Friday, April 22, 2011

REVIEW: GI Joe Pursuit of Cobra - Jungle Assault Jungle-Viper

Produced by Hasbro | Released October 2010

Jungle-Vipers are Cobra troopers with special training as silent marksmen. Their opti-camo ghillie suits have digitized camouflage blades, which make them disappear from any detection devices. They also use multi-visual imaging systems that give them wide visual displays of surrounding territory.

Packaging Shots

Jungle Assault Jungle-Viper
The Jungle-Viper is a very unusual-looking figure, but it's also a figure with some pretty cool features.

Let's talk about the ghillie suit first. This multi-plated/bladed piece fits into the back port of the Jungle-Viper and then - thanks to a number of gimbal joints - can be closed-in around the figure to provide a camouflage field. Ghillie suits do indeed exist in real life, although they're more akin to shaggy/mossy suits than the pivot-based pieces seen here. Of course though, this is the world of GI Joe and the technology is a little more advanced than that currently employed, so it's the kind of look that fits right in with the line.

Two of the ghillie suit ''blades'' connect to the figure at the forearm, thanks to a small ball-mount molded onto the main sculpt. Two pieces form ''wings'' from the connector that fits into the figure's back port (with two smaller pieces at the ''wing tips'' again mounted on the same style of joint) and a final piece connects to the back mount and forms a head-cover. As you can see, each piece can be moved independently to provide the maximum amount of cover and they work very well.

Under all these pieces is a very well-sculpted, rather cool-looking Viper. His basic body sculpt - which has a lot of nice detail and looks great -  is further augmented by a removable skirt/vest piece, made from soft rubber. This piece is nicely designed and does little to inhibit movement. There's also a hip holster and a second one at his right calf, into which the two included pistols fit when not in use. I really like this figure's look as a ''basic'' figure and am tempted to create my own kitbash/custom figure using this as the basis...

Articulation is good, both in the basic figure and the ghillie suit pieces (I know technically I should be covering this in the Extras section but they're pretty integral to the figure.) The left wrist features an additional joint, as seen on a few of the Pursuit of Cobra releases that allows it to be bent forward/backward. This makes posing him with his rifle much easier and I'd like to see all future figures use this, as it adds a massive amount of extra posing options to the toy. As mentioned, the rubbery vest/skirt is also designed to accommodate the figure's joints and so there are no problems getting him to kneel, stand, sit or strike any pose between.

The paint app is excellent. Although the figure doesn't have a massive amount going-on colour-wise (after all, he's supposed to be fairly invisible) what's here is well done. The gloves have a particularly effective dry brush/lowlight effect on them and the details on the camo blades and his rifle (see below) are neatly applied.

We've already covered the ghillie suit pieces, so let's look at the weaponry.

The Jungle-Viper comes equipped with two matching pistols, both of which are cast from a nicely realistic black plastic and fit snuggly into the figure's twin holsters. There's also an excellent long-ranged sniper rifle that's actually taller than the figure. The rifle comes in three pieces (a barrel and bi-pod attach to the core weapon) and although the rifle fits well, the bi-pod is pretty easy to knock-off and sometimes even falls out of its own accord. It also fits right where the Jungle-Viper's left hand sits naturally, so it's just as easy to display the figure without it.

The final piece of equipment is a long range scope/visor that fits over his head reasonably well. There are two ports on either side of his eyes into which this piece fits (although it's not the best of fits) and this allows the piece to be pivoted up and down. It's an odd-looking piece but it works well and looks cool when the figure is fully camo-ed up.

The Jungle-Viper also includes his own stand.

Final Thoughts
I have to confess: the Jungle-Viper and Arctic Threat Storm Shadow (Reviewed yesterday) were the last two Pursuit of Cobra figures I had in my ''to do'' pile. I bought both some time ago then found what I thought were more interesting figures to look at, so they'd been pushed further down the line until they were both finally  Reviewed this week. And that's because the new Wave (2011 Wave 4 AKA Wave 6) is hitting stores now and I wanted to make space for those figures.

I also have to confess I'm now kicking myself for taking so long to Review this figure, as it's actually a lot more fun than I'd imagined it to be.

Sure, the Jungle-Viper may not be to everybody's tastes. As a toy I could see it being quite disastrous, given how difficult it is to pick-up when the ghillie suit is in place and how the back port/peg isn't quite as snug a fit as it should be. The visor is also a little femmer and I could see kids getting quite annoyed with the toy, especially as the gimbal joints take some work to arrange.

As a display piece though, it's great. Yes, it looks odd and a lot of people may be put off by that but I personally love the design. The way the ghillie suit fits together - barring the weak connection to the actual figure - is a brilliant bit of engineering and reminds me of some of the Takara Micromen figures, which is high praise indeed.

Yes, there are some faults: the visor piece doesn't fit very well (even with some pinching) and it can be difficult to pose the figure due to the ghillie suit's presence, but these are only minor issues. I like that he has holsters and pistols that fit, a rifle that looks awesome and a design that's so different from anything else in the line.

But at the end of the day, for all these positive points, it's going to be a personal taste thing and whilst I'm giving it a solid score, unless you really, really love the look of this figure, it's probably only one for Joe fans.

Production QualityB+
Final ScoreB

Image Gallery


  1. Still not sold on this figure to be honest but i keep looking at it ever time am at the store lol.

  2. Yeah, it's a bit of a love or hate design. The actual figure under the ghillie suit is pretty cool, though and the ghillie blades do work nicely.

  3. Yeah he is some thing for a collector more so than a kid.


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