Story By Travis
G.I. Joe and Transformers. Two storied franchises with two very different modern success’s. Where as Transformers is still going strong with modern retail and third party action figures and a fifth film installment due next week, G.I. Joe on the other hand, could be perceived as a franchise on life support. No retail action figures and no film anywhere near production. Outside of the G.I. Joe fan club, IDW comics would be the only true log G.I. Joe has on the fire. Joe fans need any media of G.I. Joe to be successful. Sadly, First Strike is off to a uninteresting and generically written start with issue #0.
Now we all know that issue #0 of any comic series are not true real issues. They are free advertisements. Still, if the goal of any advertising is to lure the consumer, then issue #0 has as much appeal as a free White Castle cheeseburger. Now just a disclaimer, I am a huge G.I. Joe fan for the last 30 years, but that still does not by any means make me a expert. That said, I only recognized one character, and it wasn’t even from the G.I. Joe universe. It was Blitzwing from the Deceptacons. Again, if the goal here is to give the G.I. Joe franchise a boost in the media, there is no need to highlight a Transformer, who is the only “popular” character in the issue. Transformers doesn’t need any help. That franchise is going just fine. Instead, what we get in issue #0 is A Dr. and a patient going back and forth during a surgery on the state of the world. The dialogue doesn’t come close to giving the reader any real insight on what we can expect in the series outside of “robots are bad and we must stop them”.
The art is not horrible, but doesn’t jump off the pages either. Some of the best comics are the series that have amazing movie poster worthy art. When reading a fantastic Batman issue from Rebirth for example, the art almost comes alive as we see the Dark Knight sitting on top a skyscraper with rain pouring down his cowl and cape. Worthy comic art of that magnitude is what sells us and sucks us into that world as we turn each page. Sadly, First Strike’s comic art is simply bland. Looks as if it was art from the 1990’s comics. Just average. I have seen better comic art in the G.I. Joe Clubs monthly comic subscription.
Does this mean that the series has a nail in the coffin? Absolutely not. I would never put that much stock in a free issue #0. However, issue #1 has it’s work cut out for the series and IDW needs to come out swinging hard. IDW needs to “sell” the reader on this combined universe. Perhaps a good jungle mission on a dark and stormy night as a team of Joe’s rescues a Autobot from a Cobra base? As a Joe fan, I will be keeping all fingers, ears, and toes crossed this August when issue #1 launches.
I give G.I. Joe First Strike #0 a very average and uninspired 2 out of 4 Rattlers.
What did you think of the issue? Join in the conversation AFTER THE JUMP!