1993 Gung-Ho (Mega Marines)

1993 Gung-Ho (Mega Marines)

The Mega Marines are a vexing subgoup within what was offered in the 90‘s GI Joe line. Given the fact they were dropped faster than both DEF and certainly Sonic Fighters, I’ll go ahead and assume they probably weren’t a hit, even when they were released. Still, taken for what they are, they’re a cool little group of figures, and I’d go as far as to say this is one of my favorite Gung-Ho figures.

It took me a long time to come around on the Mega Marines, and to be frank, probably too long. For most of my time collecting I’ve had a disdain for silly things and neon colors, both of which the Mega Marines are, heavily. Beyond that, it’s basically an un-licensed crossover with Aliens, and that too, didn’t really appeal to me. They come across as being somewhere in-between Star Brigade and Battle Corps in such a way that it doesn’t really feel like they have a strong niche or identity.

Despite that, this Gung-Ho looks pretty nice. There’s a lot of fluorescent yellow on his armor, but also features some nice dark greens and blacks on the base plastic underneath. If I’m not mistaken, I believe this was Hasbro’s first usage of marbled plastic, which gives the figures a somewhat interesting look. Does anyone know why there’s a sculpted number on every Mega Marine? Gung-Ho’s number 1, while Blast-Off, Clutch and Mirage are number 2, 3, and 4 respectively. It’s sort of distracting.

Oddly, this figure comes across to me as the most combat-ready looking Gung-Ho ever made. He’s packing body armor from head to toe and looks like he could take a few hits. At the same time, he doesn’t look very much like Gung-Ho, but I really don’t mind that, since I was never a big fan of Gung-Ho anyways. The futuristic look is a little hammy, though it fits nicely with the overall esthetic that was being built in ‘93 and ‘94.

The accessories for the Mega Marines are where things got a little more interesting. Included is the same shotgun, MP5K, laser rifle and machete runner seen with several other figures (Duke, Frostbite, Stalker, Ozone, ect) cast in black. Nice parts for filling your armory. He has a unique orange helmet; it’s sorta goofy looking. You also get the standard missile-launcher, missiles and a figure stand, in addition to another gimmick part: moldable bio-armor.

Moldable bio-armor was the core gimmick introduced with the Mega Marines. Included with each figure was a tub of play-doh, and a mold that fit around the figure’s chest and included missiles. While playing, you could tear and damage the figure’s armor, and when you’re done, tear it off and cast it again later. Part of me wants to say it seems kind of cool, but I also realize this really was just a lame and inexpensive way for Hasbro to bloat the price of this assortment. It’s slightly creative, but I won’t give it a pass on that alone. Also, good luck standing a figure up with a heavy-ass mound of play-doh on his chest: that’s too much even with a figure stand!

Dealers will sell complete figures, sometimes with the play-doh, for around $35. At auction though, figures will often go for around $20, though, it’s not so often you see these in a truly complete state. With that said, I think it’s safe to say the Mega Marines are least desirable figures to have complete. There’s really no point in buying the crunchy old play-doh tub, which like wise, renders the included mold useless too. Also, while his guns are nice, they’re also terribly generic. Meaning, the only thing you really need for this guy is his helmet. Pretty astounding, since not too many GI Joes come with parts that irrelevant to the figure.

1993 Gung-Ho (Mega Marines) Links:

Half the Battle

Joe A Day

3D Joes

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4 Responses to 1993 Gung-Ho (Mega Marines)

  1. Mike T. says:

    My local TRU had Mega Marines into the summer of 1995. Gung Ho and Clutch hung around. I finally decided to go buy a Gung Ho one night, went there, and they were finally gone. They had been there just a few days before.

    I wanted him as his helmet is a dead ringer for a classic firefighter helmet with an added microphone. I thought he would make for a good firefighter at the time. Never got to see him in that role, though.

    It’s odd as the unproduced 1995 Duke had a Mega Marines number. So, they were supposed to continue in some form. Not sure why they skipped ’94 or if the Duke was just recycles for ’95 since he was so far along.

    Mega Marines didn’t used to be hard to find. Now, they are. I’m not sure what changed. Though, they certainly exist in smaller quantities than other 1993 figures. The Cobras seemed to take off and they brought the Joes along with them.

  2. Josh Z says:

    This is a mold that would greatly benefit from a good repaint. Unfortunately, I’m not sure that the gray Steel Brigade convention version qualifies.

  3. A-Man says:

    He’s camouflaged to hide inside the Monster Blaster APC.

    As an ALIENS colonial marine wannabe, his body mold was the best of the Mega-Marines. G. Gordon Liddy, alien fighter.

    Why didn’t they repaint Dodger and Blaster for his series?

  4. Jester says:

    Not sure I’d say that this guy *doesn’t* look like Gung-Ho. His headsculpt is almost identical to the 92 and 93 mainline versions of the character (minus the sculpted headband), and anyway the previous two Gung-Ho headsculpts kind of look like someone took the 1982 Flash/Hawk/Short-Fuze head and added a moustache to it.

    That aside, this really *is* a very heavy “Aliens” tribute/homage/knockoff; the body armour features plates hanging down over the main cuirass from the shoulders, similar to the Colonial Marines’ armour from James Cameron’s film, and the helmet, particularly, hits all of the same design points (prominent microphone, reinforced plate over the forehead, “lobster tail” at the back) as the film version, albeit in a somewhat exaggerated fashion, proportionally. There have been some more muted fan-repaints but I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone try and replicate the movie’s USCM colour-scheme of contrasting temperate and arid camouflage patterns, which is a shame.

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