G.I. Joe Con 2015 Announced for Springfield, IL April 9th – 12th!

Less than 24 hours after the logo was revealed, the G.I. Joe Collectors Club has officially announced the location and dates for the 2015 G.I. Joe Convention!

Revealing on Facebook and GIJoeClub.com that the convention next year will be held in Springfield, IL from April 9th – 12th. Not only that, but we should be getting our first hints about the convention set in G.I. Joe vs. Cobra #7, on sale in comic shops this December! Check out the full information below:

For G.I.JoeCon, there is no place like Springfield! The 2015 G.I.Joe convention to be held April 9th – April 12th in Springfield, Illinois.

Fort Worth, TX – October 23rd, 2014 – Fun Publications, Inc., licensee for Hasbro’s official G.I. Joe Collectors’ Convention G.I.JoeCon, announced today that next year’s amazing convention will take place at the Prairie Capital Convention Center April 9th thru April 12th in the wonderful city of Springfield, Illinois. In 2015, fans from the Midwest and across the world will be able to celebrate another year of G.I. Joe at this exciting event! You can make your hotel reservations now at The Official G.I. Joe Collectors’ Convention – GIJoeCon 2015!

In the coming weeks, pop culture enthusiasts from around the world will be able to register for G.I.JoeCon 2015 through the http://www.gijoecon.com/il2015/ online registration system. Fans and collectors who register for G.I.JoeCon as an American Hero or General package holder will receive an exclusive G.I. Joe convention figure set, admission to the Friday private sales room experience, priority seating at all panels and seminars throughout the weekend and admittance to the Saturday night Casino Night and Awards party. Finally, American Hero and General package attendees will also receive a special bonus G.I. Joe item to go along with their convention box set. General Admission for non-registered guests will be available on Saturday and Sunday only.

For all the information regarding the G.I.JoeCon show activities, hotel updates and the exclusive figure offerings, remember to stay tuned to The Official G.I. Joe Collectors’ Convention – GIJoeCon 2015! And for a sneak peek at this year’s convention set theme be sure to check out G.I. Joe VS Cobra Issue 7, on comic book shelves this December!

GIJoeCon_2015_Logo2

January Solicitations for IDW’s G.I. Joe titles

Some cool, new G.I. Joe themed things are coming at us in 2015, and IDW has just released their solicitation list, featuring the premier issue of Snake Eyes: Agent of Cobra, not to mention a possible revelation about exactly who is in that mysterious glass tube in G.I. Joe’s new PIT headquarters!

Check out the full solicitation list after the jump.

Continue reading

Interview with the lead artist for Mobage’s G.I. Joe: Battleground

It’s way too easy to get sucked into the world of G.I. Joe: Battleground. I speak from experience. When the game was first released, I jumped in with both feet and I was captivated for several months. Upgrading cards, pushing myself through events trying to get better cards, more intricate art, and higher ranks.

Eventually, I had to force myself to just step away, but I still am fascinated and intrigued by the fantastic artwork throughout the game, especially with the upper level cards. Over on the Mobage Blog, they’ve posted a terrific Q & A with Zhen Pan, the lead artist for G.I. Joe: Battleground. While he doesn’t do so much of the art chores himself at this point, he oversees the artists involved and also works on the animations and other design aspects. Since that is one of the huge highlights of the game, I thought this interview was great.

Check out the Q & A right here, and I’ve mirrored some great images from the Q & A below.

G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero – The Dreaded 6″ Discussion

If you’ve been perusing the online G.I. Joe community this week, you’ve no doubt seen mention of the possibility that there are some whispers of 6” scale G.I. Joe figures drifting in the winds. Heck, the 2015 San Diego ComicCon was even mentioned as a kick off point for these figures.

Is it true? Nobody knows at this point… but whether or not it is true, it does bring up some valuable discussion points.

I’ve received a lot of personal messages asking what I think about the whole thing (as if my opinion matters more than anyone elses). And, as usual, I can see both sides.

My first instinct is that G.I. Joe should try and focus on being the best toy it can be at one scale before it starts spiraling off into other scales. Over the past 50 years we’ve seen many different styles, formats, and figure scales, but things always seem to fall back to the old standby 12” and 4”, with 4” obviously being the dominant force in recent years. Well… dominant in relative terms at least.

So with 50 years of market data telling Hasbro that G.I. Joe is most successful at those two scales, why muddy the waters and introduce yet another scale and format to even further divide the fandom?

One might argue that G.I. Joe is having trouble finding a retail foothold at the $8 price point with 4” figures, even backed by a $400million film. Will $20 6” figures do anything to further the lifespan of the brand? Emphatically I say no.

But that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a entirely bad idea all together.

Perhaps G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero could use a little spark, right? Perhaps, instead of wondering why Hasbro is trying to spread thin a brand that already is watered down, we need to consider the fact that since G.I. Joe isn’t a behemoth, maybe this is the time to start something new?

My only concern is that Hasbro at this point seems to be treating G.I. Joe as a short term prospect. Most toylines are short term prospects these days, but each assortment of these 4” figures is so specifically geared for a short term theme that you wonder if there are any long term plans. In recent years, G.I. Joe has obviously become a film-based toyline, with some cost-savings filler figures to fit in those gaps when movies aren’t in the theaters. I don’t see a 6” line changing that. I think we all know that the 6” line will simply revisit the vintage look at a larger (and more detailed) scale. In some instances I think that could be fun, and I think (again) short term that will provide some spark. But it’s a finite spark with a clear beginning and end. Unlike Star Wars there aren’t thousands of diehards who’ve been waiting 30 years for a 6” Ponda Baba. As soon as G.I. Joe starts dipping into 3rd tier characters (which will happen far sooner than many folks admit, I think) the 6” line will be on thin ice, and we’ll once again be faced with the whole “what’s next” approach?

G.I. Joe needs some serious revitalization. It needs some kind of Beast Wars, Sigma 6, or dare I say it, G.I. Joe: Renegades level support and effort (only maybe without friggen killing the landmark animated series before it even aired this time). A toyline can only survive on the regurgitated designs from 30 years ago for so long, and we’re reaching a breaking point.

Transformers has survived and excelled because it has successfully reinvigorated itself on a consistent basis throughout the past 30 years. Beast Wars led to Robots in Disguise, led to Armada, led to Classics, led to Generations, which has been further supplemented by fantastic comic books that Hasbro is actually using as inspiration for more toys, not to mention video games (yes I’m forgetting the films on purpose).

G.I. Joe has had one clear behemoth success, and it was three decades ago. Eventually we need to stop looking back and start looking forward, or the brand will always be taking things one year at a time, with no clear direction. While 6” figures might be a fun distraction and a quick spark, if Hasbro is serious about making G.I. Joe a player again, they must realize that’s not the solution to their problem.

G.I. Joe needs synergy. The same synergy that has worked so well for Transformers over the past few years, films notwithstanding. Get an animated series rolling, develop a video game with CARE, PRECISION and continuity. Embrace the comics! For the love of God, don’t be afraid to take some chances and put some resources behind it and maybe, just maybe give the thing half a chance to succeed or fail before you pull the plug. You might just be surprised as the results.

DandDCustoms-6-inch-Joes

Image courtesy of D & D Customs and HISSTank.com

What’s on Joe Mind Presents – the MegaForce Commentary!

Because no one demanded it!

Any G.I. Joe fan from the cheesy 80′s can find parallels between G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero and the totally hokey 1980′s military film MegaForce. And yes, I use the term “military” very lightly. In this special edition we do a full blown commentary on the whole 90 minute film. I’m pretty sure the experience took a few years off my life, so you’d all better enjoy it.

Check out the latest Special Edition on our Podbean Page (or embedded below) and check out the show notes!

SHOW NOTES

MEGAFORCE

“Making it Up as I Go Along” – A documentary on Larry Hama from the Spitting Image

The Spitting Image is a creative production company and they focused some of their exceptionally talented attention on our very own Larry Hama. A new documentary entitled “Making it Up As I Go Along” follows Hama through New York ComicCon, hundreds of comics, and over three years of camera footage to produce a very slick and nicely presented documentary.

You can check it out on the Spitting-Image website, and it’s a great looking piece of work. Obviously there are G.I. Joe references throughout the production.

Making_it_Up_Hama-01

New logo revealed for 2015 G.I. Joe Convention

One must ask, if a new logo has been revealed, are they close to revealing this next year’s theme? I know the reveal last year happened towards the end of 2013, so the timeline is coming close, but it all depends on when the Convention is going to be held.

Check out the GIJoeCon Facebook page, and the image is mirrored below.

GIJoeCon_2015_Logo

Entertainment Earth Pre-Orders for upcoming G.I. Joe Product

Well, it looks like Toys “R” Us and Big Bad Toy Store exclusivity may be gone…  pre-orders have been announced by Entertainment Earth, not only for G.I. Joe: 50th Anniversary, but also for the Gentle Giant 12″ Rock n Roll!

Check out the links below.

G.I. Joe Rock N Roll Jumbo Vintage-Style Action Figure

The following images link to sets of the 2 Packs and Full cases.

G.I. Joe 50th Anniversary Action Figures 2-Packs Wave 1 SetG.I. Joe 50th Anniversary Action Figures 2-Packs Wave 1 CaseG.I. Joe 50th Anniversary Action Figures 2-Packs Wave 2 SetG.I. Joe 50th Anniversary Action Figures 2-Packs Wave 2 Case

Enjoy!

Entertainment_Earth_Logo

Unicef Releases powerful video – A Vaccine for Violence

The G.I. Joe connection here may be tenuous, but the message is a good one. Unicef UK reached out to me to help spread the word about their new “Violence Vaccine” initiative, and a video they produced to get the word out about it, and if an organization like Unicef asks me to share something, I’m going to try and do it.

At one point in the short film, a child poses his G.I. Joe figure as a method of defense against potential violence, which impacts children across the world far more than any of us would like to believe or realize. Please check out the video below and the Press Release to go along with it.

Check out the Press Release below.

Continue reading