Unseen GI Joe Comic Panel Revealed After 41 Years in Reprint

Skybound Entertainment's reprint of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #1 finally restores creator Larry Hama's original dialogue that was cut from the debut issue back in 1982

GI Joe

A historic reprint of the original GI Joe: A Real American Hero #1 by Skybound contains a panel with dialogue that hasn’t been seen by fans for over four decades. This “Larry Hama Cut” finally restores the iconic comic to the legendary writer’s full vision.

Initially published in 1982, the first issue of Marvel’s GI Joe was written by Larry Hama. However, due to creative differences, one panel with dialogue with Duke was cut last minute.

The Story Behind the Lost Dialogue

“Looking back, there are two things in ARAH that I’ve always wanted to fix,” wrote Hama in the introduction. “First, I had always been bothered by the coloring mistake in ARAH #21 (Silent Interlude) in the oubliette scene. The colorist didn’t understand that the lid of the dungeons cell had been replaced and that the scene was supposed to be in the darkness. That was finally corrected a little while back in a special reprint of the silent issue by another publisher.”

Hama added: “But the main error that has stuck in my craw since 1982 has always been the Hawk speech that was rewritten by editorial without my knowledge, which cast a completely different light on the core ethics of the group than I had intended. It led many to assume that I was something I was not – a jingoistic hard liner. I am extremely grateful to the good folks at Skybound and Hasbro for restoring my original copy in the new reprint of ARAH #1.”

A Small but Important Moment

This pivotal scene has been missing from every subsequent reprinting over the past 41 years. But now, the Skybound re-release has restored the edited-out panel on page 11.

Here is the original panel the way Marvel Comics printed it:

And now for the first time here is the new panel from the Skybound reprint:

“We’re soldiers…our job is to do the unthinkable…and be forgotten,” Duke says.

Honoring the writer’s intent

By restoring the missing dialogue, Skybound’s new reprint finally allows fans to read Larry Hama’s original vision for the debut issue of GI Joe: A Real American Hero as he had intended it back in 1982.

At the time, limitations forced edits to Hama’s work, but this new edition undoes those changes decades later. For lifelong GI Joe followers who grew up with these legendary characters, it’s a dream come true to see this seminal comic in its complete form.

The reprint provides a small but thrilling glimpse into the creative process behind building the world of GI Joe. It honors the series’ legacy by showcasing Hama’s integral role in crafting these icons. For diehard fans, it’s a fitting tribute to GI Joe’s ongoing cultural impact.

GI Joe: A Real American Hero #1 was released on November 15 and currently in comic book stores.

Rick Lemoine

Rick Lemoine

Raised on a hearty dose of Marvel and DC comics, Rick combines his love for superheroes with a knack for writing about Hollywood's brightest.