What is Monster Force?

So anyone who has been dialed into the status of the Eagle Force Kickstarter has no doubt started seeing some hints and clues scattered around for a mysterious new project called “Monster Force”…

What the heck is this?  Very good question.  Bill Murphy from Fresh Monkey Fiction was kind enough to talk to me a little bit about what we can expect from this mysterious new endeavor…

GeneralsJoes: So Monster Force is still a ways off by the looks, with a date of 2018.  What can you tell us about the background of this idea?
Fresh Monkey Fiction: Craig at Remco and I were bouncing ideas around and we started talking classic monsters.  Craig and I are huge classic monster fans and we wanted to figure out a way to produce some sort of monster figures. I was out to dinner with my writing partner Sean Rourke working on our next Pendragon book and mentioned it to him. He ran with the idea and thought why not connect monsters to Eagle Force and Midnightmen  our WWII comic.  We had already folded the Midnightmen into the Eagle Force universe with Ultima Thule, so it seemed like a perfect fit. We’ll feature General Brown and Mr. Legacy as our cross over characters.
GeneralsJoes: Will the “Monsters” in Monster Force be familiar creature characters or more generic beasts?
Fresh Monkey Fiction: They will be our unique spin on classic monsters. If you’ve seen the Monster Force Egyptian Amulet logo (which is a homage to a classic 80’s monster movie)  you’ll get an idea of a few of monsters we’re thinking about.
GeneralsJoes: It certainly looks like the Monster Force logo and Eagle Force logo share similar characteristics.  Will Monster Force be an Eagle Force “tie in” of sorts?
Fresh Monkey Fiction: Yes, it’ll tie in to Eagle Force for sure. General Brown is our main cross over character to the world of Eagle Force, but you’ll see a couple other Eagle Force/R.I.O.T. characters in the mix as well. A fan demanded R.I.O.T character, from the vintage line,  will make his figure debut in Monster Force.
GeneralsJoes: If it does tie-in to Eagle Force, is it an “alternative universe” storyline or part of the main Eagle Force vs. R.I.O.T. story?

Fresh Monkey Fiction: Well it’s not an “alternative universe” story, it takes place in the same world as Eagle Force, but these monsters pose a much different threat than R.I.O.T., so General Brown forms a new team to deal with them. We’ll reveal more details later this summer and we hope to launch the line in early 2018.

Big thanks to Bill for talking through this a little bit, hopefully you all join me in my excitement for whatever is to come from Monster Force!  It sounds pretty great!  Keep watching the Eagle Force Returns Facebook Page for the latest info!

 

The Marissa Faireborn mystery has been revealed…

First and foremost, a HUGE thanks to Josh over at YoJoe who has been doing spectacular work with their comic archive, tying the IDW Universe together, even as G.I. Joe has been criss-crossing continuity with other Hasbro properties.  He’s managed to make it easy to follow and make sense, and with the latest reveal of Marissa Fairborne, he goes above and beyond!  He’s written a terrific guest post for GeneralsJoes.com which you can read below.  Again, big props to his loyal and devoted following to the ongoing IDW continuity and how this all ties back to history.  Some really great stuff!

Big News in the GI Joe and Transformers world has just happened in the IDW comic Optimus Prime #3!

An event literally 30 years in making has finally been confirmed (In continuity).

Summaries of all of the different series can be read at YoJoe.com, so you can follow the stories.

Yes, its official, Marissa Faireborn of The Transformers Earth Defense Command is the daughter of GI Joe’s Flint.  And they actually sit down together in a coffee shop and talk.

For 20 years it was only rumored that Marissa was related to Dashiell and the mother was a mystery.  Outside of a DVD commentary, no cartoon, comic or other media has ever confirmed their relationship.

Now for the first time ever and within the IDW continuity, the Joe and Transformers worlds have been combined allowing a long time meeting between Flint and Marissa to happen.

Both GI Joe (not ARAH which is written by Larry Hama) and the Transformers along with Action Man, MASK, ROM and Micronauts are all included in the IDW continuity.  The mini-series Revolution recently tied all of the Hasbro properties together into one universe.

But one mystery that has never been solved officially in any cannon is who is Marissa Faireborn’s mother?

Let’s dive into some Transformers and GI Joe history that got us to this huge reveal.

First, in 1985 Series Four of GI Joe A Real American Hero toys, a character named Flint aka Dashiell Faireborn was released.  He actually premiered in GI Joe: the Revenge of Cobra cartoon episode #1 “In Cobra’s Pit” on Sept 10th 1984, he is voiced by actor Bill Ratner.  Flint has been a leader of the Joe since his first arrival in toys, comics or cartoons.  And in both the comics and cartoons his love interest is fellow GI Joe Lady Jaye aka Alison Hart-Burnett, who also was released in Series Four.  Flint’s in continuity cartoon stories took place in the 1980s.

On September 16th, 1986 a new character named Marissa arrived in the second episode of the third season of the cartoon The Transformers.  The title of the episode was called the “Five Faces of Darkness, Part 2”.  Marissa Faireborn was part of the Earth Defense Command (EDC) that was helping and fighting the Transformers on Earth.  In the timeline of the Transformers series continuity, Captain Faireborn was living in 2005.

At the time of Marissa’s premiere on the cartoon, GI Joe and Transformers had no official connection between the toy lines.  This was the first hint of many crossovers to come in the 30 year history of Hasbro toys and the Faireborn family.

In The Transformers cartoon episode called “The Killing Jar” with had an airdate of Sept 29th, 1986.  Disguised as a shuttle, the Transformers Quintesson ship docks with an EDC space station, and Marissa Faireborn is lured on board by an illusion of her father.  Although not officially called Flint, this character is voiced by the same actor Bill Ratner who performed Flint in the regular GI Joe cartoon.  “Flint’s” appearance in this episode has him with grey hair in his 60s, still active with the military and in good if not distant relations with Marissa, at least well enough for the projection to fool her.

Happening in another part of the Hasbro universe, released in January 1987 in Marvel comics, was a completely different kind of crossover between GI Joe and the Autobots.  Writer Michael Higgins wrote an official in the ARAH continuity 4 issue mini-series called GI Joe and The Transformers.  Now this mini-series does not contain nor reference Flint, Marissa or even the Earth Defense Command.  But forever became official A Real American Hero cannon, whether the fans liked it or not.

Over in the United Kingdom, on August 8th, 1987 issue #125 of Marvel’s UK The Transformers is released with an original crossover story called Ancient Relics Part One. The rest of this story also appears in the Marvel UK Action Force comic #24 titled Ancient Relics Part Two, #25 is Part Three, #26 Part Four, #27 is Part Five.  Flint is the leader of Action Force in the UK, when in the London underground a Transformer is discovered and it’s Megatron. Autobots Wheeljack, Grimlock and Blades all fight with Flint and his Action Force team against Megatron.  Additionally, the Ancient Relics storyline was reprinted in 5 parts in the UK’s Action Force Monthly (Issues #1-6) in 1988 which in America is called European Missions (Issues #1-6) as in 1988.  It has always been debatable whether European Mission is officially part of the ARAH continuity.  But either way it is still an original story that crosses over Flint with The Transformers, presumably before Marissa was even born.

6 years later in 1993, The Transformers appear within the GI Joe A Real American Hero comic starting with issue #139 until #142.  Now this is officially within the ARAH continuity.  Megatron shows up and partners with Cobra Commander and of course the Joes fight them.  At the conclusion of #142, Marvel’s The Transformers Generation 2 becomes a spin off comic book series starting with #1.  The GI Joe’s only appear in 3 issues of the series and Flint appears in Transformers Generation 2 #6.

Since GI Joe and Transformers first official crossed over they have since crossed over in comics numerous times with several different publishers since 1993.  Generally, each of these is their own continuity and the publisher’s were Devil’s Due Publishing, Dreamwave and IDW.   The Dreamwave Transformers GI Joe series has the Joes fighting in World War II against The Transformers.  This series introduces Nathaniel Faireborn who is Flint’s father and Marissa’s grandfather. In the Devil’s Due crossover series Flint actually goes to Cybertron.  In Dreamwave’s G1 Transformers series Marissa now holding the rank of Commander, rather than Captain, portrayed as a member of the EDC, which in the Dreamwave continuity clandestinely handles terrestrial/extraterrestrial encounters. Following the Transformers’ return to activity on Earth early 21st century, The Transformers plans were stopped, but Marissa’s superior officer did not share her fondness for the Transformers. Dreamwave’s bankruptcy and subsequent closure left remaining stories of Marissa Faireborn untold.

Marissa was a key character in US the Transformers cartoon series but never appeared in a Marvel comic in the 1980s.  In the 1990s in a comic in Japanese, Manga style, that was never released in America and connected to a radio series, this is called KISS Players.  Marissa as a child in the 1990s, lived in New York, where she met and became friends with Shaoshao Li, who developed an extremely strong attachment to her. The young Marissa resented her military father, so when one of his missions went awry and she and her father had to be rescued by Optimus Prime, she quickly came to view the Autobot leader as a surrogate father figure… and perhaps a little bit more.

Ok, so that covers comics and cartoon references between Flint and the Joes and Marissa and the Transformers.  In recent years the toys have started to crossover Joes and Transformers and the Transformers and GI Joe Collector’s Club in 2015 released a Marissa Faireborn toy, see the GeneralsJoes toy review.

But who is Marissa’s mother.

Fans speculated for two decades that the character Marissa Faireborn in Transformers is his daughter, since they both share the same last name. The writers of both shows remained coy whether Marissa Faireborn was actually Flint and Lady Jaye’s daughter or not. However, cast notes for “The Killing Jar” refer to Marissa’s father as being “a 60-year-old Flint”. The mystery was finally solved on November 7, 2006, with the 20th anniversary DVD release of The Transformers: The Movie. On an interview on the DVD, Flint Dille, story editor for Transformers, confirmed that Marissa Faireborn is indeed Flint and Lady Jaye’s daughter.  This would subsequently make Marissa a distant relative of Destro as well. However, in an interview with G. I. Joe fansite Joe Headquarters, Dille added the caveat that “I’ve always thought of Flint as being too young to have a daughter that old.”

And now you know and knowing is half the battle.  But we don’t know who Marissa’s mother is within the IDW continuity.  Stay tuned.

References: Yojoe.com, tfwiki.net, Wikipedia.com

GeneralsJoes Reviews Vitruvian HACKS Wave 6

The latest wave of Boss Fight Studio’s fantastic Vitruvian HACKS line has arrived in my sweaty palms and I’ve posted a review for all four figures on my Vitruvian HACKS Review Page.

If you want to check out the reviews individually, please click the links below:

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Amazing images of upcoming Prime One G.I. Joe statues from Tokyo Winter Wonder

There hasn’t been much in the way of G.I. Joe news this weekend at Toy Fair, but statue company Prime 1 has stepped up to the plate in a HUGE way over at the Tokyo Winter Wonder Festival previewing some fantastic looking G.I. Joe statues including Serpentor and Destro!

These are not inexpensive endeavors, but they look spectacular.  Big thanks to Skinny on Twitter for the heads up, and Statue Review on Instagram for some of these images.

They’ve previous revealed both a Snake Eyes and a Storm Shadow statue, so things are looking pretty great for G.I. Joe statuary fans and collectors!

Boss Fight Studio Bucky O’Hare gets off on the right rabbit’s foot

Toy Fair is this weekend, and we’re starting off with some exciting news from our good friends at Boss Fight Studio and Continuity Comics!  The official press release for the upcoming Bucky O’Hare action figure line (co-created by G.I. Joe legend Larry Hama) has been sent out, with some spectacular new images of the work in progress sculpts and designs for Bucky himself.  Things are looking pretty great!  Check out the press release and the images below and join me in your anticipation of this fun upcoming toy line from Continuity Comics and Boss Fight Studio!

Boss Fight Studio has teamed up with Neal Adams’ Continuity Studios to celebrate the hero who goes where no ordinary rabbit would dare!  

The upstart toy company will be producing highly-articulated collectible toys of Bucky O’Hare, his S.P.A.C.E. allies, and Toad enemies!  Created by Larry Hama and Michael Golden, Bucky O’Hare tells the story of a brave band of mammal freedom fighters trying to save The Aniverse from the all-conquering Toad Empire.  As part of a special gallery show at Continuity Studios’ New York headquarters, showcasing collectibles and the classic comic art that inspired them, Boss Fight is giving the public a first look at the new product line with a prototype of Bucky O’Hare. This all new figure features spectacular detail, super articulation, interchangeable hands and faces and his trusty automatic, self-cleaning laser pistols. Bucky is on display alongside Golden’s original graphic novel cover art!
The Bucky O’Hare product line is planned to be offered for preorder in late Spring of 2017.  As they did with Vitruvian H.A.C.K.S., Boss Fight Studio will be sharing regular in-progress updates with fans via social media outlets.
Drawing from the original comics, animation and more, this is sure to be a dynamic and KOMPLEX collection!
Available NOW at bossfightshop.com is a limited quantity of the hard to find Bucky O’Hare comic!

Boss Fight Studio releases Berzerker Gorgon Early!

A pleasant surprise this Valentine’s Day as Boss Fight Studio has released their hotly anticipated Berzerker Gorgon earlier than anticipated!

The Berzerker Gorgon is their first male Gorgon figure leveraging a brand new lower-midsection piece that is sure to appeal to collectors everywhere.  The figure itself is a terrific shade of green and will compliment anyone’s Gorgon Horde nicely.

This is NOT A PRE-ORDER.  The item is in stock and ready to ship.

GO GET EM on BossFightShop.com!

Potentially unreleased G.I. Joe 2016 Items revealed?

Package artist/colorist of the 2016 G.I. Joe line Ross Hughes has posted some images on his DeviantArt Page of artwork he has produced for recent G.I. Joe releases found at Toys “R” Us.

Interestingly, some of those images feature artwork for characters that were NOT released.  Those characters include Action Man (in two different versions), Stinger Driver (in three different versions), a Snow Serpent, Wild Weasel and Rock n Roll (resembling his look from the concept case).

Considering some of these characters (specifically Stinger Driver and Wild Weasel) it certainly seems possible that some planned vehicle releases might have included these figures, but as we know, Toys “R” Us was not on board with vehicle releases for 2016.  Whether or not these will make it out in some other format remains to be seen.

Check out Ross Hughes DeviantArt page here, and some mirrored images below.

G.I. Joe Con Exclusive Reveal Catch Up – Dodger and Blaster

I’ve had my nose buried in other projects this week and the G.I. Joe Collectors Club has unleased two more BattleForce: 2000 reveals: Dodger and Blaster.

Like they’ve been doing from the start, they seem to be sticking really close to the vintage aesthetic, and the designs are, for the most part, really solid.  I am a bit concerned about the Photoshop mock up head sculpts, especially the ones with the non-removable helmets, as I fear they may suffer from Static Line syndrome.

While many folks complained about Static Line’s permanently attached helmet, I wasn’t all that distraught about that component, but more about how the attached helmet almost looked like it was a part of his head.  Whoever is sculpting these heads doesn’t appear to be accommodating for the actual shape and size of the head underneath the helmet and the result is an almost “squished” look where the helmets are far too small and way too tight.

Time will tell what the actual finished product will look like, I hate to make judgments based purely on a Photoshop mock up, but that’s all we have to go on at this point.

One question I really do have though – WHERE’S BLASTER’S MASK????  Seriously that was a really awesome element to the original figure.  Very disappointed that they couldn’t find some way financially to include that, choosing instead to retool exact replicas of vintage accessories.  Curious choice on that one, I have to admit.

The builds for these two figures are pretty decent, though as I mentioned above I’m a little confused as to why money would be invested in retooling exactly replicas of the classic weapons when a 30 second trip to eBay will find any replacement you want for pennies on the dollar.

Regardless…  we’re now a good chunk of the way through the reveals and so far I’m liking the majority of the BattleForce: 2000 stuff, but am still really questioning the choice to include 9 Battle Android Troopers.  Let’s see what the rest look like.

Keep watching GIJoeCon.com for updates and see the previews below!

New Kindle Worlds adventure – Nerves of Stone available at Amazon

Big news this morning as my latest G.I. Joe action novella Nerves of Stone is available right now on Amazon.com!

Featuring the exciting 2016 cast of  characters I try to write a story bringing all of these different personalities together…you’ll have to let me know if I succeeded.

It’s only $1.99 and is available right now on Amazon.  Check it out!

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