The GeeksverseG.I. Joe Renumbering

G.I. Joe Renumbering
Published on Tuesday, October 16, 2012 by

IDW Publishing will be restarting their G.I. Joe comic in February 2013, with a new G.I. Joe #1 issue helmed by writer Fred Van Lente and joined by artist Steve Kurth. This is according to a tweet by Van Lente:

Just announced on @IDWPublishing Panel: I’m taking over GI JOE with artist Steve Kurth — new #1 in Feb 2013! suggests that this new creative team may breath fresh air into the title. It is a thought that is  picked up by their forum contributors but not universally. Although shocked seems to be prevailing over excited.

Additionally, ComicsBeat reports the renumbering as a relaunch and a few other IDW changes for their Joe-verse. G.I. Joe starting February by Fred vanLenten and Steve Kurtz, in March Secret Missions by Chuck Dixon and Paul Culacy, and in April Cobra Files by Mike Costa and Antonio Fuso. This news seems to spread the current Joe-verse writers around to other Joe titles instead of outright replacing them. The return of the Secret Missions title should be met with some fan anticipation since that title has a long history of Joe goodness. Apparently, Fred van Lente said his book would focus on a core team, including Duke, Cover Girl, Roadblock, Shipwreck, and Tunnel Rat, and that the Joe-Cobra war would be “very public” and “pretty hardcore.” Van Lente and Comic Book History of Comics collaborator Ryan Dunlavey will be doing GI Joe History variant covers.”

Currently, no internet buzzing about the Larry Hama continuation universe. With its ups and downs this series is a fan favorite for long time fans because it is familiar. Hama is reportedly penning issue #187 currently with plans to continue on.

Also no news about any more upcoming prequel comics to rehype the still upcoming G.I. Joe movie. Given the amount of time between the last comics and the still pending movie another set of comics could be created. Given the staleness of the Rock heavy movie tie-ins another prequel would be appreciated.

Of course there is still no announcement about a G.I. Joe: Renegade comic. The one season cartoon would benefit from continuing the story into comic book pages. At least the fans of the new cartoon would flock to it, although that may be a admittedly small number of fans and not justify the work in sales.

Adding titles seems in-congruent with convention comments about streamlining title continuity to make buying easier for fans. Although the IDW lineup is growing quickly according to SDCC.

No word in these tweets and internet articles about exactly how these creator changes and renumberings will affect the on-going continuity. This could be like the renumbering between the first and second season which set up the Cobra Civil War.  Rumors of renumbering surfaced after the Civil War as if Cobra Command might be a completely renumbered season 3, but it never came to pass. Prevailing wisdom seems to be that renumbering, creating more #1s, is a way to sell more comics, however it is annoying for fans trying to dig through back issues of variant covers and overlapping numbers trying to complete runs and sets.

Hopefully the renumbering is a marketing “fresh start” without making any continuity reboot style changes. IDW’s combined three title Joe-verse has been ranking consistently on our subjective reading meter.

IDW Publishing:
Cobra (4): #12 +, #13 +, #14 +, #15 =, #16 =, #17 =
D&D: Forgotten Realms (2): #1
G.I. Joe (4): #12 +, #13 =, #14 +, #15 =, #16 =, #17 =
G.I. Joe – A Real American Hero (3): #177 +, #178 =, #179 =, #180 =, #181 +, #182 +
Snake Eyes (3): #12 =, #13 -, #14 -, #15 =, #16 =
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (4): #9 =, #10 =, #11 =, #12 =, #13 =, #14 =

Personally, I am not a fan of renumbering for renumberings sake. I don’t see the point in changing the numbering just because a creative team shake up has occurred. Perhaps it is because I grew up reading Marvel and DC when creative teams were more fluid and less publicized. IDW is not a complete creator owned company, since they are working with licensed titles the creative changes do not seem to warrant a restart. If the story is continuing then let the numbers run with them. IF they must renumber the marketing “fresh start” then I am pleased some of the titles are being rebranded with slightly different names. Keeping G.I. Joe adjectiveless makes it hard when digging through back issue bins trying to find wayward issues which is annoying enough to make me fume.

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