Comics: G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #169

September 21, 2011

G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero is one of the most under appreciated G.I. Joe titles currently being published. In 2002, Devil's Due approached Larry Hama to write G.I. Joe: Frontline, a four-issue arc set after the events of G.I. Joe #155, Marvel Comics' final G.I. Joe issue. The result was a bit underwhelming, unfortunately. However, in May of last year, IDW went back and let Hama do what he should have done eight years earlier--write a G.I. Joe comic that continues the adventure of  the original Marvel series. The result this time around is the well-received, true-to-origins G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero title.

While the current G.I. Joe continuum by IDW is a fun and action packed take on the franchise, it's nice to have a series reminiscent of the classic Marvel books and G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero offers that connection. This issues features a good number of both Joes and Cobras, but never too many so that it gets confusing. Firefly and Crystal Ball have infiltrated a secret G.I. Joe base and its up to some familiar Joes to stop them in their tracks. One of the advantages in the use of classic characters is that their personality and visual representations--because they're drawn in their classic fatigues/action figure uniforms--are instantly recognizable making the story, not character development, the focus. This makes the plots twist and mysteries more enjoyable and most of the classic character traits still works well, surprisingly, with the exception of Crystal Ball.

Down to it's core, this issue is truly G.I. Joe against Cobra the enemy. There is a lot of continuity with the classic series, but new twists and turns that pump life into the story.

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