Hello there. Today I’ve prepared something small for you. It’s mostly a photo gallery, but I’ll also be sharing some brief thoughts on the toy with you.
The toy in question is the 1991 GI Joe Septic Tank, part of the Eco Warriors sub line. It’s not a toy I owned as a kid (though I did own the Eco Striker), but it is a toy I have an affinity for. It’s certainly not a popular toy– it’s probably one of the most hated items in the vintage ARAH GI Joe run. Most hated by people I generally don’t care to associate with, anyway.
Basically, the 1991 GI Joe Septic Tank is a remold of the venerable 1983 HISS Tank. It takes this HISS’ body and treads, and also adds a new weapons system and a new canopy cover. More importantly, it changes the classic HISS colors into radiant orange and highlighter yellow. Even with the crummy paper stickers in the mix, it looks incredible. It’s a true neon nightmare.
Here it is from every angle you could ever want.
1991 GI Joe Septic Tank Photo Gallery
Like all Eco Warriors products, it features a functional water cannon and “color change battle damage,” which is supposed to appear or disappear when it’s exposed to warm or cold water. The battle damage on my Septic Tank has long since given up the ghost– it’s there permanently.
I also quite like the stickers, even though they are made from crappy materials. Paper stickers aren’t great in the first place, but they really don’t hold up when your entire play pattern is “a water fight to save the world from pollution and climate change.”
The previous owner of this Septic Tank treated it pretty kindly. I say that because the stickers mostly still exist.
Those are all the basics. Now for some more eye-searing photos and a quick review.
1991 GI Joe Septic Tank Quick Review
Despite consisting of only 9 figures, 2 vehicles, and 1 playset, Eco Warriors might be the most widely reviled sub-line in all of GI Joe. That’s because many GI Joe fans hate bright colors and fun in equal measure. They also probably believe climate change is a Chinese hoax. Ask them to dig a little deeper, and they’ll say they’ve known climate change is a hoax since they were either children or since “GI Joe got bad,” which always directly coincides with the date when they bought their first Mr. Big or Def Leppard t-shirt.
Personally, I love Eco Warriors. As a kid, I loved the bright colors, removeable helmets, and cool figure designs. Environmentalism was “in” at the time, too, with Captain Planet and a “pick up your trash and pollute less” campaign on Nickelodeon also delivering the goods.
If I had to pick a favorite GI Joe sub-line, it would probably be Eco Warriors. It holds a huge amount of nostalgia for me and I think the figure designs are brilliant. I never really used the water cannons as intended when I was a kid, but I got a tremendous amount of enjoyment out of the figures and their other accessories.
Anyway, the 1991 GI Joe Septic Tank itself is a pretty nice piece, even if it is unpopular. It takes the gonzo-sleek retro-future design of the original HISS and bolts some additional nastiness onto it.
I love the new canopy cover. It provides more protection for the driver than just a pane of glass, and it looks like an industrial Mad Max horrorshow. The cannon itself is also pretty intimidating. Not only does it provide more protection for the gunner than the regular HISS dual cannons, but the concept of a tank rolling around spraying some chemical and/or biological warfare agents is horrifying.
Much like the original HISS, the cannon does get droopy over time. Mine will only hold about two positions– completely limp or angled to the sky. I can sometimes get it to sit in a more natural position, but I can never count on it.
As mentioned, the battle damage is now permanent and the stickers are shoddy, too. But those are really the only negatives.
It retains all of the functionality of the original HISS, but changes up the colors and some of the hardware. And the best part of it all? Hasbro did it just to make you (yes, you, specifically) mad. They ruined a classic on purpose. They demolished the entire GI Joe brand with this one toy and they have not since recovered from this monumental folly.
As for me, I love the aggressively bright colors and weirdo weapon. I’m glad I finally own this vehicle. I would have loved it as a kid and I love it now.
If it doesn’t suit you, you can ignore it and buy your 400th 83 HISS to put in a boring, sterile line in an expensive glass cabinet. But if you can’t just enjoy the toys you love and ignore the the toys you dislike, then you’ll greatly appreciate this next little photo gallery.
I did it all for you.
1991 GI Joe Septic Tank – Closing Thoughts
Thanks for joining me for this little gallery and review! If anything I wrote offended you personally, I suggest you close your eyes, take a deep breath, and count to Original 13. You’ll be fine.
Also, thanks to all of you friends and regular readers for bearing with me. I needed a week off. I feel like I’m still a little burned out and my head is not entirely in the game, but I’m hoping to push through it– that’s why I did something quick and easy.
So, let’s keep things light and fun. What’s your least favorite version of the HISS Tank? Which GI Joe vehicles do you hate irrationally? Let me know in the comments!