It’s really not fair to compare the main GI Joe line with the continuing saga by Larry Hama. As I’ve said numerous times, it’s amazing watching an author come back and continue his masterpiece so flawlessly. I couldn’t be happier about it.
We expect certain things from our GI Joe comics. We want cutting edge villains and weaponry, like the Blue Ninja clan using monofilament laser swords. We want strangely named ninja strikes, and this book has plenty. We want Cobra Commander alliterating every chance he gets. And we want action, lots of it. This book delivers everything I love in my Joe comics.
The unstoppable Blue Ninja clan has targeted Cobra for destruction, but they made the mistake of also killing Billy, Cobra Commander’s son. So that means that Baroness, Storm Shadow, and Snake Eyes are willing to make a temporary truce with the snake to wipe out these more powerful villains. The conflict takes up almost all of the collection, with Cobra’s current base in Broca Beach taking most of the damage.
These cyborgs are unstoppable, and it is great seeing the Vipers, Techno Vipers, and Televipers try to fight them off. Dr. Mindbender and his BATS do get a pretty important plot point too, which is nice.
If I had to make a complaint, it would be that this is very ninja-focused. I like Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow pretty well, but I do have to say I love seeing more of the “normal” troops too. They don’t get enough face time for me in this one. Scarlett, Stalker, and Duke get some action, but it is really sort of tacked on to the greater conflict.
S.L. Gallant handles the art, and he nails it. The key to making a Joe comic work is recognizing characters, and every detail is accounted for, down the padding on Psyche Out’s shirt. Gallant gets some design work too, as the Blue Ninjas look like souped-up versions of Firefly in concrete camos, and Cobra Commander’s new armor is imposing and effective.
It’s tough to read other Joe comics with this one on the stand.