In Issue 40, we saw intrigue, action, and some of Cobra’s plans in the Gulf of Mexico beginning to unfold. Feel free to check out the review of Issue 40 in case you missed it. (You can catch up on other “Now You Know With YorktownJoe” reviews there as well.)

On to the issue


Cutter and the Joes on the W.H.A.L.E. hovercraft are trying to get back to Tactical Battle Platform as a tidal wave or tsunami caused by the bombing in Issue 40 threatens to wipe them out. In fact, when I look at the title page, I can almost hear the drumbeats from the song Wipeout.


Snake-Eyes is seen here on the W.H.A.L.E. again, as he bounced back and forth in the last issue. Sometimes he was on the Tactical Battle Platform, other times on the W.H.A.L.E. All in good fun. “Hey kids, if you have TWO Snake-Eyes action figures, one can battle over here, while another one can keep guard over here! He’s that AWESOME! Maybe buy three or four!!”

At any rate, Cutter calls to warn the others on the Tactical Battle Platform what they already know: They made a big mistake with the bombing run, and they are all likely about to drown if they don’t tie themselves to something sturdy.


Meanwhile, on the floor of the Gulf, Cobra has some pretty impressive technology in the alleged sunken freighter, the ARBCO Star. Cobra has always been about the big screen TV’s. That, and world domination.

As the fault line cracks and shifts, the geologic plates that comprises the floor of the Gulf of Mexico shift wildly. This wrecks havoc with the tidal waves on the surface, but also begins pushing a piece of the Gulf floor up towards the surface.

The sunken freighter is actually a self contained undersea base that Cobra equipped with hydraulic stabilizing arms to withstand the jostling of the explosion and subsequent destructive force that resulted in a small island being forced up above the surface of the Gulf.

This is the original “Rise of Cobra.” Sorry about that, I couldn’t help myself.


Cobra notifies their lawyers in multiple cities who have been standing by to begin filing paperwork to establish legal claims to the new island and requesting diplomatic recognition as a sovereign nation by Mexico, Cuba, the United Nations, and Washington D.C.

We the readers aren’t told whether these were regular attorneys or specially placed Crimson Guards. At any rate, their devious plans are in play.


Cobra Commander is convinced the Joes will come and try to kick them off the island before they can get the paperwork done. So he begins deploying troops, armored divisions of H.I.S.S. tanks, A.S.P. artillery gun pods, and close air support. It is fortunate Cobra had Rattlers and F.A.N.G.s that could take off vertically. They did not have time to pave a runway for traditional aircraft since this island is still wet and muddy. It was on the Gulf floor less than 15 minutes prior!!


Duke is ready to lead the already battle weary Joes into battle, after having survived attacks from Cobra Hydrofoils and Rattlers in the previous issue. Their mission is to defend human freedom against Cobra. And Cobra is far too close for comfort on this island in the Gulf.


Ace gets his Skystriker airborne to provide some air support. But a Cobra F.A.N.G. helicopter is “painting” the Joes with an infrared beam. This is designed to help the Rattler’s missiles find the target more accurately.


Comic book Roadblock somehow channeled Cartoon rhyming Roadblock. I had forgotten that this happened…


As the F.A.N.G. gets strafed by Roadblock’s .50 cal Browning M-2, the pilot can’t keep the light on the target, so the Rattler’s missiles go off track.

Tomax and Xamot instruct the A.S.P. gunners to shoot down both the Skystriker and the Rattler chasing him. Cobra pilot survive-ability was MUCH worse in the comics than in the cartoon.


Sorry kids! No chutes to be seen…

Ace gets hits too, so he has to limp the Skystriker back to the Joe Aircraft Carrier USS Flagg.

Cobra Commander realizes his troops are failing him and quickly changes from his hooded look to the armored battle helmet. Cobra Commander is living out the saying: “If you want something done right, you have to do it yourself…”


I love the muck and mire sticking to Duke, Recondo, and Snake-Eyes. This is an undried piece of the oceanic floor, so it stands to reason it would be a bit mushy. And comic Duke is not goofy at all. He is hard charging and leading his rag-tag bunch of Joes against far superior numbers of Cobra troopers. But they are looking to finish what they started.


We also see a lot of Shipwreck and Barbecue, the Joe’s new firefighter. But here we see him making a pun about the H.I.S.S. driver being nicer if he “axes” him nicely.


Then he pretty much murders the H.I.S.S. driver. With an axe.

I wonder if that sold more Barbecue action figures? With him being a dad-joke telling axe murderer? Come to think of it, his uniform does have a little bit of a Deadpool color scheme… But maybe Barbecue just smashed the glass, then punched the H.I.S.S. driver and tossed him out. Yes, let’s go with that…


The Joes push Cobra back to the Freighter. Cobra Commander bemoans that his troops and lawyers have failed him. But he had personally put himself in harms way in this issue.

Could this be the end of Cobra Commander, Zartan, the special Crimson Guard mastermind, and Tomax/Xamot? It looks like the good guys are about to actually completely wipe out the biggest terrorist threat to the Unites States….


But somehow Duke gets a communication in the middle of RATATATATATATATATATATATATATA, KA-BOOM!! How he hears his radio let alone gets reception in the middle of this situation, I will never know. (It almost looks like Firefly’s green walkie-talkie.)

But the politicians and upper Generals snarled it up. The Joes are ordered to cease fire and withdraw since Washington D.C. has officially recognized Cobra Island as a sovereign nation.

Great. Just great.

The looks on the Joe’s faces -> priceless.


Issue 41 was filled with action as Cobra’s lawyers file paperwork for international recognition of the muddy chunk of Gulf floor that has risen to the surface. A handful of Joes had beaten the entire Cobra army but somehow Duke was able to take a radio call in the middle of a firefight, hear instructions clearly, and give orders to cease fire. Not sure if anyone has tried (rudely) to have a conversation in a theater during a battle scene of an action or war movie? How did that go? Did you hear each other well? I didn’t think so. Now multiply that by actually being shot at while returning fire. I really think trained soldiers would have finished the battle because it is not likely to receive countermanding orders to stand down once the “kill the bad guys” orders are in action. But the comic had to wrap up somehow. And that brings a seething end to issue 41.

Hope you enjoyed this review!

Tune in soon for Issue 42. Here is a look at the teaser from the letters page.


Now You Know – a little more about: ”STRATEGIC DIPLOMACY” Feel free to let me know what you thought of this issue in the comments AFTER THE JUMP.


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