Snake Eyes (2013 12 inch)

The partner figure of the Storm Shadow covered a while back, Snake Eyes is even more intriguing to me. The old school aspect of these new 12 inch styled GI Joe figures, as a contrast to the recent super detailed and hyper articulated toys, fascinates me. They’re simplistic in terms of construction, and though the throwback nature of the figures is probably due more to meeting a low price point than catering to aging action figure collectors, I’m nonetheless hooked on the idea of jumbo Joes. A five-point (okay, seven point) articulated, rigidly posed figure molded in solid black plastic makes the 70s Adventure People/Star Wars kid in me very happy.

I talked about the economical packaging in the Storm Shadow entry, but I thought this time I’d take a picture of it to showcase it. I’m glad to see plastic twist ties getting eighty-sixed, and the world’s landfills can certainly use fewer plastic action figure bubbles. Even if you don’t give a whit about conservation, I think you can appreciate the engineering that went into wrapping a figure securely in a single folded sheet of cardboard. This is the old Joe coffin box taken to a new level.

Snake Eyes takes his design from the 2011 Pursuit of Cobra commando styled figure, one of the most popular renditions of the character in recent memory. There are some nice little touches of detail on the figure, like the Arashikage symbol painted on the arm, as well as the same symbol echoed in the back scabbard. I’ve been wondering about the origins of this figure and Storm Shadow, since neither are movie depictions of the famous sword brothers. Have these molds been hanging around in some form before the release of the film, or did Hasbro just decide to throw collectors a bone with the subject matter since the articulation was limited? The detail also appears quite soft in comparison to other larger scale figures, which makes me wonder if they were sculpted at a smaller scale and enlarged to twelve inches.

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