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G.I. Joe Gets the Year One Treatment In Upcoming ‘G.I. Joe: Renegades’ Animated Series

Though rumors have circulated about a new G.I. Joe cartoon for a while now, fans weren’t sure what to expect. Would it follow the “G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra” continuity and feature an animated Marlon Wayans? Would it be violent and anime-influenced like the Warren Ellis-penned “G.I. Joe Resolute,” or would it be a watered-down affair targeted strictly to the wee ones? Well, thanks to Hasbro’s panel at this past weekend’s JoeCon, we now have some answers.

[Not a scene from the new cartoon...Hopefully]

As expected, the show–which will premiere in the fall and be called “G.I. Joe: Renegades”–will air on The Hub, the soon-to-launch Hasbro/Discovery Channel children’s network which will no doubt be used to push Hasbro products on young, impressionable minds. For the first time in animation, the G.I. Joe team will get a year-one origin story, in a 2-D animated series that will split the difference between the adult-oriented “Resolute” and the demands of a network aimed at kids.“G.I. Joe: Renegades” will kick off its 26-episode first season with a two-part pilot, which finds the G.I. Joe team on the run, possibly from Cobra. Origins of key characters like Duke and Snake Eyes (who might be mask-less and actually speak in the early episodes) will be explored, while Cobra could have both a public and private face. Word is the animation will be similar to “Resolute,” which could be difficult to maintain over an entire season. Since it’s a kids network, guns won’t be firing bullets. (Colorful lasers, perhaps?)

Unlike the mostly self-contained ’80s cartoon, “Renegades” will have an ongoing storyline, increasing the potential for character development and possible deaths (Even in the animated movie, Duke just fell into a coma). Margaret Loesch, executive producer of the classic series, is running the Hub network, putting the new show in experienced hands. And in another old-school nod, original Duke voice actor Michael Bell just revealed that he will portray Duke’s dad, with B.J. Ward (Scarlett in the original series) voicing the Joe team leader’s mother. (Jason Marsden, the voice of Max from “Goof Troop”) will provide Duke’s voice in the new series.

With zero Wayans in sight, this sounds like good news for G.I. Joe fans both young and old. Check out footage from the Hasbro panel over at Toy Newsi.

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