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Snake-Eyes

Snake-Eyes (originally Snake Eyes) is a fictional character from G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, a line of military-themed toys created by Hasbro. The character is one of the original members of the fictional team and toy line. He is a major character of the G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero G.I. Joe comic book series and appeared in the animated series. He has also appeared in G.I. Joe: Sigma 6, appearing in both the animated series and comic book.

Fictional Character Biography

Snake-Eyes is the code name of a member of the G.I. Joe team. Much of his history and information, including his real name, place of birth, as well as most everything else about him, have remained classified throughout all depictions of his origin. All that is known for certain about his military standing is that he holds the rank of U.S. Army Sergeant First Class (E-7) and has undergone Drill Instructor training. He is also the team's resident hand-to-hand combat instructor. Very little else about his past has been revealed. He was originally billed by Hasbro Toys in 1982 as a Commando, but by 1984, in the pages of Marvel Comics, it became clear that he was also a full-fledged ninja master.

In every version of his story, Snake-Eyes is quiet in his movements and is a swift and deadly master of multiple martial arts. He is an expert in the use of the ninjato and trench knives (which he collects). He usually carries them in pairs but often uses only one. He is equally qualified with and willing to use standard weapons like firearms and explosives. Making him even more dangerous is that he usually never relied on one set of weapons to the exclusion of others. For instance, in one mission, Snake Eyes is confronted by a ninja with a sai and he defeats him by simply throwing a standard grenade at him. Snake-Eyes did give up much of his ninja training in later issues of the G.I. Joe America's Elite comic series. (see below)

In keeping with his quiet personality, Snake-Eyes usually wears what could perhaps best be described as a black "military ninja" bodysuit, along with a balaclava and visor to cover his face, which was disfigured in a helicopter explosion which also left him completely mute. Since then, Snake-Eyes has had extensive plastic surgery to repair the damage to his face, but he still has a few scars left and might never speak again.

When shown out of his uniform, Snake-Eyes is around six feet tall with an athletic build, blond hair and blue eyes. He has a pet wolf named Timber that has appeared several times in toys, comics, and animation.

Snake-Eyes has been shown in many of the continuities of comics and animated series to at some point being romantically involved with fellow G.I. Joe member Master Sergeant Shana M. O'Hara, a.k.a. Scarlett, and he has several apprentices, including Ophelia (Deceased), Kamakura, Tiger Claw, and Jinx.

A Real American Hero Toy history

As of July 2008, Snake-Eyes has had 34 (33 as Snake-Eyes, 1 as Classified as his real name is still classified, and a re-release of the original with swivel arms) different 3 3/4" figures and at least 5 different 12" figures.

Vintage/Modern

Snake-Eyes was one of the original figures created for the 3 3/4" G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero toy line in 1982. The "Version 2" (or V2) released in 1985, packaged with his wolf timber, remains one of the most popular figures among collectors. He has also been released in a few play sets, or with movies in the past.

A common element in almost all Snake-Eyes figures is that his face is covered (except for the 2005 'Classified' series action figure, depicting him before he was disfigured) and he is both a ninja and a commando. He has been packaged four times with his wolf, Timber, and is most frequently paired with Storm Shadow when released in multi-packs or comic-packs. Snake-Eyes has been a member of several sub-lines of the G.I. Joe line, such as Ninja Force and Shadow Ninjas. He has also been released in several Hasbro multi-packs such as the Heavy Assault Squad, Winter Operations, and the Desert Patrol Squad Toys "R" Us exclusive. Snake Eyes' custom Kawasaki Ninja Lightning motorcycle has been sold five times at four different scales: once each at the 3 3/4" Real American Hero scale and the 12", with the remainder in the Sigma Six line (see below).

25th Anniversary

Snake-Eyes was featured in the G.I. Joe team 5 pack for the 25th Anniversary in 2007. He will be featured as a Commando, using a new mold based heavily on his first design. His ninja design (V2) also was sold in the first line of individual figure packaged with Timber in 2007. He also received an updated version of his "Version 3" (or V3) mold from 1989, which featured for the first time removable chest swords in 2008. Several of these molds have been used in other releases of Snake-Eyes including Comic and other Multi-packs throughout the collection.

Comics - Original Continuity

Origin

In the Marvel Comics' Continuity Stalker, Storm Shadow and Snake-Eyes served together in the Vietnam War in a LRRP (Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol) unit. While Snake-Eyes served in combat, he always carried a picture of his twin sister with him in his hat for good luck. On their last sortie they came under heavy fire and Snake-Eyes became separated from the group and wounded. Storm Shadow doubled back and saved Snake-Eyes' life. Upon returning home from the war, Snake-Eyes met with Colonel Hawk, who informed him that his family had been killed in a car accident (which coincidentally involved the brother of the man who would eventually become G.I. Joe's arch-foe, Cobra Commander). After some soul-searching, Snake-Eyes went to study the ninja arts with Storm Shadow's family, the Arashikage Clan.

Snake-Eyes’s ability to quickly learn skills especially impressed Storm Shadow’s uncle, the Hard Master. Over time, Snake-Eyes and Storm Shadow became sword brothers, and unintentional rivals for the attention and favor of the Hard Master, who liked pitting them against one another to test their considerable skills. Though Snake-Eyes often attempted to throw matches in order that his friend should save face in front of his family, the Hard Master was aware of Snake-Eyes' ruse, and knew him to be the true victor. During one of Snake-Eyes training sessions the Hard Master expressed his desire for Snake-Eyes to take over leadership of the Arashikage ninja clan instead of his nephew, Storm Shadow. Snake-Eyes refused, and the Hard Master continued with the lesson. It was at this point the Zartan mistakenly killed the Hard Master instead of Snake-Eyes. Zartan used an arrow he stole from Storm Shadow, implicating him in the murder of his uncle. With the death of the Hard Master the Arashikage ninja clan dissolved and Snake-Eyes returned to America, where he took up residence in the High Sierra Mountains.

Updated Origin by Devil's Due Publishing

In order to make the G.I. Joe team younger, the Devil's Due Publishing and Image comics are ambiguous about what conflict Snake-Eyes and company served in, implying it might not have been the Vietnam War, but a different (possibly unnamed) conflict located somewhere in Southeast Asia. This change was put in so that the team now appears timeless, and allows for the characters to exist for more than twenty years of comics.

Devil's Due Publishing also introduced new elements into Snake-Eyes' past during their Snake-Eyes Declassified mini-series. These changes show more of the motivation of Cobra Commander's attempt to kill Snake-Eyes while training to become a ninja. Snake-Eyes was revealed to have had a prior encounter with Cobra Commander (prior to him becoming Cobra Commander). Cobra Commander befriended Snake-Eyes and sought to recruit him into a plot to murder a judge. The judge in question had wrongfully convicted Cobra Commander's older brother of arson and insurance fraud, resulting in the ruin of his brother's life and causing him to spiral downward into alcoholism and ultimately the drunken car accident that claimed both his life and the lives of Snake-Eyes' parents and twin sister. Snake-Eyes agreed to go along with Cobra Commander, but at the last minute refused to go along with the plan. Cobra Commander would kill the judge and swear revenge against Snake-Eyes, resulting in him hiring Zartan (who in turn subcontracted Firefly behind Cobra Commander's back to pull off the hit) to kill Snake-Eyes while he was training in the Arashikage Clan.

G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero - Marvel Comics

(Note: Many of these early stories are retold in the Devil's Due Snake-Eyes: Declassified Mini Series with some updates to the original stories.)''

Eventually, Snake-Eyes rejoined his other wartime buddies when he was recruited into G.I. Joe. Once on the team, Snake-Eyes became very close to Scarlett. On a mission in the Middle East, Snake-Eyes, Scarlett, Rock 'n Roll and Grunt were sent to save George Strawhacker from COBRA. On the way, the helicopter they were in started to have trouble and was soon going to crash. It forced the Joes to bail out, but Scarlett was stuck in the burning helicopter and Snake-Eyes stayed behind to save her. Snake-Eyes did save Scarlett, but a window exploded in his face, scarring him and damaging his vocal cords (carrying Scarlett out of the wreck of the crashed helicopter, his head is actually on fire). Despite his injuries and the warning from Doc that unless he gets medical help immediately he may never speak again, Snake-Eyes convinced Hawk to let him continue on with the mission. He did so "without even saying a word." His reason for going forward was that George Strawhacker was once engaged to his sister--indeed, no one other than Snake-Eyes might have been able to rescue him from the mission. Strawhacker never learned who the "scarred, masked soldier" who saved his life was.

After many battles with Cobra, Scarlett was captured by Storm Shadow before the famous silent issue, #21 Snake-Eyes rescued Scarlett and battled Storm Shadow for the first time since they had last seen each other. At first, Snake-Eyes was angered by his sword brother's actions, but he was eventually told the truth by Storm Shadow himself. After the Hard Master was killed and Storm Shadow was blamed by the Arashikage clan, he joined Cobra to find out who was truly behind the murder. After discovering it was Zartan who killed his uncle, Storm Shadow left Cobra and joined G.I. Joe.

Snake-Eyes and Storm Shadow would soon team together for some of G.I. Joe's toughest missions, and the bond between them would be both strengthened and tested. In one of the series' most memorable story arcs (entitled the Snake-Eyes Trilogy) , The Baroness sought revenge upon Snake-Eyes under the mistaken belief that he had killed her brother in Southeast Asia. She captured Snake-Eyes while he was sedated (recovering from the surgery to repair his face) and shot Scarlett at extreme close range in the process (many feel that Scarlett could not have survived such a wound). Storm Shadow, Stalker and Wade Collins lead a rescue operation coming to the aid of Snake-Eyes while he had already escaped his torture (assembling a new uniform and weapons from those who had been torturing him in the process) and was conducting demolition operations against the COBRA consulate building where he had been imprisoned. After a second rescue mission for George Strawhacker and a run in with the Night Creepers, he is reunited with Scarlett. For the first and only time in many years, Snake-Eyes spoke Scarlett's name and Scarlet woke from her coma and ultimately returned to active duty.

As Marvel's G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero comic series was drawing to a close, the final battle that many had wanted for years to see came to pass: Snake-Eyes vs. Cobra Commander. For this battle, which took place in issue #150, Snake-Eyes removed his mask and fought with all his might against an armored Cobra Commander, eventually defeating him. However, Cobra Commander would have the last laugh, as he captured Storm Shadow and successfully brainwashed him back to the side of evil.

Snake-Eyes and Scarlett would continue to serve G.I. Joe until its disbandment, and were present for that ceremony. When the G.I. Joe property was revived by Devil's Due Publishing, it was stated that the two left the military and became engaged during this period of retirement. But according to Scarlett, on the day of the wedding, Snake-Eyes disappeared due to him (according to Scarlett) being unable to accept the fact that marriage would mean settling down and living a normal life. This would later be further explored during Master and Apprentice. The two would not see each other again until G.I. Joe was reformed in 2001.

The Years In Between

These stories take place after the events of issue #155 of the original Marvel Comics G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero comic series, and before the issue 1 of the Reinstatement storyline by Image/Devil's Due Publishing.

G.I. Joe: Frontline

The first four issues of Devil's Due Publishing's G.I. Joe: Frontline featured Larry Hama's story of one last mission, "The Mission That Never Was." The original G.I. Joe Team after the official disbandment had to transport the Rapid Pulse Particle Beam from Florida to Colton's location in New York City.

This series attempts to clear up a few loose ends from the original series, most specifically that Billy, Storm-Shadow and the Baroness were left under the influence of Cobra as a result of the Brain Wave Scanner. Snake-Eyes is on this mission to save Storm Shadow, and at the end of this series, it is revealed that Storm Shadow is returning to his ways as a Ninja, and will deal with Snake-Eyes when he is ready.

It is also revealed that Timber has passed away during this time period, but Snake-Eyes has a new wolf pup to look after in his place.

Master & Apprentice

In the four-issue miniseries Master & Apprentice, the events surrounding Scarlet and Snake Eye's aborted wedding were finally revealed, though in a slightly different fashion than previously stated by the characters. Set after the events of Frontline 1-4, the mini-series revealed that Snake-Eyes, Nunchuk and T'Jbang are training Ophelia to be the last of the Arashikage ninja clan during the period that the two were engaged. As Ophelia's final test, Snake Eyes and his apprentice confront Firefly for his role in the murder of the Hard Master. Unfortunately, Firefly kills Ophelia and escapes, leaving Snake Eyes emotionally devastated with grief.

Because of this, on the day of his wedding and in front of his longtime friend and fellow Joe Lonzo "Stalker" Wilkinson, Snake Eyes gives his wedding ring to Scarlet and ends their relationship.

Snake-Eyes again goes into the wilderness where he is approached by Sean Collins, the son of Wade Collins, another Vietnam War buddy. Sean asks Snake-Eyes to train him as a new apprentice as a way to help put himself together after watching his crew also get slaughtered by Firefly on the night Ophelia was killed. Nunchuk and T'Jbang were again present, as well as Jinx, this time serving to assist in Sean's education of the history of the clan. Some time later, Jinx and Budo call Snake-Eyes and crew in to investigate new intel on the location of Firefly. He is working for the "Nowhere Man." Of note, while preparing for battle, Snake-Eyes refuses to take any military weapons (guns) and instead only takes Ninja weapons. It is discussed at this time Snake-Eyes has given up his military training to some degree because of all of the loss it has brought him.

Snake-Eyes confronts Firefly who is meeting with another masked ninja. It is then revealed that this ninja is Storm Shadow, who has just taken out Sean.

Sean was eventually given the name Kamakura and would later join G.I. Joe.

Reinstatement - Devil's Due Publishing

In the pages G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero by Devil's Due Publishing (published by Image Comics until 2004) Snake-Eyes and Scarlett would be reunited again upon G.I. Joe's reinstatement. While initially angry with him, she eventually forgave his actions. The two again became engaged.

Later, after many skirmishes with Cobra, the return of Serpentor (in which Snake-Eyes was injured in a grenade blast, from which he quickly recovered), altercations with Storm Shadow, his triumph over the Red Ninja leader Sei Tin (which gave Snake-Eyes control of the Red Ninja clan), and a close-call defeat at the hands of the heavily armored Wraith, the team was reduced to a smaller unit, and Snake-Eyes, Scarlett, and Duke were in serious trouble. A shadowy cabal of influential generals, known as the Jugglers, had Snake-Eyes arrested. When Duke attempted to blackmail them into giving up their attempts to wrest control of G.I. Joe from the Joes themselves, he joined Snake-Eyes in prison. Secretly, however, Scarlett met with Storm Shadow (who had broken free of his mind control) and rescued them from a convoy, then escaping to Iceland as vigilantes and hiding out with Scanner until they could figure out what was going on.

Secretly, they were tailed by former Coil agent Overlord, who was working as a freelance mercenary for the Jugglers. Overlord fatally injured Scanner, and locked the Joes in a bomb shelter until Federal Agents could arrive, but Scanner, in his last moments, activated the Icelandic station's self-destruct mechanism, killing Overlord in the blast and saving the Joes, who were in the safe shelter. Days later the team were rescued, and came back to assist Flint, Lady Jaye and General Philip Rey in dealing with a new menace, the Red Shadows, while the rest of the short-staffed team cleaned up the Monolith Base victory in Badhikstan (where Barrel Roll recovered in a nearby hospital). When the Red Shadows attempted to assassinate Hawk as he recovered at a mountain camp, Snake-Eyes sent his apprentice, Kamakura, to save him, then joining him and getting Hawk to safety. Snake-Eyes would later put his skills to good use in fighting and defeating the Shadows before their plot could be set into motion (he even stabbed Wilder Vaughn, although whether it hurt the bio-enhanced Vaughn is unknown).

Amidst all this, Snake-Eyes and Kamakura travelled to Asia to assist sword-brother Storm Shadow in finding his apprentice, who had been kidnapped by the Red Ninjas. Snake-Eyes helped Storm Shadow defeat the Red Ninja leader, Sei Tin, but the mission was a failure. Snake-Eyes relinquished control of the Red Ninjas (which he had won before) to Storm Shadow, bidding him to start the Arashikage anew. Storm Shadow left his clan in T'Jbang's care.

America’s Elite - Devils Due

Snake-Eyes was reactivated as a member of the team in its new, sleek covert status with a reduced roster, and when the team was supposed to be "gone", he along with Stalker, Scarlett, Shipwreck, Roadblock, Flint and Duke (and Storm Shadow who also joined them) continued to track down Cobra cells and eliminate them in G.I. Joe: America's Elite.

When Vance Wingfield seemingly returned from the grave and, supplied by Destro, dropped deadly satellites onto major metropolitan areas with MARS equipment, the team scrambled to find answers. Snake-Eyes went his own way, not informing the team where he was going. Suspecting the involvement of the saboteur and explosives expert, Firefly, Snake-Eyes tracked his quarry to ground zero in Chicago, and interrupted Firefly attempting an assassination on a gang lord. A fight occurred, but more gangsters arrived and Firefly managed to escape.

Upon returning to The Rock, the newly commissioned Joe base, Snake-Eyes learned that Scarlett had gone missing. Snake-Eyes revealed that both he and Scarlett had implanted tracking devices in one another and that only they knew the frequencies. He input the code and was able to track her location and verify her vital signs, but found her to be in the middle of the ocean. The President wouldn't give their new commander, General G.I. Joe Colton, permission to launch a side mission with Destro still on the loose. The rest of the Joes (with the exception of Duke, also missing) agreed to accompany him on an "unofficial" rescue mission which they termed "shore leave", and Shipwreck lead them to Destro's titanic submarine, the Cataclysm. Together, Storm Shadow and Snake-Eyes rematched against Wraith, but Wraith still managed to keep ahead of them, then disappearing into the shadows. Elsewhere on the ship, Destro assessed the situation, realized the Joes would again defeat his Iron Grenadiers, and escaped, but not before he ordered the giant sub be scuttled.

Snake-Eyes was killed saving the lives of his comrades in an attempt to rescue Scarlett (who a cold-hearted Destro had planned to use as bait for the Joes). However, the rescue was successful. Later, his body was stolen from the Joe headquarters moments after the team's return, and it has been revealed that the Red Ninjas were the culprits. While Scarlett and the rest of the Joes went searching for clues as to who stole the ninja master's body, the Red Ninjas used mystical arts to revive Snake-Eyes, who has now become one of them.

The Joe team faced a ninja in Red armor that looked like Snake-Eyes and were quickly beaten. Kamukura comments that he cannot be Snake-Eyes, but he fights identically to him. Storm Shadow, Stalker and Kamukura dropped into a sewer and chased the red Ninja. Snake-Eyes defeated them all, then engaged in a one-on-one battle with Storm Shadow. Meanwhile, it was discovered that T'JBang has had his mind "exchanged" with Sei Tin, thus explaining T'Jbang's evil machinations.

As Storm Shadow fought Snake-Eyes throughout the complex, Storm Shadow tried reasoning with his friend. Eventually, Storm Shadow held an escaped Scarlett at his swords edge, commanding Snake-Eyes to choose between killing him, saving Scarlett or remaining a part of the Red Ninja clan. Snake-Eyes responded by wounding Storm Shadow, but not killing him. This act has caused Snake-Eyes to return to his normal self, and he subsequently re-joined the Joes, though Storm Shadow is now healing.

Shortly after, Scarlett observes as Snake-Eyes, in a commando oriented uniform, tests himself in a training session, seemingly abandoning all of his Ninja training and focusing solely on his military training instead. Following the session, Scarlett unmasks Snake-Eyes and is shocked at the sight, exclaiming, "Oh my god...what did they do to you?!" It has not yet been revealed what the Red Ninja clan did to Snake-Eyes' face.

Later, Snake-Eyes reveals to Scarlett, who convinces him to tell Stalker as well, a secret that he learned from Storm Shadow: the Baroness is still alive, and being held captive within the Rock. After this, Scarlett, Stalker and Snake-Eyes confront General Colton on the validity of the information, and accuse him of lying. The argument comes to a close quickly as the team is then attacked by the new Phoenix Guard team lead by former G.I. Joe leader General Philip Rey. Colton mentions he has a place to go and hide, which Scarlett again accuses him of having more secrets. Snake-Eyes calms her by simply placing his hand on her shoulder. They then lie in wait where Kamukura meets them to tell them of what has happened.

The Joe team fights the Phoenix Guard and learn that they are in fact Cobra agents using Zartan's disguise technology, provided them by Zarana. The next day, Joseph Colton orders everyone on a mandatory four day break. Snake-Eyes and Kamukura go on a retreat to the High Serias, while Scarlett goes to Atlanta. While on retreat, Kamukura talks with Snake-Eyes about recent events, and tries to rationalize that Snake-Eyes could not have died, but must have put himself into a trance. He then argues that Snake-Eyes should not have give up his Ninja skills, and that he wishes to work with him to restore his faith. Snake-Eyes remains unresponsive throughout this conversation.

Snake-Eyes returns to active duty (still as a commando) and investigates a medical facility with Stalker and Scarlett, where they find a fatally injured Scalpel, who informs them that the Baroness is on the loose and will stop at nothing to have revenge on both G.I. Joe and Cobra.

Snake-Eyes is part of the team serving in various battles during the final twelve issue arc, World War III. In the the final issue, and part of World War III, Snake-Eyes comes face to face with Firefly. In this battle, he first uses a gun. Finally, he is convinced by Storm Shadow that he has to use all of his training to defeat his enemy. He picks up a sword and strikes down Firefly. After this, he and Storm Shadow attempt to take Zartan into custody for the crimes he committed against the Hard Master many years ago, but they are unable to capture him. Snake-Eyes is shown among the members of the fully restored G.I. Joe team.

Arashikage Showdown

Published by Devils Due, this story involves Snake-Eyes and Storm Shadow on a mission for the Arashikage Clan.

Special Missions: Antarctica

In this one-shot comic published in December 2006 by Devil's Due Publishing, Snake-Eyes is part of the core G.I. Joe team, along with Duke, Stalker, and Scarlett, that is called to investigate an Extensive Enterprises venture in Antarctica after a ship off of the coast of Australia is found carrying oil with their logo. Upon arrival, where they meet reservists Frostbite, Snow-Job and Iceberg, Scarlett complains of the cold and notes that, similar to when he was in Norway, (Frontlines #5) Snake-Eyes is not bothered by it. As the mission progresses, the Joe team eventually finds themselves at the base of the twins Tomax and Xamot and the team splits up. Snake-Eyes goes with Snow-Job and infiltrates the base. Snow-Job is an extensive talker, and he is very uncomfortable, going so far as to mention that being paired with a non-talker creeps him out. Snake-Eyes and Snow-Job infiltrate the main board room and fight a hologram of the twins before chasing Tomax outside to a drilling machine. The Joes finally best the Cobra operatives and then head off to Hawaii for a second mission where the fate of Xamot is revealed.

Comics - New Continuity

A Real American Hero - IDW Publishing

In 2009, IDW Publishing will begin a new G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero comic series, headed by Larry Hama. This series does not connect to any of the past continuty. Snake-Eyes is shown as a member of the team.

Comics - Alternate Realities/Continuities

Being a very popular member of the G.I. Joe team, Snake-Eyes has been featured in many of the alternate reality/continuity based stories of G.I. Joe.

G.I. Joe: Reloaded

G.I. Joe: Reloaded was a fourteen issue ongoing series by Devil's Due Publishing that was in a new, separate continuity that did not touch on anything that happened before in the main continuity. This series explored G.I. Joe being created "today" to fight Cobra, and explored many differences from established continuity. The biggest aspect was that Duke was a Cobra secret agent and Snake-Eyes was (possibly, it was implied but never stated) a former member of Cobra who defected and decided to assist G.I. Joe instead. It is possible that Cobra merely tried to recruit him, claiming him as their own. On the Joe team, he was a wild card, and did not completely work with the team, and was suspected of being a traitor. Although he did not serve on the team, he did have some interest in Scarlett. The series ended before anything further was explored.

G.I. Joe vs. The Transformers

G.I. Joe vs. The Transformers, as of 2007, is published by Devil's Due Publishing and made up of four mini-series that involve the Transformers meeting G.I. Joe for the first time in an alternate continuity. This series does not take into account any crossovers between G.I. Joe and the Transformers in previous Marvel Continuity.

G.I. Joe vs. the Transformers

This first six issue mini-series explores Cobra finding the Autobots and Decepticons onboard the Ark and using them as their ultimate weapons in their plan to conquer the world. It is actually because of the Cobra invasion that G.I. Joe is organized. Snake-Eyes, along with Hawk and Stalker, were assigned to a group of soldiers protecting a peace conference in Washington, D.C, when it was attacked by Cobra. Snake-Eyes is terribly scarred, and loses his voice, when a Cobra Commander controlled Starscream shoots Cover Girl's missile tank out from under him. His family is also killed during the attack.

During the assault on Cobra Island, Snake-Eyes gets a measure of revenge when he slices open one of Starscream's optics and shoves a grenade into the socket. During the final part of the first mini Snake-Eyes is given a Cybertronian-based Mech that allows him to fight the much larger Decepticons, as well as Cobra agents in Decepticon suits.

Ironically, the Snake-Eyes in this continuity was mentioned as being extremely talkative, to the point that Hawk sometimes called him chatterbox. However, in keeping with Snake-Eyes' character as being silent, it turns out that before Cobra's initial attack, Hawk makes a bet with his soldiers that Snake-Eyes can keep silent for the whole mission. The only sound Snake-Eyes ever makes is a stifled laugh.

G.I. Joe vs. the Transformers II

The second miniseries focused on several Transformers being sent back in time to various time periods, which forced Joes and Cobras to team up to retrieve them. The first group to be sent back in time included Snake-Eyes, Lady Jaye, Zartan and Storm Shadow. This team was sent back to the 1970's California. They were sent to this period to reocover Jazz, Bumblebee, Hot Rod, and Sweeps. After recovering all of the transformers, they arrive back on Cybertron.

G.I. Joe vs. the Transformers: The Art of War (Vol 3)

During the third miniseries it is shown that Snake-Eyes has a developing love interest with Scarlett. Scarlett returned those feelings to Snake-Eyes with a passionate kiss after he rescues her from a Decepticon prison and removes his mask to show his scared face. In the issue #5 of the this miniseries, it is seemingly confirmed that they are in a relationship.

G.I. Joe vs. the Transformers: Black Horizon (Vol 4)

During this fourth miniseries, Snake-Eyes is only shown in one scene as still being an active member of the Joe team along with Flint, Lady Jaye and leader Duke. At the end , the Joe team has been called in as reinforcements to face the threat of Cobra-La, Dr. Mindbender, the Decepticon Pretenders (lead by Bludgeon) and the Chaos Bringer (Unicron). Snake-Eyes appears briefly as a side character in the second issue (similar to his appearance in the movie featuring Cobra-La). He is shown fighting several of the Royal Guards, but does not have a prominent role in stopping the threat.

Transformers/G.I. Joe

This series was originally planned to print at the same time as the G.I. Joe vs. The Transformers Minis. This series was being published by Dreamwave Productions until they went bankrupt. As of 2006 only the first mini-series was completed. The second series, Divided Front, was planned and in progress, but only the first issue was released before Dreamwave closed. At this time, it is not known if the remainder of the series will be released by IDW Publishing, the new license holder of Transformers, because all titles run by Dreamwave are currently held up in bankruptcy court, and as such none can be further developed by anyone. The story features the Transformers meeting the Joe team in 1939, where he was prominent in defeating the Decepticons by opening the Matrix, and then again in the 1980s for the second mini. Snake-Eyes was a member of the team in 1939, but is somehow still in fighting shape for the second mini-series. It would seem likely that the Snake-Eyes in Vol. 2 is a descendant, but due to Dreamwave going under, the true answer may never be known as this was not revealed in the first issue. It can be speculated that this series may have continued into more volumes if DreamWave had not closed down, but that is only a speculation based on the trend with the Devil's Due Comics.

Animated series appearances

G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero

Sunbow Series

Unlike his comic book counterpart, Snake-Eyes did not play a major role in the TV series (with the exception of the mini-series specials "The M.A.S.S. Device", "Revenge of Cobra" and "The Pyramid of Darkness", and a couple of episodes). During the first mini series "The M.A.S.S. Device", some of his origins were explored, but only how he came to have Timber. He was always portrayed as a trusted and loyal teammate, and even proved to have a sense of humor, as seen when he broke into a break-dancing routine on-stage, and later dressed up like Boy George in the "Pyramid of Darkness" mini-series. For his first appearance, in the first Mini-Series, Snake-Eyes appeared in his "V1" uniform. For all of his later appearances, he wore a bluish-grey version of his "V2" uniform.

Fans attribute the small role he played in this series to the idea that the show's writers did not have a "feel" for Snake-Eyes, and may have felt too limited by a non-speaking character. Also, his relationship with Scarlett was never explored beyond the initial mini-series, with Scarlett instead having some interest in Duke. Additionally, his rivalry with Storm Shadow was nonexistent, the ninja instead picking fights with such characters as Spirit and Quick Kick.

Episodes
Snake-Eyes appears in the following Episodes (in alphabetic order):

  • Arise, Serpentor, Arise
  • Battle For The Train Of Gold
  • Cobra's Candidate
  • Cobra's Creatures
  • The Funhouse
  • The Germ
  • G.I. Joe & The Golden Fleece
  • G.I. Joe I (The M.A.S.S. Device)
  • G.I. Joe II (Revenge of Cobra)
  • The Invaders
  • Jungle Trap
  • Lasers In The Night

  • Most Dangerous Thing In The World
  • Phantom Brigade
  • Pyramid of Darkness
  • Red Rocket's Glare
  • Skeletons In The Closet
  • Spell of The Siren
  • The Synthoid Conspiracy
  • The Traitor
  • Twenty Questions
  • Where The Reptiles Roam
  • The Wrong Stuff
  • The Viper Is Coming

G.I. Joe: The Movie

Snake-Eyes is shown in a few scenes of G.I. Joe: The Movie, but like many of the characters of the Sunbow Cartoon, he has a very minor role and is not present in the final battle.

He also appears in the opening title sequence where he knocks a Cobra trooper out of a trouble bubble that he then uses against Cobra, and later is in place for Alpine to hook on for a ride. Snake-Eyes inexplicably ends up on the base of the Statue of Liberty attacking other Cobras near the end of this introduction, and at the end is shown in the crowd with the rest of the team.

DiC series

Snake-Eyes, in his 1991 "V4" uniform, was a character shown during the second season of this series. He did have a few key episodes, and at this time was shown to be working with his blood brother, Storm Shadow, who now was a member of the G.I. Joe Ninja Force. Snake-Eyes was shown more in this series as a ninja, but little more of his origins or his relationships were explored before this series ended.
Episodes
Snake-Eyes appears in the following Episodes (in alphabetic order):

  • Long Live Rock & Roll, Parts 1-2
  • Shadow of a Doubt
  • The Sword

G.I. Joe vs. Cobra direct-to-video movies

Snake-Eyes is one of the G.I. Joe members in all of the direct to video CG movies. The continuity of these movies are not believed to tie to the previous history, and more directly (albeit loosely) lead into the events of Sigma Six. The main difference between these movies and previous continuity from DiC, Snake-Eyes and Storm Shadow are again on opposite sides fighting each other. Storm Shadow is again working for Cobra, where he was last on the G.I. Joe team. This change is primarily due to the reboot by Hasbro when action figures were re-released, there was a toning down on the number of ninjas on both teams.

Spy Troops

Snake-Eyes is shown throughout the G.I. Joe: Spy Troops movie. He has some relationship with Scarlet as he is a part of the team that goes to rescue her after she is taken hostage by Zartan, but it is not fully explored. Snake-Eyes shows that he may be stronger than Storm Shadow but this may be just "luck". He spares Storm Shadow's life even though he asked to have Snake-Eyes end it. This marks Snake-Eyes first appearance as a major character in any animated form.

Valor vs. Venom

Snake-Eyes is seen in this movie as the master to both of his apprentices Jinx and Kamakura for the first time in animated continuity. Snake-Eyes seems to be training Kamakura more as though he needs more training and hands over a new sword known as "Tatsuwashi" to him. Snake-Eyes again battles Storm Shadow, and several of the new Cobra Ninjas. Again, Snake-Eye's relationship with Scarlett is hinted at in this movie, but not overly developed as it is more action oriented. It is also hinted that Snake-Eyes may have some sort of close relationship with Jinx as he saves her from falling and they pause to make eye contact. Again, he is seen as a major character in this movie.

Ninja Battles

In this movie, which was packaged with a set of figures, a new Ninja Apprentice (who later takes the code name Tiger Claw) is joining the G.I.Joe team and learns of Snake-Eyes' and Storm Shadows's past in the Arashikage Clan. This movie serves to explain the rivalry between the two ninjas to some degree, and shows how they deal with each other to this day. Most of the movie is narration over original artwork and some scenes from the previous two movies, as well as some new footage at the end. This movie is not in the same continuity as the comics, and events here do not seem to progress into Sigma Six.

Sigma 6

Toy History

Snake-Eyes again makes his appearance as part of the G.I. Joe: Sigma 6 toy series. As of September 2006, he has had 7 8" Sigma Six Commando Scale Figures and been packaged with 6 different 2.5" Sigma Six Mission Sets (Most are Posed and do not have additional accessories, made at this scale for large vehicles of the Sigma Six Line). Snake Eyes' custom motorcycle has been sold at the 8" scale, with the ability to transform into a hover cycle and equipped with many hidden weapons, and twice at the 2.5" scale. He has been sold with Timber once, at the 8" scale, and this is the first incarnation of Timber which was fully poseable, rather than being a solid molded piece.

Animated series

Snake-Eyes is part of the Sigma 6 team. His background history has been substantially changed from the A Real American Hero series but still shares a connection with Storm Shadow, who referred to him as "brother". It is unclear if this is a blood connection or if they are sword brothers, like in the original series. Although Storm Shadow is a brainwashed COBRA agent, he blames Snake-Eyes for the ruin of the Arashikage ninja clan. As is in the original series, Snake-Eyes is mute, however the reason for this, like in the original series, is not explored.

During a battle in the fourth episode, Reveal, of the first season, Storm Shadow said, "What's the matter, Snake-Eyes? Getting tired? Face it, you're past your prime." This may indicate that Snake-Eyes is older than Storm Shadow or that he was simply experiencing fatigue from battling the COBRA B.A.T.s for quite a considerable amount of time. While the A Real American Hero cartoon series never showed Snake-Eyes's true face, the Sigma 6 continuity took some visual cues from the A Real American Hero comics. In one episode when Snake-Eyes was fighting Storm Shadow, Snake-Eyes's visor partially broke and it appears that this Snake-Eyes has blond hair, blue eyes, and his face is not burned. However, he does have a scar near his eye as a result of a training accident.

In the season finale of Season One, it is hinted to some degree that Snake-Eyes has some interest in Scarlett as he goes out of his way to save her and put her out of harms way before moving on to complete his mission. Also, in the 3.5" toys, it is stated in two different battle packs that Snake Eyes and Scarlett are in some sort of relationship.

In the opening of Season Two, he meets Firefly for the first time. Snake-Eyes does not seem to trust Firefly, which is a good thing since Firefly is later revealed to be a spy. In the sixth episode of Season Two, Snake-Eyes faces off against a pack of wolves. After saving one, it begins to work with him, helping him throughout the episode. Although it is not named, it is possible that this wolf is Timber as it shares a physical resemblance to previous incarnations. This is supported when, shortly afterward, a new Arctic Sigma Six figure of Snake-Eyes was released with Timber, the figure's bio card describing the plot from this episode. At the end of the episode, the wolf is seen howling atop a hill near Sigma Six headquarters.

In this series, both Jinx and Kamakura serve as Snake-Eyes's apprentices and G.I. Joe reserve members.

Comics mini-series

This comic series was a six issue mini-series released by Devil's Due Publishing with direct connection to the new Animated TV Series. Like the Animated TV Series, this comic line does not tie into the continuity of the original G.I. Joe universe. Each issue focused on one or two Joes fighting one or more Cobra Agents.

Snake-Eyes appeared in the first issues as a cameo, but took center stage in issue 6, where he was paired against Storm Shadow. The main plot of this issue centered around Storm Shadow, who had won an elite contest for several years in a row. During the most recent, he stole a new Artificial Intelligence Tracking Device that could learn someone's behavior and predict future behavior, making attacks on people in power very easy. Snake-Eyes is sent in to stop Storm Shadow. Storm Shadow agrees that, if Snake-Eyes beats him in combat, he will hand over the chip and leave. Snake-Eyes wins the chip after an action-packed fight.

During this issue, Storm Shadow refers to Snake-Eyes as Brother, but nothing mores made of this. Storm Shadow breaks Snake-Eyes' headgear, partially exposing Snake-Eyes' face, which again is shown to be of a blond American. No scarring is seen at this time.

Video Games

G.I. Joe (NES)

Snake-Eyes appears, in his "V3" uniform, as a playable character in the 1991 G.I. Joe video game for the NES. His special abilities include jumping faster and higher than the other characters, and he can use his sword as a projectile weapon that does not use up any ammo. He can be selected for any of the missions from the start, and is actually the team leader for Mission 3: Super Computer Base, in New York.

G.I. Joe: The Atlantis Factor (NES)

Snake-Eyes appears, in his "V4" uniform, as a playable character in the 1992 G.I. Joe: The Atlantis Factor video game for the NES. In this game, he is very similar to Storm Shadow in ablities, and like the previous game he can use his sword as a projectile weapon that does not use up any ammo. He can be selected for missions after he is found, which is not until late in the game after completing Area E.

G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra - Live Action Movie

It has been confirmed that famed martial artist/stunt man Ray Park will play the role of Snake-Eyes in the upcoming Hollywood adaptation of GI Joe. Originally, he was to talk in the film, but Larry Hama was able to talk the film's producers out of it.

Other Media

Snake-Eyes appeared in the Robot Chicken episode "More Blood, More Chocolate." In the "Inside the Battlefield: The Weather Dominator" segment, it was mentioned that Duke and Snake-Eyes were captured and forced to battle each other in the Cobra headquarters. In the interview, Snake-Eyes communicated with Duke by using the Etch A Sketch.

References

External links

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