I wouldn’t have thought that Zartan, of all the old GI Joe designs, could have been made integrated into the modern era’s realistic approach to what was essentially a sci-fi military toyline. A hooded, facepainted master of disguise decked out in half-shirt armor, riding a waterski–how could this design and concept work in the post-movie line?
By putting a nomadic, shaman-like spin on the character, Hasbro really nailed a different new interpretation. I welcome a non-slavish attempt to recreate the old hits, and this figure delivers. The figure really benefits from the modern era’s perfected modular construction. Where the old Zartan’s disguise was a simple mask slipped under the hood, the new version features a swappable head and interchangeable head and jacket.
The falcon is the kind of out of left field concept that somehow works well. It certainly lends even more of a mystical element to this new interpretation of character. The mysticism angle is something that I don’t think has been explored with Zartan before. Could the bird have also been an homage to Raptor, another classic Cobra wierdo?