2014
04.12

Community - G.I. Jeff Cartoon

Community season 5 episode 11, G.I. Jeff, was a wonderfully accurate homage to the G.I. Joe cartoons and toy commercials of the 1980s.

The episode was written by the great Dino Stamatopoulos (aka Starburns) and directed by Rob Schrab who also hilariously did the voice of Cobra Commander for this episode. Schrab also directed the Law & Order parody episode from season 3 (‘Basic Lupine Urology’) and the dystopian sci-fi episode earlier this season (‘App Development and Condiments’), so he has proven himself to be awesome at taking on different genres.

See Also: 5 Reasons Community’s MeowMeowBeenz Episode was Awesome

What makes this tribute extra special is the fact that Hasbro gave them full permission to use actual G.I. Joe characters as well as the iconic theme song. They even got original series voice actors Bill Ratner, Michael Bell and Mary McDonald-Lewis to voice Flint, Duke and Scarlett.

It looks and sounds just like a real episode of G.I. Joe straight out of my childhood! Except of course for the horrific deaths, which include Lifeline burning alive, Destro plummeting to his death, and Cobra Commander having his flesh ripped from his bones while passing between planes of existence. Oh, also Cobra Commander and Destro were lovers.


lifeline on fire - Community: G.I. Jeff

cobra commander disintegrating - Community: G.I. Jeff

Needless to say, this episode was real treat, especially for people like me who grew up watching the cartoon and playing with the action figures.

Here’s one of the fake toy commercials for the G.I. Joe: Mutineers

Chris Keating over at Castle Geek-Skull made these awesome photoshopped mock-ups of the action figures in packaging:


Buzzkill - Community: G.I. Jeff Action Figure
Buzzkill

Three Kids - Community: G.I. Jeff Action Figure
Three Kids

Tight Ship - Community: G.I. Jeff Action Figure
Tight Ship

Fourth Wall - Community: G.I. Jeff Action Figure
Fourth Wall

Wingman - Community: G.I. Jeff Action Figure
Wingman

I wish they would release these toys for real!

I also loved the “G.I. Joe rejects” and all the funny random characters they came up with. It kind of reminded me of Ben Edlund’s The Tick.


Hat Muffs and Spit-Take - Community: G.I. Jeff
Hat Muffs and Spit-Take

Cold Shoulder - Community: G.I. Jeff
Cold Shoulder

Deep Dish - Community: G.I. Jeff
Deep Dish

Shark Arms - Community: G.I. Jeff
Shark Arms

Weird Head - Community: G.I. Jeff
Weird Head

Home Free - Community: G.I. Jeff
Home Free

Placeholder - Community: G.I. Jeff
Placeholder

Sleep Apnea (Dan Harmon) - Community: G.I. Jeff
Sleep Apnea (Dan Harmon)


 

Bonus Stuff

Easter Egg: There’s a cameo appearance by Scud: The Disposable Assassin in the background of the courtroom scene
G.I. Jeff - Scud Disposable Assassin Cameo

‘Tight-Shipping It’ – Artwork by Julieta Colás of Wingman and Tight Ship:
G.I. Jeff and Tight Ship - Community Art by Julieta Colas

What did you guys think of this episode? Anyone else geek out over the ’80s nostalgia?

G.I. Jeff Mutineers - Three Kids, Buzzkill, Wingman, Tight Ship, Fourth Wall

lifeline burned alive - Community: G.I. Jeff