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Review: G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #276

G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #276

G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #276 kicks off the first part of “Untold Tales”. Scarlett, Snake-Eyes, and the gang drop down in Abysmia to locate a tech dabbling in poison gas and nuclear material. They meet up with their Abysmia contacts, one who is incredibly versatile with a knife, who more or less clears a path for the Joes to get to their target, only to have her own personal vendetta stand in the way of justice.

I can say I don’t know everything about G.I. Joe and I’m not sure how many stories don’t feature COBRA as the antagonists but there was no hint of that organization within the story. Writer Larry Hama, who has written this series for so long, gives them a break and instead it gives the story a bit more realism, I think. This issue felt very wordy. Even more so when you think that issue 275 was a silent issue. My only bone to pick with this issue was the ending felt very rushed but other than that, the pacing is great for such a story.

Netho Diaz is still doing art on G.I. Joe and with this issue, I thought I saw a few times where his art looked better than normal. He’s got a good hand for detail and in my opinion, is one of the best artists working on a licensed book. I’m glad IDW has an artist of this caliber working on the Joes. There are times when I feel like his art draws a bit of inspiration from the likes of Neal Adams, especially in the facial details. Jagdish Kumar’s coloring is used in a variety of different locations throughout the issue and he helps sell what’s going on within the pages.

I don’t know if “Untold Tales” is going to be a bunch of single-issue stories or if this issue will build onto something much bigger but as far as G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #276 goes, it works well as a solo issue story comprised of a good team of Joe favorites. One chapter in, “Untold Tales” is shaping up to be another quality story.

Story: Larry Hama Arti: Netho Diaz
Inks: Jagdish Kumar Color: J. Brown Letterer: Neil Uyetake
Story: 8.0 Art: 7.0 Overall: 7.5

IDW Publishing provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


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Review: G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #275

G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #275

Who doesn’t love G.I. Joe? Well, I guess some people probably don’t but G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #275 is a big deal and I’ve been reading the series off and on for the last bunch of years. Last issue, COBRA kidnapped a man named Sean Collins, who they think might be the original Snake Eyes and they want to brainwash him to work for them. It sounds like something that might have happened in one of the old cartoons.

But wait, there’s a big twist with the issue that I didn’t see. G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #275 calls back to another issue from many years ago, issue 21, or, “Silent Interlude”, in that there are no words. No dialogue. No caption boxes. That means we, the readers, have to piece it together from the art. In removing the dialogue and taking out of my mind the voices of these characters that have been ingrained in it, it actually makes for a rather pleasant read…or viewing.

I think one of the most interesting things about this is that series writer Larry Hama continues to do innovative things with these characters. When I picked up this issue, I had no idea it would be silent. But what is lost in words, this issue certainly makes up with in action. Non-stop, no-holds-barred, all guns blazing. You pick it, it’s what it is. All the big Joes and Cobra guys and gals just blasting each other all throughout a hospital. And it was something you could follow. Does it bug me there’s no dialogue? Eh, not really. I do feel that it would add something substantial to the experience, but having this issue be a silent one does also make for a memorable issue.

The art team on this issue of G.I. Joe had to do a lot of work. Tony Atkins and Netho Diaz create a great action sequence of an issue. I think they do satisfying work on the title. But on a silent issue, the art has to do so much more work to keep the reader invested in what they see and I feel it was mission accomplished in that category. And what’s more, I love seeing their renditions of so many classic characters that I grew up with.

Overall, an issue like this can hit a few different ways. I thought G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #275 was one of the better issues with no words I’ve read. It got me from point A to B and sometimes, or in this case, part 9 to part 10, and what a way to wrap a story. It’s not a perfect issue, but it’s a good one that, I think, pays off for those who have followed Hama’s G.I. Joe comic. It’s not one I’d recommend to a new reader.

Story: Larry Hama Art: Robert Atkins and Netho Diaz
Ink: Brian Atkins and Maria Keane Color: J. Brown Letterer: Neil Uyetake
Story: 6.0 Art: 7.0 Overall: 6.5 Recommendation: Good for those who follow the series but not for new readers

IDW Publishing provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


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Review: The Be-Bop Barbarians

The Be-Bop Barbarians is a graphic novel set in the late 1950s – with jazz, the burgeoning Civil Rights Movement, and the Red Scare. Three African American cartoonists’ stories weave together through tragedy and perseverance.

The Be-Bop Barbarians is by Gary Phillips, Dale Berry, J. Brown, and Justin Birch.

Get your copy in comic shops today and book stores on February 26! To find a comic shop near you, visit http://www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Amazon
TFAW

Pegasus Books provided Graphic Policy with FREE copies for review
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