Review: Snake Eyes – Agent of Cobra #1

Story: Mike Costa
Art: Paolo Villanellli
Colors: Joana Lafuente
Letters: Neil Uyetake
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Release Date: Jan. 21, 2015

Let’s be honest. Snake Eyes is everyone’s favorite G.I. Joe. Whether cartoons, comics or movies he always steals the show and it’s only right that he have his own comic title. Except now, he’s working for the other team.

As the issue begins we see Destro being transported under heavy guard. The action begins quickly, as we soon find Snake Eyes intercepting the vehicle to break Destro out. After making quick work of Destro’s guards, Snake eyes takes chrome dome to a nearby Cobra extraction site where an army of Cobra guards await his return. Here we learn that Snake Eyes has been working for Cobra, and that Tomax has taken over as Cobra’s leader. Detro implies that Tomax had him set up, murders one of the Cobra guards and orders the rest take the body back to Tomax as a message. As the issue moves along we are provided a glimpse into the childhood of Destro through a flashback. We get a glimpse of Destro’s relationship with his father, and see how early on his twisted mentality began to form. Returning to present day, Destro and Snake Eyes have moved to a safe house. After attempting to sympathize with him, Destro provides Snake Eyes with a mission. He wants him to retrieve a “package” for him that will make things uncomfortable for Tomax as head of Cobra. Destro believes the package to be in the possession of another former G.I. Joe and that only Snake Eyes will be able to find them. After a brief search, Snake Eyes finds his target, and the issue ends with us finding out what Destro has sent Snake Eyes to retrieve.

Untitled

When I heard about this series late last year, I was immediately intrigued. How would a character who doesn’t speak and works mostly in isolation carry his own title? Mike Costa makes it work. By surrounding Snake Eyes with other intriguing characters, Costa is able to move the story along effectively, while allowing Snake Eyes to remain true to his character. He does a job, does it efficiently, and doesn’t utter a peep through the entire issue. My only criticism is that the writer makes the assumption that the reader knows what’s been going on in this universe. I haven’t read the previous G.I. Joe series, so I had no idea what to expect going into this. I get the sense from reading the issue that the G.I. Joe team has been disbanded or no longer exist, which is why Snake Eyes is working for Cobra now. But it is never explained why. And while I understand it’s just the first issue and the Snake Eyes plotline can be unraveled in future issues, it would have been nice to know what the current status of the Joes is.

This was my first exposure to Paolo Villanellli’s art and I was highly impressed. Hopefully, this creative team can stick together for a while.

Final Verdict: I strongly suggest giving this one a try. The silent assassin finally has his own book and it looks to be an action packed ride.

 

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