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Thursday, June 01, 2023 

If GI Joe and Transformers returned to Marvel as new ongoing series, it wouldn't be healthy for them

One of Newsarama's most pretentious writers addressed the recent Marvel acquisition of the rights to reprint their original ROM and Micronauts series from 1979-86, and the article suggests Marvel might even launch new ongoing series for GI Joe:
Has hell frozen over? One might think so, given Marvel Comics' recent back-to-back announcements of long-sought reprints of the publisher's cult classic Rom: Space Knight and Micronauts titles of the '70s and '80s. That unexpected development has raised the question of whether Marvel might also soon be able to reprint its beloved GI Joe and Transformers comics of the '80s and '90s.

Like Rom and Micronauts, both GI Joe and Transformers are licensed from toy maker Hasbro who had exclusively licensed the comic book rights for those properties to IDW Publishing for decades.
I think I just spotted quite a boo-boo here. As far as I know, IDW acquired the license for GI Joe publication around 2008, only 15 years back, and the company's only been around since the early 2000s, so this sure is unintentional comedy to make it sound like they've been around for ages.
At the end of 2022 however, IDW lost the comic book licenses for GI Joe and Transformers, with no new licensee having yet been named. And in early 2023, IDW Publishing also underwent significant layoffs and restructuring, which, combined with the timing of Marvel's announcements, could mean that Marvel and Hasbro are back in business on a larger scale.

[...] The fate of the GI Joe and Transformers comic licenses have been in question since they left IDW, and with other Hasbro properties which were previously licensed by IDW returning to Marvel, it seems there could be a possibility that the franchises could return home to their original comic book publisher - at least for reprints.

That said, beloved GI Joe writer Larry Hama hinted that he could potentially continue work on GI Joe on some level when the comic franchise's new home is finally announced, and Hama still has a current working relationship with Marvel. So it's not impossible that there could be new Marvel GI Joe stories on the way, if not Transformers, Micronauts, and Rom.
But if Marvel resumed publication, it'd be impossible to expect quality writing (and art), Hama or no Hama, and what if he or any successor begins injecting worse liberal political metaphors than before? That would be terrible. Why, what if Paul Allor, quite a leftist himself, got the job, after the political metaphors he produced? Then the issue would go from bad to worse.

So long as Marvel's under corporate ownership, and with disastrous editors like C.B. Cebulski at the helm, for Marvel to reacquire the license to publish new ongoing stories for GI Joe would be bad news. But even Hasbro, if they're becoming woke, can't be relied upon anymore to guide the franchises on a healthy path. They already seem to have ruined Monopoly, and it wouldn't be shocking if GI Joe does eventually wind up victimized, sooner or later, if they've decided it looks easy to go ahead with doing so.

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  • I'm Avi Green
  • From Jerusalem, Israel
  • I was born in Pennsylvania in 1974, and moved to Israel in 1983. I also enjoyed reading a lot of comics when I was young, the first being Fantastic Four. I maintain a strong belief in the public's right to knowledge and accuracy in facts. I like to think of myself as a conservative-style version of Clark Kent. I don't expect to be perfect at the job, but I do my best.
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