Snake Eyes (2002)
There have been enough Snake Eyes, Storm Shadow, Cobra Commander and Duke figures that I could cover each variation pretty regularly and still not run out of them for a few more years. In fact, I think that’s what’s been happening. But what can I do, when those four have been the most ubiquitous characters in GI Joe for the past thirty something years? Hunting through piles of figures, the big four are bound to pop up now and again. So, If you don’t like to hear about another Snakes figure, come back tomorrow. I’m sure someone different will be in the spotlight. But wait–it might be Duke.
Believe it or not, this black version of the mold was not the first to be released. The man in black was the man in grey and purple for a short time in 2002, a very odd change of pace for the popular ninja. While the greater contrasting colors of that figure brought out the details in the mold, I prefer this black version. I guess my preference goes all the way back to 1982. A perfect Snake Eyes for me would be all black, with no paint apps. Of course, that couldn’t happen in a high profile relaunch, so Snakes was given some dabs of silver.
This is one kitted out Snake Eyes, with straps, pouches and molded weapons to spare. The design borrows from several older iterations, and works in arm bracers, padded uniform details, kneepads and shinguards. There’s also an interesting use of flat and glossy paints that help give a little more variation to the black on black color scheme.
Snake Eyes doesn’t fare too badly in terms of his proportions; the biggest issue for me is his inability to put his arms completely down at his sides. They’re always sort of jutting out just a bit too much. That’s a shame, since his articulation is some of the best of the era, featuring ankle and wrist joints.
I see some similarity in this figure and the later Sigma 6 design. Both featured a highly stylized visor, and the Sigma 6 version even had the same sort of padded shoulders integrated into his web gear. Unlike that later Sigma 6 figure, his weaponry is skimpy, getting only a sword with sheath, and a single Sound Attack rifle. What, no uzi? Say it ain’t so! Oh, and I almost forgot to mention–he’s got lips!