So Mark Bellomo’s The Ultimate Guide to G.I. Joe 1982-1994 collects a bunch of Larry Hama’s proposed G.I. Joe character/toy names that didn’t make the cut. Some are neat, some are weird, and I wrote ‘em all in a notebook. Last time, we looked at the releases from 1988 (and before that, 1983 to 1985, 1986, and 1987). For whatever reason, there are no preliminary names listed for 1989, so here’s 1990!
Ambush: Sgt. Hyde, Smokescreen
Bullhorn: Peacemaker, Talkdown, Wingshot, Last-Chance
Cold Front: Big Chill, Cold Wave, Sub-Zero, Perma-Frost, Cold War, Cold Steel
Major Storm: Major Foray
Pathfinder: Whacker, Bushmaster, Wildfire, Brushfire, Wildwood
Topside: Barracuda, Snipe, Marlinspike, Swabbie, Salty Dog
Skydive: Jump Master
Metal-Head: Tank-Buster, Tank-Zapper, Squash-Head Harry, Salvo, Heat-Round
Night Creeper: Ghost-Tigers, Brotherhood of the Were-Tigers, Ghost-Dragons
Overlord: Braco Dracommen, Carbo Medmornac
Range-Viper: Bush Viper, Badger, Snake-Eater, Dingo
S.A.W.-Viper: C.L.A.W. (Cobra Light Automatic Weapons)-Viper
… and that’s all for now! My favorite of these is probably “Wildwood”, but it’s a tougher call than some of the other years - “Talkdown,” “Housecall,” and “Heat-Round” are genuinely neat. There are some definite weirdos in this lot, though. “Eggbeater”? “Geronimo!” (with an exclamation point)? “Squash-Head Harry”?!
Historically, the most interesting unused names here are probably Overlord’s. Both are ridiculously transparent anagrams for Cobra Commander, putting the character’s real identity into an entirely new light! (I can’t remember if Bellomo’s book went into that particular topic more, unfortunately…)
Anyway. Be sure to tune in one last time, where we’ll not only wrap this article series up, but learn that Skymate was nearly “Jackaroo”.