So I own this G.I. Joe toyline book by Mark Bellomo, The Ultimate Guide to G.I. Joe 1982-1994. The author apparently had access to Larry Hama’s work-notes; Mr. Hama, variously an artist, writer, and editor at Marvel Comics, wrote both the G.I. Joe comic and the character biographies (“filecards”) that accompanied the toys. As part of his characterizing duties, Mr. Hama proposed names for the forces of G.I. Joe and Cobra, and Bellomo’s book collects the ones that didn’t make the cut. Some of them are neat, some of them are weird, and I wrote them all down in a notebook. Last time, we looked at the releases from 1983 to 1985. Here’s 1986!
Beach Head: Cool, Ambush, Mr. Bones
Dial-Tone: Squelch, Hot-Line
Iceberg: Winter, Ice-Man, Chill, Cool Breeze
Leatherneck: Gyrene, Semper-Fi, Jar-Head, Gunny
Lifeline: Angel, Last-Chance
Mainframe: CHIP, Big-Byte, Rely
Sci-Fi: Hot-Spot, Red Light
Wet-Suit: Gator, Hammer-Head, Soggy
Dr. Mindbender: Dr. ?, Professor Paine, Count Vlad the Cruel, The Inquisitor
Monkeywrench: Hang-Fire, Blaster, Boom-Boom, Frag-Head
Serpentor: King Cobra, Cobra Rex, Rama Set, ZoR
Thrasher: Basher, Mean-Streak, Bash McFeral, Cruncher
… and that’s all for now! My favorites of this lot are the equally inexplicable “Mr. Bones” and “ZoR”. Bash McFeral is pretty great, though, and “Hot-Line” and “Last-Chance” might not be bad Transformers names.
Tune in next time, where - among other things - we’ll learn that Cobra’s Ice-Viper was nearly “Were-Walrus”.