The entire G.I. Joe Team is mobilized as Cobra enacts its most ambitious plan starting a Third World War.
Off the coast of Florida, a Cobra spy ship makes its way through stormy waters. Cobra Commander is on deck watching out with binoculars and finds what he is looking for, the Kennedy Space Center. Elsewhere, Hawk takes the Joe Team off a cold weather exercise to mobilize them for a mission, to protect a satellite capable of locating and destroying the network of underwater launch sites owned by Cobra. For the mission, the Joe Team is split in two. The first team is composed of mobile defense and heavy armor. The second group stands guard around the space shuttle complex. Meanwhile, Flash and Breaker are selected to accompany the shuttle all the way from launch, satellite deployment and landing.
The next day, the space shuttle is ready for launch and the two Joes board. As soon as that happens, Stalker radios in informing Hawk that Cobra has begun its attack. Facing stiff opposition, the Joe Team is forced to withdraw. From a distance, Cobra Commander is confident he will be able to destroy the shuttle and his hated foes. The Joe Team turn the tide and manage to destroy the invasion force, a fact that does not distress the Commander at all. From his helicopter, the Commander launches a missile at the shuttle. It all falls to Hawk to stop it and with one shot, destroys it and just in time, the shuttle lifts off.
Rather than despairing, Cobra Commander and the Baroness head back to their undersea base and prepare one more attack against the pursuing Joe Team. The Joes find Cobra's undersea base and board it. Just then, Cobra launches a missile for one more attempt to destroy the shuttle. At the shuttle, the Joes there face their impending doom but Flash comes up with an idea. In his space suit and rocket pack, he catches the missile and pushes it out of the way.
Back at the undersea base, the Joes overcome the Cobra force despite being outnumbered. Cobra Commander can't help but gloat that he is getting away and that the undersea base is set to explode. The Joes make their evacuation in life rafts, even offered the Cobras in custody to join them, an offer that is flatly refused as they chose to remain loyal to their Commander. The undersea base explodes and when the Joes thought it all over, the Commander's sea vessel rises out of the water and now attempts to run them down. Zap has the only weapon left that is still working. He fires his bazooka at the vessel and it sinks to the bottom of the sea. The Joes breathe easier and wonder if they have finally defeated the Commander only to be disappointed by a sea plane that shoots out from water, the Commander escapes.
With this mission over, the Joes wonder what is next for them.
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
Featured Vehicles & Equipment
- None yet.
- Either the geography of the Joes' world differs significantly from ours, or the map on page 6 is seriously messed up.
- On the same page, the Baroness' reference to "capitalist lackeys" is curious. Though some of their equipment seems to be of Soviet origin, Cobra has shown no signs of being a Communist organization, or otherwise having anything against capitalism as such. If anything, even at this early date, what little we see of their political philosophy suggests a fascist, far-right orientation. (This would eventually be explicitly confirmed, in the Cobra Civil War arc - it is first explicitly stated in issue 73.)
- Once again, a Joe named "Ranger" is mentioned. Both by elimination and by reference to the specialties prominently displayed on the action figures of the time, this is almost certainly meant to be Stalker. Unlike in #4 (where this error also occurs), though, the character is also correctly referred to as "Stalker" in this issue.
- Why does Cobra send troops to (no pun intended) flush out the Joes on the surface of their aquatic base? Wouldn't it be more effective and less risky to just submerge? For that matter, why do the Joes land on it in the first place, given that possibility?
Items of note
- First appearances: M.M.S., Space Shuttle, Acqua-Chopper, Amphibious Assault Guns, S.E.A. Legs, SRV-9, Submersible Helicopter, Cobra Undersea Base
- First issue not written by Larry Hama.
- Cobra Commander has blue eyes.
- It might be a coincidence, but the method Flash uses to put the Cobra missile off course is very similar to the method his various DC Comics namesakes use when (for example) using their superspeed to catch or deflect bullets.
- The issue begins at 80°30'W, 28°27'N.
- The Baroness refers to fifth columnists within the Cobra organization
Footnotes and References