During the 2013 Comikaze Expo in Los Angeles on November 2, I had the genuine pleasure to have an impromptu discussion with one of my very favorite artists of all time, Herb Trimpe.
The legendary comic book artist is most associated with his incredible run on the Incredible Hulk, as well as the mega-popular GI Joe, and Shogun Heroes series. He was also the first artist to draw for publication the X-Men character Wolverine. In a broad-ranging conversation, Trimpe talked about his beginnings with Marvel Comics, Stan Lee, current comics, and more. He proved to be a gracious, open, and funny guy.
Very few comics can pick up right where they left off 20 years ago and still maintain the level of creative goodness that G.I. Joe A Real American Hero #179 does. I believe that’s due in part to the creative team, but also to the minds of the audience. All it takes is opening the cover and you’re right back where you were a couple of decades ago. Sure, you might have a kid or two, a family, a house of your own. But inside we’re all the same 10 or 12 year old kids that loved reading this book. The book hasn’t changed. We have. A little.
Every G.I. Joe fan needs to buy Larry Hama a drink. If for nothing else, for the fact that he’s just awesome. This issue is action from cover to cover. I’ll be honest with you, there’s not much Joe action here, it’s a Cobra-centric issue as the forces of Cobra take on the Blue Ninja Clan, with the help of a Joe or two.
Reading G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #177 made me feel like a kid again. And it’ll do the same for you. Yes, comics have come a VERY long way since the days when the G.I. Joe comics were first being published, but the creative team has realized that and updated their execution to make the perfect blend of past and present.
I said plenty of times how much I am loving IDW’s line of G.I. Joe comics and one of the things I love the most is the Real American Hero series, which picked up from the end of the classic Marvel comics run, and wisely brought back G.I. Joe writer Larry Hama to bring back some of the old magic. G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero Annual #1 is a great one-off story that perfectly captures the feel of those old stories and speaks straight to the 10-year-old in me.
G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #174 Written by Larry Hama
Art by S L Gallant
Inks by Gary Erskine
Colors by J Brown
Letters by Neil Uyetake
Covers by S L Gallant and Gary Erskine, Herb Trimpe, and Larry Hama IDW Publishing
Release Date: January 11, 2012
Cover Price: $3.99
I gotta tell you, once a month when I read G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, I feel like I’m a kid watching the G.I. Joe cartoon after school. And nothing is as fun as that! I’m really surprised that sales on this title don’t eclipse the sales on the other G.I. Joe books, because this is what Joe fans have always wanted.
I almost wish there were two books set in writer Larry Hama‘s Real American Hero universe. I would LOVE a Larry Hama Snake Eyes solo book. I mean, who wouldn’t? The best bits in this comics come from the Snake Eyes story and also from the Cobra Commander story.