Lifeline (1991)

Lifeline (1991)How many boxes of cereal would you buy as an adult collector in order to capture an exclusive figure? Would you have downed five boxes of Fruit Brute to get a free Membros figure? Come on, don’t be shy. If you’re a toy collector, you know you’ve done it, especially if you were collecting the Star Wars Power of the Force 2 line in the 90s. I’ll admit that I bought two boxes of Froot Loops to send away for the Han Stormtrooper figure. I proudly took those suckers to the checkout line. “Yes, Miss Checkout Lady Ma’am, this cereal is for me–and yes, I am sending in two proofs of purchase to acquire the Han Solo toy pictured on the back. And yes, I am single”

I got back into GI Joe collecting in 1992, just a tad late to take advantage of the Rice Krispies Lifeline offer. Would I have bought several boxes of sugary kiddie cereal in those early days of geekdom as brazenly as I did a few years later? Probably not. I did however pick the figure up bagged back in the days of Usenet trading/buying. Those were the days…

Of course, this Lifeline’s claim to fame is his legs. The story goes that Kelloggs didn’t want a mail-in figure with a weapon, so Lifeline gained the gun-less limbs of Frostbite. How true is this? Who knows, but it does make for an interesting story, much more so than the figure itself. The story also nicely ties in with the pacifist aspect of the character in the Sunbow cartoon. Now that I think about it, I wonder if the no gun story is based on the ‘toon portrayal and not a cereal company’s aversion to firearms? Does the GI Joe intelligentsia know the final word on this, or is it something that Snopes needs to investigate?

He's got legs--he knows how to use them.


  • One of my Field Report subjects!

    I actually won a fresher copy of the figure recently on Listia. He’ll do for now, until I get the 30th version.

  • The firearms story is believed to be true: where’s the gun on the mail away Han Solo Stormtrooper if it’s not?

  • You only had to send in two proofs of purchase for the Han Solo in stormie armour. A few years ago, i had to shell out $45.00 Au for that lousy “ghost” Ben Kenobi. Still. Its better than that waste of plastic that is the “hologram” Kenobi that comes with the Rebels “Jedi reveal” three pack.

    In regards to this guy. He seems like an odd choice for a cerial mail in. Was there a surplus of Lifeline figures?

    • He was probably chosen because he’s a non-combatant…and looks more like rescue guy…which he is.
      BTW, he didn’t come with the oxygen mask.

  • I display my Rice Krispies Lifeline holding a pistol as an inside joke.I remember buying all those bags of Lay’s potato chips to get that hologram Obi-Wan hologram figure, and later on getting that mail in offer for that Spidery-looking droid with a brain enclosed in glass that was seen briefly in Jabba’s palace.

  • I can’t remember if I had to eat all that many more boxes worth of cereal to send away for Lifeline.

    After a cereal promotion for Autobot Jazz, Lifeline is my second favorite cereal promotion, EVER.

    They just don’t do this stuff any more….

  • The empty holster on his chest still tells the tale of the Browning 9mm. It’s an interesting figure, but I prefer the original’s legs for the details. Frostbite’s legs are pretty plain, even for a vehicle driver.

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