6. Tactical cinema
The original cartoon film's trouble on the way to the screen was eerily prescient for the trouble that others have had getting the characters turned into a movie.
Transformers producer Don Murphy was the first to have a crack at the idea, but the start of the Iraq War meant that the time wasn't right for a conflict-based film.
So Hasbro suggested Murphy instead develop its giant robot franchise, and we all know where that led.
Then, in 2003, Lorenzo di Bonaventura, figuring that people would accept a movie boasting heavy military tech, started work developing a war film.
Hasbro's Brian Goldner got in touch and asked whether he'd be interested in getting G.I. Joe off the ground.
Di Bonaventura and Goldner, who had worked together before, hammered out a story, and then hired 300's Michael Gordon to pen the first draft of the script based on their notes.
The producer wanted an origin story, and, in conjunction with Hasbro, introduced a character named Rex who could be use to explore the main Duke role.
"What the Joes stand for, and what Duke stands for specifically in the movie, is something that I'd like to think a worldwide audience might connect with," he said at the time.
Script drafts began to arrive and di Bonaventura had Four Brothers writers Paul Lovett and David Elliott begin a re-write in February 2005.
Joe's story now found the Rex character horribly corrupted and changed into the Cobra Commander, a man on a mission to - guess what? - rule the world with super-soldiers under the command of Destro.
By 2007, Skip Woods was assigned to another re-write, and added the character Alex Mann from Action Man, giving the film more of an international feel to help sales overseas.
It was then that the first road bump appeared, with Latino Review getting a hold of a copy of the script and leaking details, such as the fact that Cobra had been dumped and Scarlett would be in a love triangle between Duke and his British counterpart.
The reaction from fans was staunchly negative, with di Bonaventura promising that it would improve and that Cobra would return, despite his worries that they were "the stupidest terrorist force in the world" as seen in the cartoon.
Yes, always a good basis for a theory, that.
But thanks to Transformers' success, the Joe project picked up both speed and a new draft from Stuart Beattie, with assistance from freshly-hired Joe comic creator Larry Hama.
Now all they needed was a director...
Next: Shooting starts