I almost missed out on this one because of the look. The art and animation remind me of the Men In Black animated series – despite liking that show, it looked like vomit sliding down a screen. G.I. Joe: Renegades is a little more colorful or should I say it just uses less greens and browns. What makes this show interesting is that the Joes are the “bad guys” and Cobra is thought to be as wholesome as mama’s apple pie. I am serious about that; in one scene Roadblock even says that Cobra makes a tasty apple pie! The promo for the show specifically tells you that this is “not yo mama’s Cobra” and even the Joes are shaping up differently from what we are used to.

This commercial sold me on the show.

I think I should mention that the guy picking the apple and standing with the children is Cobra Commander. And then, at the same time it very much is not Cobra Commander. This Cobra is so good at covering up they make the Decepticons look honest. You have the commander heading philanthropic functions and the Baroness spearheading “humanitarian relief efforts,” so who is going to believe a team of six rogue military military who are wanted for terrorist acts and murder? Yes ladies and gentlemen, in one episode, the new G.I. Joe does what multiple seasons and a movie full of guns and explosives could not – kill somebody. I hope the current storyline does not drag out too long though because there is only so much “on the run” that you can do when you are trying to evade the entire US government and a multinational organization with a large amount of military power.

Thank God there is a lot of personality behind these characters. I still have trouble with how awful they look. Under the circumstances of the story though, I don’t have too much beef with the changes they have made. Until the likes of General Hawk came around, Duke has always been the leader of the Joe team. In Renegades, he is outranked by Scarlett and they butt heads repeatedly. Roadblock has a lot less attitude than he used to and seems to just be the happy fat dude. I don’t remember rip cord being black, but I could be wrong on that. I don’t remember Tunnel Rat at all but at least he is funny and kind of reminds me of Quick Kick. Flint is a complete prick, especially when it comes to Duke and Lady Jaye is way more latina then I ever remembered her being. The Baroness is very on point but then again she is about the hardest character to get wrong. East Euro accent-check, bodysuit-check, sexy-check. Destro has not yet appeared and my only real beef with Cobra Commander is that he doesn’t say his the letter “S” like thisssssssssssssssssssssssss.

And then we have Dr. Mindbender, perhaps the most interesting new development in this show. Of all the characters, he has changed the most. Any fan will tell you that the original Mindbender looks sort of like the Iron Sheik from classic WWF days. While there is no mention of this being the reason, I would easily understand the creators not wanting a mad scientist that works for what was originally labeled a terrorist organization to be of Middle Eastern descent. So yeah, let’s make him a goofy looking white guy and instead of him making biological toxins, we will have him make monsters. Political Correctness strikes again, booo!

G.I. Joe Renegades seems to have all the makings of a successful show (overlooking the art department) and with proper marketing it will see equal success in the merchandising department, possibly more than its 1980s predecessor. One can only hope for things like a Transformers crossover and for characters like Shipwreck, Alpine, Bazooka and Quick Kick to show up because those idiots made for some of the best episodes (i.e. The ol’ Alpine Yodel). IMDB.com and other sources indicate that Stormshadow, Major Bludd, Jinx and Breaker will appear in future episodes, as will Destro. Now just one question remains and it is very important: can I get a “YO JOE!?” That is something I need to know because y’know, knowing is half the battle.