2004 Heavy Water (Glow in the Dark)

2004 Heavy Water (Glow in the Dark)

The Spy Troops Heavy Water was a pretty cool looking figure, but as a character, was pretty much the same thing as the Sludge Vipers and Toxo Vipers before him. And, in a strange turn of events, the GI Joe Collector’s Club picked up the mold to release a glow-in-the-dark version a year later, which didn’t really seem to be something too many people wanted.

In general, I think this figure sheds light on one of the biggest flaws of the Collector Club’s business model. By design, many of their store exclusives and membership figures, such as this one, were intended to have limited accessibility. The figure is tied to having a club membership, which you have to have in order to buy more, usually obtuse figures. If it were released differently, this figure could have seen mild success. Instead, it floundered for being a weird repaint that was far too costly and difficult to obtain for what it provided.

Putting that aside, this was an okay idea for an exclusive. It’s niche, in a similar vein to the 2003 Inferno BAT made from translucent plastic. Similarly, this figure provides you with one of the franchise’s only glow-in-the-dark items, which makes for an interesting one-off kind of figure, that’s fun to display or take pictures of. With that said, I scratch my head as to why both this figure and the Inferno BAT, were adult oriented exclusives. Wouldn’t it have been better to target toys like this to kids?

The gimmick works well and the figure will glow brightly if you hold him near a lamp or flashlight before cutting the lights. I’m not sure how gimmicks like this will last over time, though at least for now I found both opportunities I’ve had to photograph the figure to be a lot of fun.

For parts, you get a speargun from Spy Troops Depth Charge, and a backpack full of hoses that connect to the figure. The speargun looks good with figure, even if I find it’s inclusion a bit strange. The backpack on the other hand, works well enough, but definitely makes the figure feel more cumbersome to me. It holds together pretty well and doesn’t seem too restrictive or fragile with all of those hoses, but it does make posing him more difficult, which I don’t like.

Other than that, there’s sadly not much to say about the GitD Heavy Water. It’s a figure that looks alright and serves one, novel purpose. Other than that, it’s a pretty good, but fairly bland New-Sculpt figure. In my collection, the figure serves no particular meaning, it’s just something fun to look at every once in a while. Likely, this is why the figure was a colossal dud met with little interest from collectors: it’s superfluous.

Amusingly, GitD Heavy Waters sometimes go for less than normal ones which were produced in far greater numbers. Let that sink in for a moment. When you find them, you can get this version of the figure for around $5, sometimes less. I remember once being told that it was dumb not to buy almost every Club and Con exclusive, because even if you decide later you don’t like them, they always go up in value. It’s a line of thought that’s reminiscent of a pyramid scam, and of course, you can see how untrue it was as the Collector’s Club brand fades into obscurity.

GI Joe Glow in the dark Heavy Water Toxo Viper TBM BAT 2004 Spy Troops Cobra action figure
GI Joe Glow in the dark Heavy Water Toxo Viper TBM BAT 2004 Spy Troops Cobra action figure

2004 Heavy Water Links:

Yo Joe

Generals Joes

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3 Responses to 2004 Heavy Water (Glow in the Dark)

  1. A-Man says:

    Gorgeous Ladies Of Wrestling Heavy Water should’ve been female. I mean, it only makes sense.

    This post doesn’t though.

    I never owned one, but I have noticed he’s one of the less expensive club figures. The curse of NuSculpt era. I mean, I wish that awful o-ring Big Lob was cheap.

  2. R.T.G. says:

    You raise a really valid point in regards to the fact that a lot of exclusives that were being marketed towards collectors were probably more kid friendly than a lot of the regular line. If only people would’ve held the Collector’s Club to task back then.

    Still looks like a decent figure!

  3. Mike T. says:

    I enjoyed the Heavy Water figure. I thought it showed much of the best of that era of figures.

    Your point on the club doing “kiddie” figures is interesting…especially since Hasbro of that era was adamant that the retail line was mainly for kids with a few items tossed in to entice collectors.

    But, we do know that the guys mainly responsible for the club figs tended to make things they, personally, wanted: the rest of collectordom be damned. That is mainly responsible for why so much of the club merchandise seemed so close to being excellent, but always fell short.

    The 2002-2004 Joe line flew off retail shelves. So, kids that played with them are now 24-28 years old. When us 80’s kids hit that age, the collecting world exploded. The same hasn’t happened with a younger generation of Joe fans coming on board. So, it appears Hasbro attempts to appeal to them missed the mark.

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