Once more to the Mustad well...
Now you've got me curious, Flytyer, as to when you evaluated the 36890s with the problems. The hooks I'm basing my comments on are 20-30 years old. I haven't picked up any since then, as I don't tie on them much. The boxes I looked at didn't have the problems you listed (with the exception of opening up on fish and that I haven't tested). Mostly I use these for trout flies, and that's an area where you won't see many problems with a 36890 opening up. On steelhead, stripers or salmon, that may be something else. There I tend to use the Partiridge Salar hook for many of the reasons you mentioned.