The coils of the COBRA organization spread across the globe gathering intelligence, committing acts of sabotage and carrying out assassinations to further their goal of world domination. One of those coils is the ninja known as Storm Shadow. Silent, methodical, merciless and unflinching, Storm Shadow serves COBRA as its primary assassin but, more importantly, as the personal bodyguard of the maniacal Cobra Commander.
Born Thomas Arashikage in the United States, he continued thirty generations of tradition and trained in Japan with the Arashikage Ninja Clan. Eventually joining the United States military, he served alongside and befriended the man who would become the enigma known as Snake-Eyes. Upon completing his tour of duty, Arashikage returned to Japan only to be framed for the murder of his uncle and leader of the Arashikage clan, the Hard Master. Learning that COBRA was responsible, he called himself Storm Shadow and joined the organization intent on discovering the identity of his uncle's assassin. Upon realizing the intensity of Storm Shadow's vengeance, Cobra Commander deceptively informed the ninja that he knew the identity of the Hard Master's killer and persuaded Storm Shadow to become his personal bodyguard. Committing his unwavering loyalty to the Commander, Storm Shadow became Cobra Commander's most trusted pawn. The Commander employs his ninja agent to instill fear in his enemies and, if need be, deliver their ultimate demise. Many lives have met their end at the hands of Storm Shadow, and it is said that the white light some see as they die is actually their final fleeting glimpse of Storm Shadow as he has carried out his mission.
Male body with 30+ points of articulation
Vest with cobra insignia
Undershirt & Hakana pants
Leg wraps & forearm bracers
Quiver with Arashakage crest
Quiver belt & buckle
Daito & Shoto Sword sheaths
Black & white sashes with pockets
Three sets of interchangeable hands
High Velocity Bo
Daito & Shoto swords
Storm Shadow is another highly detailed, highly realistic looking GI Joe figure from Sideshow Toy. The base body is the same, but he features new head sculpts, weapons, and accessories. Scale and style size are perfecto for fitting in with Sideshow’s other GI Joe and other 12” figures.
The clothes look authentic, high quality, and true to the source material. The stitch is small enough so as not to interfere with scale perception. One of the advantages of these cloth clothes is that they sit on the body realistically, but there’s also the potential for them to look messy. The tight undershirt helps offset some of the perceived loose fit of his outer clothes. The leg wraps and forearm bracers, while accurate, have a lot of loose straps that look messy compared to the rest of the figure. I had to take a lot of time trying to wrap them around and tie them up to keep the straps from poking out in every direction. Overall his clothes have a tight enough fit to look close to the source material. The sculpted mask and shoes help in this respect, but it may be worth removing the forearm bracers or leg wraps for a smoother profile.
The color of the clothes is an excellent bright white, and is matched closely by the painted mask. I would have preferred more of an Asian looking skin tone. As is he looks Caucasian and the unmasked head does not help. Most of the plastic pieces are molded in the correct color with minimal paint. Where applied, the paint is clean. The quiver could have used some paint wash to add some texture. As is the quiver has a hard plastic look that sticks out against the cloth clothes.
The accessories as a whole look excellent, but there is some room for improvement. Since there is not a full quiver of arrows, some kind of holder in the quiver to evenly space the arrows would have been nice. There are pockets to hold his ninja stars inside the belt. It is hard to get them all inside, but it works well and looks good once completed. The swords looks perfect with some nice texturing and sculpt details on the hilts. The interchangeable hands are sculpted well, even having sculpted fingernails. He holds the bow a little awkwardly, but he can be set up firing an arrow with effort.
Overall this figure is every bit as good as Snake Eyes. There are not as many details on this figure, but he makes up for it in texture and quality.
Storm Shadow can do just about everything a human can. The shoulders and elbows get full rotation, so his hand can touch his shoulder, and similar poses. The hips bend only about 90 degrees. The torso has a ball joint so he can bend forward and to the sides. Surprisingly, there are two joints in the neck, one at the base and one at the head, so he can do very natural poses with his head. The hands and feet, of course, are solid pieces that are interchangeable.
The excellent articulation and appearance makes for great action poses. Difficulties in posing come from the lack of ankle swivel and the hips only bending ninety degrees. The limited hip rotation makes a lot of ninja poses more difficult, while the feet make balancing more difficult in the poses he can do. That said, Storm Shadow has a lot of good poses with his abundance of accessories and articulation. For enemies to fight, some cheap generic soldiers from Big Lots work great, but the best poses are opposite the Sideshow Snake Eyes. Once posed, you can count on Storm Shadow looking great on display.
Final Judgement 36.5/40
Storm Shadow is an excellent action figure in every category. He captures the look and feel of the character effectively in a realistic format. In short, I don’t expect to ever have a Storm Shadow better than this. He’s expensive, but you get your money’s worth in detail and poseability.