G.I. Joe A Real American Hero #172
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 & Gary Erskine, Herb Trimpe & Larry Hama
Release Date: November 16th, 2011
Cover Price: $3.99
Every month, G.I. Joe A Real American Hero makes me feel like I’m 10 years old again. And I mean that in a good way. Back in the early 2000s, Devil’s Due Publishing got Larry Hama to write a G.I. Joe title and it was met with…let’s just say, less than enthusiastic reviews and sales. So, what happened in the last 10 years to change everything? I’m guessing Larry Hama went and trained with the Arashakage Clan. It was either that, or IDW & Hasbro said, “Hey, you’re Larry Hama! Write whatever you want!” And now, we get to enjoy the results every month.
For twelve years, Larry Hama wrote the adventures of every kid’s favorite daring, highly trained, special missions force. Now, almost 20 years later, he picks up right where he left off and it seems like not even a month has passed between titles. This month’s issue mainly focuses on two stories — a “regular” team of Joes on a recovery mission and the G.I. Joe ninja’s and their adventures. I’d really love to go into more detail about the story, but the spoilers are many and they are HUGE in this issue. My only complaint, and it’s a VERY minor one, is that we don’t get any Cobra story in this issue, but that’s OK. There’s more than enough action to go around. Some REALLY big things happen here, and again, you’re not getting spoilers outta me, so just get down to your comic store and buy the book all ready. It’s MORE than worth the cover price!!
I say this every month, and I’m gonna say it again, artist S L Gallant deserves some kind of special recognition for his monthly duties on this book. There is a TON of action here, and rather than just phoning it in, he spends great time getting all the details right, on everything from knife handles to robot parts. OK, so I spoiled something, there ARE knife handles and robot parts in this issue. Sorry about that.
For a book that technically started 29 years ago, this is an amazingly easy series to pick up and latch onto right away. If you last read this title in 1994, you’re still going to be able to pick up this issue and, thanks to the recap inside the front cover, now what’s going on and who everyone is. This comic is a true hidden gem and more people — NOT just G.I. Joe fans-should be picking it up.