Published on April 2nd, 2024 | by Matt Fischer

Duke #4 (2023) Review

Duke #4 (2023) Review Matt Fischer

Summary: The teams roster has solidified and next issue SHOULD set up the Joe/Cobra conflict in its entirety. If all my gushing over the book hasn’t made it clear already, PICK THIS UP! It’s a solid book.


Vehicles and robots!

Background – Skystrikers, MOBAT’s, and APC’s OH MY!

Writing – So in this “Energon Universe” the Baroness is going to be part of G.I. Joe? Hooray! She and Destro have always been my two favorite Cobra’s and now I don’t have to feel weird about liking a bad guy so much! The dynamic between her and Duke is great. They are basically one and the same. To quote Duke:

“You were a spoiled rich kid who rebelled. But that wasn’t enough.”

It is obvious Duke has a “small” need to be the best. After saving her life from Sgt. Stalker, the team FINALLY gels into a very uneasy unit and discovers the aforementioned vehicles. As the team makes their escape, Duke goes his own way and ends up getting shot down by a debuting Scrap-Iron. To Duke’s credit even the villains are starting to become impressed with him, with Scrap-Iron shocked that he didn’t manage to kill Duke. The issue ends with Duke calling out the people who made the “flying robot” and being attacked by a Cobra B.A.T.!

Artwork – The highlight of the art this issue has got to be that two-page splash of the Joe vehicles roaring into action. We get the MOBAT (Motorized Battle Tank), a Skystriker, and The APC (Amphibious Personnel Carrier) roaring out of the bit and they look GORGEOUS! Tom Reilly is clearly having a ball drawing the Joe and Cobra vehicles. All the Joe vehicles look worn, old, and decommissioned, whereas the Cobra vehicles look spiffy, new, and high-tech. One minor nitpick is the fact that Bludd is not dead. I know he’s just supposed to lose an eye, but the art in the last issue clearly showed Baroness shooting him in the back of the head, although I guess that’s more of a gripe with the previous issue than this one, but still.

Final Thoughts – Vehicles abound in this issue as Duke has arrived for a final confrontation with Starscream, not realizing he has even bigger problems to worry about. Next issue SHOULD set up the Joe/Cobra conflict in its entirety. I’m just hoping that Duke learns that Starscream has nothing to do with this so he can have a clear head going forward against Cobra. He’s going to need it. If all this gushing over the book hasn’t made it clear already, PICK THIS UP! It’s a solid book.

Final score: 5 out of 5 stars

Comic Details

Publisher:  Image
Writer:  Joshua Williamson
Artist: Tom Reilly
Colorist:  Jordie Bellaire
Letterer: Rus Wooton
Genre:  Superhero
Format: Monthly
Release Date: 03/27/2024

About the Author'

Lover of all things nerdy. Reader of Comics for over 25 years. DC encyclopedia. Marvel lover. Indie side guy.

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