Brandon Borzelli's Geek Goggle Reviews
GI Joe America’s Elite #36
Powers, Bear, Shoyket, Beaulieu & Quinn
The end of GI Joe as we know it. The final issue of what was to be the biggest GI Joe event in the 25 year history is also the final issue published by DDP. With the end of the World War 3 arc comes some good moments that leaves me wondering how this arc really would have ended if DDP were keeping the license. Oh well. What we get, in reality, is a really great extra sized comic with some outstanding action moments, a couple of twists and some really inconsistent art.
The comic begins with Cobra Commander admitting he’s lost the war, so he decides where he will choose the battleground for his final fight with GI Joe. While this is going on, Rourke tells Duke more about his past and in doing so, figures out where Cobra Commander will hole himself up.
Elsewhere, Destro confronts his son. All of Destro’s son’s army turns on him, because, let’s face it, Destro is the freaking man. His kid is a dummy.
Next comes the most confusing scene that has a sweet twist at the end. Major Bludd catches a Cobra officer trying to call “home”. Now this isn’t what it seems. Both are calling for backup to overthrow the Commander. Convenient? Well, it’s a nice surprise later when we find out these identities.
As more of the world gets liberated we learn the fate of some of the supporting characters, such as the President, General Rey, Destro’s son, his girlfriend and some other Joes who haven’t made appearances in a long time. Remember Bazooka? Well he finally lost weight. Also, the art gives a vintage image of Grunt. A nice nod to the old Marvel run I must say.
GI Joe invades Cobra. Let me just say that all the key players are on in this one. Firefly, Zartan, Scrap Iron and on and on. Even Colton picks up a gun and does some fighting. This battle does leave something to be desired though. For starters, why does Zartan announce himself to Storm Shadow and Snake Eyes if he doesn’t plan to fight? Why does Cobra Commander shoot a certain Joe but not kill him? Why is Hawk’s boot off? Alas, we will never know these answers.
The end is what you would expect. They all go back to their lives for a day or two and then regroup again as GI Joe. Cobra Commander is in jail (until someone breaks him out). Others seem to be gone. They could be dead, they could be in prison or they could be on the run. Who knows. The point is that the ending didn’t really rock the world in such a way that a new comic series couldn’t start with the same type of story that this one just was.
The artwork suffered big time. Be it deadlines or multiple artists, I don’t know, but the art really had problems. Some pages I cant tell who a single character is. Not ONE. Other pages are beautiful where the details are captured in superb style. There is one page where Snake Eyes appears to be fighting a woman and then I realized it was Firefly when I turned the page. That’s just wrong. I shouldn’t be too critical because I usually complain when something is late, but this comic sets its standards very high in the art department a long time ago, so they made their bed here.
It will sound absurd but I actually do recommend this comic to someone who might like Joe comics that hasn’t read any. I think this comic is a good example of a war comic that has strategy and some mystery with as many twists as battles. It’s really well done.
Like most GI Joe fans I am dreading the prospect of a reboot. This would feel like somehow abandonment of an awful lot of history for very little reason. This comic left a lot open to explore. I’d like to see it get just that.
This comic was the top comic on my list every month for the past two plus years. You think I’m going to shoot this thing up at the end? It does get a demerit for the art though.
PS: Anyone know why Storm Shadow brought up the Soft Master to Scrap Iron?
4 out of 5 geek goggles
G.I. Joe Americas Elite #36