The G.I. JOE Film Franchise Needs a Complete Overhaul, and Here’s How to Do It
I’ve been a fan of G.I. Joe for my whole life. I had a ton of the toys and I enjoyed watching the animated series in the 1980s. It’s such a great franchise, but that franchise is pretty much dead now. Paramount Pictures made sure to help kill it off with the awful films that they made. Those G.I. Joe movies should have been amazingly awesome in every way! Instead, we just got mediocre crap that didn’t do the franchise any justice at all.
The studio has been in the process of developing a third film, but I doubt it will be any better than what we saw in the first two. They just need to start from scratch, overhaul the franchise, and pretend that the other films never happened. The last I heard, the studio had set up a writers room to try and figure things out for the franchise and how to move forward with it.
I would personally love to see a G.I. Joe cinematic universe. There are so many characters in the franchise and so many stories to tell with them that the studio could play with across multiple films that could put the focus on different characters. There could be solo adventures and films that center on small G.I. Joe teams as they embark on specific missions, just like they did with the cartoon series and comic books.
They really don’t need a huge budget to make these movies! All you need is a solid script and story that isn’t ridiculously over the top. These could be badass hardcore military-style films that smartly incorporate certain aspects of the animated series that we enjoyed as kids. There’s a happy medium that needs to be met when making these movies, and the previous films were way off.
If they were going to relaunch the franchise, I don’t think they should necessarily start out by focusing on the big hitters like Duke, Roadblock, and Snake Eyes. They will exist in the universe, but I think they just need to be more in the background running things while the focus is put on some of the other great characters who have been created as they are running missions against Cobra.
For example, you could have a several different teams that could consist of combinations of characters like Gung Ho, Shockwave, Lifeline, Wild Bill, Ace, Wet Suit, Law & Order, Quick Kick, Rock ’n Roll, Torpedo, Low-Light, Mutt & Junkyard, Tunnel Rat, Alpine, Jinx, Spirit, Dusty, Beach Head, Shipwreck, Lady Jaye, Scarlett, and Snow Job. There are a ton more I could list, but you get the idea.
Mix and match the characters across multiple films! You could do a whole movie with just Shipwreck and Beach Head as they team up to stop Cobra from deploying some kind of terrorist attack. You could have Scarlett and Lady Jaye kick some ass together in their own story. Since it would be a cinematic universe, other characters can come in and out of it whenever they are needed, just like Marvel Studios does with its films. They could make for some incredible, intense, fun, amusing, and action-packed movies! Eventually they could lead into storylines that could involve the bigger characters Duke and Snake Eyes after you win the audiences over with the smaller characters like Marvel did with Iron Man. I just think they need to hold off on those characters because they overused them in the previous films.
Paramount Pictures and Hasbro are currently focused on building a Transformers universe at the moment, but why not put the same resources into G.I. Joe!? It’s such a huge property and if done right, it could be even bigger than Transformers. I believe G.I. Joe has the potential to be as big and successful as Marvel has become.
I’d say they could do a Transformers crossover, but I’m not a big fan of what they’ve done with Transformers either. You know what’s funny, though? After seeing Michael Bay’s 13 Hours, I think he would be a much more effective filmmaker with the G.I. Joe property than he is with Transformers.
As a hardcore fan of G.I. Joe, I want to see the property succeed as a film franchise and I believe this is the way to do it. Either that, or take this idea and turn it into a Netflix series like Marvel is doing with some of their characters. Hell, they should just do both! Start making movies and series that focus on certain characters that tie into a giant G.I. Joe universe.
I’m shocked that Paramount and Hasbro haven't been able to figure out how to properly handle G.I. Joe yet. You’re sitting on a gold mine here and maybe you just don’t know how to put it into motion. Well, here you go. This is my pitch and what I would like to see as a fan.