Action Marine (Keychain Figure)
The original GI Joes based on the four branches of the US military were released in the small format as part of the 30th anniversary celebration in 1994. The molds were well done interpretations of those venerable 60’s toys, with a Real American Hero twist.
Fast forward a few years and the molds showed up again, this time as keychains. Keychains? Can you imagine carrying a fully articulated 3 & 3/4 inch figure in your pocket with your keys? I can hope that most of these just ended up as conversation pieces. I purchased the set of four, all exclusive recolors, at a huge discount a few years later. I’ve covered the MP repaint of the soldier.
The marine is done up in a camo that I suppose is meant to convey the desert “chocolate chip” pattern that was seen throughout the first Gulf War. In this case, the base color gets a bit too close to the figure’s other colors (skin and boots), resulting in a weirdly low contrast look to the uniform. The pattern itself is interesting, and crisply painted, but as a whole the figure’s appearance is quite odd. Add in the fact that the paint itself is very glossy, and the plastic is of a lower quality than the regular release figures, and you’ve got a true oddity. It’s almost like a mannequin version of a small Joe, and a little bit creepy.