering. Makes more sense to me.
    This design for Mindbender is just so strange: not only is he a mad genius but he’s also a .5% body-fat freaky-deaky. Not bad for a masochist with a moustache and monocle. The perfect toy for a pre-teen boy…

  • I do miss some of the original flair (like his iron codpiece), but honestly, I’m just happy to have this version at all. I had the original Mindbender growing up and thought he was super cool. I don’t mind that his legs are Crimson Guard legs. To me it gives a little synergy with other Cobras that even the not-so-good doctor is wearing some accouterments that are close to standard Cobra gear. My bigger disappointment is that they didn’t recreate the rest of his gear. The probe is nice, but the probe is also supposed to attach to a mindwave-altering device.

  • I really like Dr Mindbender….I always wondered about the shirtless look but Skymate’s comment is probably correct – his vanity leads him to do this. Also, it looks mad and adds to the insane Dr idea. He’s an iconic character and became instrumental in the contraversial Serpentor characters creation…I had the original once and now have the 25th version. I ended up buying a vintage Mindbender pistol and generator for his ‘cattle prod’ device and when all put together with a black hose connecting the generator and prod he looks much better. Just fiddle with his braces and pull them gently over the molded belt on his lower half and it sits all the more better across his chest.

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