GI Joe: Sierra Muerte, No. 1: Tropical terror and Cobra Commander


GI Joe: Sierra Muerte delivers a great story thru a unique eye.

If you played with toys in the ’80s, odds are you got your hands on a GI Joe character at some point.  They were everywhere, and there were hundreds of them. There was an animated series, an animated movie, some live-action movies, and comics from Marvel for over thirty years. This amazing take on the created universe that is “Joe vs Cobra” is brilliantly drawn for IDW Publishing by auteur Michel Fiffe, who also did the script and everything else; there is an essay after the comic by Chad Bowers, summing up the history of GI Joe and providing a clearer understanding of what Sierra Muerte is. The art is seriously one-of-a-kind, and the story hits some nostalgic airs that do a great job encapsulating what GI Joe: Sierra Muerte is meant to be, and what it is.

IDW Publishing

Sierra Muerte seems like a nice place to live…not!

Cobra is looking to take over Dr. Venom’s old base in Sierra Muerta. GI Joe sends five operatives in and as they battle, local villagers run in panic. The Joe’s end up saving some children, and catch a Cobra flunky. Betrayal in the ranks threatens to endanger the Cobra Commander, but Baroness protects her leader, and they both escape in the Cobra-copter, with the Joe’s pinned down. It’s Implied that the captured Cobra soldier will be suffering in the Joe’s custody, which is a bit of social commentary, one might believe.

In the Sierra Muerte swamplands, a three-man-team of Joe’s sneak up on a cabin and engage in a firefight with some bad dudes named Torch, Buzzer, and Ripper, ending the battle with all three Cobra operatives captured. In Cobra’s secret temple headquarters (of course it is), Dr. Mindbender informs the Cobra Commander that he has a month to live, and that they need to start some mysterious cloning program.

IDW Publishing

More from Comics

The Cobra Commander discovers a Joe in the ranks, spying, and poisons him with some pocket sand or something, and in downtown Sierra Muerte, another Joe is attempting to sneak Dr. Venom’s old partner out of the city, only to be trapped by three siblings whose names all start with the letter “Z”, also working for Cobra. Stalker, a Joe who can disguise himself as anyone, jumps in to help his teammate. Even Snake Eyes, possibly the coolest ninja in the world, shows up and evens the odds a little bit, but gets Jedi mind-tricks played on him, causing a tactical loss.  More pocket sand is tossed. The issue closes with guns pulled, ninjas tortured, and….Destro?

Next. The Dreaming No. 6: Insane god-like artificial intelligence!. dark

We’re treated to a seven-page essay from Chad Bowers about the origins of GI Joe, the publishing history, the adaptations, and the ingenuity the original writer, Larry Hama, put into developing the reality that Cobra and the Joe’s inhabit. It is both informative and illuminating, and hopefully there will be similar supplements in the rest of the 3-issue mini-series. Overall, an extremely enjoyable read. Let us know what you thought in the comments section below.