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Now You Know with YorktownJoe - Issue 35 
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Joined: Fri Aug 26, 2011 8:03 pm
Posts: 5461
Faction: Cobra Contractor
Code Name: YorktownJoe
Aliases: YTJ (more acronym than alias)
Primary Military Specialty: Counter-Intelligence
Secondary Military Specialty: Sense o' humor
Grade: O-4
 Now You Know with YorktownJoe - Issue 35



In Issue 34, we had a standalone duel featuring Wild Weasel and the Baroness in an updated Rattler versus Ace and Lady Jaye in the Skystriker. An epic dogfight with an intriguing conclusion highlighted a unique issue. Feel free to check out the review of Issue 34 in case you missed it.

On to the issue


The issue begins in a remote location with a trio of Zartan’s motorcycle gang, the Dreadnoks admiring Zartan’s motorcycle.
I have never been in, nor remotely associated with a biker gang. But I would think the number one rule would be to respect the motorcycles of fellow members so as not to get oneself beaten or killed. Just sayin’.

Evidently Buzzer, the blonde-haired pony-tail Dreadnok did not subscribe to my theory of respecting the property of fellow Dreadnoks.


Buzzer also likes to talk. He convinces his fellow Dreadnoks Torch and Ripper that their boss Zartan is not a wizard or magician. His tricks are done with holographic projections and small transmitters. He eventually convinces his less-witted colleagues that they should go for a ride, and he would take Zartan’s bike.

Meanwhile, a trio of Joes are enjoying a road trip for their vacation leave.


Rock ‘N Roll, Clutch, and Breaker are headed out in Rock ‘N Roll’s classic car. Clutch is usually the Joe most frequently associated with classic muscle cars. But Rock ‘N Roll appears to be pretty good at it as well.


His car is a 1956 Chevy Bel-Air Nomad. The gas station attendant is impressed and chats them up. When someone mentions he has been working on the car in the motor pool while on duty, the attendant lights up and is interested in signing up. Rock ‘N Roll dampens his enthusiasm.


Larry Hama inserts dialogue that is very philosophical. When the Joes debate why he discouraged the attendant, Rock ‘N Roll reminds them that most young people that age are looking to get out from where they are, but later realize they are running from themselves.

Back at Cobra HQ, Zartan is waiting outside Cobra Commander’s office. Baroness and Major Bludd approach and trade verbal taunts, but Bludd gets in the last jab by revealing something that Zartan may or may not know. Zartan storms away, very angrily.


Farther down the highway, Larry Hama begins to intersect the stories. The trio of Dreadnoks pass the Joes in the Bel-Air. It does not go well.


Rock ‘N Roll pulls over and gets out to check on his beautiful automobile. There is a long and ugly gash all along the driver’s side. He is not happy. It’s on. Like Donkey Kong.


Buzzer compliments Ripper’s destruction, and he replies he was once driven off the road by a Chevy. Meanwhile, Torch displays the emotional intelligence of a middle schooler by thumbing his nose at another motorist.

They pass by a truck hauling bales of hay, and it is Torch’s turn for wanton destruction.


The bales of hay are ripped off the truck and lit on fire, causing chaos behind them on the highway. The Joes are catching up, but the hay bales of fire are flying by them. Rock ‘N Roll is dodging debris as he continues to accelerate past 85 MPH and pushes toward a hundred. And they are approaching a tunnel.


For some reason, the Dreadnoks decide to turn back toward the debris and exit the tunnel they just entered. But they are projecting holograms from Zartan’s special motorcycle. And it looks hideous.


They swerve to miss the “truck of destruction” but end up crashing into the hillside. As the flames begin to consume the Bel-Air, Buzzer pulls over and mocks the Joes, lighting up a victory cigar. He is going to leave them to burn to death.


Rock ’N Roll makes sure to remember the license plate number as he is trapped inside. ZTN-123. Zartan, 1-2-3.

Further back on a stop along the highway, a large bus with an odd skull decoration on the front of it is picking up a passenger.


What appears to be an elderly woman is gently chiding the bus driver for nearly zooming past without picking her up. The bus is empty, except for the driver wearing a hat and sunglasses, as well as an odd skull-themed name badge marked “Smith.” He flips the destination sign to read Springfield. Something about his license plate too. Hmm.


Back at the crash scene, EMT’s and ambulance personnel are treating the wounded Joes. They describe the horrible scene of the death truck that headed straight for them.

Further away now, the Dreadnoks have come upon another Air Force base. Back in Issue 30, the Dreadnoks messed up a Cobra operation by destroying Skystrikers at McGuire Air Force Base. Evidently, they didn’t learn much from their mistakes of that incident. They are debating sneaking in versus using Zartan’s projector and disguising themselves as military personnel and rolling through the front gate.


They decide on the brazen route.


Buzzer uses the projector to display a staff car with 2 stars (signifying a Major General). His hologram projected over Ripper and Torch to disguise them as military police (MP) escorts riding military motorcycles. Side note: The chain of Command would go from a Colonel O-6 (like Hawk at this time), then a 1 star Brigadier General O-7, then a 2 star Major General O-8, then a 3 star Lieutenant General, and finally a 4 star General (yes, just General). And know you now…

Once on base, the Dreadnoks stop their projection and prepare to destroy some aircraft. Because of course they do.


They all wish there were Joe Skystrikers there, but they are willing to settle for Air Force F-15’s. Larry Hama must have really enjoyed the theme of issue 30, since the Dreadnoks make exactly the same mistake and blow up a jet rather than just vandalizing and disabling the jets.

The MP’s and emergency crews scramble to the scene and they encounter an MP in a jeep and two more with military cycles who already got there. Something about that license plate though. Hmm.


Buzzer, Torch, and Ripper race off base still disguised, but the security personnel are engaged. The ambulance driver mentions they might just be chasing a poor AWOL (Absent Without Leave). But Rock ‘N Roll notices the jeep driver is smoking a cigar, and the jeep has a civilian license plate.


Then it hits him ZTN-123.

He pushes the ambulance driver aside with his one good arm and joins the chase.


Torch realizes the jig is up and tries to take evasive maneuvers away from the rest of them. When he strays too far from the hologram, he appears to be half Dreadnok, half MP. The cameras and transmitters can only project the illusion so far.

Rock ‘N Roll knows they are Dreadnoks and makes a bold move.


I’m not sure how someone with a concussion, burns, and his arm in a sling can drive an ambulance with one arm and throw an oxygen tank out the window like an NFL quarterback, with his left hand no less!!

Suspend disbelief readers. Geeee.I. JOoooE!!!!


Buzzer crashes Zartan’s special motorcycle while Ripper and Torch display the 2nd rule of biker gangs.

“Rule 2: When the authorities are chasing you, every man for himself.”


The Joes stop to apprehend Buzzer, but the Dreadnoks head straight for the unusual bus.

When everything transforms…

The bus becomes a helicopter, or rather, it always was a helicopter, but it was projecting a hologram as a bus. Which begs the question: Was the helicopter coasting on the ground, flying low, or well, oh yeah – suspend disbelief!!

The bus driver is revealed to be Zartan.

The front of the bus, err, helicopter opens up with a cargo area, and the Dreadnoks drive aboard. The elderly lady comments that things aren’t exactly what they appear to be.
And they fly away leaving Buzzer to the Joes.

As they arrive in Springfield, Ripper and Zartan debate on what to do with the granny lady now that she knows too much about Cobra and Dreadnok operations.
Zartan suggest she should “have an accident” which is a thinly veiled reference that Ripper should kill her.

But when he checks, she is gone.


Her clothes and belongings are left behind, leaving the Dreadnoks to wonder if there is an elderly lady running around Springfield airport in her birthday suit.

Zartan replies that escaping from a locked helicopter in flight is a feat worthy of a ninja master.

Evidently the mystery passenger was correct: things aren’t always what they seem to be.

This issue had twists and turns, but also had a little bit of humor in between wanton destruction and explosions. Hopefully we will find out in the future who the mystery person is. And we learned to be wary of any vehicles with ZTN as the beginning of their license plate numbers.

There was also a note about the artwork:


Rod Whigham began to work the pencils for GI Joe, but the cover was by John Byrne (of Alpha Flight and Fantastic Four). Mark Bright also helped on this issue. Moving forward, Rod Whigham and Andy Mushynsky would be working the art for quite a while.

Tune in soon for Issue 36.

Now You Know - a little more about: ”DREADNOKS ON THE LOOSE!” Feel free to let me know what you thought of this issue in the comments.


Fri Aug 03, 2018 1:43 pm
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