A bust by G.I. Joe leads them to clues of Cobra's latest scheme. The trail leads them to the country of Sierra Gordo where Snake-Eyes finds himself in a not-so cheery reunion.
A car chase erupts through the streets of San Francisco. The Joes pursue a Naja Hanna Video Corp. van filled with Cobra agents. When they manage to disable the vehicle, a scar-faced Cobra Officer makes a run for it and escapes. The Joes survey the van and Breaker finds out the Cobras had in their possession what looked to be like video game circuit cards.The boxes in the van are all marked for shipping to Sierra Gordo. Stalker and Breaker head to the office of Naja Hanna in that country while Snake-Eyes and Gung-Ho observe from the woods and serve as back up. Snake-Eyes recognizes the man that Stalker and Breaker are talking to as Dr. Venom, who tried to extract information from him back in Springfield. He jumps and heads to the Naja Hanna office. Gung-Ho follows only to bump into the scarred Cobra from back in San Francisco. Gung-Ho considers pursuing him but Snake-Eyes gets him to focus on their more immediate concern. Dr. Venom is aware of the Joes' ruse and quickly orders Cobra guards to kill the Joes. Snake-Eyes and Gung-Ho arrive in time to keep their comrades from an untimely death. Kwinn, the Eskimo mercenary, enters the fray and disarms the Joes except for Snake-Eyes. After being assured by Kwinn nobody will die, Snake-Eyes drops his uzi which actually has no more ammunition. The Joes are taken to the river dock. Dr. Venom remembers the humiliation he suffered back in Springfield and starts to savagely beat Snake-Eyes. He is only stopped by Kwinn who is furious as he gave his word no one will die. A Cobra Trooper checks in on Snake-Eyes and declares the man has no pulse and is dead. They leave him at the office and let the building burn. Dr. Venom watches the building burn and thinks it reminds him of something from an Asian temple and a ninja. He suddenly realizes that Snake-Eyes is actually still alive.
The fire catches the attention of the villagers and several of them witness Snake-Eyes, still on fire, running out of the building, some of whom comment on his terribly scarred face. He is last seen jumping into the river.
On the Cobras' boat, Kwinn and Dr. Venom continue to argue. It is there that Kwinn's role in the operation is revealed. He is to ensure the delivery of the computer chips to Cobra; once that is done with, he plans to end his association with them. While the two continue to argue, Breaker uses his chewing gum to coat his bonds to get the rats on board to start chewing them.The boat reaches an island in the middle of the river where the Baroness awaits them in a bunker. Venom and Kwinn join her in the bunker to complete the transaction. The Joes make it out of their bonds and take the upper hand against their captors. Snake-Eyes arrives and tells the Joes to head back to headquarters with the computer chips. Rather than joining his teammates, he elects himself to neutralize the threat.
Inside the bunker, the scarred Cobra Officer is assigned as the courier for a virus that Dr. Venom has developed and the serum that will mutate it further. Kwinn's realizes that Snake-Eyes is alive and outside the bunker. The Baroness and the Officer escape on the sea-plane. She unleashes a bomb that blows up the boat Breaker, Gung-Ho, and Stalker have commandeered, but the Joes jump overboard in time. The sea-plane circles back towards the island where it fires another bomb. The island blows up with Snake-Eyes, Kwinn and Venom still on it.
The Joes, clinging to the wreckage of the boat, witness the destruction of the island and swear revenge on the Baroness.
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
Featured Vehicles & Equipment
- --Stalker doesn't like rats.
- When Snake-Eyes' Uzi runs dry, his hand is colored pink in the close-up.
- When Snake-Eyes emerges from the river, his hair is colored black, rather than the blonde it would later be revealed to be.
- On page 12, it seriously strains believability that Dr Venom would fall for the same trick he just finished insulting Snake-Eyes over on the same page. Even if he does catch himself a page later.
- On page 9, Gung-Ho realizes the Cobra agent he encounters there is Scarface, yet he is surprised by this on page 17.
Items of note
- First Appearances: Scar-Face, Sierra Gordo
- This issue was reprinted in G.I. Joe Digest #5, Tales of G.I. Joe #12 and the G.I. Joe vol. 2 trade paperback.
- Mike Vosburg is credited as "Mike Vosberg".
- This story begins a multi-issue story arc that lasts until issue #19.
- This issue is a game-changer, marking an abrupt switch from self-contained, mostly single-issue stories to lengthy arcs with detailed continuity. (By bringing back Kwinn and Dr Venom, it could even be said to retroactively apply this mentality to some of the previous issues.) The latter storytelling style will dominate the book for the rest of its run.
- The car that explodes in the beginning is a Pinto, a car notorious for being unsafe in rear collisions.
- Wendy O. Williams was the lead singer for punk band the Plasmatics.
- Washington, D.C. is famous for its cherry blossoms in spring.
- Breaker refers to "Sgt. Granite of Difficult Company," a roundabout reference to famed war comic Sgt. Rock, published by Marvel's competitor, DC Comics, and the title character's unit, Easy Company.
Footnotes and References