Monday, June 13, 2016

Rarities - 1995 Ninja Commando Flint

Flint may or may not have been popular in 1995.  He might have been part of the Battle Corps Rangers.  Or, he may simply have had a repaint of his 1994 figure.  But, it is certain that he would have somehow become a ninja and joined the Ninja Commandos.

The Ninja Commandos are a fairly famous unproduced concept.  Not only were carded mock ups shown, but full production level figures have been found, too.  There persist to be reports that these figures were actually produced.  But, as we're two decades removed from their timeframe, it's pretty safe to say that they either were not, or they have subsequently been destroyed.

This Flint wouldn't have been a terrible figure.  But, he had the non standard articulation that was introduced with the production level ninja subset figures from prior years.  The proposed coloring with a green base and brown offsets was more normal than the 1993 and 1994 Ninja figures.  But, seeing Flint as a ninja would have been tough to swallow.  In the set of 5 figures, Flint would have been the 4th best in front of only Road Pig.  But, his colors would have been decent enough that he wouldn't have been an embarrassment.

While I'm growing to appreciate the Ninja Commandos, they also embody much of what collectors came to loathe about the line, both in the mid 1990's and today.  They reused characters and put them into specialties that made no sense.  They still skimped on paint masks, though the Ninja Commandos seem to have more details than the 1994 Battle Corps figures tend to.  And, they perpetuated the ninja dominated story that was the final years of G.I. Joe.  So, while 1995 would have had some pretty solid stuff, the reasons for the line's slow descent were still evident.  And, while I think the year would have been solid overall, it would have full of items that made it's overall place in Joe history debatable.

This body didn't die without a use, though.  In 1995, the Mortal Combat Movie Edition Rayden figure uses the Ninja Commando Flint body.  There is a new head.  But, the body was used by Hasbro to squeeze some value out of it.  This leaves something for customizers to use should they want to attempt this figure.

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