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The year 1984 (MCMLXXXIV) is the third year of the A Real American Hero brand.
By the end of 1983, G.I. Joe was well established as a popular toy line, and among the year's five best-selling toys. By this time there were so many figures and vehicles available that Hasbro began phasing some of them out to make room for the new releases. Some of the 1982 toys would no longer be sold, although the figures were still pictured on the back of packages and could be found in stores through the end of 1984. This year was characterized by the release of many smaller battle sets, in addition to the larger vehicles. Cobra's equipment line began to balance that of the Joes with the introduction of a jeep and a jet, and the first real water equipment was released for both teams. Also, a new mercenary force was created: the Dreadnoks, led by Zartan. These were hired by Cobra to fight the Joes, but were non-military and had no real loyalties, thus beginning the first noticeable divide between Joe and Cobra: while the Joe Team was made up of honest, dependable soldiers from the five military branches, Cobra would hire any old oddballs they could get their hands on.
Toward the end of 1984, Sunbow produced another animated five-part miniseries titled "The Revenge of Cobra." The miniseries aired in September, just as kids were heading back to school, thereby creating heavy word-of-mouth advertising that wouldn't have happened had the series aired over the summer. In addition to the new 1984 line of characters and equipment, it featured the first appearances of Flint, Shipwreck, and Lady Jaye. The commercials also took a turn toward the end of the year, adding a new catch-phrase which would last for several years: "Live the Adventure." The 1984 assortment brought the G.I. Joe toy count to 54 figures and 47 vehicles.
Up to this point, a few figures and vehicles had been introduced as mail-in exclusives: Cobra Commander and Major Bludd in 1982, Duke and the M.A.N.T.A. in 1983, and Hooded Cobra Commander and the Parachute Pack in 1984. Starting in this year, retired figures and equipment would also be available from Hasbro Direct. Brochures would be included in vehicle boxes or, if smaller, carded with figures. This became a way for Hasbro to sell leftover stock and over-produced toys. Most figures and vehicles from the early years were available by mail sooner or later. These could be purchased with money plus the Flag Points which could be clipped from packages. Each offer was good for between 12 and 18 months. The catalog art for 1984 was simply Duke's character art.
G.I. Joe Team
- Show the G.I. Joe Spirit
- Introduced Cobra Commander in the hooded form seen since the first issue of the comic. The back of the brochure offered the same non-toy merchandise as the Duke offer: M.A.N.T.A. and the Parachute Pack.
- For G. I. Joe Team Members Only
- Included with vehicles sold in 1984 and early 1985. The 1984 version was green; the 1985 version was tan. Offered Cobra Commander, F.L.A.K., H.A.L., J.U.M.P., M.M.S., M.A.N.T.A.
Issues 19 - 30 of the Marvel Comics series came out this year.
Animated commercials for issues 24, 25 and 28 of Marvel's G.I. Joe comic were produced, with much of the footage recycled for toy commercials.
Sunbow's second animated miniseries, G.I. Joe: The Revenge of Cobrawas released in September.
|#||Title||Writer||Original airdate||Production code|
|1||In the Cobra's Pit||Ron Friedman||September 10, 1984||#4018|
|Using a laser core stolen from G.I.Joe, Cobra activates the Weather Dominator, an incredible weapon which controls the forces of Nature itself.|
|2||The Vines of Evil||Ron Friedman||September 11, 1984||#4019|
|Cobra Commander targets Washington for destruction, but the Joe team repels the attack and the Weather Dominator explodes into three parts setting off a chain reaction of natural disasters around the world.|
|3||The Palace of Doom||Ron Friedman||September 12, 1984||#4020|
|Cobra forces attack G.I. Joe on the stormy seas surrounding the Island of No Return and in the cursed confines of the ancient Palace of Doom.|
|4||Battle on the Roof of the World||Ron Friedman||September 13, 1984||#4021|
|Zartan reveals his dangerous plan of treachery and G.I. Joe and Cobra battle for the recovery of the laser core on the roof of the world.|
|5||Amusement Park of Terror||Ron Friedman||September 14, 1984||#4022|
|Storm Shadow infiltrates Joe Headquarters on a mission to steal Joe's part of the Weather Dominator and Cobra and G.I. Joe clash in the ultimate battle outside the Cobra Temple.|