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Cobra #1

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Cobra #1

Credits

  • Words: Mike Costa
  • Art: Antonio Fuso
  • Colors: Arianna Florean
  • Story Title: Cobra Civil War
  • Publisher: IDW Publishing
  • Price: $3.99
  • Release Date: May 25, 2011

What happens when the world's biggest terrorist organization's leader is shot in the face? Well, they do what they do all the time, they go to war!

IDW's Cobra Civil War kicks off this month, with the relaunch of their Cobra series bringing up the tail end of the month's releases. Though the previous Cobra series is where the Civil War actually started, this is not necessarily a direct continuation of that book, so you don’t absolutely need to have read it (but you should!). The major difference between the previous series and the relaunch is that the previous series focused on a GI Joe spy infiltrating Cobra (aptly named Chuckles), whereas this volume is actually about the new prospective leaders of Cobra, Baroness, Serpentor, and Major Bludd. That isn't to say that there aren’t any double-agents but, you'll have to see that for yourself.

If you aren't already familiar with the concept of the Cobra Civil War, the long and short of it is that there are a handful of candidates vying to take over Cobra after the demise of Cobra Commander. To do so, shadowy benefactors of Cobra have begun a contest (‘whoever kills the most Joes wins’), and to win is to lead Cobra. It's a simple concept for an event, but one that absolutely works. The idea of the bad guys killing the good guys as a plot point is a fun one, and I'm sure we'll see plenty of classic Cobra backstabbing in play, as well as the Joes doing their best butt-kicking to stay alive.

For this relaunch, Mike Costa takes over the sole writing duties (he previously shared them with now Marvel exclusive writer Christos Gage), but the gritty espionage tone doesn't suffer at all. Returning with Costa is artist Antonio Fuso, and while I'm not entirely crazy about his art, he makes a strong case for it on this book. With his knack for drawing GI Joe characters in a way that not only shows love for their original artists, but makes them undeniably cool looking (even the somewhat silly Serpentor looks awesome here), Fuso comes across as an absolutely perfect artist for this series.

This issue focuses on Baroness' point of view for the most part, with her coming to terms that she will have a hard time taking hold of Cobra due to her gender and the organization's traditional ways. Costa paints an interesting picture of Baroness here: a character that has appeared so strong for so many years having doubt, but still fighting to gain control is an interesting take, and one I'm interested in seeing more of.  The plot really kicks off when Serpentor's plan comes to light, ending with a strong cliffhanger that sets the tone for this series, and will definitely make things interesting as the event progresses.

The Cobra Civil War looks to be a fun ride with lots of betrayal and bloodshed, and if you want a good place to start, you should look no further than Cobra #1. If you are however interested in reading more of the event, GI Joe #1 and Snake Eyes #1 both dropped this month and should give you some more insight into who may end up as the new Cobra Commander.

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