G.I. Joe Convention Theme Announced and first figure previews

Happy Friday!  Earlier this week the G.I. Joe Collectors Club promised the first reveals from the 2017 G.I. Joe Convention, and today they delivered!

Ladies and gentlemen, the 2017 G.I. Joe Convention theme includes BattleForce: 2000 and B.A.T.S.!

Interesting choices.  I’m all in for BF:2000, but do we really need more B.A.T.S.?  Ehhh… yeah.  Not sure about that, especially at convention set prices.  But we’ll wait for some figure previews to make final judgments.

Until then, the Collectors Club has revealed Battleforce: 2000 Maverick!

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Keep watching GIJoeCon.com for the latest updates!

FORCE OF BATTLE 2000!

We’re celebrating the 30th anniversary of the G.I. JOE BF 2000 team with this untold
tale of the original team members from a recently declassified special mission.

The G.I. JOE BF 2000 team is the walking, breathing proving grounds for tomorrow’s battlefield technology today!
These highly trained specialists are entrusted with one-of-a-kind, state-of-the-art prototype weapons. Their mission
is to field-test experimental equipment under battlefield conditions.

COBRA has developed a new laser weapon system so dangerous that it threatens the safety of the entire planet!
The G.I. JOE: BF 2000 team is called into action and must travel through the Pacific Northwest into British Columbia to dismantle the operation.
What they don’t know is that COBRA is ready for them with a battalion of their upgraded B.A.T. (Battle Android Troopers) guarding their base.
This G.I. JOE team will be fighting against insurmountable odds, and must pull their individual specialties together to battle these deadly threats.
Will the cold and calculated programming of the COBRA B.A.T. SQUAD LEADER be the end of this G.I. JOE team?

Meanwhile, on the 12″ side we have what looks like a combination Adventure Team/G.I. Joe Jungle Fighter collection!  Check out the first image below.

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Back in in the war G.I. Joe was a specialist serving as a Marine Jungle Fighter. During an undocumented mission in and undocumented area,
something went terribly wrong and they were being over run. As he was evacuating due to an impending air strike, he fell into some sort of ancient
buried temple that appeared to have something to do with the worship of snakes. Using his flamethrower for illumination, he realized that…
the snakes were still there! As he was fighting his way out through the snakes something caught his eye, a golden cobra shaped staff.
There was no time to get to it out. The airstrike was inbound and he had to evac!

For years this memory haunted Joe and led him to his current career in the Adventure Team as their Jungle Explorer.
Where was the old temple? Was that golden staff still there? Did it really happen, or was it just a hallucination?
He spent years researching and searching for this lost temple. Now he thinks he has finally found the answers!

This year’s 12” Convention Set is based on the vintage Marine Jungle Fighter and the Adventure Team, Jungle Survival accessory set.
It comes with: Painted Head Figure; Marine Jungle Uniform; Belt; Canteen and Cover; .45 and Holster; Boonie Hat; Vinyl Shoulder Radio;
Flame Thrower; Tall Brown Boots; M-16 Rifle; Machete and Scabbard and Dog tag; Flocked Head Figure; Jungle Survival Uniform;
Tall Black Boots; Belt with Canteen; two Snake Anti-Venom Pouches; Pith Helmet; Yellow Short Radio; First Aid Kit; Compass;
Machete and Scabbard; Tranquillizer Rifle; Equipment Storage Crate; Dog Tag and Golden Cobra Staff.

It also comes with a Mini-Comic with a surprise ending!

Exclusive debut – John Royle Gatefold cover from G.I. Joe: RAH 237, 238, and 239

Wow, nothing brightens up a Friday afternoon like some spectacular new art from IDW cover artist John Royle!  He’s been doing some really terrific variant covers for G.I. Joe titles recently, and this latest one is the mother lode.

It’s a three-issue gatefold with pencils by John Royle, inks by Jagdish and colors by Juan Fernandez.  It frankly looks… amazing!  Check it out for the very first time right here, and if you love these covers, definitely let IDW Publishing know.  I think they’re some really fun, energetic and well orchestrated covers, and I try and go out of my way to get these issues.  Great stuff.  To see more of John’s terrific artwork (G.I. Joe and otherwise) you can follow him on Instagram or hit up JohnRoyleArt.com!

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GeneralsJoes Reviews 2016 Heavy Duty and Stiletto

The holidays are past us and I’ve gotten a couple more 2016 G.I. Joe reviews under my belt… Heavy Duty and Stiletto can now be found on the G.I. Joe: 50th Anniversary review page.

Along with this, with Chris from the Full Force Podcast’s help, a video review has been completed to compliment them and that can be found below, or embedded within the review itself.

Enjoy!

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G.I. Joe 2016 Stiletto

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Okay, I admit straight up.  This is going to be a tough review to write.  I was desperately hoping that Whisper might end up winning the fan vote, and I fully admit I was pretty upset that she didn’t get the nod.

That’s not meant to be any slight against the other three excellent candidates, but I’d be lying if I said this review wasn’t being written through at least some gritted teeth.  As it stands, the Stiletto figure came out pretty good, and manages to capture the elements of Bill Nedrow’s character relatively nicely.

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The new head sculpt is decent, but would have benefited from better paint apps, especially on the scar and potentially missing left pupil.  The figure build is essentially Rise of COBRA Agent Helix with Lady Jaye arms, and as much as I love the parts for that figure (I consider her one of the highlights of the excellent Rise of COBRA toy era) the color placement on Stiletto is odd to say the least.  Purple and black on the torso with oddly green colored pants and a blue scarf makes for an eclectic and eye-opening array of colors that seem almost arbitrarily chosen.

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While I fully admit to being somewhat disgruntled at Whisper’s shunting to relative obscurity, I’m generally a fan of new characters, and Stiletto works in that regard, although her filecard is in pretty direct contrast to the actual character in the fiction.  That leads to some challenges, as she is clearly a COBRA agent in the books, but is written as purely a G.I. Joe member according to the filecard.  It’s an interesting dichotomy which will make for some intriguing storytelling opportunities.

ACCESSORIES

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As an expert in edged weapons, Stiletto comes with two swords and knives aplenty, as one might expect.  She also has a submachine gun and a Drugonov sniper rifle.  I’d argue out of the 2 packs she is the best equipped figure and has the most sensible assortment of weapons out of the whole crew.

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Stiletto is an intriguing new character and I’m happy for Bill that she managed to get included in the 2016 assortment, and I’m still totally not holding a grudge about Whisper.  All that being said, this figure is a decent build with some strange color choices and a nice assortment of useful accessories.

YouTube Video Review

G.I. Joe 2016 Heavy Duty

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After the run that Heavy Duty had in the early 2000’s, it’s tough to picture a time when fans might actually be looking forward to a new version of this 90’s character.  Essentially a Roadblock replacement when the trademarks were lost during the new sculpt era (and into Sigma 6), Heavy Duty was often the target of derision from collectors who much preferred the more popular Roadblock.

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Now here we stand in 2016 after getting a healthy helping of Roadblock from G.I. Joe: Retaliation and now people seem happy and satisfied with a new Heavy Duty.  In truth, there’s a lot to be satisfied by.

Heavy Duty here is by and large the Retaliation Roadblock from the neck down, with what looks to be a new head sculpt.  The result is a large, imposing looking figure as the classic was meant to be, though this version’s baseball cap is replaced by a bandana.  His shirt is off-white, like the vintage version was, and the green pants offset it nicely.  I will say without some kind of vest or web gear the figure looks a little plain, but still is pretty cool. Once you put the Resolute Roadblock web gear on him, it’s a huge improvement and the figure all told is surprisingly effective. Certainly it’s basically a Roadblock repaint, but this particular Roadblock is a fantastic figure with great sculpting and impressive articulation, so it’s pretty tough to complain about that formula.

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Heavy Duty is a nice compliment to other figures in this first 2 pack assortment, and I think Hasbro did a decent job with it.

ACCESSORIES

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Heavy Duty is littered with accessories to the point where he seems to have more weapons than he has places to store them.  This seems to be an ongoing issue with these modern figures as Hasbro kind of treats them like “accessory packs” simply dumping a pile of gear in there that aren’t necessarily meaningful.  Heavy Duty comes with two separate oversized machine guns along with the M249, pistol, and knife.  He also has the great Resolute Roadblock vest, too.

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In spite of the prevalence of Heavy Duty back in the early 2000’s, I was excited to hear about his inclusion here, and the end result is really nice.  It’s got some vintage twists, but some new elements, and the figure is surprisingly one of the highlights of this year’s series.

YouTube Video Review

New Kindle Worlds Novella – G.I. Joe: Nerves of Stone Coming Soon!

nerves-of-stone-cover-templThe time has come! Last year we brought you Welcome to Wolf Squad, a novella based on the 2015 series of G.I. Joe and COBRA action figures… now we bring you Nerves of Stone, the follow-up Novella to our Wolf Squad adventure from last year.

Familiar characters make their returns and some new characters get introduced…each and every member of the 2016 G.I. Joe and COBRA roster appears!

When a new G.I. Joe recruit goes missing while investing a top secret COBRA research lab in Alaska, G.I. Joe’s special operations Wolf Squad team gets deployed to see what’s up. They get far more than they bargained for and when G.I. Joe reinforcements arrive, a long kept secret gets revealed…

Now, for a limited time, get an exclusive sneak preview of this upcoming novella! Sign up for the World of Wolf’s Head Publishing and you’ll get immediate access to the Prologue and first chapter of this novella, due for release in early 2017. This will be available NOWHERE else.

As an added bonus you can check out the first three chapters of my original novel The Fog of Dreams and get access to a Top Secret Research Paper outlining the Operation: Harvest story. If you’re a fan of G.I. Joe, I really think you’ll enjoy this story as well. Lots of similarities as one might expect.

Just sign up for the World of Wolf’s Head Publishing, I promise we won’t spam you or throttle your mailbox, but we will have plenty of exclusive offers and fun stuff coming down the pipe. Check it out!



Generals Joe and Tell Video Reviews – FSS Outback and Sneak Peek

With some newly found spare time at GeneralsJoes we’ve put together some video reviews for figures from FSS 4.0!  Tiger Force Outback and Sneak Peek video reviews have been posted to the GeneralsJoes YouTube Channel and are ready for viewing.

They’ve also been embedded in the written reviews at the G.I. Joe Collectors Club Review Page or the direct links below.

Enjoy and huge thanks as always to Chris from The Full Force for his help on these videos!

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Special Retail Incentive Cover for IDW’s Revolutionaries #4 by John Royle

In recent months, comic artist John Royle has put together some amazing G.I. Joe covers, and just revealed was his retailer incentive cover for Revolutionaries #4 from IDW Publishing.

This cover looks just as exciting as the other work he’s been doing, which is really saying something!  Check out this fantastic cover and the comic details below.  Fantastic stuff from John Royle.

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Revolutionaries #4
Art by John Royle
Inks by Eeshwar
Colors by Juan Fernandez

Check out more of John’s great work at JohnRoyleArt.com!

GeneralsJoes Reviews 2016 Duke vs. Tombstone!

I’ve had the video reviews up for a while, but finally I’ve had some extra time to assemble the written reviews as well!

Hop on over to my G.I. Joe: 50th Anniversary Review Page to check out the latest reviews for Duke and Tombstone.  You can also click the links below to go straight to the reviews.  Enjoy!

More to come…

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G.I. Joe 2016 Duke

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I could spend hours extolling the virtues of Duke as a character, but let’s face it, after over 50 different versions of the character, almost everything that could possibly be said about Duke has been said.  While there isn’t a whole lot of new ground to cover when it comes to Duke the character, it’s interesting to look at this particular Duke action figure.

After the original 50th Anniversary run, there were rumblings among the fandom asking why we couldn’t get an updated version of Duke similar to Flint that we got in 2014.  It was something that many folks asked for, in spite of the numerous versions of the character we’d already seen, because interestingly, Hasbro has never really done a modern update (past the questionable 25th Anniversary versions) that tied directly back to the vintage look.

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Well, in 2016 Hasbro does a little bit of both, but I’m not certain the figure is better off for it.

While they certainly mirror the vintage look of the figure from a color perspective, Hasbro elects to modernize the figure with a bulkier, almost arctic looking uniform (using components from the Data Viper).  The range of motion and articulation is really great, though the choice of different parts than, say the 2014 Flint does raise some eyebrows.  Duke’s legs are from the G.I. Joe: Retaliation G.I. Joe Trooper, though thankfully seems to have deeper foot holes that fit in the pegs better than some other figures that have shared these parts.

From a color scheme perspective, Duke obviously pulls homage from the 1983 version, but is cast in a strangely bright hue, his shirt looking much more vibrant (and thus a little less realistic) and his pants a deeper, richer green.

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All in all, Duke definitely has the look of the character, though the colors don’t quite jive with a more realistic looking version of the figure.  The sculpting and articulation are both really good, thanks to more modern figure components, but they look like a more arctic version of the figure.  Also, for whatever its worth, once you take off Duke’s vest, his torso is from Rise of COBRA Breaker and looks really skinny next to the baggy cloth of the arms.

ACCESSORIES

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Duke comes with a wide array of cool weapons, though none of them especially stand point.  He’s got a familiar machine gun and pistol, the green Shock Trooper tactical vest, smaller M249 heavy machine gun.  He also has a green backpack.  Pretty traditional looking weapons assortment that works fine, though isn’t especially remarkable.

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Duke is one of the timeless characters of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero lore. Rather than go full bore vintage, Hasbro uses some vintage homages with some new twists, which generally I’m a fan of, though in this case it doesn’t work especially well.  It’s a decent looking figure, but doesn’t bring a whole lot of new elements to the table, which feels necessary for yet another version of this character.  Either go full vintage or go full on new, this walking the line in between isn’t especially effective.

YouTube Video Review