Comics: G.I. Joe #7

January 13, 2012

Written by Chuck Dixon with art by Wil Rosado, G.I. Joe #7 continues the Cobra Civil War as the Joes face Cobra threats on two fronts: the crew on the Tuna realize the ship is not as secure as they thought, while Flint's team in Springfield recognize just how deadly a single B.A.T. can be.

Dixon seems to be compensating for the slower buildup of the first G.I. Joe series by majorly reviving up the pace in this second volume. He also seems to be enjoying kicking the Joes down every chance he can get, and not even letting them breathe before he drops the next bombshell (literally, in this issue). That's fine by me…I enjoy my heroes downtrodden with backs against the wall, and it makes it an exciting read. This issue was no exception.

There are some weak elements in the storytelling, though. The Joes are on a captured submarine, and now use it as a base, despite acknowledging there are mysterious boxes scattered throughout that they don't know the function. Likewise, Flint leads the team into an ex-Cobra stronghold: Springfield. These really don't seem like decisions consistent with elite special forces operatives. The threats to both teams are basically a result of being in unsecured enemy territories when there was no real need for it. That weak logic, repeated twice in one issue, took a lot of impact out of the story.

Both Dixon and Rosado seem to really love the Baroness. She's developed into a strong, clever, and witty character under Dixon's run, and I'm all for her inclusion in as many stories as possible.
All apologies to Larry Hama, but this issue gives one of the best portrayals of Major Bludd in any media, not as the bumbling farce he's been depicted in the Marvel run or the cartoons, but as a cold, calculating soldier and leader. Here's to hoping we see more of him in the near future.

However, despite Bludd masterminding the attack on the Tuna, we really don't get a lot of character development out of him. We do get a lot of facetime with Error 404, Bludd's “tech support.” Smart, cold-blooded, cocky, with a touch of insanity, he's an instantly likeable antagonist, and a much needed foil for numerous tech-savvy Joes that seem to be running around in the IDW universe lately.

Rosado's art has been very inconsistent in this run. This issue exemplifies this. He seemed to have made a notable jump in quality between issue #5 and #6, and I was hoping he would continue that trend. Indeed, some panels in this issue are absolutely beautiful. But others are lacking in detail, seem overly cartoony or distorted, and appeared rushed. I know that Wil Rosado has the skills, it just seems he doesn't always apply it. Although he does seem to be consistent with drawing the Baroness strikingly. The man obviously knows what he likes!

Quote of the issue:
Cover Girl: We're doing this again, Ship?
Shipwreck: The sea's a harsh mistress, Cover Girl.
Cover Girl: I have a shorter name for the sea.

Despite weak setups for both stories, the execution is well done. A strong addition to the Cobra Civil War story, and well worth reading. Recommended.

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