|Code Name: LIFELINE|
The 2010 'Vacation in the Shadows' convention set effectively added some elements of the old Fleetway/Palitoy Action Force series to the G.I. Joe continuity. Part of this proposition involved a few established Joe characters mixing with the foreigners. One of these was Lifeline, apparently with Z Force on some sort of exchange program or something. A figure commemorating this was produced and packed with Gaucho and Jammer, which is why I have it (or had it; in the lapse between writing this review and editing it, he's been ebayed).
It's a very strange choice, bluntly. The figure is a recolour of the 1994 Battle Corps version of Lifeline. The scheme and uniform bears more than a passing resemblance to the straight-arm Z Force Medic figure. When the latter was deployed in the comic, he was a Swede codenamed Doc. I would suspect the guy was renamed to avoid confusion with the more famous G.I. Joe character Doc. Even so, making him a random version of Lifeline seems an odd choice - why not a new codename, with using the Swedish Doc's file name? All I can think of is to get some recognisable names in the convention set, which seems a bit patronising.
The problem with identity sadly translates to the figure. It looks like just another strange variation of Lifeline (and very few Joes have had as many physical makeovers as everyone's favourite ill-placed pacifist), with only the green to even half-link him to the other Z-Force figures. While it fits with the on-exchange back-story, it's a shame he doesn't even have any Z-Force insignia.
I'm a little perturbed that my hopes he'd replace the straight-arm Doc
were dashed by the weak design, but he does look very generic - it's
not even like it's a great update on the original Lifeline, bearing
only a passing resemblance to the guy's best-known
incarnation. The figure does come with a decent range of accessories,
culled from Hasbro's vast pool of extant parts, but falls between two
stools. It's not a good version of Lifeline and it's not a good Z-Force
figure. Generally the convention set can be found at prices acceptable
for Gaucho and Jammer alone, but if you're buying the figures individually,
there's no need to chase this one down.