Confused on what comic is what?
Difficuties I found when looking at the newer comics were trying to figure out which ones were which of the new spin-offs of which there are quite a few and where they fit into the continuity of the story or not. Below is a list and description of all the collections.
Battle Action Force - The original British version from the early to mid eighties that ran weekly. This is what got me started in Action Force when I was a kid. Although it started with completely different characters it eventually realigned itself with the characters from the American version. This site doesn't really cover these as there is already a brilliant site where you read scans of the originals. For more information please see the Where to Buy and Links Page.
GI Joe A Real American Hero - The Marvel comic that's been the base of all spin-off's released since. It spanned 155 comics which lasted from 1982 - 1994. Written in the majority by Larry Hama who created all the characters for the toys, this is the collection you really need to collect first.
GIJoe Yearbook - New stories and a catch up of what happened in the main series during the past year. Lasted 4 issues.
GIJoe Special Missions - A spin off in the eighties that coincided with the main comic with many crossover stories. It lasted 28 issues in the eighties.
Action Force International Heroes -After Hasbro took the liscence away from Fleetway Publications they passed the rights over to Marvel UK to align the UK with the US. Action Force recreated a lot of the backgrounds of the characters to be European to appeal more to a UK audience. Running weekly it lasted 50 issues between 1987 - 1988. Along with newly written stories it reprinted the American series. To fit the American series into the UK Continuity dialogue was changed on several occasions (e.g. Flint's first appearance in the US was his first meeting with Lady Jaye, while when reprinted in the UK it was rewritten so that they were both visiting the US Team to test some new equipment to take back to the UK). The American reprints eventually moved into the Transformers comics after issue 50.
Action Force Monthly (GI Joe - European Missions) - A continutation of the Action Force story but written in a way that it could be repackaged as GI Joe - European Missions as a monthly comic in the US. As a result a lot of the stories can be placed into Larry Hama's original continuity (Please see continuity page). Action Force monthly lasted 15 issues over 1988 - 1989.
GI Joe And The Transformers - The first crossover of the two franchises. This series was initially ignored by Larry Hama and not mentioned in the main series until several years later. In 1993 The Transformers made an appearance in the main GI Joe series with a small mention of this original series.
GI Joe - After the Demise of the original American series the franchise was handed to Dark Horse. It was a completely new story with new characters set in the future. I haven't read these so I don't know very much about them. The series didn't last that long.
GI Joe A Real American Hero (2001) - Image and then Devil's Due Publishing were passed the rights to the franchise in which they took up the story from the original series as the team are reinstated 7 years after being decommisioned. The series lasted 43 issues before being relaunced in another new series.
GI Joe Reloaded - Using the original characters this was a new continuity beginning with Cobra and GI Joe being created in modern times. Started with 2 one offs called Cobra reborn and GI Joe Reborn before becoming GI Joe Reloaded.
GI Joe Frontline - A spin off from the new main series which had stories from different times in the continuity (eg. The first four issues were set immeadiately after the first series came to an end)
GI Joe Master and Apprentice - Another 4 part spin off based before the new series based around Snake Eyes and a later 4 issue series based around Storm Shadow.
GI Joe America's Elite - A relaunch of the new series but with a reduced team roster. This lasted 36 issues and was the last series based in the original continuity.
GI Joe Declassified - Several mini series spin off's showing the origin of certain characters including a Snake Eyes 6 issue series a one off Scarlett issue, a 3 issue mini series of the creation of the GI Joe team and a 3 issue Dreadnoks origin.
GI Joe Special Missions - This was an occasionally released spin off of the Amerca's Elite series using unused characters from the main series.
GI Joe Storm Shadow - A spin off of America's Elite following the adventures of Storm Shadow written by Larry Hama that lasted 7 issues.
GI Joe VS The Transformers - Based in their own continuity in much the same way as GI Joe Reloaded. There were 4 mini series.
Transformers / GI Joe - Another brand new continuity in which all the characters are based during World War II, a follow up had 1 issue released but was never completed as the publisher Dreamwave went into administration.
IDW GI Joe Issue 0 - Released October 2008, this was the launch of a brand new continuity with three 5 page stories leading into the following 3 new title releases early 2009.
GI Joe (2009) - The first main series based in IDW's new continuity written by Chuck Dixon which launched January 2009. This series lasted 27 issues before relaunching as issue 1 again at the beginning of the Cobra Civil War.
GI Joe: Origins - Initially a 5 part mini series written by Larry Hama set before the new main series which launched February 2009. Due to the fan appeal of the series it was turned into an ongoing title written by various writers. It lasted 23 issues.
GI Joe: Cobra - A 4 part mini series launched March 2009 set within IDW's new continuity. Based sometime between GI Joe: Origins and GI Joe, this follows Chuckles as he goes deep undercover within the still secret Cobra empire. With the popularity of the series, a one off special issue was released soon afterwards with a 2nd series that led into an ongoing series starting with issue 5.
GI Joe: Special - An occasionally released one off special release title. So far this has had 3 editions, the 1st was Helix, a focus on a new character on the Joe team. The 2nd was the above Cobra issue based after the mini series and a 3rd after Cobra II.
GI Joe: Cobra II - A sequel to the successful Cobra series that led into an ongoing series that reached issue 13 before being relaunched as Issue 1 at the beginning of the Cobra Cival War.
GI Joe: Hearts & Minds - Written by the authour of World War Z, Max Brooks; this is a 5 part mini-series that focuses on 2 different characters per issue. Set in the IDW continuity.
GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra Official Movie Prequel - A 4 part mini series that focused on different characters from the film continuity. All based before the film these issues included in order - Duke, Destro, The Baroness & Snake-Eyes.
GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra - Official comic adaptation of the film released in 4 issues weekly in June 2009.
GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra - A UK released comic/magazine released every 4 weeks by Panini that lasted 6 issues running between August 2009 to January 2010. These had original new stories set after the Rise of Cobra film that were the first UK original stories since 1989.
GI Joe: Snake-Eyes - Based in the movie continuity, this was a 4 part mini series co-written by Ray Park who plays the character in the film.
GI Joe: Operaton Hiss - A 5 part mini series that was the first to be set after GI Joe: Rise of Cobra.
GI Joe: A Real American Hero (2010) - Written by Larry Hama, this is the direct continuation of the original Marvel run. Originally released as issue 155 1/2 on Free Comic Book Day in the US, this continued as an ongoing starting from issue 156 in July 2010. This is a different continuity from the DDP run. (IDW are reprinting DDP's run in graphic novel form under the title DISAVOWED).
GI Joe: Future Noir Special - A two issue special series set within it's own continuity in the near future. Sort of a Manga type of experiment.
Infestation : GI Joe - An IDW Publishing crossover event from 2011. Starting with Infestation issue one, this series covers a zombie invasion that is able to crossover different dimensions. Along with the main 2 issues of infestation that started and ended the series, there was also 2 issues each based on the franchises of GI Joe, Transformers, Star Trek and Ghostbusters. The creative team behind this based this in the IDW Joe continuity but gave the fans the option of including this or not.
IDW GI Joe: Cobra Civil War Issue 0 - Released April 2011, this was the re-launch of the IDW continuity with three 5 page stories leading into the relaunched GI Joe, Cobra and the new Snake-Eyes series.
IDW GI Joe - Beginning May 2011, this was the re-launch of the IDW series, commonly known as 'Season 2'. This was originally with the sub titles 'Cobra Civil War' and 'Cobra Command' which were the first 2 story arcs that crossed over all 3 titles.
Cobra - As above beginning in May 2011, this was the re-launch of the IDW series, commonly known as 'Season 2'. This was originally with the sub titles 'Cobra Civil War' and 'Cobra Command' which were the first 2 story arcs that crossed over all 3 titles.
Snake-Eyes - Beginning in May 2011, this was a new series that was part of the re-launch of the IDW continuity, commonly known as 'Season 2'. This was originally with the sub titles 'Cobra Civil War' and 'Cobra Command' which were the first 2 story arcs that crossed over all 3 titles.
Infestation 2 : GI Joe - Released over 12 issues, this is the sequel to IDW's franchise crossover. Again starting and ending with Infestation Issues 1 & 2 this crosses into the worlds of GI Joe, Transformers, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Dungeons and Dragons and 30 Days of Night.
Annuals 2012 - Double sized issues of original material with a glossy cover and no adverts. So far, two has been released. One for the Cobra series and one for the Real American Hero series, both in 2012. To be confirmed if these are one off's or as the title suggests a yearly release.
GI Joe: Retaliation - Official Movie Prequel - A 4 part mini series based before the events of the 2012 movie.
To see where all these fit into each other please see the Continuity / Chronology Page and The Other Continuity Page.
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