G.I. Joe Extreme is the name of a short-lived line of military-themed toys by Hasbro, a two-season cartoon show by Sunbow Productions, and two 4-issue comic mini-series by Dark Horse Comics. It is a sequel of sorts to the previous G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero TV series, with a one-shot pack-in video called Sgt. Savage and his Screaming Eagles bridging the two series. However, the only character carried over from the video was Sgt. Savage himself. As a result, many collectors consider the Screaming Eagles toys to be part of the G.I. Joe Extreme toyline.
The new line features a storyline quite similar to the original. In a "near-future" continuity, a new G.I. Joe Team fights to stop a rising terrorist organization called "SKAR" (Soldiers of Khaos, Anarchy and Ruin) and their leader, a mysterious, shrewd, and incredibly powerful military leader only known as "Iron Klaw".
The title logo was reminiscent of the original G.I. Joe logo from the 1960s and 1970s. The 3.75" scale was discarded in favor of a new 5" scale, which allowed a greater level of detail especially in the facial and muscular features. However, the line was criticized by collectors for replacing articulation with "special feature" gimmicks compared to the Real American Hero line.
However, even with (or perhaps because of) a larger scale, the line never approached the success of the RAH line and was canceled after its second wave.
Seventeen figures were produced: 3 of Lt. Stone, 3 of Iron Klaw, 2 of Sgt. Savage, 2 of Metalhead, 2 of Ballistic, 2 of Inferno, 1 of Black Dragon, 1 of Freight and 1 of Harpoon. Mayday, the team's only female, was never released.
|G.I. Joe Extreme|
|Format||Animated television series|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||26 (List of episodes)|
|Running time||30 min.|
|Original channel||First-run syndication|
|Original run||September 23, 1995 – February 21, 1997|
Main article: List of G.I. Joe Extreme episodesAs with the original cartoon, the new series was produced by Sunbow / Gunther-Wahl Productions (later co-founded by animation producer Lee Gunther) and distributed by Claster Television. Set in the (at the time) "near-future 2006", the show's main threat is a new, emerging terrorist organization called SKAR led by Iron Klaw, the former count of an eastern European country.
According to the intro (which resembles a news flash), a "former super-power" has collapsed with several factions vying for control against a new global terrorist organization "known only as SKAR" whose goal is nothing less but total world domination. Iron Klaw claims: "We will be VICTORIOUS!" to which Lt. Stone replies "Not on MY watch!" followed by an introduction to the new Joe roster. The opening concludes with a news reporter giving odds of survival as "a million to 1" and Stone yelling: "...and that's the way we LIKE it!"
The new Joe team operates in a post-Cold War world wracked by chaos and carnage, and battling against both SKAR and independent mercenaries, who seek to further destabilize an already unstable world. Unlike the previous series, the cartoon featured a pre-credits teaser featuring a mixture of both live actors and CGI. However, as with the previous series, the end of the episode featured new public service announcements in the same vein as the popular "Knowing is Half the Battle" PSAs.
Cover to G.I. Joe #1. Art by Frank Miller.
|Publisher||Dark Horse Comics|
|First appearance||G.I. Joe #1, Dec. 1995|
|Created by||Mike W. Barr, Hasbro|
|Type of organization||Military unit|
|Base(s)||G.I. Joe Headquarters|
|See:List of G.I. Joe Extreme characters|
Dark Horse acquired the rights to publish the G.I. Joe Extreme comics in 1996. The four issue mini-series was written by Mike W. Barr, with art by Tatsuya Ishida and Scott Reed. The cover to the first issue (The Hour of the Iron Claw) was done by Frank Miller, the second issue (Pawn of the Iron Klaw) by Norm Breyfogle, and issues three (The Gang's All Here) and four (The Ultimate Price) by Walter Simonson. The plot of the mini-series revealed events that occurred after the events depicted in the television series, but also contradicts it on several points, notably in that Iron Klaw is, at the very beginning, the second-in-command of the military wing of SKAR. The original leader was a woman named The Duchess of M'Klavia, who wanted her royal line to regain control of her country’s government through whatever means necessary. She was assassinated by Iron Klaw, when he became more ambitious and craved for world domination. At this point, the new Joe Team included two new members, Short Fuze (not related with the original one from the A Real American Hero series) and Tall Sally.
The mini-series led to an ongoing series following the same continuity, and beginning with a three-part story: (Red Scream: Hunted, Red Scream: Shakes Hands with Satan, Red Scream: Island Assault). The plot featured an anti-globalist group led by a woman called Red Scream, who sought to discredit (and eventually destroy) the Inter-Alliance, by using Joe impostors to commit acts of terrorism. The storyline concluded with both Red Scream's and Iron Klaw's capture. A fourth issue (All This and World War II and The Last Wild Heart: The Fourth Man) began a new story following the still-active remnants of the I.R.O.N. Army, but a fickle comic market coupled with the poor performance of the toy line led to the series going on indefinite "hiatus", and ultimately led to its cancellation.
G.I. Joe TeamEdit
- Mr. Clancy - He is the Joe Team's presidential liaison and the true team leader, very much like General Flagg in the original series. He dresses in a black suit and is always wearing sunglasses, resembling the men in black.
- Lt. Stone - Field commander. After foiling an attempted kidnapping by SKAR soldiers, both he and Sgt. Savage were approached by Mr. Clancy to form a new G.I. Joe Team.
- Sgt. Savage - Master Sergeant Robert Stephen Savage. He was frozen alive during World War II before being discovered by Hawk, Doc and Lady Jaye between the original animated series and G.I. Joe Extreme. Savage is the "oldest" member of the team; he once had a wife and child.
- Ballistic/Eagle Eye - Albert Salviatti (renamed Eagle Eye in the second season) is the team's sharp shooter. He has a strong rivalry with his former comrade-in-arms, the Silencer.
- Black Dragon - Kang Chi Lee is the Joe Team's resident ninja and martial artist. He is from Hong Kong, (The Search for Clancy) and has a history with a crime family from that area.
- Freight - Omar Diesel is a former professional football player and the team's demolitions expert. Freight served in the U.S. Army before becoming a football player. He left football when he heard about the reformation of the Joe Team (Crawling from the Wreckage, Winner Take All).
- Harpoon - Jose Montalvo is a former Navy SEAL and the team's nautical expert (Dawn's Oily Light). He provides comic relief for the G.I. Joe team.
- Mayday - Mayday is the lone female of the reformed Joe Team. She is an aggressive and determined skilled fighter and pilot.
- Metalhead - Matthew Hurley is the team's communications and computer expert and hacker. He was the first person recruited to join the new Joe Team (Summoning of Heroes).
- Quick Stryke - A former SKAR operative who defected to the Joe Team after the death of his brother, Jonathan (Point of Honor).
- Red Mcknox - A scientist of Scottish descent who designed most of the equipment used by the Joe Team.
- Tracker - Tracker, along with his trained wolf Dakota, is an expert tracker recruited by Stone, in order to find Clancy. Tracker possesses extra-sensory perception (The Search for Clancy).
- Short-Fuze - A member of the Joe Team, appearing only in the comic series. He is an expert in demolitions, not related with the original one from A real American Hero series.
- Tall Sally - A second female character appearing only in the comic series.
SKAR (Soldiers of Khaos, Anarchy, and Ruin)Edit
- Iron Klaw - The leader of the military wing of SKAR. He has a fascination and deep respect for Genghis Khan (Relics, Rebellion, The Search for Clancy). Iron Klaw operates under the alias of Count von Rani, the ruler of a small Eastern European nation called Kalistan.
- Duchess of Mklavia - The former leader of the military wing of SKAR, the Duchess appears only in the first comic series. Iron Klaw assassinated her to replace her as head of both Kalistan and SKAR.
- Steel Raven - Iron Klaw's right-hand woman, Steel Raven becomes the main instrument of his will by the second season of the TV show.
- Inferno - Kidwell Pyre served Iron Klaw throughout the first season of the television series. Inferno grew up as the son of a poor single mother who worked as a maid. Refers to arms as his "Toys", and talks with a hissing voice.
- Wreckage - A soldier who fought alongside Freight in the American military. Wreckage was experimented upon in an early attempt by Iron Klaw to create a super soldier when he was captured during a major military conflict (Crawling from the Wreckage). The experiments made Wreckage extremely strong and resilient, but prone to fits of rage.
- Rampage - Rampage is an arms manufacturer who operates legitimate business fronts and black market deals. Rampage is SKAR's primary weapon supplier. However, he seeks to eliminate Iron Klaw and seize control of the organization. He possesses the ability to transform into a grotesque devilish green skinned creature (Crawling from the Wreckage, Extend a Helping Klaw).
- The Silencer - Although not technically a member of SKAR, the Silencer is often found in their employ. He is a freelance mercenary known for his marksmanship. The Silencer used to be a member of the U.S. Special Forces, serving with Ballistic (Eagle Eye). However, he was court-martialed and thrown out of the military.
- Red Scream - Appearing only in the comic series, Red Scream is an anti-globalist terrorist who sought to destroy the Inter-Alliance by discrediting the Joe Team through the use of imposters. Her identity was later revealed to be Commander Roston, an American military officer with access to the Joe Team's files.