Are we in for a “different kind of (G.I.) Joe” with upcoming Cinematic Universe?

The Los Angeles Times newspaper dropped an interesting article online today discussing the upcoming release of Transformers: The Last Knight as well as a My Little Pony animated film, but within the context of the article they spoke broadly about Hasbro’s new “Cinematic Universe” initiative.

This is all old news to most of us, but where it got interesting is some very specific discussions about the G.I. Joe brand itself:

Simon Waters, the man in charge of consumer brands says the following:

“The world has changed, and I think you’re going to see G.I. Joe changing with it.”

I think the evolution and change of G.I. Joe is a natural thing, especially as you consider all of the different other brands contained within the cinematic universe.

Hasbro’s Stephen Davis elaborated on this, saying:

“We hope to create a head snap. It’s a different kind of ‘Joe’ — one that still resonates with ‘Joe’ fans but brings in an uninitiated audience and expands the audience internationally and domestically.”

Discussions of a “contemporary approach” also take place within the article, the true meaning of which is anyone’s guess at this point.

I’m glad that G.I. Joe seems to be the focus of a potential overhaul, but time will tell what Hasbro considers a “head snap” and how it will resonate with the long term fans and what it can do to bring in new fans.  I’ll certainly be watching.

Check out the full article at


17 thoughts on “Are we in for a “different kind of (G.I.) Joe” with upcoming Cinematic Universe?

  1. Honestly, the Joe movies are bad enough ANY change would probably be an improvement at this point. Or at least it cant hurt to try. They just are not viable the way they are now, theyre just so bad people don’t go to see them. At least people actually show up for the terrible Transformers movies.

  2. Well, here we go again. This is the same stuff they said about Sigma Six and the first movie. “Oh, GI Joe has to be re-imagined for a generation! Kids are going to love it!” Forget the “writers room,” the advertising executives are calling the shots and dictating the story, just as they did before. To GI Joe’s ruination.

    Fans will get marginalized and pushed aside, and eventually told that they’re such a small percentage of Hasbro’s customer base, they don’t care if we like the movie or not… until it fails, just like the previous films did. Then it will be: “boo-hoo! The movie failed because fans didn’t support it enough! You guys are killing GI Joe!”

    How about just letting GI Joe be GI Joe? By all means, feel free to modernize the settings and costumes, but keep the essence of the characters and story true true to the originals? Because if you don’t respect the characters and history, you’re simply not going to make a good GI Joe story. Bottom line.

  3. If G.I. Joe is to live on it does need some sort of re-imagining. However, it must be done properly and across multiple platforms. Hasbro just can’t decide to do a one off movie and hope for the best. Kids need to be hit from all angles. TV cartoon, movies, video games, toys, other merchandising, etc. Hasbro can pull this off and they own the brand so no licensing fees to worry about. I am hoping for big things. TMNT did this and they had a decent showing. The TMNT brand is fizzling out a bit again but overall I thought they were very successful.

  4. In that third paragraph I can’t find a common ground with you. I think our A Real American Hero brand ran best when it more or less disregarded the 12″ doll that boys play with and then jumped into a scale that was strong at retail and then took the lead and made an expansive play system.
    Time to come with exciting, interesting, original stuff. No need to keep any essence or “true story.”

  5. I got the four turtles and the new turtle van and some villains and some mousers. I like watching the show. I never got into the turtles on the first go-round years ago.

    But on your observation of fizzling out again, I agree. But where can the turtles go from there? The dimension-x arc was pretty out there.

    It would be interesting to me if the sewers were left behind forever. Maybe add in some real permanent “death” of one of the four and add some real human character that would add the underlying sorrow among the remaining three who still continue with their zany adventures but have to grow up out of their teens.

    Maybe a school for the mutants led by the remaining older turtles?

  6. I guess the majority of them want. Resolute is one of the best things released under the name G.I. Joe.

  7. There’s no way to back up the claim of a “fan majority.” The very definition of a G.I.Joe “fan” has been varying for over 50 years, and Resolute was just a one-off cartoon with a few figures among this expansive toy lines history (or a small drop of multiple borrowed re-imaginings in the G.I.Joe ocean). Not to knock your assessment of the fan base, your observations of what the fans want are likely way far apart from where I am or others are. I’ll admit I’m wrong when that 8 year-old agrees with the 68 year-old.
    And at the end of the day, G.I.Joe is just another property brand to the C.E.O.s to make some fast dollar return anyway.

  8. if i read you correctly, i agree. i have been a fan since 1982 and , for me, the canon has always been Larry Hama’s G.I. JOE: A REAL AMERICAN HERO which can and has opened it’s opus to newer toys, and even mentioned cobra commander’s SIGMA-SIX SUIT. i’m sick of revamps and all the #1’s. the sunbow cartoon was, in my mind, a primer for the younger fans to prep for the comic book (which was different but basically, the same idea w/o the killing or snake-eyes being overused and storm-shadow being bad – in the cartoon).

  9. Just to be clear, the GI Joe films didn’t fail.
    They were terrible, retched garbage, but they were successful terrible retched garbage…

    $302 for Rise on a $175 budget
    $375 for Retaliation on a $94 Budget

  10. In terms of box office take, you are correct, they made back the money that they cost to make. In the case of Rise of Cobra, just barely, but they didn’t bomb and lose money.

    Though saying that that’s successful is a bit like a little kid with all D’s on his report card telling his parents that they should be happy that D’s mean that technically he passed.

    But for Hasbro, the bottom line is always going to be toy sales, and that’s where the movies, again, particularly the first one, failed, with a ton of unsold merchandise that had to be clearanced out.

    That’s the unforgivable sin of the movies. Not that they they were bad (they were) but that they hurt toy sales instead of reinvigorating, and turned retailers away from the brand.

  11. That’s the sin for toy collectors. But not these particular films.
    That’s the sin for a LOT of franchises; Ghostbusters, Prince of Persia, Tron, but oddly Hasbro didn’t invest heavily in toys for the second film, so they didn’t lose much money. The reports on the toys for the first film were pretty good too. They clearanced them at the end, but from what I recall they were able to get five to six waves out of the film with only the later waves glutting the shelves.

    You seem very committed to classifying the films as a failure, and I hate to be in the position of defending such awful films, but they are considered pretty successful. The first one was considered a major surprise and the second one is among the films considered “the rock revitalizing a franchise” streak that lead to him being the most profitable actor in hollywood for a couple years.

    I hate the films, I love the toys and comics and have been a fan since the early 80’s. I would love something more representative of what I enjoy, but who knows what will be decided. Hopefully the critical reception will have an impact.

    If comic films have taught us anything it’s that GOOD movies make more money than BAD ones. A good comic/toy movie goes into the next level of billion dollar franchises, where a bad one makes a hefty profit but gets forgotten and panned and even works against it’s own long term survivability.

  12. Did you ever read the Storm Shadow solo series? It was amazing.

    It simply gave up on all the GI Joe stuff, and dealt with him as a ninja who used to be a member of the joes and cobras but was now a sort of anti-hero wandering ninja. It was superhero-esque. Worked great because it removed the black and white of what team he was on and instead focused on the fact that ‘ninjas’ aren’t really anyones friend and follow a very different type of morality than ‘real american heroes’.

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