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The Viper is Coming source material...

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Old 01-10-2013, 01:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
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The Viper is Coming source material...

As a kid, I’ve always loved “The Viper is Coming.” It’s the one where someone calls Barbeque’s home and announces “This is the Viper” which sounds ominous and threatening. GI Joe preemptively attacks Cobra around the world but doesn’t find “The Viper.” It turns out to be a misunderstanding, The Viper is really the Window Wiper.





I thought it was hilarious as a kid and still thought it was pretty clever when I rewatched it in the recent boxset.



Today, I noticed one of my students reading Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark. I remember these books as a kid as well. The student was reading a short story called “The Viper” in the book. When I glanced over, imagine my surprise that it’s essentially the same story as the GI Joe episode!

It’s a very brief one page story. The line “This is the Viper” and the punchline is the same. I don’t remember reading “The Viper” when I was younger. Then again, I don’t remember about these scary anthologies other than their gruesome pictures.



The copyright in the book is from 1981 while the GI Joe episode broadcasted in 1985. I’m not accusing the GI Joe writer David Bennett Carren of swiping to cause a ruckus. Plus I'm sure most of the cartoons I loved as a kid were inspired by something else. I just think it’s fascinating that two things I enjoyed as a kid had something in common!

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Old 01-10-2013, 01:14 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Even Animaniacs had a story about the "Viper".
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:55 PM   #3 (permalink)
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It's an old joke. I've seen it a kids' joke book too. I give credit to the Joe writers for turning a silly old joke into one of the most memorable episodes of the entire series. Writers rehash old ideas all the time. With Cobra's snake motif, the joke is a perfect fit.
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Old 01-11-2013, 09:16 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I'm pretty sire the Ioe episode was my first exposure to that old chestnut.
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Old 01-11-2013, 09:25 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Yeah, in the sources section of Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark this variant is attributed to a Philidelphia teenager in 1980, and gives mention to another version in book published in the '70s.

It wouldn't surprise me if a writer on the show had a kid that had read the book, and used it as inspiration.

As an aside, they recently republished the first book with new, far less nightmarish illustrations. :(
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Old 01-11-2013, 09:48 AM   #6 (permalink)
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haha good find. that was a great episode.
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Old 01-11-2013, 10:54 AM   #7 (permalink)
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That's my favorite Joe episode.
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Old 01-11-2013, 11:16 AM   #8 (permalink)
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You should show that episode in class.
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Old 01-13-2013, 01:21 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Konigstiger View Post
Yeah, in the sources section of Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark this variant is attributed to a Philidelphia teenager in 1980, and gives mention to another version in book published in the '70s.

It wouldn't surprise me if a writer on the show had a kid that had read the book, and used it as inspiration.

As an aside, they recently republished the first book with new, far less nightmarish illustrations. :(
Ah, I didn't realize there was a source section in the book. Interesting!
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Old 01-13-2013, 01:26 AM   #10 (permalink)
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everybody loves that show cause of the classic "viper", but after watching it again, it also has a lot of good action scenes with vehicles and soldiers and stuff.

definitely one of the best, and the most memorable for my from my childhood.
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