Comic Reviews

Review: G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #301

In this review of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #301, Larry Hama writes the first issue of the G.I. Joe for the new publishers Skybound and Image Comics. The story picks up with a Joe attack on Cobra Island and Serpentor Khan unleashing the ultimate weapon which can permanently change the fight between G.I. Joe and COBRA.

 

Title:  G.I. Joe:  A Real American Hero #301
Writer: Larry Hama
Artist:  Chris Mooneyham
Color Artist: Francesco Segala
Letterer:  Pat Brosseau
Cover Artist:   Andy Kubert & Brad Anderson

 

 

Note: This review contains spoilers

 

g.i. joe: a real american hero #301 main coverSynopsis

G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #301 begins with a transport plane carrying the reinforcements for the Joe team on the ground being hit and going down. Wild Bill and Duke struggle to keep the plane in the air.

Inside his lab, Dr. Mindbender and Serpentor Khan view the Joe team on the island. Serpentor activates the countdown for the mutant virus bomb. When this weapon detonates, all within the blast radius will be mutated into cannibalistic monsters. This terrifies Mindbender, but Serpentor would rather this happen instead of capture.

Cutter on the ground sees the C-130 transport right on top of them. He orders the ground team back onto the Whale hovercraft and he maneuvers the vehicle out of the way. Cutter launches the hovercraft back into the water and they move to evacuate with a captive Cobra Commander. Wild Bill and Duke continue to struggle to keep the plane in the air. He succeeds but one of the engines is out so they have to dump the extra vehicles. The danger however is not over.

On board the Whale, Cutter orders Laura and Wade to take the Commander below and keep an eye on him. Commander takes this opportunity to jump Laura and kill wade with Laura’s weapon. He escapes from the Whale and heads back to Cobra Island. Stalker and Snake Eyes investigate and discover what happens and begins procedures to crank the ramp back up to avoid sinking and regain speed.

On evacuation the plane encounters the Cobra cruise ship heading to Baton Rouge. It is loaded with advanced Battle Android Troopers. They fire on the plane and Alpha-001 continues with the plan.

The bomb on the island detonates. Cobra Commander see this and immediately turns around. He and the Joe’s survive. Alpha-001 sees the explosion and launches surveillance. The Joes arrive at Revanche Headquarters in New Jersey and prepare for the burial of one of their own.

On the island the Cobras learn that they have an intense urge to rip living flesh off of the bone and devour it but they are still aware of who they are. Serpentor even declares that he is not a mindless criminal monster.

 

Analysis

The beginning of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #301 provides a good synopsis of a couple of the main characters in G.I. Joe. That is a good little primer before the action. This issue is the aftermath of the previous run. It recounts the story of how the Joes escaped Cobra Island but it is not clean. They lose equipment and a member of the team. The action here is intense and we get a good look at the character of Serpentor Khan.

He only cares about his own self and his ego. He does not want to be humiliated in captivity and would rather sentence himself to inhumanity than be forced to become mindless animals than be forced to admit defeat. That however does not happen. He becomes a monster but a monster with intelligence and self awareness. This will actually make him deadlier and presumably harder to fight.

The art is fitting for this type of story. It is very scratchy yet not stylized. It is realistic in the character’s designs and appearance. There is even a hint of their individual characters.

 

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g.i. joe: a real american hero #301 main cover
G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #301
Final Thoughts
An action packed entrance of the G.I. Joe story into Skybound comics.  I was able to follow the action without having to read the IDW run. However, I did grow up with the original Marvel Comics run of G.I. Joe.
Story
Art
Colors
4.3
Overall Score

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