"Dreadnoks Declassified" was born out of the overwhelming positive responses to the two other "Declassified" mini-series published by DDP. "Following the success of 'Snake-Eyes: Declassified' and 'G.I. Joe: Declassified,' we wanted to delve into another set of characters with a majorly in depth, yet largely unexplained past," Blaylock told CBR News "Response to the 'Declassified' series has been great, and we plan to continue them for as long as readers demand them."
The title of the mini-series is "Dreadnoks Declassified," but the star of the story is the Dreadnoks' leader. "I'm focusing mostly on Zartan," Blaylock explained. "How he and the Dreadnoks cross paths will be a major part of the story, too, but it might not happen the way people expect it to."
In the regular "G.I. Joe" comics Zartan and his siblings are usually seen as mysterious bad-asses. In "Dreadnoks" some of that mystery will be revealed and readers will see the moments that shaped the series protagonists into the hard cases they are today. "Zartan and his siblings, as most of us, have very defining moments from their childhood that steer them down the path of life they later choose. They're faced with some very tough circumstances, and unfortunately make the wrong choices. They are, after all, the bad guys," Blaylock said. "At first Zartan is known for an amazing ability to impersonate others, and also for a case of schizophrenia and multiple personality disorder. These are all intertwined, and ironically, his ailments are what help him to be so good at his specialty, yet make his problems worse. I'm delving into the origins of these traits, and hint at how they may have gotten out of control.
The action in "Dreadnoks Declassified will take readers to cliff sides, bustling metropolises, and a variety of other locales. "Zartan is a bona-fide globe trotter, and the Dreadnoks are from the land down under," Blaylock explained. "This story takes us through Florida, Vegas, Chicago, France, Australia, Scotland, and a country added to the list of G.I. Joe's other fictitious nations, Rusnia."
Blaylock had to stay mum about the specifics of the actions that go down in the varied settings of "Dreadnoks Declassified." "I don't want to reveal much, because each chapter really is a surprise," he explained. "You'll finally see where Zartan and his siblings come from, from day one, and how they got to be who they are today. That's all I can divulge, lest my own editor put out a hit on me. I've possibly already said too much."
As with many origin stories the worst enemies faced by the cast of "Dreadnoks Declassified" will often be themselves, but that doesn't mean many familiar faces won't appear to oppose or offer assistance to Zartan, his family, and his gang. Blaylock revealed that familiar operatives of both G.I. Joe and Cobra will play very important roles in the series.
Blaylock has had a lot of fun crafting the origin of Zartan, his siblings, and their gang of motorcycle riding roughnecks in "G.I. Joe: Dreadnoks Declassified" and hopes readers who are even remotely intrigued check out the series. "The camps have always been divided on my G.I. Joe stories," Blaylock stated. "Some love them, some not so much, but for whatever reason, I always received a majority of positive response to my handling of the Dreadnoks. When the time came for me to take a crack at the Joes again, this seemed like the natural choice, and it's also something I've had ideas for, for the past five years. It's nice to finally get those silly little voices, I mean ideas, out of my head."