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So last month when I reviewed Issue #26, I praised the art and the overall story, but was disappointed that this particular story was put where it was.  A cool and fun tale, but it didn’t serve well as the culminating issue of a two-year long story arc.
I agreed to give Dixon one more chance to surprise me, and with Issue #27 hitting this week, it’s time to say whether he pulled it off.
Click the “Read the Rest of this Entry” link below for the full review.

G.I. Joe #27
Writer: Chuck Dixon
Art: Robert Atkins and Allan Goldman
So, come on, Chuck…hit me.
Yeah, unfortunately, not so much.
As Issue #26 ended, we had Snake Eyes and Helix charging across the arctic tundra pulling up the rear behind an armored convoy of Cobra vehicles, with the rest of the Joes on a potential collision course.  In the hopes that maybe we would get the massive armored combat that the issue promises, I eagerly flipped the pages, only to find a simple continuation of the previous issue.
That’s right…the bulk of this issue still only features Snake Eyes and Helix, and apparently taking down the entirety of Section 0 wasn’t enough…now they get to single-handedly ravage the entire Cobra armored convoy on their own.
Essentially, Issue #27 features a high end, heavily armored destruction derby with Snake Eyes and Helix piloting a massive armored carrier as it slams and crashes through various Cobra vehicles  and decimates the entirety of Cobra’s arctic forces without any other support.  A cool paradrop scene with Iceberg simply serves as a rescue for the stranded operatives.
Like Issue #26, I actually enjoyed the flow of the issue.  It was action-packed, with the awesome Atkins art that I’m used to, but the problem is this is the final issue in a long-running 2 year story arc and only features two characters, and once again the two characters we know the least (and care the least) about.  But not only that, let’s look back.
Chuck Dixon went to great lengths early in this story to show just how bad ass Cobra is.  Remember that lone Cobra Trooper who actually went toe-to-toe with Snake Eyes and almost killed him?  By himself?  Now, all of a sudden, these two lone Joes waltz through the entire arctic complex, carelessly gunning down these ruthless Cobra Troopers, barely breaking a sweat.  And not only that, but we had all of this character build up for guys like Mainframe, Beachhead, Scarlett, Duke, Ripcord, and we get absolutely no pay off whatsoever.
And let’s even take a broader look.  G.I. Joe is an ensemble book…it always has been.  Sure, there has always been a closer focus on singular characters, but this is supposed to be a team.  We have a Cobra threat that has been built up for two years now…and nearly this entire organization was brought down by Chuckles, Snake Eyes, and Helix.  Three Joes and Cobra is sent scrambling.
Yes, I understand that the story continues during the Cobra Civil War, but this just seemed like a “thud” of an ending.  Everything was setting up to have a great, action-packed, full scale battle royal, but we got none of that, and it’s a shame.  Again, I feel bad in a way, because standing alone, this was a very entertaining issue, and I loved seeing the classic vehicles and characters (not to mention the awesome Arctic HISS Drivers), but because it was written as a “thrilling conclusion” to the massive MASS Device story, it just felt empty.  I’m also not entirely sure why Cobra was given the Snow CAT as one of their vehicles, but I suppose that could just be artistic license.
I will admit that Dixon’s action writing and the pace did quicken somewhat towards the end here, but I just wish the progression of the story had led to a more wide-spread conclusion.
To Dixon’s credit, though, I will admit that the final sequence in this issue was pretty damn chilling, and pretty cool.  I would imagine it ties into the upcoming Infestation story, and it did leave the issue ending on a high note, but the end result was unfortunately mixed, which is really a shame, considering the entirety of the past two years led to this.  Here’s hoping we get some more payoff as the Cobra Civil War gears up.  Everything I’ve seen from that storyline looks pretty good, and editorial promises of larger scale combat makes me feel better, but ultimately the fact remains that the main G.I. Joe title ended pretty flat.

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