In Issue 35, the Dreadnoks took Zartan’s motorcycle on a joy ride, while Clutch, Breaker, and Rock ‘N Roll were enjoying time on leave before the two groups met. Zartan was not pleased with the Dreadnoks, and neither was Rock ‘N Roll. The issue did not go perfectly well for the Dreadnok Buzzer. Feel free to check out the review of Issue 35 in case you missed it. (You can catch up on other “Now You Know With YorktownJoe”reviews there as well.)
On to the issue
This issue is titled All the Ships at Sea. Larry Hama weaves multiple stories, mostly focusing on boats, ships, and watercraft.
The issue begins somewhere in the South Atlantic on board the G.I.Joe freighter, the Jane. The ship has weapons systems, but it seems to be more stealthy, trying to give off the vibe of a freight ship hauling cargo. Aerial or satellite surveillance would probably just show them as a shipping vessel. Nothing to see here, move along.
Doc has brought hot chocolate for Deep Six and Cutter on the bridge. Deep Six declines and Cutter and Doc banter about whether the WHALE Hovercraft’s secret mission spying on Cobra should have been scrubbed due to bad weather.
We get right into the action as Trip-Wire warns they have missiles incoming. Cutter mentions their automated weapons systems should take care of the threats. And 3 out of 4 missiles are taken care of. But a giant wave from the storm knocks out some of their starboard facing systems and the 4th missile crashes into the Jane.
Meanwhile, on another ship 20 miles away, Snow Job and Torpedo have run into danger themselves. Their recon mission has gone sideways and Cobra is shooting at them too.
A Cobra Officer on a small island atoll is ordering ASP (Assault Systems Pods) to fire on the WHALE. He is watching them through his binoculars.
On a seemingly more peaceful ship, we find Scarlett with another Joe on the Staten Island Ferry. She mentions other routes might be faster, but she likes the ferry. Unfortunately, their peaceful ride is going to be interrupted. Cobra undercover Crimson Guards are on a training mission. Fred (or technically, Fred II) has rookie CG’s (Siegies) on a mission, and they were tailing Scarlett. They refer to her companion as an unknown soldier.
Can’t those two ever get a moment of peace together? The Crimson Guards are waiting for the soldier to leave so they can apprehend Scarlett. Even without Snake-Eyes being there, Scarlett would have been trouble for these guys. Although four against one could even the odds, three of them are in training.
Back at the Jane, one of the missiles sneaks through and hits the hull.
Torpedo makes a bold move and pushes the WHALE towards the Cobras on the atoll. (Side note, an atoll island is a formation that appears to be a ring of land in the water, with water in the middle too. These are usually the remains of underwater volcanoes. The rim has cooled and protrudes out of the water to form a tiny island. And Cobra placed a small base on this particular one.)
Larry Hama appears to have Cobra purchasing their undercover clothing from the Dick Tracy’s Surplus Store and Fedoras ‘R Us. These characters remind me of villains from the 1920’s or 1930’s that could have been working for Al Capone rather than gentlemen trying to blend in during the 1980’s.
They threaten Scarlett and try to take her into custody while Snake-Eyes is getting snacks and coffee.
They really didn’t think this all the way through. And they sure picked the wrong guy’s girlfriend to pick on.
Snake-Eyes is a ninja and a commando. Evidently, he is still working on his barista and hot dog vendor skills.
He delivers the order straight to the Cobra’s face, scalding him with hot coffee. Then he ducks as the other Cobra shoots his friend.
Back at the Jane, two Sea Rattlers are circling for the kill. Their comrades at the atoll are radioing for help.
Torpedo waits for the ASP turrets to traverse. In the cartoons, these twin cannon vehicles spun around in rapid succession. In this comic, it appears to take a lot of work for the gun crews to re-position them. Torpedo waits for them to finish, then speeds back out to open ocean in the far more nimble hovercraft.
Two of the training CG’s hustle Scarlett inside, while the one who was hit by coffee and friendly fire staggers between Fred II and Snake-Eyes. Fred II can’t get a clear shot, and Snake-Eyes recovers the CG’s sub machine gun.
He does not waste any time once he is armed. I think the Crimson Guard rental fleet is going to be making an insurance claim. Snake-Eyes riddles the car full of holes, and hits Fred II at least once.
One of the CG’s tries to kill Snake-Eyes. But he is a trainee and doesn’t have the safety off. Click, click, click. That’s not going to get it done.
Back at the atoll, the Cobra Officer is demonstrating his leadership by throwing a fit. All the gun crews are asking him what to do, but Torpedo has kept messing with him. He throws his helmet in frustration.
Two Cobra Hydrofoils are chasing the WHALE, but Torpedo is able to get the better of one of them.
At the Jane — Deep Six, Doc and Trip-Wire work valiantly to try to put out fires and shoot down Rattlers. Cutter is trying to keep them afloat.
At the ferry, Snake-Eyes pursues the CG’s inside. He smacks one in the face and Scarlett jabs one with an elbow and they both curb stomp the attackers.
The trainee outside is out of the fight, if not dead. The two at the bottom of the stairs are unconscious.
But Fred II believes he has the advantage of the high ground. And he kills the light and brags about his night optics. The reflection in the night scope is brilliant artwork.
He does not know with whom he is picking a fight.
Back at the Jane, Deep Six cuts through the straps holding a large crate or shipping container. He has a surpise inside. A Mobile Missile System (MMS) is available, and he fires a missile up and takes out one of the Sea Rattlers, but is bounced around in the ensuing explosions.
The Cobra Officer in charge of artillery has been outsmarted by Torpedo and Snow Job up until now. He hears the firing from the opposite side of the island where the WHALE and the second Hydrofoil are engaged. He makes a decision based on trying to outsmart Torpedo.
At the Jane, Trip-Wire discovers that their Gatling gun system had the circuit board shorted out during the storm. He re-wires the circuit while Doc lifts the gun up. The 2nd Sea Rattler is coming in for the kill.
The Gatling gun fires and hits the target. But it’s wreck crashes right into the Jane and explodes!!
After shooting at each other in the dark and missing, both Snake-Eyes and Fred II are out of ammo. Snake-Eyes charges Fred and pushes him toward an outward facing hatch. Snake-Eyes catches the door hatch with his fingertips to keep from falling in to the river. Fred hangs on to him.
At the atoll the Officer orders the ASP emplacements to fire on the boat coming around.
But it is their own hydrofoil.
Don’t you hate it when that happens??
And to add insult to injury, Torpedo and the WHALE slide in behind them taking out the emplacements as the cruise on by unharmed.
Back at the ferry, Fred II is holding Snake-Eyes and then realizes he is wearing a rubber life-like mask. He pulls it off and screams in horror at the sight of Snake-Eyes face unmasked.
Snake-Eyes does not try to hold on to him when he plunges overboard and flows into the river.
Scarlett tells Snake-Eyes she has a spare mask in her purse.
At the smoldering ruins of what was once the Cobra secret island base, we are given a brief hint that Cobra has a bigger operation planned in the Gulf of Mexico, not fare from where they were stationed.
Although I agree with the one Cobra’s assessment that the Commander will not be enthusiastic about their losses.
Torpedo and Snow Job head back to meet up with the freighter known as the Jane. But they see smoke and an oil slick.
Torpedo is tearing up on the loss of Deep Six, Cutter, Trip-Wire and Doc. But then they find them in a survival rubber raft. They are able to board the WHALE, but don’t have the range to make it back to HQ.
Cutter replies that he was able to call for backup before they sank. The Joes got an upgrade from a “Plain Jane” freighter. They are riding home in real style aboard the brand new aircraft carrier, the USS FLAGG!
This issue had an intertwining of three stories, with two being directly connected. Torpedo and Snow Job in the WHALE messed with the Cobra Officer commanding the small base of operation. There was good humor here, but it was a little odd that Cutter was on the Jane while Torpedo was cruising in his WHALE. The Jane story further developed Deep Six as a genuine hero. Trip-Wire and Doc also worked together to try to put out a fire and shoot down a Sea Rattler. The ferry story was action packed. But it was interesting that at nearly point blank range, Snake-Eyes did not blow Fred II away. In the end, gravity and water enveloped him. An what do you think hurt worse for him, having his date ruined, being attacked by Cobras, or having his mask removed and a blood curdling scream at the sight of it. I know he is a deadly ninja commando, but doesn’t he have some feelings about his ruined personal appearance? This does bring in an important theme, Crimson Guards are undercover everywhere, and they will keep popping up as the story continues. And something is up with Cobra in the Gulf of Mexico.
Tune in soon for Issue 37.
Now You Know – a little more about: ”ALL THE SHIPS AT SEA!” Feel free to let me know what you thought of this issue in the comments AFTER THE JUMP.