GI Joe Real American Hero #216
Written by: Larry Hama
Art by: Paolo Villanelli
One of the most popular GI Joe characters just sacrificed his life to stop a greater evil. Issue 214 was a great farewell to Snake Eyes with a wordless script, and issue 215 started to hint at a new Snake Eyes might be coming. This issue introduces us to the next person to take up the mantle of the great ninja soldier. That introduction is done by showing just how much of a badass he is. Cobra sends a strike team to kill Scarlet and the new Snake Eyes, but only two people make it back from the critically failed mission. One of these survivors is alive to deliver a message from the new Snake Eyes; the other is actually Snake Eyes in disguise. He is there to deliver the message that harming family is off limits. This new Snake Eyes makes a flashy entrance and a grand exit, showing that he is worthy of the Snake Eyes mantle.
The writing in this issue is thrilling to follow panel to panel. You can almost feel the terror in the Night Creeper’s (the survivor) voice as he retells the horrors he saw from the failed strike. To go along with the writing, the illustrations and colors keep pace with the fast action. The pace of writing is a quick as the ninjas this issue features. All of the quick sword slashes and gunfire doesn’t seem sloppy or rushed as the pages turned quickly.
Now that the brand new Snake Eyes has been established, there are still other plots being developed in this issue. From picking up the pieces of the Pit, to the new Snake Eyes’ family being attacked and surviving themselves, there are a lot of elements being woven for the future of GI Joe. If the writers are ready and able to kill off iconic characters (granted his code name was just passed along to the next ninja) then anything can be shaken up and bring a new change to a familiar franchise.