2009 proved to be a major year for the G.I. Joe brand. Most of the focus this year would be on the movie, but there were other things to be had as well. A single series of Generation 3 figures shipped early in the year, mixing RAH and Resolute characters; at least one more series was scheduled, and carded samples showed up in Asian markets, but the series was cancelled before release. Similarly, five Resolute Comic Packs were planned, but only the first two made it into production. Most of the remaining comics were later available as free promos. Hasbro stopped shipping G3 toys in the first quarter, leading to a long drought before movie toys hit the street in June.
The Rise of Cobra figures were sold in oddly unpredictable collections. The number in each grouped release varied from five to 11 figures. Hasbro's internal naming scheme divided the toys into "Collection 1 and "Collection 2," and various "waves" of each, but there was no decipherable difference between the Collections in packaging or character choice. Many of the series were released concurrently as well, leading to no end of confusion.
Despite initial trepidation, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra opened well, and most old-school Joe fans were won over. The movie didn't set the world on fire, but neither was it decried by the fandom. It succeeded in bringing G.I. Joe into the mainstream consciousness in a way unseen since the '80s, without insulting the existing fanbase in the process.
Unfortunately, the toys sold more slowly than expected. They came to shelves with a high SRP ($7.99 for a single-carded toy) during an economic downturn, which didn't do anything to help them move. The final series of carded figures shipped to stores in October, and early rumors said the follow-up line - Pursuit of Cobra - wasn't expected until Fall 2010. Several "Alpha Class" vehicles were left outstanding, and eventually cancelled altogether.
IDW Publishing took over the G.I. Joe comic license this year, starting their own new continuity with three series: G.I. Joe, G.I. Joe: Origins and Cobra. The characters were similar to their A Real American Hero counterparts, but given entirely new backstories.
Toys - A Real American Hero
Collectors' Club exclusives
Hall of Heroes
G.I. Joe Set
Assault on Cobra Island
Defense of Cobra Island
Greatest Battles Pack
Crimson Strike Team
International Team 3-Pack
International JUMP Jet 2-Pack
Resolute Comic Packs
- Arctic H.I.S.S. w/ Arctic H.I.S.S. Driver
- Cobra C.L.A.W. w/ Air Viper Commando
- F.L.A.K. w/ Outback
- Python Conquest w/ Python Patrol Viper
- Ghost H.A.W.K. w/ Lift-Ticket
- Sting Raider w/ Python Patrol Copperhead
- Stinger w/ Stinger Driver
- Tiger Rat w/ Wild Bill
Toys - The Rise of Cobra
- Armored Panther w/ Sgt. Thunderblast
- Desert Rockslide w/ Dusty
- Polar Sharc w/ Icestorm
- Rockslide ATAV w/ Snow Job
- Sky Sweeper w/ Air Raid
- Snarler w/ Beachhead and Rollbar
- Tiger Claw w/ Leatherneck
- Lava Pod w/ Volcano-Viper
- Mantis Attack Craft w/ Aqua-Viper Officer
- Mole Pod w/ Terra-Viper
- Snake Trax ATV w/ Scrap Iron
- Dragonhawk XH1 w/ Wild Bill
- Ice Dagger w/ Frostbite
- Crimson Hydra w/ Aero-Viper
- Steel Crusher A.P.V. w/ Nitro-Viper
Exclusives - Kmart
Exclusives - Target
Exclusives - Toys "Я" Us
Attack on the Pit
G.I. Joe Troop Builder
Cobra Troop Builder
G.I. Joe Senior Ranking Officers
Cobra Senior Ranking Officers
Exclusives - Wal*Mart
- L.A.W. w/ Grand Slam and Hawk
- Outpost Defender w/ Roadblack and Tripwire
- Heetseek Missile w/ Neo-Viper and Scrap-Iron
- Surveillance Port w/ M.A.R.S. Trooper and Tele-Viper
- ↑ Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner said "I think one of the big mistakes we made on G.I. Joe was really just in the price point. It really had less to do with the enjoyment of property. In fact if you look at the DVD sales they were quite strong and property performed really well. At the lower price points G.I. Joe has performed very well, in fact we shipped G.I. Joe product in the fourth quarter and feel very good about, we did some research with consumers and see great consumer appetite for the brand."
- ↑ Hasbro Officially Cancels Rise of Cobra Wave 3 Alpha Class Vehicles? Articles Daily G.I. Joe Toy News & Discussions at The Terror Drome
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Though the release was canceled in North America, some samples did reach retail in foreign markets, such as the Philippines.