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G.I. JOE #4

Posted: Friday, April 3, 2009
By: Stephen Joyce

Chuck Dixon
Robert Atkins, Clayton Brown with John Wycough (i), Andrew Crossley (c)
IDW Publishing
In G.I. JOE #4 we continue to see the Pit under attack by Destroís spider-robots. The Pit is threatened to be compromised while Destro and Baroness go into aggressive negotiations.

Iíve been enjoying G.I. JOE since IDW relaunched the franchise and issue #4 continues to please me. The characters are the ones we remember from past versions, but at the same time we are relearning who they are and how this world works. This issue really shows the Joes rallying together. Theyíve learned how to take care of Destroís robots and theyíre taking the fight to them. For me, what really makes this issue work are the little character moments that are placed throughout this battle that is raging in the Pit. I really enjoyed the little nudge towards Duke and Scarlett being an item. The pacing for this issue is pretty good. The story flows very well, with there being no parts that seem rushed or dragged out.

One thing I have to applaud Chuck Dixon on is that Iím actually left in some suspense each month with this series. In a lot of cases I can figure out to some degree what the end result might be. Thatís not the case with G.I. JOE. Iím honestly not sure if Duke and his team will be able to stop Destroís robot or not. Itís nice to have back that feeling of uncertainty in comics.

The one gripe I may have about the series thus far is the pacing to some degree. While individual issues are paced wonderfully, as a whole the series is dragging. The Pit has basically been under attack by Destroís robots for about two and a half issues now. I understand in the world of trades that decompression of stories helps for collecting them later on, but by issue #4 of a series I do expect more of the plot to be expanded on. This is a very minor gripe. While I donít like that we arenít very far into the overall plot, I have been really enjoying each issue. As long as each issue stays at this caliber of writing I can deal with decompression.

There is little I can say on the art except that Robert Akins was made for this book. Iíve enjoyed looking at his wonderfully, beautiful pages each month and look forward to them as the series goes on. Hopefully IDW doesnít have any plans to switch him to any other book.

Final Word: Old school G.I. JOE fans need to be reading this book. Itís everything you remember about your favorite childhood heroes and more. New fans to the franchise will definitely get something out of this as well. These characters are great and as the series progresses they keep getting better. G.I. JOE #4 was a blast to read and will capture just about anyoneís attention who gives it a glance.



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