Tuesday, April 23, 2013

365 Comics...113: G.I.Joe: The Cobra Files #1 (2013)

Ever since Cris Gage and Mike Costa debuted their dirtier, darker, edgier skew on G.I. Joe a half decade ago it's been the only Joe I've needed, and kind of all I ever wanted. It's gone through at least four relaunches at this point yet with Mike Costa and artist Antonio Fuso still in control, and really carrying on as if it were just the next issue.  I haven't actually checked, but I'm quite sure we're well over 50 issues at this point, with nary a dip in quality.  The series has started to play a little loose with its original conceit (which was a Cobra-focused series) but it had followed its own natural path, the creator's instincts, leading to certain characters taking the foreground, including Cobra refugee Chameleon, Tomax Paoli and, for a time, Major Bludd.  Costa likes to play with shades of grey in these series and it is so very fascinating, especially the manner in which using a fictional terror organization allows him to play any spy games with impunity and without offense.  I'm almost certain the Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy type psychological espionage storytelling would be quite rejected by the masses were the next Joe film to look like this, and critics would be baffled by storytelling this mature coming from action figures, but it does go to show that characters and concepts are only bound by those constraints which we conceive ourselves.  This is some of the best comics reading I get every month.

Q to the crew: who was that waking up from the coma at the end?  I'm obviously forgetting some story detail from last series.  It can't be Chuckles, right?

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