Depending upon which source you use, this week marks the birthday of my favorite franchise of all time. To commemorate the G.I. Joe 50th Anniversary, the folks at The Breaux Show have put together a short video tribute as part of their “Geektastic History” series. Short and to the point, it’s a nice look back at 5 decades of “America’s Movable Fighting Man”!
Check back on Saturday Evening as the host of The Breaux Show will be traveling to New York City for Hasbro’s special Pre-Toy Fair Media event! This event showcases Hasbro’s entertainment brands and their products for 2014 from Transformers to Marvel to a spotlight on the G.I. Joe 50th Anniversary!
The xmas holidays have this high value: that they remind Forgetters of the Forgotten, & repair damaged relationships.
- Mark Twain in a letter to Carlotte Welles, 30 December 1907
Just a quick shout out to everyone who visits this site whether frequently or occasionally– a quick moment to wish any and all who celebrate it “Merry Christmas/Happy Holidays”! Whether you enjoy the day with friends and family or quiet reflection, it’s a day to reflect on the blessings that each of us share and to remember those who are less fortunate than us. For children it’s a day filled with the excitement of a new present; for adults, it’s a day to put aside the cares of every day living and just enjoy the spirit of the season. It’s a day in which mankind shows the best that it has to offer its fellows. It’s also the day in which TBS broadcasts the story of a young boy and his quest for a Red Rider BB gun for 24 hours straight! (Something that my friends over at TheBreauxShow remember all too well!)
I’d also like to thank everyone who visits this site on a regular basis. JBL isn’t the biggest Joe site on the web and it was inactive for far too long during the past couple of years. It’s meant a lot to me that people still stop by, check out the news and the reviews, and even post on the forums. (All seven of you!) As the admin, I’d like to just humbly say “thanks for sticking with us.”
So have a safe and happy holiday, don’t shoot your eye out, and thank you for visiting JoeBattlelines.com. We look forward to celebrating the 50th Anniversary of G.I. Joe in 2014!
The Cobra 1st Legion is back and this time they’re taking on their most vile foe yet: hunger!
If there’s one thing I love about the Cobra 1st Legion, it is the dedication that these guys show in helping their communities! Not just are these men and woman fantastic ambassadors for the G.I. Joe brand but they’re also strong supporters of their own cities and townships. These fans give their time and energy to help others in a way that makes them all “Real American Heroes” in this admin’s eye.
On November 23th, the Legion is taking over the Stork Club at 2330 Telegraph Ave in Oakland, CA to host a costume party and dance that will benefit the Alameda County Community Food Bank. Admission to the event is either 5 cans of food or $10 – with the proceeds to help the hungry of the Alameda County!
If you’re a Joe fan looking for a fun night out or just a concerned citizen looking to help those who are less fortunate, check out this event and more as the Cobra 1st Legion continues to march onward!
The 90′s were an interesting time for G.I. Joe. The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles with their bright neon colors were dominating store shelves and ninjas were EVERYWHERE in popular culture. Video games were more popular than ever and a certain band of Real American Heroes didn’t seem to have the luster that they once did.
So, what was a toy line to do? Well, as the saying goes: if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em!
G.I. Joe did what it did best and adapted– becoming more ninja-centric and much more neon. The brand even co-opted Street Fighter II and tried to portray it as a “sister line”. Results were mixed at best; you know you’re in trouble when the new-comers are beating up one of the main characters in your lineup.
Take a look at this 90′s gem that features live-action portrayals of both the Joes and the cast of Street Fighter II.
Until the debut of G.I. Joe: Retaliation, our favorite Real American Heroes have had a dubious association with live action productions. The Rise of Cobra didn’t exactly reignite the fires of the fandom and, aside from some fan films, the team really hadn’t dipped its toe in the pool any further.
However, there are a few near-forgotten gems from the 1990′s from when the line was in direct competition with toy lines such as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. It was the age of “EXTREME” everything and Ninja Force was the headlining sub-team on the covers of the comics. It was also when Hasbro attempted live-action portrayals of the Joes in television commercials. (Frankly, I think the guys from the Cobra 1st Legion have better costumes!)
Check out this “Ninja Force” gem and feel free to leave your own thoughts below:
This is almost entirely un-related to G.I. Joe in every way but it’s too good of a deal not to share. HasbroToyShop.com recently has been dumping a lot of the Marvel Comics Online exclusive Universe figures lately at $14.99 a piece– which is a far cry from what you’d end up paying for them on the secondary market. Today, they dropped one of my all-time favorite characters at the bargain price!
That’s right– the ORIGINAL Nick Fury in 1:18 scale form is available for a FRACTION of what I ended up paying for him about 2 years ago. Originally the only way to get Colonel Fury was to subscribe to Marvel Comics Online, pay the $66, fill out a form and mail it in. Trust me, this is MUCH simpler!
Now, I’ll throw out the disclaimer– he’s not as detailed as some of the recent 30th Anniversary G.I. Joe offerings but this is Nick Fury we’re talking about here. Cigar-chomping Hydra-smashing Director of SHIELD Nick Fury! He gets a pass on things like that! Plus he comes with the insanely cool rifle that he wielded during the end of the Civil War crossover and a jet pack.
C’mon– you know you want to snag him! Quit gold-brickin’ and get on it!
I’ve been cleaning out the old photo archives from the last nine years as I’ve been updating the site recently and stumbled across this gem. It’s for Easter probably back in 2005 or so judging by the figure offerings. Back then JBL was still affiliated with RingofCollectors.com (when RoC still existed) and I was more known by the web handle “Leonardo T Dragon”. (Hey, back in the early days of the internet we ALL had handles of some sort! It was like a high tech CB radio community.)
If you celebrate Easter, then “Happy Easter from JBL!” If you don’t, then let me wish you a happy spring! After all, we’ve got G.I. Joe Retaliation in theatres right now and the 2013 Joe Con is just a few days away.
I can’t think of a better time to be a G.I. Joe fan!
This isn’t entirely related to G.I. Joe but I just had to point out that the 50th anniversary installment in the James Bond franchise drops on DVD and Blu-Ray today. Why is this important to fans of America’s first action figure? Simple– the Bond franchise is the longest-running film series in history and has set the bar for so many elements of modern action cinema! From the use of practical effects and world record-breaking stunts to exotic locations and dynamic villains, the Bond films have entertained millions for the past 5 decades! Plus, the 007 series has had more than a “passing influence” on many aspects of G.I. Joe.
Years ago, a young Joe fan who happens to be writing this article was introduced to the world of 007 by his father, thanks to ABC’s frequent airing of the films on Sunday nights. As a kid, I was floored by the similarities between the early appearances of Cobra in both the Marvel Comics and the first Sunbow mini-series and the use of SPECTRE in the Sean Connery films. From the incredible lairs that evoked memories of the design of Ken Adams to the elaborate plots to disrupt the western world, Cobra was the kid-friendly version of a Bond villain. Heck, look at the Sears exclusive Missile Command Headquarters and you’ll see an homage to the volcano base in You Only Live Twice.
Regardless, the Bond films left a strong impression upon me and really have shaped my view of what makes for a good spy/action movie. It’ll be this bar that will be measured against when I watch G.I. Joe Retaliation in just a few weeks. Yes, the Bond movies have evolved over time– from the secret organizations of the 60′s, the near-parody of the 70′s, and all the way to the grim realism of the new Daniel Craig era. Like G.I. Joe, Bond is a product of his time reflecting the realities of the world in which he finds himself. He just happens to do it with style and flair. This past Christmas, my father surprised me with what has become my favorite gift in years – the Bond 50 Blu-Ray set. For days afterwards, I poured over the special features and the films like a relapsed dieter at the last Twinkie warehouse. The marketing department behind the set was clever, however. They left one empty tray in the box for the latest film in the franchise– a spot that will finally be filled tonight!
So, if you’re so inclined, run out today and snag a copy of Skyfall. Sit back in your favorite chair, pop in the disc and be prepared to watch 007 prove that “nobody does it better.” It’s a great way to relax and prepare for the arrival of G.I. Joe: Retaliation in just a few short weeks.
I’ll step off my soap box now and let you resume your regularly schedule G.I. Joe website. However, if you’re so inclined, here’s the trailer for Skyfall followed by the “mother of all Bond compilations” to watch. Enjoy!
Duke and Roadblock are looking forward to the return of G.I. Joe in 2013!
What are G.I. Joe team members Duke and Roadblock looking at? They’re looking forward to 2013 in which G.I. Joe returns to store shelves, cineplexes, and the public eye once more.
2012 was a year of challenges for our favorite brand and yet 2013 promises to be the year the Joe “came back” and staked its claim once more as a top brand for Hasbro. I know that I’m looking forward to forthcoming waves of Retaliation product and getting the review schedule back on track around here once more. (C’mon– a 1:18 Bruce Willis? How can you NOT love that?!!!)
So, welcome 2013– 31 years after the debut of A Real American Hero. It’s time to show the world that G.I. Joe is back and stronger than ever.
To all of the G.I. Joe fans around the world, the staff of JBL would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and blessed New Year! 2012 has been a year of challenges for the brand with the film delayed and merchandise absent from stores, but 2013 promises to be a strong year with a revamp of the comics and a brand-spanking new film hitting just in time for a certain admin’s birthday. Plus, JBL will be back on schedule next year– having survived a fairly disastrous year of house-hunting and moving.
I look forward to returning with reviews, news, and more random G.I. Joe insanity in the new year and hope that JBL will always find a place in your internet browser favorites.
And let’s hope Scarlet doesn’t find out about Duke and Cover Girl!