Iron Cobra Vs. The PCP Army

Kickstarter Image Promo

Codename: Iron Cobra vs. the PCP Army issue #1 Kickstarter. Writer/Artist Ryan Smith. Close date – December 16th 2014. Publication date – May 2015

Ryan Smith writes,

Codename: Iron Cobra vs. the PCP Army is a comic book mini-series about Tom Hunter, a Delta Force operator recruited by a clandestine organization within the C.I.A. during the 1980's. He was given a license to kill and tasked to wage a one man war against drugs. This clandestine organization gave him a codename: Iron Cobra. The series follows Iron Cobra as he travels from his home base in Miami to the San Fernando Valley to investigate an incident involving kids freaking out on PCP in candy form. While there, he uncovers an elaborate KGB plot to unite the gangs of Los Angeles, creating the largest cold-war stand off since the Cuban missile crisis.

Iron Cobra Promo Poster 2

I created Codename: Iron Cobra out of love for the 1980's and action comic books, movies, and television shows. Examples like Steven Grant's work on the Punisher, Frank Miller's Daredevil specifically issues #182-184; and the Keebler sponsored Teen Titans comic heavily influenced this series. Then there is the influence of action movies like Commando, Scarface, Die Hard, Escape From New York, Deadly Prey, and all of the Rambo movies (just to scratch the surface) that were so prevalent in the 1980's. This series was also influenced heavily by the television show Cops which always reminded me of Fahrenheit 451 with the televised police chase of Montag escaping, and the police killing someone they claim is Montag in order to give the public a release and to uphold the confidence in the state and the perceived certitude of punishment. On Cops I've only seen one person get away in a chase and I've watched a lot of episodes. The police statistics in real life don't fare as well. I imagine that criminals watching Cops probably root for the "bad boys" only to be constantly disappointed and, in the end, subconsciously relieved that it's not them getting busted. Then there is Miami Vice (the television successor to Scarface), with its pastel colors and Italian sports cars, that brought the fashion and lifestyle of 1980's Miami to the world at large. The 1980's also introduced us to one of televisions best action shows of all time: the A-Team, an ex-special forces outlaw team of mercenaries for good. The A-Team had awesome and memorable characters, lots of action, and a great concept. Plus it was just a lot of fun.

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The character of Iron Cobra is part Billy Idol, part Val Kilmer's Iceman from Top Gun with the sensibilities of Judge Dredd, U.S. Agent, and Casey Jones from TMNT. I wanted to create a character that could only exist within the confines of the 1980's. He would be completely in his element in this decade. Don't be mistaken, Iron Cobra is not a cookie cutter archetype (e.g. Arnold Schwarzenegger-type clone) which has been done time and time again. He is more unique with contradictions and humanity, finding himself constantly in adverse situations.

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What sets this series apart from anything remotely similar to it is that I have not seen a work of fiction that critically analyzes the war on drugs in the 1980's. The 1980's are rife with potential story arcs that have not been fully explored in fiction. There is the Iran/Contra and Oliver North scandal, Ronald and Nancy's war on Drugs with D.A.R.E and the Just Say No campaign. Everyone was in on the Anti-Drug campaign. It was in schools, on television, in movies, comics, Arcade games, on candy wrappers. It was everywhere. The reason why I am so compelled to bring this project to life is because I have not seen this before and I know that it needs to exist. If I don't do it, someone else will. It's only a matter of time.

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The funds for this Kickstarter will go towards production, printing, shipping, rewards, and promotion of issue #1 of Codename: Iron Cobra vs. the PCP Army. Back the first issue of Codename: Iron Cobra vs. the PCP Army on Kickstarter which ends December 16th, 2014 and be a part of the ultimate 1980's comic book!


About Rich Johnston

Head writer and founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world. Living in London, father of two. Political cartoonist.

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