30th Anniversary ARAH Reading Marathon - Week 1

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Postby jackharkness » Sat Jan 07, 2012 7:18 pm

Leneer1 wrote:General Flagg was a very interesting character. I wish he could've stuck around at least another year. The same goes with the rest of the original thirteen Joes. Larry was building up a great team, each with distinctive and interesting personalities. I won't say I regret the introduction of the later Joes because there are a lot of personal favorites in the waves to come, but I've often wondered what direction Larry would've taken the team in if he had stuck with the originals just a little longer.

i agree, and i believe i mentioned in another post thread that I'D like to see a companion gi joe book (even a mini or one shot) the focuses on the original 13, i know they did a flashback story in the 140's that had breaker in it, so, i'd like to see that happen, and as for flagg NOT taking the shot, perhaps, he had something in his eye?

Favorite moments from Tanks For The Memories (And that title isn't one of them. *Groan*):

Steeler ogling the...uh, rearguard situation.

Breaker, Steeler and Clutch having to improvise with whatever is at hand to defeat Cobra (this is why they are the best of the best).

Flagg, who was captain of the army pistol team, letting CC escape because he won't risk harming the girl scout troop CC is hiding behind.

Flagg also has the best line in the issue. When one of the girl scouts comments that they'll catch CC because "They always catch the bad guys" Flagg whispers, "I wish that were true, little girl..."

I think it's safe to say that I like General Flagg.
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Postby Leneer1 » Sat Jan 07, 2012 7:48 pm

Torpedo wrote:
Leneer1 wrote:Flagg, who was captain of the army pistol team, letting CC escape because he won't risk harming the girl scout troop CC is hiding behind.


That was a good moment that I always felt was let down by the art. Cobra Commander was not using any of the girls as human shields. He held one at arm's length, but any soldier with Flagg's credentials ought to have been able to unload on CC's head and chest without risking bystanders.


I hear you. I always thought Flagg didn't want to risk the possibility of a bystander being hurt. CC could've maimed/killed someone with his own gun before or after he was shot, and the girl scouts would also have been traumatized by seeing a man shot to death right in front of them.
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Postby Torpedo » Sat Jan 07, 2012 7:54 pm

Leneer1 wrote:and the girl scouts would also have been traumatized by seeing a man shot to death right in front of them.


Yeah... they should probably get a badge for that.
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Postby CrazyK » Sat Jan 07, 2012 9:45 pm

GI Joe #5 was the first Joe comic I read, and the first comic I ever bought off the rack myself (I used to read some of my brother's Star Wars comics, but this was the first one I picked up, bought and read myself).

I read this issue at least ten times within the first few weeks I had it. I could not get enough. Even as a kid, I found it odd that I got this comic about a military action team... and they didn't fire a shot! But I still loved it! I was so proud of myself the first time I read it and picked up immediately that there was no muzzle flash when the MOBAT "fired" and I knew it had to be a ruse.

And, even then, I thought Flagg should have been able to pick off CC at that range with how CC positioned himself behind the little girl! :) That type of thing used to drive my father crazy when he would see it in movies or on tv (he and I used to shoot pistols all the time... he got to be a pretty wicked shot... let's just say the household "Duck Hunt" high score was never in contention!): "Oh, come on, he can totally make that shot!" :lol:
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Postby Leneer1 » Sun Jan 08, 2012 5:34 am

Torpedo wrote:
Leneer1 wrote:and the girl scouts would also have been traumatized by seeing a man shot to death right in front of them.


Yeah... they should probably get a badge for that.


Agreed. LOL
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Postby Mamu_Nestor » Sun Jan 08, 2012 9:50 am

CrazyK wrote:And, even then, I thought Flagg should have been able to pick off CC at that range with how CC positioned himself behind the little girl! :) That type of thing used to drive my father crazy when he would see it in movies or on tv (he and I used to shoot pistols all the time... he got to be a pretty wicked shot... let's just say the household "Duck Hunt" high score was never in contention!): "Oh, come on, he can totally make that shot!" :lol:


I dunno have you ever shot a pistol in combat? That really changes things. And if you don't do it regularly you lose the the adaptation to the stress stimiluis. Shooting is different than shooting in competition, is different than shooting in combat, is different than shooting in a hostage situation. The higher the stress level (fear, anxiety whatever increases the heart rate) the less fine motor skill a person has. At the highest level a person will get stuck in a repative loop of action without a way to stop except through success or death. There plenty of stories of trained police officers that have unloaded 2.5 clips into a suspect (in a parked car) because they suspected would be armed and violent. It was a lack of regular and adaquate training. When stress goes up accuracy goes down. How would you feel if a tank almost ran you down and you almost had to shoot a friend to prevent it and then your arch nemisis just popped up and grabbed a little girl as a human shield? Stress levels are high and then as a general he has to think about the public response to even appearing to put a young civilian girl in even more danger by shooting at her. To me it is very plausible.
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Postby ER » Sun Jan 08, 2012 11:19 am

Leneer1 wrote:
Torpedo wrote:
Leneer1 wrote:and the girl scouts would also have been traumatized by seeing a man shot to death right in front of them.


Yeah... they should probably get a badge for that.


Agreed. LOL


I would have loved it if CC had stolen a box of girl-scout-cookies as he made his getaway - that would have been the ultimate dastardly thing to do :)
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Postby ER » Sun Jan 08, 2012 11:45 am

Read Declassified #1-3 yesterday and again loved them.

When these came out I had been done with DDP for a couple of years already, but I kept a watch out for any further contributions that LH might make. So I bought these up as they came out - love the 3-part connecting cover with our original 13

I had never even thought about the issues that Torpedo raised when I had read these in the past. But now that you point it out, I guess I do find the interaction between Sparks and General Flagg to be a little annoying because yeah, Sparks does seem to come off smarter than Flagg, the way he's explaining everything to him.

Shooter being kept secret from the other Joes? Though I can't think of a good reason why she would have to be unknown to the other Joes I still really like this angle. Shooter gave her life to save them and the Joes never even knew who she really was - I don't know - I just really like it - it hits home.

Flagg blackmailing the corrupt general to save Hawk? Yeah, I guess that does seem dirty to not expose this traitorous general at any cost - I had never thought about that before. I guess it would have been better if Flagg had found a way to both save Hawk and expose the general.

But still, this mini is a gem, coming out in a time when I had given up hope of ever getting another decent Joe tale again. The background stories for everyone are great fun to read!

We still don't have a background story for Scarlett, though. Perhaps we'll get one in the current issues sometime ???
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Postby Mamu_Nestor » Sun Jan 08, 2012 7:54 pm

Scarletts background was done in Scarlett Declassified.
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Postby shanecdavis » Mon Jan 09, 2012 9:11 am

While it is true Scarlett's origin was covered in Scarlett: Declassified, that was written by Mike O'Sullivan and wasn't very memorable. I can't remember if there is any conflict between IDW ARAH and DDP ARAH, but I would much rather Mr. Hama provide an origin for her, and for Snake Eyes too, if he so inclines.

I did get caught up with this week's reading, burning through 3-5 over the weekend. I put off reading #3 because it was the first time we got a silly sci-fi element from Mr. Hama and it bothered me since this was before Hasbro started mandating it. This was all his idea. I actually never read this issue until Marvel put out the small digest volumes, which made it an even harder pill to swallow. Reading it again though, it wasn't too bad. The robot being able to find the console to activate the blast doors was ridiculous to me, not to mention it re-assembling itself, but I have to say that the characterization and the action more than made up for it. Most of the good points have been covered so I won't go into it, but I couldn't get enough of how Mr. Hama brought out how the Joes work together. The tactics and their ingenuity made it an enjoyable read. Not quite on par as the previous 2 though.

Like #3, I first read #4 in digest form. As ER said, this was some pretty dark stuff for a "kid's" comic. Mr. Hama once again balances a solid story with superb characterization, many learning moments, and sprinkles of both good humor and humor that makes you roll your eyes. The high point for me were the entries of Snake Eyes, especially when he is observing Hawk and Grunt. Reading this again was interesting because there were two DDP spin-offs from this issue, one good and one not. Brandon Jerwa's Frontline #11-14 storyline centered around Wingfield's son Tyler, which I think is the best Frontline story DDP produced and really made Chuckle's a much more intriguing character. Joe Casey, on the other hand, started off America's Elite by bringing back Wingfield himself. It was plagued with bad characterization, flying IG robots, Storm Shadow jumping from an exploding Sky Hawk and landing to the ground without a scratch, among other things.

There were a couple things though that made me scratch my head. Throughout the issue Stalker is referred to by many Joes as Ranger. The second is Hawk jumping in the Sabre and piloting it. Maybe it's different in the Army, but in the Marine Corps there just isn't that type of cross training. Artillery officers and especially enlisted soldiers (Zap) don't have any possible way to attend MATSG-21 (Marine Aviation Training). I would have rather Hawk got a message back to Breaker to scramble a certain pilot, but, as with most of Mr. Hama's work, the rest of the story is so good that you can accept a few of those inconsistencies.

Then there was #5. It is interesting to note that to this point the Joes have only battled with COBRA once, in the first issue. That streak continues here as this issue further shows the Joe's ingenuity and their ability to adapt and overcome. If they were any better they would be Marines. Once again Mr. Hama teaches us, this time with detailed information on the inner workings of a tank. Gotta love those moments. Mr Hama did a fine job of balancing action and comedy. Joes always seem to ease the tension of a situation with levity, and this issue certainly was no exception. Like Torpedo, I too thought the using of Breaker's gum to simulate firing was brilliant. I also agree that I think it was the fault of the artist to properly depict the situation with CC using a girl scout as a human shield. Regardless, this is the second time in three issues the Joes have thwarted CC's plans without firing a single shot (squashing/stomping/shooting tiny COBRA robots notwithstanding).

So that makes 8 issues read in 5 days. Well, 11 if you consider Declassified were double issues. Not bad. Here is how I would rank the stories:

Declassified #1-3
Marvel #2
Marvel #1
Marvel #4
Marvel #5
Marvel #3

Thankfully Mr. Hama's plots would only get better and better over the next few years, until Hasbro started introducing some pretty suspect figures/vehicles into the toy line and then mandating their appearance into the comic.
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Postby Torpedo » Mon Jan 09, 2012 9:26 am

I would rank these first five installments, plus Declassified thusly:

1. G.I. Joe #1
2. G.I. Joe #2
3. G.I. Joe: Declassified #1-3
4. G.I. Joe #5
5. G.I. Joe #4
6. G.I. Joe #3

Issues #1 and #2 are close, very close, but the debut takes it for utilizing the whole cast, balancing the exposition of introducing the core concept and sixteen significant characters with a great action adventure story.
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Postby ER » Mon Jan 09, 2012 10:35 am

I was aware that DDP had done a Scarlett: Declassified, though I've never read it. Sorry for not clarifying in my original post - I meant that I'd like to see a Scarlett background story written by Larry.

As for a Larry-written SE:Declassified, I'm good with what we were already given in #26 and #27, but hey, if Larry wants to add more details to his past in the future I'd be all for it.
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Postby ER » Mon Jan 09, 2012 10:39 am

Here's my rankings for the first week:

Excellent
1) #4
2) #2
3) #1
4) Declassified #1-3
5) #5

Good, but not amazing
6) #3
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Postby Mamu_Nestor » Mon Jan 09, 2012 4:42 pm

IMO
1. #2
2. #4
3. #1
4. Declassified (1-3)
5. #5
6. #3
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Postby ER » Tue Jan 10, 2012 4:18 pm

Poor #3 - ranked last by all of us - the one thing our lists all had in common :)
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