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GI Joe Renegades
by yo go re

I like to imagine this guy sounding like Kenny from South Park when he talks.

Dr. Kurt Schnurr is a scientist working for Cobra Industries. Schnurr became a bio-chemist to fight diseases in developing countries, and he believed Cobra personnel when they assured him they would support his goal. But he discovers that Cobra has darker plans for his research, and that even his lab partner, Dr. Monev, is not who he pretends to be.

Remember last week when we said that GI Joe: Renegades seemed to pride itself on bringing up the obscure references? No, we're not calling Airtight obscure: his bright yellow and green costume is very memorable, even with his scant appearances. What's obscure is that his lab partner was Dr. Archibald Monev, which means in its first season, the cartoon introduced a character only people who read the comics in the '80s would recognize. Love it!

Airtight has an all-new body. Parts of it have been used for other figures since then, but they all originated here. The sculpt of the body honestly does make it look like he's wearing hazmat gear, or one of those static-free numbers that computer technicians wear when working with super delicate electronics. In fact, if Hasbro were to remove the green vest and mold him in white plastic, this would be a good base for a Static-Viper or some similar silliness. In addition to the vest with its black technological pack on the chest, he's also wearing green gloves and boots - just like the old toy. He even has the ridges on his gloves and the pads on the back of his hands, which is a great attention to detail!

His helmet (which is also shaped exactly like the old toy) is removable. The visor is clear, allowing you to see his eyes, but sometimes that's not enough. The suit continues up over his head, adding to the "clean room" look of the figure. His face doesn't really have any distinguishing features, but it is sculpted quite well. A nice, generic, manface.

Even beyond the helmet and vest, Airtight gets more accessories than you'd expect. The vintage-inspired ones include a big green backpack with two small turbines coming off the sides, and a rifle-like vacuum that connects to the backpack via hose. Basically, this is what he uses to clean up areas: you can play that at the end of the day, his backpack is full of the worst junk imaginable because he's sucked it all up.

Before he can do that, though, he has to find the toxins: not everything is a big, billowing clouud of obvious smoke! To that end, he comes with a blue oxygen tank backpack, and a handheld DIM sniffer - that's "detection, identification and monitoring." It's a black box that looks like a dustbuster. Finally, he comes with a gun. A shotgun, cast in black.

Airtight is a Renegades figure, but there's nothing about the design that doesn't look like it belongs with the Real American Hero toys. He'd be great as part of the "Compound Z" thing they have going on, for instance. Whatever storyline you want to put him in, this is just a terrific update.

-- 03/30/12

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