I was away from the computer for a bit tonight, but wanted to catch up for folks who may not have seen it. After the G.I. Joe Collectors Club roundtable, they put the figures on display from the Transformers/G.I. Joe 5 Pack! Over at the YoJoe Photo Galleries the images have been posted, and I’ve got them mirrored here as well.
Scarlett and Biggles Jones are looking pretty great!
As a kid in the late 80s, early 90s, ninjas were pretty much the be all, end all. My first ever exposure to the term “ninja” was with Storm Shadow, and that opened these doors for me into great films and stories throughout the next decade.
Ninja Force, first released in 91 felt like it kind of came on the tail end of the ninja craze, but it had some spectacular, somewhat outlandish designs that worked really well with the 90s era of G.I. Joe.
Unfortunately many of those figures were hampered by spring-loaded action features that either ruined the aesthetics, or wrecked the play value of the figure. Thankfully the G.I. Joe Collectors Club has been making an effort in recent years to fix some of those mistakes.
Slice, Dice, and TJBang are a few of their modern revisits, and each one has been a very successful take on these colorful characters. Nunchuk is much the same.
Using modern parts like Airtight’s legs, with 30th Anniversary Storm Shadow’s torso and arms, they’ve cobbled together a pretty effective Nunchuk update, who has the right ninja/martial arts elements, but also is more of a combat based figure, too. He’s got terrific articulation, and the use of modern parts means the sculpting and overall design of the figure is really great.
I will say I’m not real wild about the decision to just use the clunky mask from the Training Storm Shadow. I’m not sure what existing alternative could have been selected, but this doesn’t look a whole lot like Nunchuk from that perspective. Also, the singular Storm Shadow chest strap makes the figure look a little empty in the torso, too. Again, not sure what else could have been used, but this doesn’t feel like quite the right formula, and it’s not even vintage accurate.
The color scheme is good, using the familiar green uniform with black tiger stripe camouflage, with black wrists and boots. It’s a good look and a very nice update to the original.
As one might suspect, Nunchuk comes with… nunchuks. As well as a pair of swords, sais, and the darts that Storm Shadow came with. He has the sheath on his back from the Storm Shadow strap, and that about covers is. Pretty straight forward accessories that work fine, though part of me would have loved for him to come with a crazy scimitar looking thing like the original did.
Simply from the new parts and modern construction, I consider this figure a win, even though there are some cosmetic changes I would have recommended. The head and webgear are two changes that could have made a big difference, but even as it stands, I’m excited about a Ninja Force update and Nunchuk is a cool addition to the FSS. Now I need me some Dojo, Snake Eyes, and Scarlett! At the very least!
FSS 4.0 Nunchuk
The latest addition to the modern era Ninja Force, Nunchuk does a great job approximating his vintage look, while taking advantage of the modern style. His paint scheme is relatively close, though muted compared to the vintage look. While he’s got a number of cool accessories, the simple Storm Shadow sash leaves me a bit dry, and I would have liked to have seen a little more ingenuity there.
I’ve also done a video review of this figure on YouTube! Check out that video review below:
As promised, the G.I. Joe Collectors Club revealed their latest 2014 G.I. Joe Convention Exclusive today, and it’s none other than Zombie Hunter TJBang!
I suspected, once some colors were revealed, that this figure might appear in a very classically themed uniform, and it looks like that suspicion is right on the money! I know there have been folks questioning why the Club is apparently combining Ninja Force with E.C.O. Force, and I think we’ll probably get some answers with the Convention comic this year. Regardless, for those 90s lovers like myself this is really awesome.
TJBang now joins the Discount Store Storm Shadow on the Ninja Force roster, and one might wonder if others are close behind. Dice is on the other side of the fence…will we see some other key members in future Figure Subscription Services?
Regardless, check out GIJoeCon.com and the image mirrored below.
So with big thanks to Gyre Viper and JoeDeClassified, we got a very nice look at some potential upcoming figures to be released this year. With much of the focus being placed on the G.I. Joe: Retaliation movie line, this figure assortment (which contains some very old school classic deco’s) sort of came out of left field and has many fans scratching their heads.
Well, looking to find some answers, I asked around a little bit to see what I could find.
A reliable source tells me that these figures are themed as a low price-point assortment, mostly targeted for Dollar Stores. The idea of the assortment was to take some of the well known core characters and get them into retail outlets, but to do it in interesting ways, and ways that existing tooling would allow.
With the idea of paint applications, apparently some decisions had to be made for cost purposes, and even though a figure like Cobra Commander looks to be somewhat bland, he has the same paint apps as anyone else, they’re just applied differently. As far as paint applications go, too, each paint app adds cost to the overall product, so to keep pricing low, the number of different paint applications also had to be kept low. While the price has yet to be revealed, we can expect to see these priced lower than the mainline items.
Release dates are uncertain, but we should expect to see these hit Dollar Stores this summer.
Obviously at this point, these details could be subject to change, but I consider this information to be extremely reliable. Again, to see some images of these figures, check out JoeDeClassified.com.
If nothing else this assortment brings a certain enlightenment to me. Ever since its release, I’ve always hated the Ninja Force Storm Shadow. I wasn’t entirely sure why, but it’s clear to me now. I think the design and the limited articulation of the original figure significantly impacted my overall opinion of the uniform itself. Seeing this similar design on a much better base figure really gives new light to the look of the figure in a way I didn’t appreciate back in the 90’s. It’s amazing that after 15 or so years, taking old school deco’s and applying them to newer figures can still bring things to light after all this time.
A great looking assortment, and great news about them potentially hitting discount and dollar stores. Hopefully there’s more still to come!