Anyone who follows the Transformers Collectors Club has heard about the “Shattered Glass” phenomenon by now. Essentially it’s a “mirror universe” situation where the good guys are bad guys and vice versa. Based loosely off of the “Mirror, Mirror” episode of Star Trek, it is a very interesting storyline idea, and seems to have worked somewhat effectively for Transformers.
The question is, does it work the same way (or could it work the same way) for G.I. Joe?
Brian Savage posed that very question during the Collectors Club round table at the 2014 G.I. Joe Convention, and to my great surprise, the majority of people in attendance raised their hands in favor of a Shattered Glass element to the G.I. Joe Collectors Club toy offerings. So where is this coming from? For folks who haven’t been reading the G.I. Joe Collectors Club newsletter, in the very fun Adventure Team comic by Todd Pleasant and Rod Whigham (yes, that Rod Whigham) has shown the Adventurers passing through the Bermuda triangle, and into a parallel universe where Cobra is the leading governmental entity, and has recruited some G.I. Joe operatives to serve under them (most notably Flint, Lady Jaye, and Wild Bill). So the question comes up, does this formula work for the toys?
My opinion? No, no it doesn’t. At least not right now.
The Collectors Club has been finding a very successful formula recently for their exclusives and convention offerings. They have been able to walk that line between paying homage to the vintage elements, pulling from other mythologies (Extreme, Action Force, and Adventure Team) and adding some neat new things to create a great synergy between all of those. This year’s Convention set was a primary example. We got some cool ECO Force vintage figures, new style Outback and Clutch figures, and a cool zombie storyline all woven together to create some really fun toys. What happens when Shattered Glass gets injected into that?
Pete Sinclair with the Collectors Club was quick to say that Transformers fans were negative about Shattered Glass at first, but seem to have come around…but Transformers also has a myriad of other mainstream toy lines to collect. If Transformers fans don’t like Shattered Glass, they can always just buy retail (or third party for that matter). If G.I. Joe fans don’t like Shattered Glass, and the Club is devoting significant resources to Shattered Glass, those G.I. Joe fans are simply out of luck.
I realize that Hasbro and the Collectors Club have done a number of updates and hundreds of new toys under the G.I. Joe banner over the past several years, but they are still just scratching the surface. There are still many more different paths the brand could take. I just don’t believe, at this point, that Shattered Glass is among them.
What are your thoughts? If you feel strongly one way or another, I strongly suggest you contact the Collectors Club. Get them on Twitter, on Facebook, or on their forums at GIJoeClub.com. Share your concerns (if you have them). The vote at the Convention seemed pretty clear to my eyes that the Club was preparing to move forward on this. If you have strong feelings, please express them. The Club needs to know one way or the other.
I’m kind of torn. If the toys are good, I’m interested in that, but I can’t see it getting large enough to be anything other than a one-off. For my money, I’d rather see modern updates of the whole of the Red Shadows, maybe an update of the MARS Attacks Con set, or even new characters in any established team, rather than alternate-reality versions of characters we have tons of. I don’t need Cobra Flint – I can swap heads easily. Same for General Jobra Commander. So ultimately, if I had to pick between those or Shattered Glass, Shattered Glass would be a no for me.
Why are we calling it Shattered Glass? Wouldn’t Worlds Without End be a better name? 🙂
(Yeah, yeah, alternate history vs Mirror Universe….)
I dunno…. I’m ok with it, but not for a whole set… Pieces here and there would be fine.
With all the figures that still need updating (fastdraw, Bullhorn, sneakpeak……….) or a good revision (dialtone, Sgt slaughter……), why even consider this?? But then again, I only buy convention sets for one or two cool figures, then sell the rest. Either way, I can do without. Don’t need anymore snake eyes, stormshadow or dukes in my collection.
Here are some points to think of
There are not only several figures that not appeared yet but other Characters who have not been done yet i.e. Lt. Stone, Red Scream, Machete, Sgt. Savage and so on.
There have been several other sub teams that could be done i.e. Sky Patrol, Star Brigade.
We could combine concepts like a Anti-Venom/Mega Marines Task Force to deal with Cobra’s latest monsters.
Or Plague Troopers Cobras 13 vs. the Original 13
There is still many ideas to be tapped before we do a Shattered Glass.
Well put. I forgot about other sub teams. I agree fully with this. Save basic figures for FSS. YOU’VE PERSUADED ME. LOL
Also a few years back Joe Customs did for their Group Projects a Mirror Universe which would work better for a con set then Shattered Glass. But the Con Boys would have to pay a lot to use the concept.
I agree with most of what has been said here. Shattered Glass is just a waste of time. There are plenty sub-teams to dip into that we actually want. Don’t force feed us crap.
First the SHARC repaint and now this. Club’s just chomping at the bit to put out stuff nobody wanted years ago when they first pitched it.
Is this actually called Shattered Glass? The Transformers version already uses Joe characters in the fiction although that universe simply flips traits so the good guys are now the bad guys and vice versa. This sounds like the bad guys are still the bad guys but now the good guys are bad also. Pretty lame. We’ve already got so many different continuities and alternate timelines that are fairly unexplored that adding a Star Trek mirror universe version seems unnecessary especially if their goal is to charge thirty bucks for figures of Joes with Cobra logos on their shirts.
Besides we already got Cobra Flint
I would like to see GI Joe Agents of Shield, Or GI Joe Marvel Universe, or GI Joe (Filler name) where GI Joe becomes a brand for a style of action figure that has articulation, in a certain scale, that can come with vehicles or what not. Where the GI Joe label means that all these products made by Hasbro are compatible.
Adventure Team is written by Tod Pleasant.
I was one of the guys who raised his hand in favor of Shattered Glass. I like the idea, but I don’t want an entire convention set based on it, and for Pete’s sake, keep it out of the FSS. One or two Shattered Glass figures per year would be okay with me as a con souvenir two-pack, but I’d rather keep the momentum of updating old figures and creating new characters going.
I don’t hate the idea, but I don’t think the timing is right. When the primary ‘Joe toy line was thriving, cranking out 30+ cannon figures a year, it might have been okay to try things like this. But when the vibe coming from Hasbro is as palpably awkward as it is right now, not so much.