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Comic Riffs
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Posted at 11:02 AM ET, 04/05/2013

‘G.I. JOE: RETALIATION: Film wins over not only box-office rivals, but also the ‘father’ of G.I. Joe comics

“G.I.: RETALIATION” may have gotten splattered by RottenTomatoes.com (with an abysmal “29 percent” score) and savaged via Metacritic.com (a woeful “41”), but the film is winning in two other notable arenas.

Dwayne Johnson plays Roadblock and Ray Park plays Snake Eyes in “G.I. Joe: Retaliation.” (. - PARAMOUNT PICTURES)
First, of course, is the box office, as “G.I. Joe” — which stars that action triumvirate of Dwayne Johnson, Bruce Willis and Channing Tatum — topped the box office with a $40.5-million domestic debut last weekend (the second-biggest Easter bow-in ever) and a $51.7-million four-day take, according to distributor Paramount. The flick, directed by Jon Chu, has now grossed more than $142-million worldwide — or nearly half the ultimate take of the first G.I. Joe film, 2009’s “The Rise of the Cobra.”

Now, though, “Retaliation” has also found favor with that esteemed “father” of G.I. Joe comics, Larry Hama — who launched Marvel’s “A Real American” series based on the Hasbro toy line.

Adrianne Palicki and Bruce Willis in "G.I. Joe: Retaliation." (Jaimie Trueblood - AP)
And Hama is honest about his expectations.

“I went to see “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” expecting to hate it, and was pleasantly surprised,” Hama tells Comic Riffs.

“Retaliation,” Hama says, is “much more character-driven than the first one, and the focus is on the right characters with a minor quibble about the disappearance of Scarlett.

“There are less silly sci-fi gadgets, the action scenes are about people [and] not CGI vehicles — they also make sense — and Mr. Chu shows respect for the original characterizations,” Hama continues.

“Oh, and Snake-Eyes doesn’t speak, and there’s no sinking ice.”

By  |  11:02 AM ET, 04/05/2013

Tags:  g.i. joe, box office, larry hama

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