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GI Joe #163
Writer: Larry Hama
Penciler: S.L. Gallant
The Baroness is being held captive in Storm Shadow's old cell in the Pit. When she breaks a suveillance camera, it takes the Joes three minutes to get back into the cell and replace it; making them think she's deliberately acting out and trying to create a distraction.
Storm Shadow disappears from the Pit via the waterpipes. Outside the complex, Scarlet and Spirit Iron Knife give him a bundle of clothes, cash and other resources he'll need on his hunt to bring back Snake-Eyes. Back inside, Duke confirms to Stalker that they sorta' let Stormie "escape".
In Broca Beach, "Billy Venom" has a blast subjecting himself to the Brainwave Scanner. Destro is worried about the Baroness, as he brings up the dichotomy between the Joes and Cobra: the Joes will go all-out to bring one member back, whereas Cobra considers their operatives expendable and replaceable. Put off by CC's attitude, Destro goes to Zartan and the Dreadnoks to discuss breaking into the Pit.
Finally, Snake-Eyes sneaks into the Brainwave Scanner and relives his "origin". This time, Dr. Venom is driving the car that killed his parents and twin sister. Snake-Eyes then finds the administrator key to the Scanner, much to Dr. Venom's dismay. Venom is now on a symbiotic basis with the actual Scanner. The story ends with Dr. Venom and Snake-Eyes seemingly set for a showdown on the "astral plane".
- Cobra Commander is back to his old hobby: target shooting GI Joe targets. This time it's on the boardwalk of Broca Beach at a shooting gallery. But if we remember back, all of the carnival weapons on Broca Beach's boardwalk are actually REAL versions.
- Storm Shadow escapes the Pit and ends up in the water tower, above ground. This may be a callback to the original Pit's escape route (pre-issue 19), which in itself may have been a reference to the movie "Stalag 17". But that's a stretch.
- Snake-Eyes is in his "window shade visor" outfit, but in his Brainwave Scanner mental flashbacks he's wearing a modified version of his original "Commando" gear. He then switches back to his Vietnam LRRP gear with the panama hat.
- I'm more than a little rusty on my 70's hot rods, but Dr. Venom's virtual ride appears to be a black 1970 Ford Mustang. Or maybe a 70's Dodge Challenger.
- It seems that they're getting back to Dr. Venom as Snake-Eyes' arch-enemy, as was the case from issue 10-19. Of course, there's a key THIRD member missing in this... I wouldn't be surprised if we see that particular character pop up as SE and Venom face-off inside the Brainwave Scanner, next issue.
- Destro shows off a special vision enhancer in his helmet. A little like Iron Man, as it apparently allows him to ...ummm... find a used handgun in a swamp? I guess that'd be "Metal Detection Vision".
- Mainframe appears to have shaved his facial hair since his last appearance.
- A fews shots of the Pit show some generic "greenshirts". Although one's outfit looks a little bit like "Airborne" (the second) from Sky Patrol.
- Cobra Commander hints that Dr. Venom and the Baroness had similar personalities back in the day; explaining their recent connection.
- In the past two issues, the 'camera' keeps showing a recreation of the "Battle of Little Bighorn" in the Cobra history museum.
- Stalker's midly concerned about the legal ramifications of keeping the Baroness incarcerated. Duke mentions that they have a wide berth thanks to the Homeland Security Act. "Habeus Corpus is not what it used to be".
- It's a little frustrating how Cobra has conveniently forgot that they once attacked the Joe base in Utah, circa issue 125. But, Destro and Zartan were NOT with Cobra when that attack went down. It was all Mindbender and Cobra Commander. Still, one line about the previous attack would be nice.
- It's the curse of modern comics, but things seem to be moving slowly in this book. Basically a buncha' talking in this issue and this recurring Dance of the Brainwave Scanner is getting a little tiresome. It seems the obvious conclusion will be Snake-Eyes somehow facing down the entire system and Dr. Venom. I'd like to see Mindbender be replaced by a virtual Dr. Venom-- one who flops around in computers and electronic stuff, kinda' like Prester Jon in 90's "Team Titans" comics.
- Damn... a Team Titans reference. I must really be scraping.
Characters (figures): Snake-Eyes, Storm Shadow, Duke, Stalker, Mainframe, Psyche-Out, Lady Jaye, Wild Bill (cameo), Cobra Commander, Destro, Zartan, Torch, Ripper, Buzzer
Characters ("comic-only"): Billy, Dr. Venom (virtual)
Vehicles and stuff (toys): Cobra Hiss (cameo), HAVOC (cameo)
Vehicles and stuff (not toys): none to speak of.
Vehicles and stuff: none
Rating: 2 Flag Points
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