The A Real American Hero franchise (also known as RAH for short) is a relaunch of Hasbro's G.I. Joe series in 1982. While a very American property, it was also successfully marketed in other countries. This series, moreso than previous G.I. Joe series, is what people often think of when G.I. Joe is mentioned. Over the years, it has become only one of many series to include G.I. Joe's fight against the forces of Cobra.
"A Real American Hero" was a revival of the original 12" (30 cm) G.I. Joe brand of the 1960s and '70s. After the 12" line had been absent from toy shelves for a few years, G.I. Joe was re-introduced in a 3 3/4" (9.5 cm) action figure format following the success of the Star Wars and 3 3/4" tall toylines. It went on to become one of the most memorable icons of the 1980s and even surpassed its classic 12" predecessor in popularity.
Prior to G.I. Joe's relaunch in 1982, Larry Hama was developing an idea for a new comic book (to be called Fury Force) which he was hoping would be an ongoing series for Marvel Comics. The original premise had the son of S.H.I.E.L.D director Nick Fury assembling a team of elite commandos to battle Neo-Nazi terrorists Hydra. The idea was nixed, but Hama was able to use the basic premise when he learned of Hasbro's plans to resurrect the G.I. Joe toyline. Each G.I. Joe figure included a character biography, called a "filecard." Hama was responsible for writing these filecards, especially for the first 10 years. When developing many of the characters, he drew much from his own experiences in the US Army. Larry Hama served in Vietnam with the Army Corp Of Engineers with distinction from 1969 to 1971, and was a qualified expert in both small arms and explosives.
Unlike its predecessor series, RAH came at a time when toys were supported by a gamut of merchandising tie-ins. Chief components of this franchise are:
Other tie-ins included:
A few years after RAH folded, nostalgia for the series remained strong. Toys "Я" Us released limited edition toys that became known as the Real American Hero Collection. In 1999, there was an attempt to bring back the comics by Benchpress Comics before Devil's Due acquired the publishing rights.
|This page uses content from Wikipedia. The original article was at G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Joepedia, the text of Wikipedia is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.|