Tag Archives: Steve Mitchell

“The Rotten Egg” storyboards batch 6

Sorry for the delay!  Back to blogging!  Thanks to all the visitors who clicked here while I wasn’t posting.G.I. Joe season 2 storyboard to animation still comparison "The Rotten Egg"

Pages [1-5] [6-7C] [7D-10] [11-15] [16-19] [20-24] [24A-28]

More storyboards from writers Steve Mitchell and Barbara Petty’s “The Rotten Egg,” this time pages 20, 21, 22, 23, and 24.  Sorry, I don’t know who boarded these, but when I do I’ll update this sentence.

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 020

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 021

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 022

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 023

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 024Things will get a little more interesting with batch 7 when the final animation deviates a little from the storyboard.

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“The Rotten Egg” storyboards batch 5

G.I. Joe season 2 storyboard to animation still comparison "The Rotten Egg"

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More storyboards.  This time it’s pages 16, 16A, 17, 18, and 19.

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 016

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 017

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 017A

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 018

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 019

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“The Rotten Egg” storyboards batch 4

G.I. Joe season 2 storyboard to animation still comparison "The Rotten Egg"

 

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Something that simultaneously delighted and bothered me as a kid watching G.I. Joe was how obvious certain traps were that the Joes walked headlong into.  Whereas in Larry Hama’s comic-verse, a Cobra military academy in the next state over would have felt right at home with Broca (note the anagram!) Beach and the Cobra Consulate Building.  But here CEC was trying to have it both ways — secret and yet in plain sight.  So it bothered me then, though amuses me now, that Leatherneck tools over on the Silver Mirage, outnumbered a thousand to one, and is actually surprised when what are clearly bad guy cadets turn out to be bad guys.  But Barbara Petty and Steve Mitchell crafted a strong script with great characterization, that delivers something new for the series — a rivalry begun in the past — and manages to be filled with tension and action — mostly sans weapons, while eschewing the “regular” Cobra Command.  No small feat.  Clunky animation, yes?  (See still above, YIKES)  But great boards, of which here are five more pages:

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 011

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 012

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 013

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 014

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 015

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“The Rotten Egg” storyboards batch 3

G.I. Joe The Rotten Egg storyboards TEASE

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Back to the storyboards for the Season 2 episode, “The Rotten Egg.”  These pages below are drawn by two or three artists, unusual for a Joe board as one artist tended to handle each act.  There may have been deadline trouble, or a change from the director (or Hasbro) necessitated altering shots, and perhaps whoever originated these had already moved on to the next episode.  What is certain is that Mike Vosburg drew some of what’s below — everything but the Wet-Suit close-up on the first page, the top tier of the second page, all of the third page, the first two panels of the fourth page, and probably none of the final page.  Vosburg’s figure work (see big panel above) is angular, and he spots blacks — no sketchy pencil lines, no rounded or bulbous anatomy.  Vosburg is a tremendously talented artist, a post for another day, but for fun trivia I’ll point out he was the only artist who both drew the monthly Marvel comic and also storyboarded for the daily cartoon.  Coincidentally, to boot.  Pages 7D, 8, 9, 9A, and 10:

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 007D

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 008

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 009

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 009A

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" Season 2 storyboard page 010

Next five pages!

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The Other Half of the Battle: “The Funhouse”

Continuing our look at key episodes of G.I. Joe (1983), G.I. Joe (1989), and GI Joe Extreme (1995)…

“The Funhouse”
original airdate 10/01/85
Written by Steve Mitchell and Barbara Petty

The plot in one sentence: Cobra kidnaps scientists and makes six Joes run the gauntlet of a deathtrap-filled funhouse.

Personal Trivia: I own a production animation cel and background from this episode.  They’ll be in the book.

G.I. Joe Trivia: Steve Mitchell, co-writer of this episode, inked the covers to three issues of Marvel’s monthly G.I. Joe comic book.  Before he got into writing and producing, Mitchell was an inker seen on many a Marvel and DC title, notably Norm Breyfogle’s Batman and Detective Comics runs.

Best thing about this episode: Dusty pops a balloon filled with gas and hallucinates.  His reaction, and the character animation on this scene are great:

G.I. Joe "The Funhouse" screencap Dusty, Airtight, Cobra Commander

Worst thing about this episode that’s also kind of the best thing about this episode: This carnival barker Cobra Commander robot.

G.I. Joe "The Funhouse" screencap Cobra Commander robot

Best line:

Cobra Commander (from an overhead monitor): “Despite your rudeness, I offer you a sporting chance.  Three doors, three choices.  Two of them lead to dead ends.”

Flint: “What about the third one?”

Cobra Commander: “It leads to me.”

Alpine: “Then all the doors are losers.”

Worst example of one character finishing another’s sentence:

Lady Jaye: “I don’t know where we’re going–”

Air-Tight: “–But anywhere’s an improvement.”

Does it hold up? This episode is a strange one.  It’s straightforward – Cobra, scientists, Joes, deathtraps – until you look carefully.  It’s best not to think too hard about where and how Cobra comes up with its deathtraps, but the ones in “Funhouse” really beg some questions.  Who built an indoor roller coaster in a Latin American step pyramid?  Would Cobra Commander have been upset if all six Joes had taken one door and the other deathtraps had gone to waste?  On the positive side, the character animation is so great, year one character (and discontinued action figure) Zap makes an appearance, the pacing is tight and the banter snappy, and there’s an explosion that looks suspiciously like a mushroom cloud.  Not a good representation of the show at its most grounded, but definitely the pinnacle of the show’s balance of cool and zany.

Tim Finn gives this episode 5 out of 5 MacGuffins

I give it 5 out of 5 MacGuffins.

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“The Rotten Egg” storyboards batch 1

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" storyboard title pg excerpt

Sorry for the late post.  Monday’s supposed to be art day, with Tuesday a reserve should Monday get swamped.  Anyway, happy Wednesday!

Today we look at the first few pages of storyboards from the Steve Mitchell and Barbara Petty-written season 2 G.I. Joe episode “The Rotten Egg.”

This episode has a great premise, that Leatherneck’s old rival is now running a military academy, and invites him to graduation ceremonies, but the two have a long-standing grudge that comes to a head.  Also, Cobra’s peripherally involved.  The emotional through-line — that grudge — is tight, and not that you’d know if from this art but voice actor Chuck McCann gives an Emmy-worthy performance as Leatherneck.  Dick Gautier, elsewhere heard as Serpentor, is similarly stellar as antagonist Buck McCann — a play on the other actor’s name.

I should know who drew these Act I boards, but I don’t.  If I find out, I’ll update this post later.

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" storyboard pg 01

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" storyboard pg 02

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" storyboard pg 03

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" storyboard pg 04

G.I. Joe "The Rotten Egg" storyboard pg 05

Next five pages!

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