Thursday, December 3, 2009

Cheap Exclusives II

Yes, as promised, it's the GI Joe Rise of Cobra Toys 'R' Us Exclusive Snow Serpent!

Though it looks like this dude is exclusive to TRU in these parts and he comes at a time when the price of Movie Joes is dropping accross the board, he's not being cleared wholesale off the shelves.  That's good news for me because I'm gonna buy at least 2 more of these guys (at S$12.90 = US$9.20) to make up my crack polar combat specialist team! (I've already snagged 2. Heheh.)

Like: The sculpt! It's a repaint of the 25th anniversary Snow Serpent, and Snow Serpent Officer except with more gear (the ice pick and BFG) and a cooler gun!  I think the fur gloves and shoulder pads/collar give the Snow Serpent real character. But somehow the original paint job didin't really make the character come alive, which brings me to my next point...

Like: The paint! The Rise of Cobra version has a nice grey camouflage paint job that contrasts well with the white fur and the black mask. It makes him look more all-purpose, instead of standing out like a sore thumb if there isn't any snow around. I also can't find any paint spills/smudges on this guy.

Like: The hands.  They're well molded and hold the gun and ice pick he comes with very tightly.  This goes for both Snow Serps I have, and it could well be due to the gun not being in his hand in-package. Oh and you wouldn't see the ice-pick in the package either--it's hidden behind the cardboard below his feet. :)

Like: He can hold all his stuff at one go except his BFG, of course. His snow shoes tab onto his feet, and his missile tabs onto his backpack which tabs onto Snow Serpent himself.

Dislike:  His snow shoes fall off too easily! Hasbro actually had the great idea of allowing his snow shoes to be tabbed onto the figure stand as well, with holes in the shoes in front of the foot pegs. But because shoes fall of easily, Snow Serpent often falls off and leaves his snow shoes behind. You can still pose Snow Serp directly on the stnad though. Good idea in theory by Hasbro, but in practice it doesn't seem to work.

Dislike: That he has this great pouch and harness package that's really tough to remove.  It's got a small peg and hole around the back, but I'm now reluctant to try to take it off for fear of breaking the harness after several unseccessful attampts. Don't get me wrong, it's an awesome harness but it has a strap that goes under and between the legs.  The up side is that the harness doesn't shift around because of this.


Aesthetics: 9.5/10 - Great sculpt and paint.  There aren't many figures that jump out at me off the peg (not literally, of course. Heh.) and none which are COBRA troopers.  But this is one of them. I knew I just had to get him when I first saw the pics online. Cool sculpted fur, great semi-camouflaged gun, great looking goggles and helmet, and nice padded pants that really look like they would be comfy and warm to wear in snowy weather.

Poseability: 8.8/10 - He's got your standard Joe 22 points of articulation but his shoulders are obstructed from being raised above his head by the fur on his shoulders.  But surprisingly, his head can turn almost all the way to the right and left and he can look up and down pretty ok.

Fun: 9.5/10 - You gotta give it to these guys, they sure can screw up an ambush! :P But seriously, army builders are fun--you juts gotta find the right generic dude you want to make up your squad/army and buy in bulk! ;) I also like that his shoulder fur is removeable.  This way you can make most any figure look arctic climate ready by putting it on another figure. I'm thinking someone like Paris Pursuit Baroness. All you have to then is add "Snow" or "Arctic" in front of their name an viola! You got Arctic Paris Pursuit Baroness! Come to think of it, wasn;t there a scene in the movie that Baroness was wearing some fur?

Value: 9/10 - I'd say this and wave-mate Bench Press are both there or thereabouts in this category.  With Snow Serpent you get his assault rifle, ice pick, snow shoes, backpack, missile, BFG, fig stand and harness.  You also ge the surprise accessory shoulder pads/fur. And with the colour of camouflage he comes in (matches with Joe uniforms), you could easily repaint his COBRA insignias on his left am to a Joe one, and you'd have Snow Joes. Hahahaha. I just made that up. Really.

Overall: 9.2/10 - A real solid figure, this. And I'm really not a big fan of many of the Vipers, Adders, or other Serpents out there.  I can't say for sure for the rest of the Vipers, Adders, and other Serpents, but if you're looking for a bad guy soldier with a great head sculpt and mask, decently cool accessories, and who actually looks like he's part of an army and not some alien invasion force, then Snow Serpent is your man. I actually think he'll also go very nicely with some 25th Anniversary (mostly) all-white snow Serps in some sort of Arctic Assault Squad to go with Arctic Assault Storm Shadow (who has no shirt, let alone warm clothes, on).


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