10 - Commune Leader
"Do not fight if you don't have to. Do not hate. Patience and love will bring unimaginable rewards."
Not much is known of the background of the man many call FATHER COBRA. What we can tell is how he works and how he thinks. We know that he has deliberately started political and social movements in a number of areas. He has amassed a cult by recruiting displaced people, promising them love, self-sufficiency and a chance to get back on their feet in the world that until now only hurt them. In return, he requests that they swear loyalty to his cause. What is his cause? "Love and world peace."
Father Cobra may be deluding himself by justifying his actions as matters of principles or glory. He claims he doesn’t do it for control or power. He certainly seems merciful and loving, if completely obsessed. A laid-back person, he leads more by inspiration than direct command, and doesn't need to personally oversee vital projects himself, wiling instead to delegate to whomever has the right combination of passion and skill. While a man of peace, Father Cobra has engaged in military combat on occasion when no peaceful means of resolution could be found and innocent lives were at stake.
At one time Cobra lived openly, in compounds across California and the American Southwest. However, frequent raids by the government, during which children were taken, houses burned, and people killed, led Cobra to go back into hiding. Now they meet in secret, in back rooms and basements all across the Midwest and the world.
Father Cobra is a distinctive figure, even with his face hidden behind a Japanese tenugui, his head covered by cloth zukin hood. His customized shinobi shōzoku outfit is a unique combination of ancient and modernized garb. Beneath his gappa travel cape he wears a katabira jacket with a prominent green Cobra logo. His legs are covered by black and red hakama, and his feet are covered in jika-tabi split-toe boots. A katata is worn on Father Cobra’s back, held tightly to his body by a matte black scabbard. If Father Cobra didn’t seem so calm and self-possessed, the outfit might look slightly ridiculous, but on this man they make him look either dangerous or protective, depending on whether one is a follower or threat.
Father Cobra's lined face is kind but resolute. With his long white-streaked red hair and bushy ‘stash, he looks more like a hippie throwback from the 60s than President Colton’s characterization of him as “the most dangerous man alive.”
Jesse Romeo was born June 7, 1949. As a child, Romeo studied Kodokan Judo and later studied Kyūdō (Japanese archery) and Iaido (Japanese martial art swordsmanship). Planning to become a painter, Hama attended Manhattan's High School of Art and Design, but ultimate followed his older brother Dan into the military. However, finding military life not to his liking, he chose not to reinlist at the end of his tour, and instead got a job temporarily as a used car salesman to support himself while he worked on his art.
Romeo, however, found he had a flare for sales, and soon wound up buying out the owner, going into business for himself. Abandoning art, Romeo became more and more focused on material acquisition, marrying a trophy wife and driving flashy sports cars around town, hiding his eyes behind thousand-dollar shades.
His life changed the night he learned that a car crash had taken the life of his older brother Dan, who had been driving drunk. Becoming very introspective about the nature of life and death, the future Cobra leader sold his car lot and devoted his life to the search for inner meaning and peace.
Father Cobra was happier with his new life, but it created domestic problems with his wife, who was concerned at his new, seemingly shiftless existence. After his wife gave birth to a son, Billy, she expected him to settle down and get another "real" job. Instead he took the child and left his wife, becoming increasingly agitated with the problems of "the system." He traveled across America with Billy, seeking out people who shared his desire to topple the dominance of big business and the government, using money donated by his new followers.
Father Cobra then moved to the town of Springfield, where the businesses were struggling and the population had become disillusioned with existing policy. He applied his influence to reinvigorate the township and eventually became its spritual guide. Within the town, he established a clandestine cult group called Cobra.
When Billy entered his "teen rebellion" years, he left his father, rejecting his peaceful hippy ways and joining the US military. Father Cobra despaired over his son's choice, but told him to live his life as he saw fit, trying to support his offspring no matter what path he took.
When Storm Shadow rejected his family's business of assassination, his search for a new purpose in life eventually led him to Cobra, which Storm Shadow joined, pledging loyalty to Father Cobra as his personal bodyguard. Feeling that Father Cobra was his new family, Storm Shadow taught him the secrets of the Arashikage Clan so they may be passed on even in the event of Storm Shadow's death.
Cobra's influence spread throughout the world, giving hope to those under the thumb of oppressive governments everywhere. Father Cobra himself became an international symbol of change, peace, and revolution. Eventually, Cobra became so large that Father Cobra could no longer lead it on his own, and so he recruited created a "Faithful Inner Circle", which included Zartan, Duchess Anastasia DeCobray, and Scottish philanthropist James McCullen Destro. This varied staffing led to occasional power-struggles within the organization as different leaders chose different avenues to change, but Father Cobra's benevolent leadership manages to keep the movement together through thick times and thin.
At one time Cobra lived openly, in compounds across California and the American Southwest. However, frequent raids by the government, during which children were taken, houses burned, and people killed led Cobra to go into hiding. Now they meet in secret, in back rooms and basements all across the Midwest and the world. Father Cobra goes from town to town in disguise, meeting with his followers and preaching a message of patience and peace even in the face of constant government oppression. He knows his followers have militarized out of necessity to defend themselves, and after seeing so many killed outright he doesn’t blame or condemn them. However, he holds out hope that someday guns won’t be necessary, and in the meantime tries to hold the movement together in spite of any adversity.
Father Cobra's most recent success was helping Lt. Bludd rescue his son from the clutches of G.I. Joe. Following that success, Scott and his father pledged their loyalty to Cobra. During Christmas of 2009, Father Cobra visited the Bludds dressed as Santa, bringing gifts for each member of Bludd's family.
In early 2010, Father Cobra discussed with Slipstream the possibility of sneaking Lt. Bludd's wife and daughter out of the country, using false identification, in a chartered or stolen plane. However, before details could be worked out with Bludd, the Duchess, and Xamot and Tomax, Bludd was captured by Cobra and held at their Burpleson Air Force Base. In response to threats to his family, Bludd eventually revealed the whereabouts of Cobra's headquarters in Springfield. Fearing this possible eventuality, Father Cobra has been moving his supporters out of Springfield.
Father Cobra is an ex-60s hippie who got militarilized after his compound was attacked by ruthless G.I. Joe thugs.
Taught self-defense by Tommy Arashikage, Father Cobra was made an honorary member of the Arashikage clan by Tommy after Tommy himself left the main clan in disgust to seek his own path as a peaceful martial arts instructor and recruiter for Cobra.
Father Cobra is seen as a peace movement leader the likes of Martin Luthor King or Ghandi by his supporters. G.I. Joe sees him more as an early Malcolm X or David Koresh.
- October 8 - New Home - Father Cobra records a message for his people.
- 23 September - "I See Right Through You" - On the hunt for his Shattered Glass alternate self, Major Bludd meets the Shattered Glass version of Cobra Commander, a strange bathrobe-clad man known as Father Cobra.
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