2017 TBM Alley Viper (Reverse Colors)

2017 TBM Alley Viper (Reverse Colors)

In terms of TBM figures, my favorite run was probably the 2017 Alley Vipers. They felt very new given the mold was never used before, and the original paint masks created for the second run of figures was very fresh and breathed a lot of life into the mold. Generally, I liked all of the recolors he did from this mold, but of them all the Dirty South exclusive one in reversed colors is tied for my favorite, with the Night Viper colored one.

A problem that the TBM Alley Vipers run into, is that the original Alley Viper was already an incredibly sharp and attractive figure. He’s bright, but orange and blue are colors that compliment each other really well. For people allergic to neon, the black variations immediately stand out and show what this mold could offer in darker colors. Still, it’s hard to actually make a figure that’s more attractive than the original when you put realism aside. The colors on this release are sharp, and maintain a lot of the original figure’s charm just by reversing the main color with the camouflage color, give or take a hue.

These colors are fun, and I find them easier to integrate into my Joe world. To me, these are apart of a special Detonator task force, who are both capable of operating the vehicle, and act as it’s security that protects it in the lead up to a missile launch. The tones on the figure aren’t a perfect match, but look close enough that I think they compliment the Detonator really well. Plus the idea of a vehicle being important enough to have it’s own, unique division to accompany it, was something I can’t un-think.

The quality was alright on these. I always have a little trouble judging this element of the “factory customs”, since there’s a lot of toys I see people call fragile or flimsy on the internet, that I personally have no problems with. Overall, I got very few Alley Vipers with significant flaws, and the new mold did a good job of recreating the sculpt without deforming it as far as I can tell. The Snow Serpents and Eels he did later were a bit better, but these were also a bit better than most of his older figures at the point they came out.

All of the original Alley Viper accessories were recreated for this release, which includes the mask, shield, backpack with grappling hook, and his distinct SMG. For a long time, I really couldn’t stand the way Alley Viper’s looked without their shield, so incomplete V1 Alley Vipers really drove me nuts for not having the parts. Since I acquired the TBM figures though, I got enough Alley Vipers at once that it made me curious about them with different kinds of gear. A flaw of the original is that these parts are very clunky, and truth be told, he can’t hold his shield very well, even if he looks incredibly bad-arse with it. To be honest though, it’s a fun figure to reaccessorize with less clunky gear, although the original shield and gun is still my favorite setup.

Although they were only sold at first at the 2017 Dirty South convention/meetup, they aren’t particularly more expensive or rare than most of the other ‘17 Alley Vipers. You don’t find them all the time, and they may run upwards of $40, but you might also get them a lot cheaper than that, as patience really helps when it comes to getting old bootlegs. I got mine at the original price, as a kind soul on Instagram hooked me up with an individual who bought too many and got in trouble with his wife. Personally though, I have a hard time paying a high premium for TBM figures, especially when there’s always the chance he’ll make new ones that are similar to what I want.

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2017 TBM Alley Viper (Reverse Colors) Links:

The Dragon Fortress

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One Response to 2017 TBM Alley Viper (Reverse Colors)

  1. A-Man says:

    They photograph well.

    I’ve long lost track of what BM makes. His variations may outnumber the vintage ARAH releases at this point.

    I don’t pursue factory customs because of cost and quality. The few I have, it took me awhile to accept them for what they are, much like Funskool. Though, Funskool figs had soft hands. I don’t miss vintage hard hands…another reason to skip factory customs.

    Besides, I don’t need Alley Vipers. I got a lot of 2002 Alley Vipers, some can even still move their knees. Oh, the reason I hardly even look at my own stuff anymore always creeps back in.

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