Scarlett’s Strike Force #1

Writer: Aubrey Sitterson
Artist: Nelson Daniel
Colorist: Ryan Hill
Letterer: Taylor Esposito
Publisher: IDW

Review by Greg Brothers

As a child of the 1980’s, one of the first comics I remember reading was the long-running G.I. Joe Real American Hero. It is a series I still read today. One thing that I know about that series is that it is one that is not easy for readers to jump onto. With that in mind, I gave G.I.Joe a chance when IDW decided to create a shared universe. I went the first arc and decided it was not for me, mainly because of the art and also I do not care about Dire Wraths.

Scarlett’s Strike Force #1 picks up where the first series left off. Baroness is now the Cobra Commander. She is working with Crystal Ball to try and create an army of snake people based on the classic Cobra-La mythos. The G.I. Joe Strike force is working to find the group and stop them. Meanwhile, along the way the team is finding missions and troubles far beyond the normal army’s scope.

Right away I could tell that I was going to enjoy this series much more than I had the original storyline in the reboot. It felt like the story was focusing more on the G.I. Joe mythos rather than just being a small part of the line wide reboot. Sure, there are parts that have to do with both ROM and MASK, but they are just part of the story–not dominating it. Jumping right into the action allows the reader to quickly see how this team works together to be successful. Meanwhile, the parts at Cobra headquarters give us a chance to see some of the new dynamics of the team. One thing that I think has been missing from the line in general is a run down of the team, and we get a bit of this here. As Roadblock is getting ready to put his team together to head out on a mission, he goes through and picks his team, explaining why he picked each. It is something small, but it reminds you of how large the team really is.

One of the things that originally turned me away from the reboot was the art. Scarlett’s Strike Force #1 does not have that problem. Where the other series seemed too cartoonish, this one seems to be more based in reality when it comes to character designs. Some of them are closer to the classic-style while other have updated looks, but none of it feels out of place. While the art is based in reality, it does use a bit of the supernatural and represents that in a believable way in the book. 

Verdict: Check it out.

If you are looking for a fresh approach to the G.I. Joe franchise that also manages to keep the right elements of the original series, then Scarlett’s Strike Force #1 is the series for you. Featuring Scarlett as the team leader challenging Duke is a fresh approach. While components of the ROM series are here, it does not overshadow the Joe team.

Gregory Brothers
Ohio born and raised. Avid comicbook fan who is always trying to find time to get through my ever growing read pile. When not working on that I Teach, coach youth sports, and cheer on my hometown Cincinnati teams, and Buckeyes. Can also be heard talking comics and pop-culture on The Comics Agenda Podcast.

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