G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra (2009) Poster

Frequently Asked Questions

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  • Apart from the Sector Seven connection established by the novelization of the second Transformers movie, the fictional universes are unrelated or, by virtue of "Easter egg" homages, scarcely related. Both films were developed completely independently, with the only common point being that Lorenzo Di Bonaventura and Brian Goldner are executive producers. None of the supplemental materials (comics, novels, children's books, etc) nor any early drafts for either the Transformers films or G.I. Joe reveal any sort of link between the two film series. The only thing in this regard is that it was believed that the studio originally planned commission the production of a live-action G.I. Joe movie back in of middle of the 2000s decade but opted to go with a live-action Transformers first instead, due to the US invasion of Iraq and ensuing wars; the result being that a portion of the Transformers included two American servicemen characters and dealt with Decepticons attacking American military bases in the Middle East, whereas G.I. Joe was made to have more of a science fantasy tone than its source material, distancing it a bit from the gritty reality of wars with terrorists.

  • In the original Real American Hero series, Tommy "Storm Shadow" Arashikage started out as a member of Cobra's inner circle, but he was really there to avenge the death of his uncle, the Hard Master. When the killer turned out to be Zartan, Storm Shadow (along with his other uncle, the Soft Master, who initially thought Storm Shadow himself was the murderer) failed in his attempt to kill him, and had to flee. He eventually met up with Scarlett and Snake Eyes, who convinced him to join the G.I. Joe program. In the film, we were made to believe that Storm Shadow killed the Hard Master out of jealousy of the attention Snake Eyes was given, but in interviews following the release of The Rise of Cobra, Steven Sommers stated that Storm Shadow didn't kill the Hard Master and this would possibly be explored more in the sequel. Byung-Hun Lee had been signed on for two more sequels, and returned in Retaliation (2013) accordingly, wherein it is revealed that Zartan was responsible for the murder.

  • In the Marvel RAH comic continuity, Snake Eyes's vocal cords were damaged in a fiery accident, leaving him mute. He never spoke in the Sunbow or DIC cartoons either, but this was never explained. In the film, it is stated that he swore an oath of silence until he avenged the Hard Master's death, which he does. Whether this means he will speak in the sequels is unknown. An interview with creative consultant Larry Hama, who created Snake-Eyes, revealed that the original script had him speaking by the film's end. However, because of Hama's objection, the line was cut and Snake Eyes remains mute.

  • The effect was most likely a matter of artistic license for dramatic effect, but various attempts at explanations have been explored and refuted by viewers. At sufficient density in excess of that of water, ice would sink, but it is not possible for such a properties to form naturally or to be inherently stable if formed artificially. In the real world, ice will not sink regardless of the pressure. According to every water phase diagram ever created, the solid phase of water is never more dense then the liquid phase. Most liquids must go through the liquid phase in order to reach melting/freezing point; water however does not. Even if it was somehow more dense due to compression, it wouldn't sink in the manner displayed. More likely it would remain at the same general depth it was originally at due to water also getting denser as it gets deeper.

    Some viewers claim that the ice was weighed down with steel and other supports, but if this was the case, the whole iceberg would have sunk earlier. Even so, upon placing a sufficiently heavy object upon ice, the composite object usually tilts or flips over completely, the heavy object sinking while ice remaining afloat. So, the only explanation (along these lines) left is that the ice was stuck to something very heavy beneath it and that the heavy object was kept afloat by static supports extending to the sea floor or by powered propellers. And otherwise, one would have to believe that the ice pack was not made of H2O at all. Being that the movie is a science fiction, it is somewhat appropriate to consider these bizarre speculations.

  • Not until after the Arctic Base is destroyed towards the end of the film. It is also not a mask, but his actual face (made metallic using nanomites).

  • G.I. Joe

    Duke (Conrad Hauser) - The lead soldier. He is part of General Hawk's team. Contrary to his original back-story, he is as a newcomer to the G.I.Joe team; all Joe rookies are already established, well-trained soldiers. Also in the 2009 film, Duke identifies himself as a Captain while conspicuously wearing the rank of Major (Army) or Lt. Commander (Navy). There is no reference in the film to him ever performing duties as a First Sergeant, the rank of the original Duke character in the GI Joe animated series.

    General Hawk (Gen. Clayton Abernathy) - The team leader. He is the commander of the G.I. Joe Team.

    Ripcord (Wallace Weems) - Duke's friend, a pilot with a loving interest on Scarlett. Also a newcomer to G.I. Joe, and one of the film's major characters; the traditional Rip Cord, however, is caucasian, a G.I. Joe veteran, and more of a background character. Before joining G.I. Joe, they were mid-level ground troops in the U.S. Army. Unlike Duke, Ripcord loves flying planes and wanted to join the U.S. Air Force before becoming a Joe.

    Scarlett (Shana M. O'Hara) - She graduated college at age twelve and became the team's intelligence expert. Having left school so early, she does not understand men's attraction to her. Whether she and Snake Eyes are in a relationship with each other is unknown.

    Snake Eyes - A mysterious ninja commando who took a vow of silence, a departure from the character's traditional difficulty in speaking due to grievous vocal wounds suffered in a helicopter crash.

    Heavy Duty (Hershel Dalton) - An ordnance expert and field commander of the team.

    Breaker (Abel Shaz) - He is the team's communications specialist and hacker.

    Cover Girl (Courtney A. Kreiger) - Hawk's aide-de-camp.

    Sgt. Stone - A special operations instructor who trains the G.I. Joe team in combat tactics, marksmanship, survival techniques, and other commando skills.


    The Doctor / Cobra Commander (Alexander "Rex" Lewis) - The leader of Cobra and The Baroness's brother, a former mild-mannered U.S. Soldier who was thought to be killed during an operation - instead, he became the insane disfigured MARS head scientist.

    Destro (Laird James McCullen XXIV) - A weapons designer and CEO of the Military Armament Research Syndicate (MARS) and the main villain in the early part of the film.

    The Baroness (Anastasia Lewis "Ana" DeCobray) - A spy and sister of Cobra Commander who is also both Duke's former fiancee and his and Destro's love interest.

    Storm Shadow (Thomas "Tommy" Arashikage) - Snake-Eyes' rival, both were close members of the Arashikage ninja clan. Storm Shadow serves as McCullen's assassin and as both bodyguard and mentor to the Baroness.

    Zartan - An expert in make-up and disguises serving Destro.

    Doctor Mindbender also appears in a flashback, as it is revealed that he passed the secrets of nano-technology on to Cobra Commander.

  • Yes and no. In Britain the classic 9-inch GI Joe doll was called Action Man. Inspired by the success of Star Wars figures in the early 1980s, a smaller 3-inch version was introduced called "Action Force". A backstory was published in a series of tie-in comics with the terrorist army of Baron Ironblood and his Red Shadows attempting to take over the world and combated by the United Nation's own military unit, Action Force (composed of Z-force infantry company, SAS-force special operations team, Q-force naval squadron and Space Force star fleet). In the mid-1980s, Action Force was taken over by a US company, Baron Ironblood; and the Red Shadows were transformed into Cobra Commander and the Cobra organisation whilst the previously British-dominated Action Force became almost exclusively American. The comics continued to publish stories under the title of Action Force but they were simply the American GI Joe versions with the titles changed.

  • Considerable, for instance in the comics Duke is a First Sergeant whilst in the film he is a Captain. He has no previous history with the Baroness who certainly isn't Cobra Commander's sister. Cobra Commander himself never knew Duke, was never a soldier but a car salesman who turned against America after the failure of his business and death of his brother in the Vietnam War (in the British-Action Force backstory he was Marcus Kassels, the disgraced son of an aristocratic Swiss diplomat and scientific genius who served in the British Army and led a US platoon nicknamed "The Baron's Brigade" in the Korean War before being accused of a massacre of civilians. He fled to Africa where he became a mercenary, fighting in conflicts all over the world before forming his own private terrorist army, the Red Shadows and adopting the alias Baron Ironblood, based on his family's Latin motto of "sanguineo ferris"—"our blood is of iron". After numerous defeats at the hands of Action Force he would abandon the Red Shadows and form the Cobra organisation, adopting the new identity of Cobra Commander).


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