Good morning and happy ComicCon everyone!
No doubt, from a G.I. Joe perspective one of the most exciting things we learned about ComicCon this year was that Hasbro would be releasing a spectacular Revolutions Boxed Set featuring G.I. Joe scaled figures of several different characters throughout their properties, including MASK, Visionaries, Transformers, Rom, and Micronauts.
Well, good friend of GeneralsJoes and noted author James Kavanaugh, Jr. managed to get his handsome mitts on one of these Revolutions sets early and has been kind enough to put together an early review and look at the set!
You can find the review right here and eventually I’ll pop it up in one of the menus above, as soon as I can figure out where it belongs.
Humongous thanks to James for taking time out of his busy life to grab some pictures and do a fantastic write up of this great set. As an added bonus, here are some images of the COBRA Missile Command Center he sent along as well, featuring better looks at the COBRA’s within and filecards!
The Los Angeles Times newspaper dropped an interesting article online today discussing the upcoming release of Transformers: The Last Knight as well as a My Little Pony animated film, but within the context of the article they spoke broadly about Hasbro’s new “Cinematic Universe” initiative.
This is all old news to most of us, but where it got interesting is some very specific discussions about the G.I. Joe brand itself:
Simon Waters, the man in charge of consumer brands says the following:
“The world has changed, and I think you’re going to see G.I. Joe changing with it.”
I think the evolution and change of G.I. Joe is a natural thing, especially as you consider all of the different other brands contained within the cinematic universe.
Hasbro’s Stephen Davis elaborated on this, saying:
“We hope to create a head snap. It’s a different kind of ‘Joe’ — one that still resonates with ‘Joe’ fans but brings in an uninitiated audience and expands the audience internationally and domestically.”
Discussions of a “contemporary approach” also take place within the article, the true meaning of which is anyone’s guess at this point.
I’m glad that G.I. Joe seems to be the focus of a potential overhaul, but time will tell what Hasbro considers a “head snap” and how it will resonate with the long term fans and what it can do to bring in new fans. I’ll certainly be watching.
Check out the full article at LATimes.com.
Many fans of G.I. Joe and Hasbro properties in general have been quietly getting excited for whatever may be to come with the upcoming Hasbro Cinematic Universe. The idea of a film “relaunch” bringing together G.I. Joe, M.A.S.K., and several other Hasbro properties just seems like an idea too good to be true and an awesome way to potentially bring in a new generation of Hasbro action figure fans.
But then you read an interview with one of the lead writers, Akiva Goldsman and suddenly you’re not so sure.
Over on the Wall Street Journal (of course the full interview is hidden behind a paywall) apparently Goldsman has revealed some early ideas for this Hasbro Cinematic Universe. Now, these are just ideas, so perhaps we shouldn’t get too worked up, but hey, we’re toy collectors, like Bruce Banner said, I’m pretty sure we’re always worked up.
Thankfully AgentsofMASK.com pulled over some of the key quotes from WSJ…well, thankfully, because at least we can read them. Not to thankfully, because honestly, if this is the direction things are going in, I’d probably rather they just didn’t. Here’s the quote in question:
Among the ideas they came up with were a “G.I. Joe” film set in World War II and a new version of M.A.S.K., the 1980s-era secret-agent series, that doesn’t feature the adult superspies seen in the cartoons but rather a multicultural group of youths in Detroit who come upon “magic technology” similar to what fans may remember. “That’s a story relevant for today, but if you remember the cartoon or the toy, we trigger your memory and you take a look,” Mr. Goldsman said
So, wait. First you’re going to take the G.I. Joe universe and drop it back 40 years, effectively removing every important character, or making them irrelevant by sending them back to World War II. Then, instead of a highly trained technology task force, M.A.S.K. is going to be a group of kids who stumble on magic technology?
Sorta like the Power Rangers? Is that what we’re working with here? Is that what these ace writers are bringing to the table for the Hasbro Cinematic Universe?
I know… this is one interview, effectively years before an actual movie is getting made, there’s absolutely no reason to get worked up. A hundred things are thrown at the drawing board throughout the process and not all of them stick. I truly hope neither of these two ideas stick.
I mean, one would think that Hasbro is bringing their brands together to try and create a more cohesive universe that looks and feels familiar. Neither of these two concepts feels the least bit familiar, and let’s all hope these were early ideas that were quickly discarded.
Thanks to AgentsofMASK.com for pulling out some of the intel. If anyone has a subscription to the Wall Street Journal and wants to toss the entire interview my way, I’d love to read the rest.
With Byung Hun Lee out doing the interview circuit for his new film The Magnificent Seven, it’s natural that some questions would come up regarding his role in the G.I. Joe movie franchise. Speaking with LRM, the Korean actor said that:
“…that there’s a possibility to do the third one, but I think they’re waiting for the actors’ schedules. They’re arranging the schedules for the actors, especially Dwayne Johnson.”
While it is nice to hear some talk of the next installment in the G.I. Joe film franchise, I don’t think it surprises anyone that they’re building the next installment around Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Already one of the most popular actors on the planet when he filmed G.I. Joe: Retaliation, somehow the onetime wrestler has skyrocketed even further, recently pulling down the honor of the highest paid actor in Hollywood. If G.I. Joe has the inside track to leverage Johnson’s billing for a third film, they would be painfully stupid not to do so.
At this point that means a bit of a waiting game. When you’re one of the most popular action heroes of the current moment, a wait list generally forms, and Johnson right now has a hell of a long one.
Now the real question is, how does this play into the whole Hasbro Cinematic Universe discussion? We’ve heard rumor upon rumor that Hasbro is trying to develop something for 2018, would that something include Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson? That would feel like a logical step to take, but at this point it remains to be seen whether that would be considered “G.I. Joe 3” or something else entirely.
For many, many years a G.I. Joe film franchise was considered to be in development hell, and there was much rejoicing when it finally got the green light for 2009. Two moderately successful films later, it almost feels like we’re back in that in-between area. Hopefully news comes out in the next 12 – 18 months that changes this perception.
Right now in Las Vegas, the 2016 Licensing Expo has launched, and while there is very little of consequence on display (some individual display with older and vintage items), it’s clear that Hasbro is officially pushing this Cinematic Universe pretty heavily.
Check out the images below from Collider, and thanks to HISSTank.com for the heads up.
So much for the quiet news days, eh?
Apparently Hasbro has just participated in the Bernstein Strategic Decisions Conference, and rumor has it they spent quite a while talking about their future entertainment and toy plans with the folks in attendance there.
According to staff with TFW2005, Hasbro actually spoke about G.I. Joe specifically, saying they were going to “reignite” and “reimagine” the G.I. Joe brand through the Cinematic Universe, and that they were even currently developing a new G.I. Joe animated series.
In a way, this should come as no major surprise. G.I. Joe in its current iteration isn’t exactly a retail behemoth, and with a potential movie franchise on the way, you have to expect that Hasbro is looking to get back to the drawing board and push the franchise forward. I am fully on board with this plan.
G.I. Joe as it currently stands remains a fantastic and relevant product. Its design aesthetics, articulation, and overall style have very few peers at brick and mortal retail, in my opinion, the main issues all seem to fall around thematic ones and conceptual ones. Continually revisiting the same themes from the past 30 years is not an innovative way to carry a brand forward, so really, with a film franchise coming, it only makes sense to jettison some things and start fresh.
By all accounts, that seems to be what Hasbro is prepared to do.
Unlike many of my collecting peers, I don’t feel handcuffed or wedded to three decades of past history, and I really look forward to seeing what new concepts Hasbro might develop to move into the 21st Century. It will certainly be interesting to see what they do to dovetail a mostly real world military brand with these other interstellar adversaries, but I’m definitely on board to see what happens.
Check out TFW2005 and HissTank.com for some more specific commentary. I think the next few years could certainly get interesting!