As the holiday season approaches, consumers everywhere are left with the dilemma of what to get for those friends and family members on their respective lists. Even more perplexing can be the question: “What do you get for the G.I. Joe fan on your holiday list?” Well, thanks to Joe fan and published author Mark Bellomo, this might have become a lot easier.
As of last night, Mark opened the floodgates and has listed a plethora of Joe-themed goodness up on internet auction site Ebay. However, what makes a lot of these items truly unique is that they are signed by the “godfather of G.I. Joe Larry Hama”– and many of them come from his private collection! In corresponding with Mark he’s revealed at even more items are coming– just keep an eye out on his eBay page for future updates.
Normally this type of news wouldn’t make the front page here at JBL but for a chance to own something truly unique– a piece signed by Larry Hama himself– well, we’ll make an exception.
Yet, as as they say in the infomercials: “But wait, there’s more!” There is something even cooler on Ebay as well– Larry Hama himself has listed the original cover sketch for IDW Publishing’s G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #195! With just over a day remaining, here’s a great chance to own a real piece of G.I. Joe history with a piece that features Shockwave, Lady Jaye, and the ever-popular Roadblock!
“The best laid plans of mice and men”… it seems to be a mantra around JBL lately.
I had been planning on getting reviews posted of G.I. Joe Retaliation wave 3.5 shortly after Coil Con IV as I was able to procure a good supply from Kokomo Toys. However, WordPress issues and work wackiness seemed to be facets of a multi-pronged attack by Cobra to prevent any new content from going live on the site.
Thankfully– the site seems to be functioning normally now and things at the office have died down a bit. (What? This ISN’T my day job?!) So, it’s back to shooting images and getting the reviews ready. So far wave 3.5 seems to be limited to online stores with limited sighting at retail. In my area (Central Illinois) the line has been dropped by both Target and Kmart (yes, we still have a few) while Walmart has scaled it back to just a pair of pegs reserved for the figures. Toys R Us has yet to restock and hopefully won’t just jump to wave 4.
It’s an interesting time to be a Joe collector as the movie’s delay until March seems to have thrown off Hasbro’s entire time frame for product. The three new figures in wave 4 are going to prove particularly elusive as they’re packed in a case with figures that have been out for months now. The sole troop builder the Cobra Night Viper is starting to command premium prices on Ebay and many online stores are already sold out.
However, all is not bleak on the western toy front– the GIJCC’s FSS 2 should be shipping before too long giving fans SOMETHING new to add to their collection and Hasbro’s Derryl DePriest promised that Toy Fair 2014 will hold a few surprises for fans. It gives us all a chance to catch our breath after the onslaught that was G.I. Joe Retaliation– a line that was produced in far more conservative numbers than it’s cinematic predecessor.
So, reviews will continue here in the coming weeks. I’ve got some back-end work to do on the review page templates to make them “less archaic” but there’s a ton of product sitting in my “to do” pile that is just begging for some attention. (Plus now that I have Kwinn in hand I really want to review the Club’s Dr. Venom figure! “The bear is angry with the weasel!”)
So, stay tuned to JBL. More new content IS indeed coming!
Wow– one of the single greatest events of JoeCon 2013? That would be the Sunday voice actor panel with two of the greatest stars of the Sunbow G.I. Joe animated series– Bill Ratner and Mary McDonald-Lewis. That’s right, the voices of the original Flint and Lady Jaye were on stage together and they didn’t disappoint!
To open the Sunday panel, Bill and Mary took the stage and performed an impromptu script reading with a little help of Fun Publication’s own Pete Sinclair. The story was entitled “Flint & Lady Jaye Have a Baby” and detailed the events of a G.I. Joe mission in which Lady Jaye reveals that she’s expecting. After foiling the efforts of Cobra and returning to headquarters, they decide upon a name for their daughter– Marissa. It was a nice homage to both the Sunbow G.I. Joe and Transformers animated series and marked the first time that the two had performed their respective signature characters since production on the original series ended. Honestly– it was a fan written script performed at a convention and it still caused me to grin from ear-to-ear when two of my favorite animated characters seemingly returned to life in an auditorium in Indianapolis. In many ways, it was like being a kid again and rushing home from school to catch the animated adventures of Flint and Lady Jaye each weekday afternoon.
Following the performance, the two took audience questions and related a number of anecdotes about the production of the original Sunbow series. (Who knew Michael Bell carried a “man purse” or that Chris Latta was always late coming back from lunch?) Mary Mac and Bill both discussed the differences between voice acting and stage acting as well as their fondness for the days of radio performances. In the end, the hour went by far too quickly and the audience gave these two a standing ovation. 2013 marks the first ever JoeCon appearance for either of them and it would be fantastic to see their return in the future.
To catch-up on what these two talented voice actors are working on currently, visiting the following links:
If you’re a fan of the Sunbow G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero series you’ll want to be at this year’s G.I. Joe Collector’s Convention! Just added to the guest list is Bill Ratner- better know as the voice of Flint, the team’s premiere warrant officer! Ratner will be joining Mary McDonald-Lewis (Lady Jaye) for what is sure to make for some exciting panels and fan interaction! I mean– who didn’t like Flint? (Plus, some of us remember Mr. Ratner from the Variety Arts Radio Network productions of The Adventures of Doc Savage!)
Check out the official announcement from the Club below:
01/28/2013 – We are thrilled to announce an additional guest to the GIJoeCon line-up. On hand for the entire weekend will be Bill Ratner, voice of Flint from the G.I. Joe: A Real American Heroanimated series!
Check out our special guest showcase and read their project bio’s…Click here! All will be scheduled for discussion panels and autograph sessions over the convention weekend.
Mr. Ratner was a guest on the popular What’s On Joe Mind podcast– featured in Episode #70!
Much like the Renegades images– this set just makes me a bit sad. Some of the figures shown are ones that I was looking forward to since the 30th anniversary line-up was announced. Sadly, they’re now falling into the category of unproduced G.I. Joe figures that are headed into the concept case of obscurity.
Three of the most anticipated but now unproduced G.I. Joe figures for this fan?
Even the much-lamented Data Viper is a figure that piqued my curiosity. However, as of now, none of these figures are slated to see release– save for hopefully Kwinn.
Check out Photonut’s Day 1 unproduced G.I. Joe images below: