Paul Allor is a fantastic writer. If you don’t believe me, then you should check out G.I.Joe Deviations, in which over the course of 24 pages he tells a complete story set in an alternate world of G.I.Joe where Cobra wins, which makes Cobra Commander go a little stir crazy. The nature of the book is more comedy than action orientated, which isn’t to say it isn’t action packed, but the focus of a lighter tone works a lot better then a gritty end of the world type. The idea of Destro and the Baroness settling down and having kids is brilliant, as is the idea of having to replace several nannies. I won’t spoil it for anyone except to say you should check it out as it’s perhaps one of the better books out there.
But it does lead to a slightly larger problem. While the book is fantastic, I have to question who it is really written for? The Deviations range is certainly inventive, it’s also a bit baffling because they’re seemingly made for fans of the respective title,s of which there are four other books. That’s okay, but they’re not really user friendly, because unless you have a vested interest in the characters already, you won’t really care if Mulder was abducted by aliens or if Optimus Prime decided that he’d rather not die. To be fair there is a recap page in the cover explaining the series, but I can’t really imagine anyone who isn’t already a G.I.Joe fan walking past it on the shelf and deciding to read it. No matter how great the review is. The same goes for the other books as well. Unless I’m already a fan of the series, I don’t really care how a world would be different if X happened and not Y.
That’s not to say that they’re not any good, because they are and if Paul Allor were to write a G.I.Joe book I’d sign up for that in a heart beat. But seeing as the goal of a comic company is to increase readership of these titles, offering an alternate look into what could’ve been doesn’t really strike me as some thing will bring in new readers, and while the concept is cool, I can’t really see it as a basis for a monthly title.