Writers: B Clay Moore, Mike OíSullivan, Sam Wells, Sean Dove
Artists: Jeremy Haun, Tim Seeley, Sean Dove, Russ Lowery, Stefano Caselli, Daniele Rudoni
Publisher: Devil's Due
When the top tier Joes are busy, captured, or dead, itís time to call in the reserves for special missions. At least, thatís what this first issue is leading us to believe, and Iím all for that, since itís a great premise to showcase characters not seen in a while. This issue presents Beach Head, Tunnel Rat, Low Light, Mercer, and Cover Girl take on some would-be terrorists while also dealing with the real threat, the former Cobra agent Neurotoxin. The issue also treats us to a brief interlude between brothers Barrel Roll and Blackout that adds a new element to their complex relationship. The issue ends with a short attempt at humor with G.I. Joe and Cobra pets waging war against each other.
The main story was really interesting, since I wasnít all that familiar with most of the characters, and this provided an excellent opportunity to find out about them by dropping them right in the middle of a potentially deadly situation without any prep time to really come together as a unit. The strengths and weaknesses of each character quickly came to light, and they had to think on their feet to make the most of their individual talents.
The second story took me by surprise, since, because of the artwork, I really thought the main character was Duke, which wasnít the case at all. Again, Iím wasnít familiar with the characters involved, so in this case it might have helped to have the profiles presented before the story instead of after it.
The final story was pretty much a waste of space in my opinion, since I donít pick up Joe titles for comedy relief.
I have to say I wasnít a big fan of the artwork in this issue. I guess Iím just spoiled by the regular Joe title, but Haunís style just wasnít to my taste. Even on the very first page, Stalker looked like he was from South America, not at all the way he normally looks. As I mentioned above, the second storyís art, while nice, had me thinking that the main character was Duke. The face needed to be more like it is in the profile page, so that I would have some idea of who Iím dealing with. I wonít even comment on the art in the third short story.
Overall I really liked this first issue. It allowed me to become more familiar with second tier characters, and it even had a full listing of all reserve Joes. Thatís worth price of admission alone! I would just think twice about the art team next time.
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