GI Joe/Transformers cross-overs

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GI Joe/Transformers cross-overs

Postby Dominic » Tue Sep 04, 2012 11:38 am

Some might argue that this should be in the G1 forums. But, ultimately, these are cross-over books, and there going to be inevitable comparisons to other cross-over books.

GI Joe v/s Transformers volume 1:
IDW is reprinting all of the Joe/TF cross-overs over the years. This first volume includes the Marvel cross-overs.

The first official cross-over between the two mainstay Hasbro franchises was published in 1986 during a time when both of the "core" books were undergoing changes. (Notably, the Joes got top billing, which is inconceivable today.) Issues 24 and 25 of the original "Transformers" series occur during, or immediately after issues 1 and 2 of the cross-over. Aside from Bumblebee being rebuilt as Goldbug and a few TFs getting damaged/destroyed, nothing from this series carries over in to the main TF book. On the Joe side, it was wholly ignorable, (being set early in Serpentor's reign, roughly concurrent with Cobra's attack on the Pit). All things considered, this series is actually better than I recalled it being. Higgins actually did a sound job of combining two previously unrelated properties and writing a complete, if forumulaic, story. The biggest problems with this series were all common to the Marvel of the early to mid-80s (clunky writing and redundant narration boxes). Aside from Goldbug's appearance, this series would be easily ignored for American TF fans of the mid-80s. (Readers in the UK would have accounted for "Gold Bug" in "Fallen Angel".) As a result of this, one could credibly argue that the TFs shared a world with the Joes *and* at least some 616 Marvel characters.


G2:
Even when I first read this nearly 20 years ago, I knew that there was not much to recommend it beyond having both the Joes and the TFs in once place. And, over time, that has come to mean less to me than simply wanting good comics. Truth be told, these are some *bad* comics. While Larry Hama would have had little control over the fact that he had to use TF characters, he could have written this story so it would not have been necessary for the Joe series as a whole. (On the other hand, given that Hama was not really giving "GI Joe" his A-game after issue 100, the poor execution of a forced cross-over should probably not be much of a shock.) Besides making specific reference to the previous TF/Joe cross-over, Hama addresses major plot-points from the Joe series. The town of Millville is liberated from Cobra control during the battle with Megatron, (who provides the Joes pretext to invade the town), and Doctor Mindbender is raised from the dead during Cobra's encounter with Megatron. (Aside: I wonder if a cursory misreading of this story is the reason for DDP mistakenly including Stormshadow among the characters buried on the frieghter.) Aside from raising odd questions about just who the Joes share a world with, these are just some bad comics.

And, if that were not enough, the Joe comics make no mention of Bludgeon's, and later Jhiaxus, attack on Earth....despite the Joes being prominently shown in the G2 comic. This implies that there are at least two G2 timelines, on top of however many splintered G1 timelines.

All things considered, the old Joe/TF cross-overs are worth reading more as curiosities than as anything particularly memorable or defining.

Grade: B


For those who are curious about which Marvel characters might share a world with the Joes or TFs:

-Shown: Spiderman and the black costume, Fury and SHIELD, Dazzler (mentioned), the Savage Land.

-Strongly implied or referenced: Venom (via Spider-man's costume and some footnotes), the "Secret Wars", the Celestials and Inhumans (due to the Savage Land), the Avengers (via footnote), the X-Men (Dazzler), Godzilla (throwaway line from Fury), the Beyonder (shown interacting with Circuit Breaker in "Secret Wars II").



Dom
-would like to see a series pick up from this, or the DDP series....
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Re: GI Joe/Transformers cross-overs

Postby Onslaught Six » Tue Sep 04, 2012 7:34 pm

Not Godzilla! Fin Fang Foom. Maybe.
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People spend so much time worrying about whether a figure is "mint" or not that they never stop to consider other flavours.
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Re: GI Joe/Transformers cross-overs

Postby Shockwave » Wed Sep 05, 2012 9:39 am

I recently went through my collection of the TF/Joe crossovers and could not find DDP GI Joe/TF volume 1. I have GI Joe/TF II and III and Black Horizon but I'm at a loss for what came before all of that. I do have a GI Joe/TF crossover from Image but I don't really know if that's part one to the DDP series or it's own separate continuity.
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Re: GI Joe/Transformers cross-overs

Postby Dominic » Wed Sep 05, 2012 12:27 pm

Any Image branded Joe books were essentially Devil's Due. (DDP began as one of the in-house studios at Image, not unlike Wildstorm though much less successful.)

There were four DDP TF/Joe series. They assumed that both franchises existed in the same setting, and were linked.

-volume 1: Cobra discovers the Ark and activates the TFs, making it necessary for the Joes to be recruited. Mostly 1984 TFs, with a few from '85 and Joes from the first 5 years.
-volume 2: Really bad time travel story. Poor writing and worse art. Pure shit.
-volume 3: Idiomatically, this was an analogue for 1986. A cybernetic Serpentor was introduced. Hawk got the Matrix. Readable, but not great. Notably, Hawk's back-written late fiance from the DDP series showed up in this book.
-volume 4: Unicron and Cobra-La. Tried too hard to be clever and failed.



Not Godzilla! Fin Fang Foom. Maybe.


Godzilla was referenced in a line of dialogue by Fury. (In the late 70s or early 80s, Godzilla did show up in the 616. No joke. Before "Rom and the Space Knights", Marvel was careless about letting licenses slip in to their mainline books.)


Dom
-notes that GI Joe was mentioned in "ReGeneration 1" #83.
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Re: GI Joe/Transformers cross-overs

Postby Shockwave » Wed Sep 05, 2012 4:26 pm

I thought that's what it was. Thanks for clearing it up. I actually kind of liked the time travel story. I've often thought it would be fun to see TFs in different time periods and this certainly delivered on that. And I don't recall the art being particularly bad. The Serpent O.R. "son of Megatron" thing was just ridiculous. And the Unicron/Cobra-La thing was just shit icing on an a crapcake.
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Re: GI Joe/Transformers cross-overs

Postby Dominic » Thu Sep 06, 2012 7:09 am

The time travel story was predictable to the point that it was hard to justify as anything more than a single issue. (I would forgive something like that as filler. But, as a four issue annual event.....) The art failed at basics like consistent character models and panel to panel continuity. (Poor art also plagued the first volume. But, it at least had a good concept and execution on the writing side.)


Serpent O.R. was actually a good idea that incorporated all of the important things about Serpentor. And, it was a pretty good guess at how 1986 would have played out had the two properties been merged from the start.

The Unicron/Cobra-La thing was also a good guess at how it likely would have played out. But, it was terrible. It was a combination of "excuse for call-outs", predictable and kind of crap all around.


Dom
-and lets not even get started on the DW crossovers...
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Re: GI Joe/Transformers cross-overs

Postby Onslaught Six » Thu Sep 06, 2012 1:15 pm

Dominic wrote:-volume 2: Really bad time travel story. Poor writing and worse art. Pure shit.


Don't listen to Dom; this is actually the best one. (Fuck it, if you're gonna do Joe vs. TF, do it awesome.)

Not Godzilla! Fin Fang Foom. Maybe.


Godzilla was referenced in a line of dialogue by Fury. (In the late 70s or early 80s, Godzilla did show up in the 616. No joke. Before "Rom and the Space Knights", Marvel was careless about letting licenses slip in to their mainline books.)


Yeah, I know. Fury doesn't specifically say "Godzilla," though, and his description could equally be Fin Fang Foom.
BWprowl wrote:The internet having this many different words to describe nerdy folks is akin to the whole eskimos/ice situation, I would presume.


People spend so much time worrying about whether a figure is "mint" or not that they never stop to consider other flavours.
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Re: GI Joe/Transformers cross-overs

Postby Shockwave » Thu Sep 06, 2012 1:47 pm

Onslaught Six wrote:
Dominic wrote:-volume 2: Really bad time travel story. Poor writing and worse art. Pure shit.


Don't listen to Dom; this is actually the best one. (Fuck it, if you're gonna do Joe vs. TF, do it awesome.)


I agree. Cramming all of those different time frames into one issue would have been scizophrenic at best. Having multiple issues focusing on one time frame each was really the best format and allowed some exploration of each period before moving on to the next one.
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Re: GI Joe/Transformers cross-overs

Postby Dominic » Thu Sep 06, 2012 2:08 pm

Each issue was as predictable as a videogame. Even the set up read like the intro-screen to an old 8-bit video game.

And, the art was fucking atrocious. Like I said "inconsistent character models" and it lacked basic panel to panel continuity. They failed at the basics. At the very least, a cross-over like this should have competent art.
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Re: GI Joe/Transformers cross-overs

Postby Onslaught Six » Thu Sep 06, 2012 3:31 pm

All I remember are GI Joe members being chased by armies of Ravages in a postapocalyptic future, and that badass fake Scorponok cover that depicts nothing that actually happened.

Also, I take offense at your video game comment!
BWprowl wrote:The internet having this many different words to describe nerdy folks is akin to the whole eskimos/ice situation, I would presume.


People spend so much time worrying about whether a figure is "mint" or not that they never stop to consider other flavours.
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