Read and laugh
If you cruise the toy aisles nowadays, you'll find that the majority of contemporary action figures come with dice, some form of stat card relating to a game, and possibly a stand. But back in the '80s and '90s, all figures came with were weapons and a bio file on the back of the card to be cut out and collected in a shoebox. Nearly every figure line featured these little cut-outs, but none of them had as much richness to their biographical sketches as G.I. Joe. But did any kids really pay attention to the details on these cards?
If they did, they may have questioned why so many Joes and Cobras were miserable degenerates, chronic gamblers, womanizers, and failed poets. The army seemed to have sent recruiters to the darkest backwoods of the U.S. to rope in any roughneck with a dangerous job and a mountain of speeding tickets in their glove compartment. Every card attempted to sugarcoat the fact that the Joes were a gang of lowlifes by noting that they were all qualified experts in NATO and Warsaw Pact small arms.
Blame it on Larry Hama, the writer of the Marvel G.I. Joe comic, who was also happened to write the a good portion of the file cards for the figures (and often, their names). Hama managed to deliver concise little background sketches in a very short amount of words -- sometimes with humorous and somewhat baffling results. Here are 20 of the most hilarious G.I. Joe bio cards -- much thanks to YoJoe.com for the images!
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