Saturday (Day Three): Saturday really is “Seminar Day”, the day where we get the most seminars and events throughout the day. The Hasbro Seminar was early in the morning, so we rushed in to the room and waited with baited breath for the “big announcement” that Hasbro had promised the day before. The wait was worth it as we received our first look at “G.I. Joe: Resolute”.
G.I. Joe Resolute is a ground-breaking new animation initiative targeted directly at the older collectors of the G.I. Joe brand. These are the stories we all wanted to see told and in the gritty, mature style that we all appreciate.
Similar to "Clone Wars", G.I. Joe: Resolute will feature 10 5-minute animated shorts leading up to a 10 minute finale, all adding up to a one hour feature. It will either be a web-based property, or Hasbro is also still shopping around potential broadcast partners.
This is the cartoon that Joe fans have wanted to see. Trust me on this. We got a few minute "sizzle" (featuring a scene that will not appear in the actual series) and it was simply amazing.
Animated by J & M Studios (the guys behind Avatar: The Last Airbender) and written by Warren Ellis, it is an adult, serious storyline with a fantastic animated style.
No lasers, no parachutes. ;)
The scene starts out in the jungle.... machine gun fire breaks out, and birds go flying into the sky. We see Duke and Roadblock running frantically through the trees as they're pursued by well equipped COBRA Troopers. Machine gun fire is frantically flying everywhere, and the two Joes break down a door and take cover in a small COBRA bunker.
The COBRA Troops advance...but Snake Eyes is squatting in the trees above. He leaps down and takes down a Trooper with his sword. Other COBRA's flank him, but he's too quick. He takes one down with a flurry of punches, rebounds off of a tree and kicks another in the face. In the same fluid motion he whips a throwing blade from his uniform and whips it striking a COBRA Trooper in the forehead. Yes, he takes out a COBRA Trooper with extreme prejudice.
He smacks around a few others, and the battle ends with him flipping a Trooper over his shoulder onto the ground, then taking out his sword thrusting it into the Trooper and twisting it, finishing him off.
As the gunfire stops, Duke and Roadblock emerge out into the woods, seeing Snake Eyes standing there victorious, with COBRA Troopers littering the ground around him. The Commando snaps off a quick salute.
This was... incredible. It gave me goosebumps, seriously. Animation was fluid and fantastic, the voice actors were good, the action was amazing, and there were no punches pulled. We are going to get an animated series that does what we've wanted it to do for twenty-five years.
Other notes on “Resolute”:
- 1st Quarter ’09 release date
- In shots of the G.I. Joe headquarters, a large American flag hangs from the ceiling.
- Lots of new cutting edge or pseudo-futuristic technology including something called a “Strattelite”.
- Firefly will make an appearance
- Vehicle models will be 3D rendered alongside the 2D animated humans.
- Color schemes for the characters will pull lots of influences from the classic looks.
- Confirmed characters: Duke, Snake Eyes, Scarlett, Roadblock, Lady Jaye, Tunnel Rat, Gung Ho, COBRA Commander, Destro, Baroness, Storm Shadow
- With a short window to tell the story expect a LOT of action, encompasses the G.I. Joe story, the COBRA story, and the background behind the Snake Eyes/Storm Shadow conflict.
From here we moved on to the G.I. Joe product seminar, with the room still buzzing with excitement over the Resolute sample animation. This seminar would cover exclusives for 2008.
First we covered Toys “R” Us Exclusives.
- Crimson Guard 5-Pack; This will come with 4 Crimson Guards and one “Immortal”. All figures will have silver facemasks with black visors, while the Immortal will also have a silver chest. Non-removable helmets. The same familiar weaponry and accessories.
- Firefly Vs. the Greenshirts; the Greenshirts are faithfully translated from their cartoon appearances, with different shades of green uniforms and different head sculpts. Firefly is fairly reminiscent of his original look with some minor color tweaks.
- Air Command 3-Pack; Comes with Skyduster (design is a Starduster homage and it’s meant to be representative of that character), Wild Bill, and Ace.
- Naval Command 3-Pack; Comes with Torpedo (with a very cool cartoon-based paint scheme), Deep Six, and Cutter.
- Iron Grenadier Command; This set comes with Destro, an Iron Grenadier trooper and an Iron Grenadier Officer. The officer has purple trim based off of Voltar’s look from ’89.
- 12” Land, Sea & Air; This set comes with 12” renditions of Rock n Roll, Wet Suit, and Wild Bill.
Next in line were Online Exclusives, meant to be figure sets designed to be marketed and sold through online retailers like Hasbro Toy Shop, Entertainment Earth, Big Bad Toy Store, etc…
- Extreme Conditions Arctic Set; A wide assortment of great looking COBRA troops led by Scrap Iron. There’s a Snow Serpent Commander, Snow Serpent, a Tele-Viper, a standard COBRA Viper and more accessories than you can shake a stick at. The Tele-Viper is even carrying a very familiar looking portable computer…
- Extreme Conditions Desert Set; Crimson Guard (with removable helmet), various COBRA Troopers (including one with a flamethrower), and a COBRA Viper all led by Major Bludd. The best news of this set is that Bludd has been totally reworked with a HISS Driver torso, a different left arm and some different legs to give him a MUCH better look. His armored arm still does not look articulated, however.
Next we covered the Target exclusives, which would bring a smile to most Joe fans.
- Conquest w/ Slipstream; Faithfully replicated from the ’86 original the new Conquest is an impressive looking fighter jet with a great figure utilizing existing tooling. Even with the existing tooling, though, the figure is looking spectacular.
- Rattler w/ Wild Weasel; Like the Conquest, the Rattler is based very strongly off the original version, from the color on down. A great, GREAT new rendition of everyone’s favorite COBRA assault plane and something that got a great reaction from the crowd.
- Ultimate Battle Pack; Target is also partnering with Hasbro to release an impressively sized “Ultimate Battle Pack” which comes with a Mobat, a red HISS, a blue Trubble Bubble as well as Destro, Steeler, HISS Driver, COBRA Trooper, Short Fuze, and Stalker. This was one large looking set and an impressive layout of figures.
Wal-Mart is partnering with Hasbro to produce a 12” themed set based off of the original 1964 G.I. Joe product as well, featuring faithful reproductions of the boxes and a wealth of accessories for the first time.
Hasbro took this opportunity to reveal the Hall of Heroes Winners based on the winning vote getters from GiJoe.com:
- Snake Eyes Black
- Zartan ’07 Wave 3
- Crimson Guard
- COBRA Viper
- Storm Shadow
- Snake Eyes w/ Timber
Time will tell what unique deco’s and packaging each of these items will receive.
Hasbro also took this chance to reveal that they are making G.I. Joe themed “Mighty Muggs” showing us Destro and Snake Eyes.
At this point they took some questions, which I will recap:
- Vehicle exclusives will likely come from Target in the future. Target, as a retailer, is very excited about doing large box exclusive items that fit their retail philosophy.
- Expect a reveal of some new figures at San Diego ComicCon in July.
- The Battle Damaged B.A.T. we saw at Toy Fair will appear in early 2009.
- Figures are possible to coincide with G.I. Joe: Resolute. They could not fully confirm or deny that they would be coming, but indications are a strong “yes”. Also, expect some comics to go alongside the Resolute universe as well.
- The familiar hard cases that came with the mail away Doc figures should launch at ComicCon as well, and should be available afterwards.
- Pythona is not looking very likely for release.
That rounded off an informative morning spent at the second Hasbro Seminar of the weekend. Next up was a sit down with the G.I. Joe Collectors’ Club. Yet another informative seminar certain to excite long time fans.
Our first look was at the upcoming DTC Wave 4, due to be released in the 4th Quarter of 2008. This is a breakdown of the figures and expected changes:
- Outback; Fan reaction to the black shirt was very positive, so they kept it. They changed up the camo pattern on his legs, removed his tattoos, and made some minor pantone tweaks throughout the rest of the figure.
- Lt. Falcon; Camo pattern was changed slightly and the overall color scheme was moved from brown/tan to his more familiar green and brown. He also now has black trim and a beret “flash”
- COBRA Officer is mostly the same, only now sporting a silver COBRA logo instead of the red.
- Night-Viper; Another figure that is mostly the same, only he comes with twin Uzi’s (that were meant to come with the figure originally and connect to his leg harnesses), and they added the familiar Night-Viper patch tampo to one shoulder and changed the COBRA logo from yellow to silver on the other shoulder.
- Munitia; Changed the purple color to a more “COBRA blue” and darkened her COBRA logo on her chest over all.
- Airtight; Added the 3-star Joe logo on his arm, because the other figures all had it, then altered the details on his boots, gloves, and chest plate trim.
- Python Patrol Copperhead; Yes, this was a surprise. They’ve added a figure to DTC Wave 4, in the form of Python Patrol Copperhead. This figure is based off of the free membership figure in 2007, and has a Python Patrol color scheme designed to match the new sculpt Viper and Tele-Viper from the Valor Vs. Venom 2-Pack a couple of years ago.
The next 3 ¾” revelation was that they are currently working on a 3 ¾” scale Adventure Team themed set! The Collectors’ Club is working hard to start doing more “Quarterly Launches” which would be figures and sets launched once a quarter, and they’d like the Adventure Team to fit that mold.
But possibly the most exciting aspect of the Adventure Team set is the fact that the theme takes the Adventure Team in their own timeline (the 70’s) and puts them up against the insidious Dr. Venom before he joined COBRA’s forces. Yes, Dr. Venom will finally be making his first appearance in plastic form!
Price point is currently unknown, but the Club expects to sell them in a 2-pack format, either carded or boxed.
The last reveal of the seminar was the free membership figure for 2009… a vintage style Undertow! This Undertow will be colored to match the MARS Attacks boxed set from the Convention in 2005, another figure that has been at the top of many fan “want lists”.
Other information from the seminar:
- Rage was a likely vehicle choice, but tooling/production issues nixed it at the last minute.
- The Flaming MOTH sets still haven’t sold well enough to warrant a vehicle release. Original plan was for a flying vehicle, but the Club would not get more specific.
- They are still working on the locations for the Conventions next year, but expect both of them (the Transformers and Joe Cons) to be put on very close to the launch dates of each movies.
The last event of Saturday was the always popular Convention dinner and Casino Night. While there wasn’t a whole lot of information or anything revealed during this event, the Joefans in attendance got the opportunity to take part in something pretty special… G4 Television’s COBRA Commander campaign for President in 2008! A producer from G4 was in the house and shot several scenes of COBRA Commander giving a speech to the convention goers and having us react accordingly. There were several takes and it was pretty tiring for everyone, but I think the end product will be worth it, and we’ll be sure to keep everyone in the loop if we find out information about when and where it might air.
That pretty much covers YoJoe’s Convention Adventure in Dallas for 2008. Along with the rundown of events we have literally hundreds of pictures in our Photo Gallery so check those out as well.
I'd like to take a few minutes to give a big thanks to Jim Odden for all of his help with covering the event and taking pictures, and a big thumbs up to Brian Savage and the entirety of the G.I. Joe
Collectors' Club for once again holding a great event. Hasbro must get their proper kudos as well, it was a terrific weekend all around. See you next year!
All in all it was a great show. It was great to see everyone as usual, and G.I. Joe is going to go strong for a long time to come! Yo Joe!
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