Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Reviews
GI Joe Origins #1
Hama & Feister & Hawthorne
This comic is the second of the three new GI Joe series is written by the master: Larry Hama. His crack at redoing GI Joe’s beginning isn’t all that much of a different flavor then we are used to from the old take. The comic moves quickly, introduces some key characters and establishes a new and much more sinister Cobra Commander. For the most part, this is a good comic and a very solid start to this series.
Hawk sends his new recruits, Duke and Scarlett, on a mission with no clear instructions and only a code word each to go on. Stalker is also introduced as first assisting Hawk and then getting chased by Hawk on his own training mission. The introduction is clever and helps to make sure Stalker is regarded as a man who watches out for his team and is a bad ass at the same time. The problem with this opening is Hawk is back to having blond hair. I thought they were committed to making Hawk different from Duke this time around?
On the mission, Duke and Scarlett meet with an ex-military civilian who pretty much leads them directly to their mission. This was a risky move using a non-GI Joe regular to be the one to show Duke and Scarlett the ropes. On one hand its makes Duke and Scarlett look very incapable but on the other hand it helps to create a new character that has a blank slate that could play an important role down the road. To be fair, she is a very interesting character out of the gate.
As the issue progresses we find out that the man who will become Cobra Commander has ties to Snake Eyes and he is bent on killing him. Duke and Scarlett find Snake Eyes and have their first run in with the Commander. True to their characters, Snake Eyes is a bad ass and a bit of a head case, while the Commander is a scam artist of lowly depths. However, the departure here is that the Commander is an ex Green Beret, a doctor and a genius. This version of the Commander is dangerous on every level and he seems completely psychotic. It’s a really terrific introduction.
The comic has excellent artwork. The parts that stand out the most are the battles that the Commander has getting in and out of scrapes. He looks like a menace and the gunfights are as realistic as you would hope. The depictions of the characters are a mixed bag. Scarlett and Stalker look great while Duke and Hawk look out of place and a little awkward. It’s possible the art is more conducive to battles rather than characters standing around. We’ll have to see how the series progresses.
This is a good issue to help build up Scarlett, Duke, Snake Eyes and Cobra Commander. It’s got a good plot and moves quickly through it. It helps tie all the origins together, which makes their clashes later in life all the more meaningful. This was a good start and a very good comic.
4out of 5 geek goggles