jamesewelch's G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #158 review

Silent Castle breached

Previously on G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero...

COBRA was hired by the US government to provide national security after attacks on the capital, monuments, and government offices by Broken Star Liberation Army and other US anti-government organizations, who were secretly funded and organized by COBRA. After taking control of the national security, the government contractor COBRA identifies the disbanded G.I. Joe team as terrorists and begin to systemically hunt them down and kill them.

However, the G.I. Joes aren't taking a vacation from protecting America. Instead, they begin to reorganize themselves and counter-attack. Stalker, a sniper in Afghanistan/Pakistan area, is ambushed and almost killed by COBRA sniper team. However, Stalker out-smarts the COBRA sniper team by creating a decoy. As he makes his way back to the states, the other Joes are chased and attacked by COBRA forces. General Hawk and Rock & Roll escape Washington D.C. under gunfire and Snake Eyes, Scarlet, and Duke return from an attack at Snake Eyes cabin in the Sierra Nevada mountains with Storm Shadow closing in on them.

Things are also getting complicated over at COBRA command. Dr. Mindbender is investigating why Billy, Cobra Commander's brainwashed son, is beginning to act strange which may be related to a virus implanted into the Brainwave Scanner by the deceased Dr. Venom.

The Story (Spoiler)

The Good

It's the 3rd (or 3 1/2) issue into the restarted G.I Joe: Real American Hero comic book series. The Joes begin their counter attack and there's a lot of action going on in three separate, but coordinated offenses. Snake Eyes and Scarlett lead up the infiltration attack and squares off versus Storm Shadow. Duke, Roadblock, Rock & Roll, MainFrame, and Stalker lead the attack at the main gate (possibly a distraction for Snake Eyes and Scarlet). Back at the Pentagon, General Hawk tries to sneak into the Pentagon for another non-combative strike against COBRA.

It's nice to see the Joes and Cobra personnel in their original uniforms. It feels a bit strange seeing everyone wearing something different and no uniform uniformity, but it is still working for me. Maybe it's just me enjoying the reminiscing about the previous issues 15 years ago...

Zartan's back. I'm looking forward to seeing him in the next issue since he's heading off to cause some confusion.
With the three prong attack on COBRA, there's a lot of action. Although, the battle at the front of the castle lead by Duke, seems a bit over the top, it is a comic book and sometimes you need to throw realism out the door to enjoy the plot. 
The subplot with Billy, Baroness, and the deceased Dr Venom continues in the background of this issue. Will the brainwashed COBRA personnel get their memories back? If so, what happens to COBRA's elite staff and bodyguards?

The Bad

The artwork is good, but just not all that great. I think that some panels look great, but overall, it's just good/okay artwork. I'd love to see some better interior artwork. I'm normally not an art snob - as long as the art doesn't distract from the story, then I'm okay with it. But for some reason, something felt off and I was a bit distracted by it in this issue unlike the previous two issues.

There seems to be some gap in the continuation between the last issue and this issue. The Joes have traveled all the way from southwest US to the Silent Castle with Storm Shadow on their trail.

Verdict 3.5/5

I enjoyed the previous issues a little more than this issue, but the story and action is still good enough to keep be on board for a bit longer. I do believe that this issue is setting the stage for a big next issue, so I'm hoping that 159 and 160 will deliver the goods on the story arc.
1 Comments Refresh
Posted by Cobraviper11

Nah..... I mean, sure Larry Hama founded de bases of the story of the joes and all that but after all these years the comic book is kinda "cheesy" im tired of all the lame cobra soldiers im tired of the ultra super invincible joes tired of the insecure cobra commander and most of all im tired of the brainwave scanner,.. that machine takes the life out of cobra cause it makes it that its members are there not because they want to but because they have to.......it still so 80's and i cant help to feel it like the "back in the day" cartoon so boringly cheesy.   I know its a diferent story and Hama wants an ending to the Marvel story (that never ended) but we all know how its going to end (the super invincible joes are going to kick the insecure paranoid cobra commander's ass  *yawnn......  YAWN....predictable) Dont get me wrong I have much respect for Larry Hama, BUT! we are in 2010 no the 80's anymore,...and im LOVING what IDW PUBLISHING is doing, where cobra soldiers are top killer machines that can go 1 on 1 against Snake Eyes and a lot more,,...but must of all thank god i didnt got STUCK  in the old Hama universe and was flexible enough to dig the new versions of the story,..you know? like the dude that grew up and only likes the music bands that played around his time and cant get into the newer younger bands playing now.  IM NOT COMPARING cause i know what i have to know, im just saying.....let Hama tell the ending and lets continue.  COBRA!!!!!!!!!!

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