Author's Note: I've mentioned that these prompts were generated by watching Rise of Cobra and basically scribbling down what came to mind. Since I've already used them, though—and since some of them went in very different directions from the scenes that made me think of them in the first place—I thought it would be fun to give you my original prompt list and note what inspired them. Maybe these images will give other people ideas, too. Thanks for reading!
Spider-Duke: The, argh argh, accelerator suits produced some very un-G.I. Joe images in the film. Chief among these was when, during the race to get the kill switch from the Baroness in Paris, Duke jumped up onto a wall and scales a giant pillar in seconds—looking for all the world like a deranged cross between Spider-Man and Iron Man. This one was sort of inevitable.
Taking my toys: The first of many, many prompts inspired by Storm Shadow. In the film, this pretty much sums up his motivation—Snake-Eyes was the favorite and got all the attention (and probably all the coolest training, too), and he killed their master in revenge for that. Movie-Storm doesn't share.
Sleepy ninja: Also inspired by Storm Shadow. Throughout the film, the actor looks almost exhausted to me; his eyes are red-rimmed, and there are bags and dark circles under them. Clearly, a life of amoral killing is wearing on him. I'm afraid my version of this was a little happier than poor Storm was.
Too human for this: Destro. Oh, so much Destro. Christopher Eccleston is a brilliant actor, and his reactions brought some real poignancy to the scene where the Baroness is almost killed by her nanites. Despite the way the film set him up as an almost-amoral bastard, Eccleston made Destro work, and at times it seemed like he was too human to be part of the film.
Symbolism: . . . it's what happens when an English major watches a film. Giant missiles, built by men, which explode and spray strange substances all over things . . . I'm sorry. I'll go now.
Bring me the head of Conrad Hauser: Pretty much my reaction during the majority of the film.
Pretty when you're homicidal: Scarlett and the Baroness both. Honestly, I can almost understand all those naughty-librarian fetishes now; glasses plus attitude equals a significant effect. And it was brilliant to see the women get a real knock-down-drag-out fight, rather than some creepy excuse to rip clothes off.
All mimes go to heaven: I feel so, so sorry for the mimes of Paris. Their main purpose in life seems to be acting as humorous background for when bad guys destroy Paris, and Rise of Cobra is no exception to that rule.
Good-luck kiss: That's all it was, dammit!
Photo op: The entire team seems addicted to posing as photogenically as possible. Not that I'm complaining . . .
Old-fashioned ninja: A lot of movie ninjas seem to suffer from this, and in Rise of Cobra, Storm Shadow wasn't much of an exception. It's the 21st century, guys! We have more weapons than just variations on the theme of "pointy thing that goes in the other person." (See also: "Silent Interlude.")
That word does not mean what you think it means: Weaponize. Is it a noun? A verb? Hell if I know! All I can figure is that Cobra really, really likes this word. It is, like "fuck," something that can apparently mean anything you want it to mean.
There is a ninja on the roof: And underneath the car. And on the side of the car. And on the ceiling. And in your base. And right behind you, RIGHT NOW.
Fall-down kinda guy: In the comics, Duke is a stand-up kind of guy. In the movie, he is not.
No humans allowed: Apart from Destro and a few moments with some of the Joes, there isn't much life in the cast. Ripcord in particular appears to be a comedy-bot stuck on setting number #62A ("Dayamn, girl!").
Swiss Army ninja: . . . how do they carry all that gear, anyway? Is Snake-Eyes a Time Lord with bottomless pockets? Because that would be brilliant.
How much is too much: Two hundred and sixteen recorded explosions. 'Nuff said.
Information to die for: Inspired by two things: the scene at the end of the Paris chase, when the dying Cobra operatives are facing the Joes after the car crash, and the attack on the Baron de Cobray's lab. In both cases, Cobra operatives are going bare-faced, which means one thing: they don't plan to leave you alive long enough to say anything about their faces.
Cobra Commander never changes: Turning people into snake-people with infusions of Cobra venom, cackling evilly, treating Destro like a disposable paper cup . . . yeah, that sounds about right.
Snark in the face of death: The entire cast. Not that you see me complaining.
Into the valley of death: A wonderful little moment during the rec room scene, and an aspect of Breaker's character that I wish they'd expanded on. When Ripcord heads off with the intention of putting the moves on Scarlett, Breaker says "Into the valley of death rode the six hundred"--a quote from Alfred Lord Tennyson's "The Charge of the Light Brigade," referencing an ambitious and noble but ultimately suicidal endeavor. This little moment made me think they'd combined Breaker with Flint (it seemed like a very Flint thing to do) but it suggested that there was more to Breaker than we got to see. Plus, given the bits of S/SE subtext already, it makes me think happy thoughts of film-Ripcord being discouraged in a very definite way.
No first use: Did they ever actually use the word "ninja"? If they did, I didn't catch it.
Lady of the lake: The Baroness, like the Lady of the Lake, gifts a man with a very remarkable weapon. I don't think the Lady ever weaponized Excalibur, though . . .
Spoil the surprise: Protip for both Cobra Commander and Destro. Don't explain your plans to the good guys.
Handstand by your man: Snake-Eyes handstands twice in the film, once while walking on his fingertips and once balanced on two swords, and I started wondering just how you train for something like that. Plus . . . hell, it looked fun. And "Stand by your Man" is horribly ear-wormish.
Scream for the fun of it: This one bothered me. In the introduction of the Vipers, Rex Lewis specifically said that they have no fear, feel no pain and lack the instinct for self-preservation. So why did they scream when they were blown up? Was it just something they had to get off their chests? ("Hey, viper #26! I think somebody just stuck a grenade down my shirt. Wanna pretend we can feel pain?" "Sure, why not.")
Ginsu: Ninja blades can cut anything, and I do mean anything. Plus, those bladed tonfas would be the best kitchen equipment on the face of the planet. The association was inevitable.
Touching my equipment: Breaker actually says this. "No touching my equipment!" It took a lot to not make this one a sex joke.
Talking too much: The script could have used some polishing. Also, I'm looking at you, General "Exposition" Hawk.
Running with scissors: The entire cast does this. Repeatedly. But to be fair, they're risking their lives for the safety of the whole world (or money, depending on which side they're on) so I can't fault them for it.
Damp hair on my pillow: I kept this one for last, since it was my favorite. During the escape from the collapsing base, Scarlett comes pelting through a door that's just about to close; the water is rushing in and everybody's soaked to the skin, and her hair is a mess. As she comes through the door she sees a certain ninja coming the other way, and yells out "Snake!" almost desperately. The two of them grab on to each other and race for the exit. I had a mental image of the Pit after it was all over, with Scarlett finally getting into some dry clothes and toweling the Arctic ice water out of her hair.
God help me, I'm a fangirl.