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Rolling Thunder (Marvel Comics issue)

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When seismic tremors force a chunk of land up near Cobra Island, both Cobra and the Joes scramble to claim it.


Detailed summary

A new island has risen out of the sea close to Cobra Island, a result of the fault-line explosion that created it, and both G.I. Joe and Cobra have despatched forces to the island. Outback and Ripcord are in charge of the Joe mission to secure the island, with Wild Bill along as pilot. Outback briefs a quartet of new Joes: Hardball, Char-Broil, Muskrat and Hit & Run.

On the Cobra helicopter, Dr.Mindbender wants to wait for the island to settle down before landing, but Firefly sees it as a chance to get back in the good graces of Cobra Commander. Mindbender changes his tune when Cobra Commander contacts them to let them know he has an armoured squadron on the way to garrison the island and wants it secured before they get there.

Ghostrider detects the incoming Cobra forces and alerts Wild Bill. Ripcord decides to go for the jump. Cobra are reluctant to follow sit so Firefly throws some B.A.T.s overboard without parachutes. Even though it wrecks them, they're intact enough to fire on the parachuting in Joes. Hardball returns fire and, when the Cobra helicopter attempts to strafe the Joes, Char-Broil blasts it with his flamethrower, causing it to crash into the sea.

Cobra Commander contacts his forces and tell them he's sending another squadron of helicopters but wants the island secured. Wild Bill contacts Lift-Ticket, who is bringing in Duke, Rumbler and the Rolling Thunder. They are attacked by Mambas but Ghostrider comes to their rescue.

On the island, the Joes are successfully defending the high ground when a group of Cobra helicopters drop off Maggots and B.U.G.G.s, although they have to immediately return to Cobra Island for refuelling. Hit & Run predicts the Maggots don't have the right elevation to drop artillery rounds on them and sure enough the first salvo overshoots. With more pressure from Cobra Commander, Firefly convinces Mindbender to give him control and instead fires at the lip of the cliff top, blowing away the Joes' cover.

Lift-Ticket and Ghostrider arrive, although they are also in need of refuelling. Ghostrider manages to track a BUGG's radar and destroy it and Lift-Ticket drops the Rolling Thunder with Rumbler and Duke onboard before they both pull out. The Rolling Thunder decimates the Maggots while the Cobra ground troops continue to climb the cliff. Rumbler manages to roll straight over the last Maggot, then takes out the last BUGG.

BAT reinforcements arrive but, with tremors increasing, most are knocked straight off the island when they land. The Joes are now heavily outnumbered and under attack from all sides but the island is sinking. The Rolling Thunder gets ahead of the rising water level as Mindbender and Firefly find themselves in the water. Mindbender protests that he can't swim and Firefly says he'll keep him afloat if he takes the blame. Rolling Thunder demolishes the last of the BATs and the Joes climb onboard as Lift-Ticker returns to winch them clear. Outback and Hit & Run reflect it was all for nothing as the island disappears beneath the waves, leaving the Cobras floundering in the sea.

Appearances

Featured Characters

(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)

G.I. Joe Cobra



Featured Vehicles & Equipment

G.I. Joe Cobra




Memorable quotes

  • None yet.

Other notes

Errors

  • Flint, Shockwave and Spearhead are shown on the cover. Flint isn't in the issue, and the other two hadn't even debuted yet.
  • On page 11, Firefly is wearing gloves. He's barehanded for the rest of the issue.
  • On the last page, Hit & Run's face is colored pink instead of green. Maybe all his facepaint washed off in the surf?

Items of note

  • First appearance of Rumbler,[1] Hit & Run, Hardball, Charbroil, Muskrat
  • This was the final issue advertised on television, with its commercial airing around August 1988. Notable because it was the final Sunbow/Marvel collaboration. The cartoons had ceased production with G.I. Joe: The Movie a year earlier, and the commercials were now done, as well.
  • Throughout this issue, nobody ever gets Ghostrider's name right.

Real-world references

  • When one of the Joes says the island went back from whence it came, another asks if he's been reading Thor comics again. Marvel's version of Thor is known for speaking in very flowery language.

Footnotes and References

  1. 1.0 1.1 The character called "Rumbler" in this issue was called "Armadillo" on his filecard. There has never been any word why the name was changed for the comics.





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