OZONE v.5 (2014)
This is it, my final figure review from the 2014 G.I. Joe Convention Set: Zombie Initiative. This year’s set featured a small squad of Joes fighting to prevent a potential zombie outbreak caused by Cobra’s mysterious Compound Z. Because of the toxic nature of Compound Z the Joe squad was appropriately comprised of the Eco-Warrior sub-team while the Cobra forces were a blend of lab technicians, hostile environment troopers, and of course zombies. I wasn’t completely sold on the set at first but I must admit that after scrutinizing each and every figure it has won me over.
What had me so jazzed about Clean Sweep and Ozone was that they were established characters who hadn’t yet received the modern figure treatment. It can be cool to get variations of popular characters from time to time but I much prefer seeing new faces. Speaking of faces, Ozone has a very unassuming one, just like his pal Clean Sweep. Both of them look like they could work in my office. Ozone is rocking a beard, some nappy helmet hair, and a pissed-off scowl. It’s a brand new head and I really like it. Not every Joe needs to a square jawed Adonis. Apparently the reason why Ozone and Clean Sweep look as average as they do is because they were modeled after a couple of average guys who worked at Hasbro back in the day. I wonder if they regard having their face on a Joe figure as a kitschy novelty or as the huge honor I would take it as. I would absolutely love to have a G.I. Joe with my face. I’ve actually considered getting one, there are plenty of capable customizers out there, but the main reason I haven’t is because I don’t have a definitive “Mike look”. I tend to change up my haircut a lot and I shave my beard regularly. It seems silly to invest in a curly haired, clean shaven Mike figure only to then shave my head and grow a beard. I wouldn’t want to become a slave to the toy’s grooming choices just to maintain a resemblance. Plus, I’m not exactly in G.I. Joe worthy shape these days. I probably wouldn’t fit behind the wheel of the VAMP if they gave me an accurate beer gut. I can only imagine trying to squeeze myself into a Trouble Bubble or a Buzz Boar.
Sorry to ramble on like that but I think I’m running out of things to say about these Convention figures.
Other than the newly sculpted head this Ozone figure is made up of existing parts. The part choices all come together very well to create a look true to the original 1991 Ozone figure. I don’t think I ever would have thought to use Snake Eyes’ shin guarded legs or the Retaliation Cobra Trooper’s webgear had I attempted to customize my own Ozone. The paint job really sells it and ties everything together. I sometimes moan about the bright colors used on the 90s figures but I love this color combination. Ozone would look great displayed with Joes, Super Heroes, or even Star Wars figures. The outfit is cool and yet non-descript. I guess that’s why Hasbro was able to repurpose the original figure into an astronaut with nothing more than a fresh coat of paint. I never owned the 1991 figure but I have one of the Star Brigade repaints from ’92. It was a hand me down (up?) from my little brother.
For accessories Ozone has Airtight’s backpack and vacuum thing which look really nice sculpted in this shade of blue. He also has a pistol that can be holstered on his hip, a little oxygen mask and a display stand. The coolest accessory is the newly sculpted helmet. This thing looks completely rad and it fits perfectly. I like it so much that it doesn’t even bother me that the Club repainted it green and slapped it on Eco-Flint instead of giving him a unique helmet. I actually like that it ties them together and creates a more unified look for the Eco-Warriors team. This is one of the top 2 or 3 figures in an overall very nice 15-figure collection. If you passed on the boxed set this should be one of the individual figures you seek out on the secondary market…or hold out hope that the Club repaints it in Star Brigade colors and includes him in a future subscription service. 9 out of 10.