They showed a preview of the upcoming Gi Joe: Absolute- Animated series at the 2008 Gi Joe convention in Dallas Texas.
"So they showed the new GIJoe animated series at the Convention today - I can honestly say, this is the GIJoe series we've been waiting for. This is aimed at the adult market, and is using some of the lead team that worked on Avatar: The Last Airbender. The animation was saw was incredible, and as they put it, this is the G.I.Joe battles that we all saw in our head when we were playing with our toys. It's got a gritty, modern anime look to it while still retaining the feel of an American animated show (unlike the kiddie anime crap that was Sigma Six).
- They've redesigned the characters, gear, and vehicles to be near-future, and they are all very recognizable as the characters we all know and love (similar outfits, color scheemes, etc but with an updated look). Lots of new weaponry and high-tech gear like the stratellite low-orbit baloon satellite.
- The team is based on a futuristic version of the USS Flagg, with a round Ops Center where the conning tower would be and multiple takoff runways."
Part 1: New G.I. Joe Animation for 2009.
G.I. Joe Absolute
Adult themed, PG-13
Highly detailed animation
Designed to bring adult fans back into the market
10 5 minute episodes, 1 10 minute season finale
No distribution decided upon yet.
Could be webisodes, could be tv special, could be DVD, or all 3.
Starts in first quarter 2009
NO LASERS. NO PARACHUTING.
Will have deaths.
Little to no blood (but, from what we've seen, that won't matter)
Focus on core early characters.
No Cobra La.
Producers: Sam Register Jaoquim Desantos
Writer: Warren Ellis
Lead Animator: Dave Johnson
1 minute promo animation shown. Breakdown:
Duke and Roadblock are running through the jungle being chased by cobra troopers. Being shot at. You see Roadblock from behind, running, he stops, turns around, and says "You want some of this!? Come on, come on!" and unloads his machine gun into the camera. Heavy sound of loud powerful gunfire, shell casings fly everywhere.
They continue on and take cover inside what looks like a Cobra bunker. Had a cobra symbol on building. Duke radios in for backup, says the LZ is hot. They return fire back and forth with the Cobra Troopers outside, who are moving in using real world cover fire formations.
Then, we pan up, and see the action from above, when you hear a sword bling. A Cobra Trooper looks up, and he sees Snake Eyes dropping down right on his head. Snake Eyes then proceeds to kick ass one by one using hand to hand combat and sword play.
We pan back into Duke and Roadblock, you hear grunts and bones cracking outside, and Duke asks "What the hell is going on out there?" Emphasis on "Hell". Pan back to Snake Eyes, who tosses one of his smaller knifes across the field at a trooper, lands right in the middle of his helmet, he falls. (Don't show the entry, but you get the point. (Fling, pan, hear the pop, heads looking up, falls slowly, etc).
Snake eyes then goes one on one with the last Trooper, flips him over, takes out his sword, thrusts down into the Trooper's chest, and TURNS IT. Stands up, puts sword back in its holder.
Duke and Roadblock come outside, and see all the Troopers dead. He gives a "whooo" type whistle. Roadblock then says "Ninja? I didn't know we had a Ninja." END SCENE.
This story will not be part of the 60 minute story in 2009. It is a stand alone scene they did to show the new tone of the series and what could be done animation and story wise.
They played it 3 times, and the crowd exploded every time. It really was what you've been waiting for from these childhood toy lines as an adult. As they described it in the panel, while you were playing with these toys as a kid, or even watching the shows and reading the comics back then, what we saw today is what we THOUGHT we saw back then. And what we expect, and why the new versions of the old stuff doesn't play with us now. But, this new direction, PG-13 based adult themed entertainment, should fill that gap, and will be focused upon in the upcoming years, for Joe and all brands it fits with. This GI Joe project is however the first of the new direction for Hasbro.
Snake Eyes - Goggles
Gung Ho - No chest out
Storm Shadow - mask, hood, mix between 2 styles.
Cobra Commander, Destro, Baroness confirmed. Lady Jaye more like a Starbuck from Battlestar Galactica type role. Not major player. Cobra Commander is ruthless. Not a clown. Emphasized several times.
Cobra Commander being played by 80s cartoon voice of Tripwire, Charlie Adler.
Ninja moves based on real world techniques.
Real guns, real bullets. No parachuting out of planes right before they blow up. People will die. They said they thought about sniping a guy in a parachute on his way down who actually did make it out of a plane in time.
No direct benchmark for success, will include overall promotion, hits, feedback, news coverage, ratings, eventual DVD sales if sold, etc. But XYZ product making XYZ money doesn't need to happen to continue on, its a brand promotion tool.
Entertainment being done first, and well, to stand on it's own, with product to follow, rather than the reverse. This is first outing with that philosophy.
SHOWED A NEW FLAGG. Updated version, crowd applauded. 2 forward runways in front, all same sticker like applications, and updated but similar rest of body. (Animated version only)
Also, they specifically showed the morgue interior, from the FLAGG. Apparently that will be used a lot.
Sources include: donmurphy.net, hisstank.com and yojoe.com