IDW Publishing 2010
Written by Larry Hama
Penciled by SL Gallant
Inked by Brian Shearer
Coloured by J. Brown
Lettered by Neil Uyetake
Zartan and Destro carry out two separate raids on Cobra: Destro storms the Silent Castle alongside The Baroness and his Iron Grenadiers; Zartan leads the Dreadnoks and a group of Cobra mercenaries into Cobra’s latest HQ. Both groups find each location abandoned… while Cobra Commander, hiding in a secret bunker, sets off hidden explosives at both locations and blows the Cobra traitors to smithereens!
There are so many things about this epic event that have and continue to be outstanding. From a reader’s perspective Larry is the only person alive who understands these characters as if they were his own, and many instances they pretty much are. His characterization, plot twists and the way he’s able to craft this story seems effortless. The first page here is just a prime example of this as Cobra Commander is bowling, watch the pins by the way, and Doctor Mindbender’s droll comments. It really captures these two beautifully.
When we catch up with Destro and the Baroness what we get again is the kind of characterization that puts things squarely in their corner. Actions speak louder than words ever can and these speak volumes. This is the kind of stuff that inspires loyalty in others in ways that Cobra Commander never can and this is dangerous for him. There are moments that define an arc like this and I have a feeling this is one of those.
Conversely when we see Zartan and his crew it’s a great moment. When we left them it was like the building they were in was extinguished and we thought them lost. Even when we go back to them you sit and wonder what the heck happened that they are talking this way and experiencing what they are. I like the appearance of those who rescued them and brings them up to date with what’s happening and why did what they did.
The whole thing with Duke and his wife while is wonderful to see and explores their relationship and how she was found and lost to him again is on point I still feel like there’s something there that doesn’t sit well with me. I feel like we’re being duped somehow and that she isn’t whom we think she is. Colour me jaded or too cynical but it seems too good to be true and too convenient at this point in time. See it’s Larry’s ability to get us to that point and think these things and whether they are true or not is not relevant it’s just happened. That i’m just into this as much as I am isn’t surprising but it serves as this reminder that Larry is so amazing at what he does.
With the way this issue ends sets up the next turn of events and it’s going to be something unique to witness. I’ve thought perhaps this time around Cobra Commander could sustain a win but after all we’ve seen i’m thinking differently and that it won’t be the Joe’s who bring him down.
This is some of the most seriously genre breaking stuff to happen in any G.I. Joe setting, franchise or book.