G.I. Joe: Above and Beyond by Max Allan Collins
Book Report by Vincent
I recently finished reading G.I. Joe: Above and Beyond by Max Allan Collins. Babette purchased for me based on two factors, the first being that she knows I love G.I. Joe and the second being that Snake Eyes is all up on the cover looking like a bad mother fucker. Despite the fact that it is was based on the movie, I hoped that it would be handled a lot better than the crappy, yet fun film.
Before I get to the book, I have to say something about the writer, Max Allan Collins. Max Allan Collins writes a lot. In fact, I work in a bookstore and Max Allan Collins has written at least 75% of the books we sell. Every single movie that has been released in the last ten years has a book tie-in written by Max Allan Collins. Max Allan Collins has written a novelization of every single CSI episode. Max Allan Collins has even written your diary. You can thank him later.
Obviously, this means that Max Allan Collins is an amazing writer and he proves it with G.I. Joe: Above and Beyond. From the very start he truly captures the essence of the characters found in G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra movie. Remember how Ripcord was so fucking annoying that you wanted to shank him? He’s exactly that annoying and funny! Just check out this bit from the beginning of the book:
Snow covered Duke’s face and the cold stung his cheeks. He looked first to his left to make sure Westen was okay, then glanced right toward Ripcord, who grinned at him.
“What?” Duke asked, as bullets buzzed like angry insects.
With mock innocence, Rip asked, “Don’t you think I oughta be the dude in white face?”
LOLZ!!!1 It’s because he’s black! Get it?!
So what is this book about? Well it starts out with some mission in a made up country where Duke and Ripcord save some scientists, but don’t intercept some weapons. They then have to go with some other dudes to some made up South American country where they have to pose as mercenaries in order to get said weapons. At the same time a G.I. Joe team is sent in to assist the Americans without letting them know they are there. That’s one problem with this book is that the Joes can’t meet Duke because that happens in the movie. Anyway, both teams work separately to destroy the weapons and ensure the country remains a democracy (AMERICA FUCK YEAH!). The book then goes to yet another mission to another made up country, but this time it’s the begining of the one seen in the movie where the kid from Third Rock From the Sun is in the building that is blown up. We then get to “see” his funeral and almost see Duke get recruited by Gung Ho, if he wasn’t so sad.
So was this book all bad? No, the parts that don’t have Ripcord are pretty good. It’s kind of like how Phantom Menace could have been good without Jar Jar… oh yeah and if Phantom had a better plot. So, if there were an option to read the book without having any Ripcord in it, it would be a hell of a lot better, but I guess that’s the Marlon Wayans curse.