I was completely baffled when I heard that DC was giving us another military based comic series after the dismal sales that ‘Men of War’ had. I had exactly ZERO interest in picking up G.I. Combat when the ‘Second Wave’ hit. Zero interest in it, until I saw that cover! Dinosaurs versus soldiers? I’m sold. It turns out that G.I. Combat is actually a double sized book with two completely separate stories in it, much like All Star Western. We get The War That Time Forgot, as well as The Unknown Solider.
While normally dinosaurs are a huge selling point for me, The War That Time Forgot was the weaker half of this title. Our story starts off with soldiers being briefed on their next mission, which will be sending them deep into North Korea for intel on what appears to be a large blacked out area that recently appeared on their radar. Needless to say, dark spots on the radar never end well, and midway into Korea our troops run into a problem a little too big to handle! Without telling you the whole story, The War That Time Forgot introduces us to what could be an interesting story, but with so little revealed in this first issues it’s hard to tell where writer J.T. Krul is going to go with it. Justin Gray’s artwork is beautiful, although I wish he took the time to draw the vehicles himself rather than sub in what looks to be CGI rendered ones. The important thing is that Gray’s dinosaurs look fantastic!
The second half of our book tells the story of The Unknown Solider, which is where this title becomes a ‘must buy’ book! The Unknown Soldier tells us the story of a man with no identity to speak of who loses any semblance of self in Afghanistan after his face is literally blown off. He wakes up hunkered down with a new squad of soldiers that are trapped in their encampment under sniper-fire. The Unknown Solider disappears in the night, and mysteriously the sniper fire ends shortly after. Who is this mystery man? That’s what the U.S. Government wants to know. Not that they particularly care, as they’ll be recruiting him regardless. Ariel Olivetti and Dan Panosian give us an interesting story that honestly feels more like the set up for a big budget film adaptation than your usual comic book, but that is in no way a bad thing.
In the end, G.I. Combat was a fun read that managed to leave the standard comic book capes and tights out of the picture. G.I. Combat looks to be a great addition to the ever expanding DC Universe!