G.I. JOE A Real American Hero (@thisdayincomics)

G.I. JOE A Real American Hero

G.I. JOE A Real American Hero

When Hasbro launched the G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero toyline in 1982 alongside the Marvel Comics series, they commissioned Marvel Productions to produce a series of fully animated 30-second television commercials to promote the toys and comics, beginning with an ad for the first issue that aired throughout Spring 1982.

The popularity of these commercials led to the production of a five-part G.I. Joe mini-series which aired in 1983 (later known as “The M.A.S.S. Device” when it re-aired during the series’ syndication). The plot centers on the titular M.A.S.S. Device, a powerful matter-transporter, and G.I. Joe and Cobra’s race around the world to acquire the three catalytic elements which power the machine. A second five-part mini-series followed in 1984, “The Revenge of Cobra”, with a similar plot that involved the Joes and Cobras traveling around the world to recover the scattered fragments of Cobra’s new weather-controlling weapon, the Weather Dominator.

The series premiered on September 12, 1983.

G.I. Joe is the code name for America’s daring, highly-trained, Special Mission force. Its purpose: To defend human freedom against Cobra, a ruthless terrorist organization determined to rule the world.