The Red Shadows troops are the backbone of Baron Ironblood's infantry forces. They are the dregs of humanity, recruited from the mercenary and criminal underworlds all around the world. Initially drawn by empty promises of riches, they are subjected to extreme brainwashing techniques ans a punishing training schedule intended to turn them into unthinking minions. Under the command of the Black Major, they are relentless in battle, suicidal, and utterly unstoppable, driven only by the desire to conquer - or die - for their master.
TrainingPotential candidates for Red Shadows are sent into an obstacle courses filled with traps, such as machine gun nests and anti-personnel mines with the use of other kinds of traps such as broken bridges, piranhas and grenades tied from nests above trees. Both Baron Ironblood and the Black Major weed out candidates not worthy of being Red Shadow soldiers by letting them die in the traps or shoot them with small arms.
Transition to Cobra
In later editions of the Battle Action Force series, Ironblood betrays the Red Shadows, leaking information about their bases and intentions to the UN. As the Shadows are under attack, Ironblood goes into hiding and constructs a new identity for himself, becoming Cobra Commander, and creating Cobra as a new enemy force.
The continuity of the storyline was maintained as the Black Major (a former traitor from Action Force), Red Laser and Red Vulture re-grouped the Red Shadows and sought revenge against Cobra Commander and the newly-amalgamated 'AF' whilst prominent Red Shadow character Red Jackal was given his own storyline, transforming to Destro and joining Cobra. Additional storylines saw the Red Shadows fighting alongside the Nazis against both Cobra and Action Force. In Showdown for the Shadows, the Shadows make their final appearance.
The Devil's Due incarnation of the Red Shadows organisation bares little resemblance to the Red Shadows organisation that fought the UK Action Force. The organisation is portrayed as an independent organisation that has no ties to Cobra.
|Action Force (1983)
Appearance: All red suit, with black belt, harness, shoulders, collar, and boots. Red 'Jerry' style helmet, with skull-and-crossbones on black field (at front), a red face-plate, with black visor and white lenses. A pair of black "stick grenades" appears on belt.
Accessories: Bazooka, and black "AMMO" case.
|Vacation in the Shadows Boxed Set (2010)
Red Shadows was released as part of the 2010 International G.I.Joe Convention (Providence, RI) exclusive Vacation in the Shadows box set from the Official G.I. Joe Collectors' Club.
Appearance: All red suit, with black belt, harness, shoulders, collar, boots and low-hanging holster. Red 'Jerry' style helmet, with skull-and-crossbones on black field (at front), a red face-plate, with black visor and white lenses. Silver grenade on harness.
Accessories: Two-piece black recoilless rifle, a black submachine gun with two black magazines, two black grenades, a red satchel, and a clear display stand.