"And this is how I win the world. This juncture of course is usually where the wheels come off. But not this time. Cutting the traitor Major Bludd's heart in half right in front of you, right here in this room, should have gotten the point across. It suited me once to appear weak and cowardly because it motivated you "people" to think. But today, is a new day. There will be no move to take over my command, there will be no mistakes. There will be NONE OF YOUR CRAP! NONE OF IT! Work with me, I will give you the world in less then 24 hours. Work against me, and I will gut you like a fish. Right here."
open/close all foldersComic Books, by publication date
- G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero (Marvel) & Devil's Due series:
- The original Cobra Commander himself is, underneath any silliness or ridiculous behavior, a truly vile, heinous monster who has earned his title of the Arch-Enemy of the G.I. Joes. A former car salesman who got his start with well-intentioned goals following the death of his brother, the Commander quickly moved beyond this altruistic outlook, growing in ambition and love for power as he killed thousands of people in his various maniacal plots. Returning from the grave after a seeming change of heart, the Commander brags that he has thrown away all of his humanity and redeeming qualities, illustrating this by burying his own son alive along with many of his former allies. Orchestrating a variety of atrocities that ranged from nuking cities to dropping acid rain onto others, the Commander throws away the lives of hundreds of loyal recruits to illustrate his cruelty, and his villainy culminates in the final arc of the Devil's Due series, in which the Commander murders his son, Billy, simply to prove that he can, and tries to wipe out all life on Earth so he can feel like a god. Cobra Commander goes through a variety of character twists and turns, but always is brought back to his roots: a psychopath who willingly, happily has chosen to destroy his humanity and embrace pure evil for the power and glory it brings him.
- "Dr. Venom", real name Claude Vinim note , is the original Mad Scientist for Cobra, who came into the organization after burning a college dean alive for attempting to expose Venom's murder of his own father. Developing the Brainwave Scanner for Cobra, Venom deliberately designs the machine to cause the maximum amount of pain to its victims, using it to Mind Rape anyone unfortunate enough to cross Cobra. After making an Arch-Enemy out of Snake Eyes by using the Brainwave Scanner on him, Venom brutally beats the defenseless G.I. Joe, betrays and tries to kill him when they are forced to team up, and shoots one of Snake Eyes's partners, Kwinn, In the Back when the man showed Venom mercy. Though seemingly killed after a failed attempt to poison the United States's money supply and kill millions, Venom returns, having copied his brain into a computer program, and begins bodyjacking several people, using them in his mad experiments on innocents to kill or subjugate every member of G.I. Joe and Cobra alike. Though lacking in appearances of other leadership of Cobra, Venom's despicable crimes and scoffing of love and caring relationships marks him as one of the worst criminals to ever grace Cobra's ranks.
- Vance Wingfield, debuting in "Operation: Wingfield", is a military tactician obsessed with the idea of survival of the fittest, and, believing that a large portion of humanity has become weak, sets out to cull mankind. Wingfield plans to frame America for dropping a nuclear bomb onto a highly populated Russian city, then ride out the ensuing World War III before rising up and ruling over whatever of humanity is left. To aid in his endeavors, Wingfield subjects numerous men to Training from Hell, while attempting to turn their children into Child Soldiers, and eventually tries to blow up himself, his followers, and their entire families with another nuke to ensure a nuclear holocaust starts even if he is dead. Surviving this event, though crippled, Wingfield goes on to create a virus that can pull satellites down from orbit, and proceeds to drop satellites onto both Chicago and Silicon Valley, killing thousands of men, women, and children, planning to do the same to Washington, D.C. and New York City as well. Even after death, Wingfield's crimes continue, as his son Tyler, whom Wingfield horribly abused and corrupted into becoming like him, tries to continue his father's legacy, threatening millions of lives, all the while unaware that his father was planning to kill him as a child because he was showing weakness. Vance Wingfield stood out even among the terrorist organization Cobra as one of the few wholly irredeemable villains the G.I. Joes faced in their original comic run.
- Special Missions (Marvel Spinoff):
- "Words of Honor": Doktor Otto Totenschadel is a Nazi war criminal seeking to escape any form of retribution for his past crimes, no matter the cost. A vicious sadist who oversaw concentration camps and experimented on thousands of innocent people to perfect his horrific "Sarin Plus" nerve gas, Totenschadel hoped for it to be used in World War II to kill millions. However, realizing that a direct deployment of his nerve gas on American soil would lead to him being relentlessly hunted by America's governments, Totenschadel betrayed and murdered several of his fellow Nazis to enable himself to vanish with priceless treasures. When, decades later, Totenschadel is tracked down by Israeli militants seeking his head, the despicable former Nazi tries to hand off his Sarin Plus to Cobra in exchange for protection, uncaring of the millions Cobra will endanger with the nerve gas.
- "Decisions": Bill and Mary are a pair of sadistic terrorists who, along with their partner Erich, go on a vicious shooting spree at a packed airport, gunning down innocent families and civilians with smiles on their faces and while laughing in glee. Killing seventeen people in this rampage, Bill and Mary then take a family hostage inside their home and stage themselves as the hostage family, hoping for the G.I. Joes to mistake the family as the terrorists and kill them in Bill and Mary's place. When this plan fails, Bill tries to kill the whole family before Mary takes the young son Mikey as a hostage, holding a gun to his head and threatening to shoot him in his kneecaps if he struggles, hoping to use him to escape then kill the boy anyway.
- "Forced Play": Nobel Peetman is a Darklonian ambassador who seeks to discredit and wipe out the Lower Darklonian Separatist Front to ensure the dictator Darklon continues to reign supreme and empower Peetman. Pretending to be an ally to the LDSF, Peetman supplies them with bombs and manipulates them into targeting a National History museum, leading to hundreds of civilians being endangered and ran over by the terrorists, before orchestrating their deaths or captures by G.I. Joe. Executing the leader of the LDSF after revealing how he tricked them, Peetman reveals his plan to bomb an elementary school while hundreds of children are inside, then frame the LDSF, annihilating any good will the group has and securing the power bases of Darklon and himself.
- Extreme comic miniseries:
- Iron Klaw is the main villain the military team the G.I. Joes confront in this comic miniseries, and handily the worst. The leader of the terrorist group Soldiers of Kaos, Anarchy, and Ruin, or S.K.A.R., surpassed in rank only by the Duchess, Iron Klaw murdered his way to the top position of the group, and is a horrific boss, murdering his henchmen for everything from accidentally touching him, to simply assert his ego. After murdering the Duchess when she slowly shows disgust for his homicidal plans for world domination, Iron Klaw murders a man, taking out many of his soldiers in the same instance, to steal his political position, and proceeds to steal the powerful crop hormone known as Ferti-gel, poisons it, then plans to spread it across numerous countries to plunge them into famine and drought in order to blackmail the world with his massive supply of food. Even when forced into an Enemy Mine situation with the Joes against Red Scream, Iron Klaw takes every opportunity to betray and try to murder his "allies". Iron Klaw was a complete sociopath who was only concerned with his own personal power.
- Inferno is a psychopathic Mad Bomber who, though only a minor servant of Iron Klaw in the present, is revealed to be a truly wicked individual in his backstory, shown in the short arc From the Ashes. Using his pyrotechnic skills, Inferno bombed more than half a dozen military bases, killing dozens of innocent American soldiers, and follows it up by blowing up an American intelligence agency, killing more than thirty people. After bombing the recently-created G.I. Joe base, wiping out most of the starting Joes, Inferno goes on to try and kill the President of the United States with an explosive during a mass funeral for his own victims, fully aware of the dozens of military families present as well.
- Crossovers with Transformers:
- Transformers/G.I. Joe, written by John Ney Rieber: Cobra Commander continues to prove himself capable of being an irredeemable psychopath when it comes to adaptations of his original iteration. With Cobra serving as a stand-in for the Nazi Party, Commander runs his empire with the same cruel egomania that the Nazis were known for. After discovering the Decepticons hidden in an ancient monastery whose inhabitants he has just had slaughtered, Commander forcefully takes control of the Decepticons and forces them to lay waste to numerous countries across Europe, including Berlin and Rome. Any survivors of these massacres, including the children, are forced into slave camps, and, later, used as human shields against the Commander's enemies. After forcing a Decepticon to exhaust all his energy in wantonly laying waste to enemies and allies alike, the Commander reveals his plan to use the Decepticons to institute a new world order under his rule where only the strong will survive and serve under his thumb. Cobra Commander is a megalomaniac whose status as a stand-in for the Nazi leadership makes him one of the most realistic, and wicked, baddies throughout the G.I. Joe franchise.
- G.I. Joe vs. the Transformers:
- G.I. Joe vs. the Transformers II, written by Dan Jolley: Shockwave is a coldly ruthless Decepticon who assumed control of Cybertron after the disappearances of Optimus Prime and Megatron, and now rules it with an iron fist, crushing any rebellion against him. Scheming to invade Earth, Shockwave successfully turns the planet into a warzone, killing billions of humans and keeping countless more as slave labor who he routinely executes by the dozen when they fall behind in their workloads. When the past is altered and Earth is saved from this invasion, Shockwave instead attempts to bring about a time fracture upon Earth, bathing the planet in nuclear fire for decades and wiping out all life on the planet so he can then gut the planet of its resources, and planning to keep human survivors as experiments for him to vivisect.
- Black Horizon, written by Tim Seeley: Unicron is the Chaos Bringer, a planet-sized Transformer that devours entire planets and keeps thousands of survivors as tortured, mind-altered slaves inside his body until they die and he replaces them with new victims. Having devoured countless planets over millennia, Unicron struck a deal with Cobra-La on Earth that he would spare the planet for a few centuries until there were billions of humans populating it, at which point Unicron would return and consume them all, leaving the barren husk for Cobra-La to rule. When the G.I. Joes and Transformers try to stop Unicron as he causes natural disasters worldwide and kills countless people, Unicron sics his "antibodies" on them, gleefully boasting his plans to slowly eat them all alive in the same fell swoop that he consumes Earth.
- Golobulus, also from Black Horizon, is Unicron's agent on Earth, ruling over Cobra-La and using his forces to scheme for Unicron's return. Capturing and twisting several Transformers into his monstrous slaves, Golobulus uses them to slaughter anyone who tries to uncover his plans, and even takes humans captive to be kept as tortured pets. Threatening and abusing his own people should they fail him, Golobulus, believing humanity to be a blight upon the Earth, summons Unicron to Earth to wipe out the entire race so that himself and Cobra-La can reign over the planet, and tries to brutally kill the G.I. Joe soldier Firewall as a "sacrifice" to Unicron in celebration of the genocide of humanity.
- Cobra Commander is, much like many of his other incarnations, a pure evil lunatic in this mini-series created to make a more realistic take on the franchise. As the leader of the terrorist group Cobra, the Commander is a power-hungry madman obsessed with bringing America to its knees, and kicks the story off by blowing up the Golden Gate Bridge and the many innocents on it. Going on to try and steal the United States Constitution, the Commander's ultimate plan is to drop the Omega Black virus onto a highly-populated city, which will painfully rot the bodies of the millions infected by it before melting their brains, at which point he will blackmail other cities to cow to his whims. When the Joes show up to stop him, the Commander attempts to simply launch as many nukes as possible as he makes his retreat. Despite his seemingly-benevolent attitude toward his minions, this is completely thrown out the window when he is revealed to ruthlessly execute anyone who fails him, even animals, and goes a murder spree of his own soldiers for the pettiest of reasons. Though slightly implied to have a tragic backstory and many claims of well-intentioned goals, Cobra Commander is ultimately shown to be a remorseless and deranged tyrant with nothing but greed and evil itself driving him.
- Firefly is a mercenary-turned-Cobra agent who takes joy in classical music and blowing things up. After bombing the Golden Gate bridge in Cobra's name, killing dozens, Firefly derails a train and executes the surviving passengers with a gun to steal supplies which he uses to take over an oil rig whose staff he massacres. Firefly murders anyone who tries to approach the rig, and later mocks a Joe over the fact that Firefly killed the man's girlfriend in a previous job.
- IDW comic:
- Krake is a brutal, vicious Cobra leader who carves a path of destruction straight into the position of Commander. Born in a war-torn country, Krake raised himself to be a cold-blooded mercenary, able and willing to kill anyone in his way in his path to power and survival. Upon joining Cobra, Krake carries out a bevy of missions chosen for him, notably leading an attempted massacre of a village detrimental to Cobra's operations, until he is chosen as a candidate for Cobra Commander, at which point he assassinates a fellow candidate and orchestrates the deaths of hundreds of G.I. Joes to secure his election. As Cobra Commander, Krake quickly orders the murders of the entire Cobra Council to secure his permanent reign; invades and nukes the country of Nanzhao, killing hundreds; and executes dozens of Cobra prisoners and any Cobra troops who have no usefulness to the organization any longer. Under Krake's more aggressive Cobra, terrorist attacks endangering civilians are faked to kill enemies of Cobra; an entire city is nearly destroyed to frame the G.I. Joes; and young children are taken captive to force their parents to do work for the organization, all of this working together to cement Krake's Cobra as the most evil the organization has ever been.
- Xamot Paoli is the more sadistically inclined, ambitious twin brother of the pragmatic Tomax. Committing a variety of war crimes and atrocities throughout his life alongside his brother, from slavery to exterminating hundreds of innocent people, Xamot makes a personal enemy with the G.I. Joe Chuckles when he tricks Chuckles into killing his own Love Interest for an ultimately pointless reason. After being scarred across his face by Chuckles for this, Xamot grows more unhinged and deranged, culminating in his concoction of a scheme to murder the Cobra High Command—starting with his own brother—which Xamot personally kicks off by massacring an entire room of defenseless Cobra agents. Though sharing many of his crimes with his brother, Xamot is the more proactive and crueler of the duo, and uses his relatively few appearances to make his own mark.
- Rodrigo Vargas is one of the candidates to become the next Cobra Commander, and a Mad Scientist to boot. A sadistically curious lunatic who is introduced covered in blood from an experiment, Vargas begins his campaign to become the new Commander by seemingly donating countless medicine to the city of Kariba, Zimbabwe, as an act of charity; in reality, Vargas has poisoned the medicine, infecting hundreds of thousands with a monstrous plague that drives them into bloodthirsty insanity. As Kariba turns into a war zone of infected citizens tearing the military and each other apart while the government firebombs it, Vargas, suspecting his girlfriend of being a counterintelligence agent, infects her with a brain-eating parasite that destroys her free will centers, before offering her the choice of killing herself, or letting the parasite continue its course and give her an agonizing death. Even when infected with his own virus, Vargas just laughs that there is no cure, bragging that he was planning on letting the virus spiral out of Kariba and kill millions as nothing but a "test" for it, after which he could target anywhere he wanted with a horrible, plague-induced death.
- Firefly is a Cobra operative skilled in pyrotechnics and sabotage who absolutely loves his job. Introduced blowing up a building filled with dozens of people as one of his jobs for Cobra, which is something he routinely does, Firefly later attempts to blow up an entire casino filled with hundreds on Tomax Paoli's orders, showing visible annoyance when many of the patrons flee and lower the body count. Not restricted to just destruction of buildings, Firefly flings a live grenade into a crowd of innocents to kill them all as a distraction for his escape, and assists in Cobra's takeover of an entire town by walking into a police station and burning the entire staff alive with a flamethrower.
- Blacklight is a Cobra sniper with a cold love of killing. Carrying out a bevy of assassinations on Cobra's orders, Blacklight, when sent to capture a scientist for his superiors, tricks a group of college students into being his bullet shields and kills a security guard to accomplish his goal. Later killing a large group of G.I. Joes but failing at his larger mission, Blacklight is left out in the cold by the Baroness for this failure, and instantly begins planning his return to Cobra. Blacklight travels across the world, completing his trip by threatening and murdering several people for their transportation, and tries to assassinate a traitorous Cobra agent before slaughtering a security patrol and destroying an entire building full of people. Blacklight's final appearances sees him plunge two G.I. Joes and their charge into complete darkness, Blacklight happily planning to kill them off one by one in darkness while he just smiles about it.
- Skull Buster is the recruit trainer for Cobra, and a sadistic brute to boot. To train potential recruits, Skull Buster takes them on long treks through isolated locations such as deserts or jungles, forcing them to start out naked and starved. When any of the recruits show weakness, such as decreasing mental health or revulsion at eating raw meat, Skull Buster wastes no time in ruthlessly killing them. Along their travels, Skull Buster has his troops murder any and all people they come across, be they Taliban soldiers or innocent villagers—including children—in order to steal their supplies. Doing this routine weekly on separate groups each time, Skull Buster enjoys his job way too much, and takes sadistic pleasure in any of his trainees' deaths, be they by his hand, their own weakness, or suicide. Though having limited appearances, Skull Buster made his mark as the most wicked low-level villain in the story.
- Chimera is a former Green Beret who got rich from manipulating stocks, but when his crimes were discovered and his money taken from him, he murdered his entire family before going on the run. Undergoing facial reconstruction surgery, Chimera bombs the clinic where he had his operation to kill anyone who saw his face, and later murders numerous police officers who try to arrest him. Taking over a gang of thugs after executing their current leader, Chimera kidnaps a governor's daughter, claiming his plans to use her for ransom to his gang, before sadistically murdering her in front of her father to show his true goal isn't money, but destruction. Chimera reveals he has set two timers, one of which will release a toxin that will kill millions of people worldwide, the other which will leak stock market strategies and money laundering secrets to corrupt individuals, and will lead to economic failure within a few years. Though killed while trying to murder numerous Joes, Chimera's money laundering secrets are still leaked online. Demented and sadistic, Chimera may have been one of the earlier major villains the Joes faced, but he was easily one of the worst.
- Future Noir: In this non-canon, alternate universe, the sociopathic Dr. Mindbender is portrayed as far worse than his mainstream counterpart. Mindbender performs horrifying experiments on numerous innocents, including children, who are drawn into the cult of Cobra. These experiments leave them as hideous monsters in constant agony that he uses to kill anyone who defies Cobra. With raving fanaticism for his leader, Serpentor, Mindbender plans to spread a toxin countrywide that will turn all it infects into monstrous and mangled beasts in order to leave only the "pureness" of the Cobra cult to exist in the world. Commiting his crimes For Science! and misanthropy, Mindbender stood out as a wicked monster who more than made up for the relatively low quantity his crimes with the sheer monstrosity of said crimes.
- Danger Girl/G.I. Joe, written by Andy Hartnell: Cobra Commander is as ruthless and unhinged as often portrayed, establishing himself to his command staff by slashing a Cobra soldier to death for another's offhand insult. Planning to use unearthed nuclear missiles to wipe out millions of people across the globe and threaten countless more until they cow to Cobra, the Commander sends his soldiers to implant homing beacons for the missiles at their targets, taunting his troops all the while that he has no plans to hesitating to fire the missiles when the beacons are ready, uncaring if they are caught up in the blast.
- Street Fighter x G.I. Joe, written by Aubrey Sitterson: M. Bison is the domineering dictator of Mriganka and the founder of the Shadaloo crime syndicate, using his resources to host a massive fighting tournament so as to power his Psycho Drive with the dueling energies. Teaming up with Destro as his partner, M. Bison also mocks Cammy over her time as one of Bison's enslaved, brainwashed soldiers, and brutally beats her to near death for fun. Bison's ultimate plan is to use his Psycho Drive to orchestrate the destruction of several major cities around the world, killing millions of people until the world cows to him, and reveals he will kill Destro as well when he outlives his usefulness.
- G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero vs. The Six Million Dollar Man, written by Ryan Ferrier: Cobra Commander himself plots to Take Over the World. He starts by having Baroness and Doctor Mindbender brainwash Steve Austin, The Six Million Dollar Man, into joining them, while Commander and Cobra forces take over the massive Infinity Centre skyscraper in Switzerland, taking over the top floor and threatening the lives of the inhabitants. Promising a "bloodbath" if anybody challenges his rule, Commander has Baroness and her henchmen attempt to bring down Air Force One and kill everyone on board, ultimately aiming to prevent the signing of a global peace accord on the Frisian Islands. When this fails, Commander's contingency plan is to have Baroness activate Austin's arm—basically turning it into a nuclear weapon—and attempt to blow up the island, killing thousands of people.
Animated Works, by release date
- G.I. Joe: The Movie: Golobulus is the ruler of Cobra-La and by far the most depraved villain to come from the original animated series. An ancient serpent entity who once lorded over Earth, Golobulus emerges from a deep hibernation thousands of years later to the sight of humanity having blossomed. Refusing to share the planet with anyone else and finding humans to be disgusting apes, Golobulus created the terrorist organization Cobra and installed Cobra Commander as his puppet, using the group to commit a variety of atrocities against the human race in an attempt to exterminate or subjugate them. Tired of Commander's constant inept failures, Golobulus painfully transforms the man into a snake, then reveals his plans to repeat a similar process on the entirety of humankind, reducing billions to submissive beasts for Golobulus to lord over. When the G.I. Joes attempt to thwart his plans, Golobulus sadistically brutalizes and tries to murder them all, bragging his intent to bathe in their blood before moving on to conquer all humans.
- Sgt. Savage and his Screaming Eagles: Lieutenant Garrison "General Blitz" Krieger, aka Dr. Garret Stromm, quickly establishes himself as one of the most evil characters in the franchise. A member of the IRON (International Robotic Operations Network) Army in World War II, Krieger infiltrated the U.S. Army and served in Sgt. Savage's unit, all of whom he led into a trap, with only Savage surviving the ensuing slaughter. Krieger then subjects Savage to horrific experiments in his attempts to create a super-soldier to help The IRON Army win the war. Having Savage cryogenically frozen after The IRON Army's defeat, Krieger turns himself into a cyborg and spends the next 50 years re-establishing The IRON Army in secret, helping to create the terrorist group Cobra in the process. When Savage's frozen body is located by the G.I. Joes, Krieger dispatches an executioner robot to kill Savage and any Joes that get in its way. Krieger then initiates his master plan: Using a satellite weapon to take control of Earth's computer systems, then leading The IRON Army in the conquest of the world. Savage, though brutally beaten and taunted by Krieger, manages to stop his plan, but not before Krieger makes his escape. A vicious would-be dictator, Krieger was willing to betray, torture, and murder anyone who got in his way to ensure The IRON Army's domination of the world.
- G.I. Joe Extreme: Iron Klaw is the maniacal leader of SKAR (Soldiers of Khaos, Anarchy and Ruin), using his public guise of Count Von Rani to cover up his heinous acts. Iron Klaw abuses and threatens his own minions into submission and regularly endangers innocents in his schemes for power, never hesitating to test out a new weapon or acquired Kill Sat on entire cities. In one of his most horrific crimes, Iron Klaw subjected dozens of captured men to experiments that left them mutilated monstrosities that he abandoned to die, and when the sole "success", Wreckage, lost his memory, Iron Klaw manipulated him into believing America was behind his trauma, and uses him as a weapon that he discards as soon as he runs out of usefulness. Iron Klaw's grandest scheme comes when he invades a meeting of dozens of world leaders and infects them all with a deadly plague, using them as hostages to enable his takeover of America, and, when Iron Klaw's attempts to gain control of America's nuclear weapons to use in a conquest of Earth fails, he orders the world leaders be burned alive and their screams broadcasted for all his enemies to hear.
- Sigma 6: Cobra Commander is as bombastically villainous as always, and despite the heavy censorship of this series, stands out as a purely evil warlord. Using "Thor's Hammer" to obliterate the G.I. Joe base of operations, the Commander then attempts to use "Thor's Hammer" to carve off the entire East Coast of America so as to invade it and create his own country, uncaring of the massive casualties that would ensue. The Commander pulls off a variety of other terrorist acts that endanger many innocent people—all while threatening the lives of his minions and command council for the slightest of failures—and reaches the apex of his evil when he unveils the Terrordrome. Using the Terrordrome, the Commander throws all of Earth's weather into catastrophic conditions, causing floods and forest fires worldwide that endanger countless lives, and follows it up by threatening to leave entire countries in these conditions while revealing he has frozen all of the world's leaders alive to serve as trophies to his conquest.
- Resolute: Cobra Commander is the ruthless leader of the international terrorist organization Cobra, and this version is a far cry from his previous versions. Appearing before the United Nations via a hologram, Cobra Commander wipes out Moscow and its population of 10 million with his Kill Sat and announces he will do the same to more nations if the world hasn't surrendered to him within 24 hours. After the G.I. Joes begin thwarting his plans, Cobra Commander orders his soldiers to destroy cities randomly until the world gives him what he wants, then kills one of them for informing him they have to recharge the weapon first. When the Joes locate his base, Cobra Commander proceeds to freak out, slaughter his entire command center, and try to use his satellite laser to obliterate Washington, D.C. before being stopped by the G.I. Joes.
- Cobra Commander/Adam DeCobray is the cruel, calculating head of Cobra Industries, who uses the supposed philanthropic organization to mask the terrorist activities of the group "Cobra". The Commander utilizes Cobra for a variety of crimes, from developing a bioplague to wiping out entire towns when they halt Cobra development, all while silencing any potential leaks and ruthlessly executing or punishing his subordinates, notably sealing a metal mask around the face of James McCullen and dubbing him "Destro". To combat the Joes, the Commander threatens their entire families with death, kidnaps one of their number to experiment on, and frames them for heinous crimes committed by Cobra itself. After his bevy of plans to Take Over the World through more subtle methods are consistently thwarted by the Joes, the Commander forgoes all attempts at obscurity and tries to lead a full-on invasion of various countries using the M.A.S.S. device.
- Dr. Mindbender, real name Brian Bender is portrayed here as a more youthful, monstrous incarnation of his usual depictions in media. A psychopathic Mad Scientist who develops the Bio-Viper army for Cobra, Mindbender experiments on innocents to assist in his projects, and works with Baroness in ordering the deranged Firefly to destroy a small town and its inhabitants. Torturing the twin psychics Tomax and Xamot in an attempt to use their powers for Mind Rape, Mindbender later tries to destroy Brooklyn, New York just to distract the Joes from his activities, and interrogates and threatens a young child for information in the same episode. As Cobra develops the M.A.S.S. device, Mindbender cheerfully tests it on Cobra's own soldiers, uncaring of any deaths it causes, before trying to send Snake Eyes through it and kill him while making his best friend Scarlett watch.
- The Doctor/Cobra Commander is the Diabolical Mastermind behind Cobra, and the ultimate villain of the films. Once a soldier named Rex Lewis who was left to die by his military allies, the Commander embraced his abandonment, as it gave him time to weaponize the nanomite technology and ally with James "Destro" McCullen of MARS Industries as "the Doctor". Using the nanomite technology to mind control a variety of soldiers—even his own sister Ana, the future Baroness—"the Doctor" planned to assist McCullen in using the nanomites to wipe out major cities, before using Zartan to replace the President of the United States for ultimate power. After the nanomite plan fails, "the Doctor" betrays McCullen, uses Ana as a hostage, tries to blow up his entire lair and everyone inside and christens himself Cobra Commander. Later escaping prison, the Commander uses Zeus to destroy London, promising to continue wiping out entire cities until the world cows to Cobra.
- Zartan is the Commander's right-hand psychopath, a Master of Disguise whose sadism and cheerful personality make him far worse than any other servant of Cobra. His introductory scene showing him stabbing Cover Girl through the back and mocking her as she dies, Zartan assists in killing a variety of Joes before killing a man for his clothes to evade capture. After capturing and replacing the President of the United States, who he regularly tortures for information, Zartan orders the execution of the G.I. Joes and kickstarts a war in a foreign country to enable Cobra Commander's escape. At the demonstration of Zeus, Zartan giddily pulls the trigger that blows up the city of London, England, and is revealed to have been the one who killed Storm Shadow's master as a child and corrupted him into evil, cementing himself as the worst Cobra has to offer alongside its Commander.
- James "Destro" McCullen, from The Rise of Cobra with a small cameo in Retaliation, is an Arms Dealer and the head of Military Armaments Research Syndicate (M.A.R.S.) Industries, using the company to mask his growing schemes for power. Able and willing to sell to weapons to terrorists worldwide and eager to test out said weapons on anyone in close proximity, McCullen works with the Doctor to create the powerful machines called Nanites, using them to turn hundreds of men into enslaved soldiers fully aware of their surroundings but unable to control their own actions. Developing four nanite warheads then orchestrating the destruction of the military convoy transporting them, McCullen tests one of the warheads out on Paris in an attempt to wipe it out, before planning to use the other three to destroy Moscow, Beijing and Washington, D.C., at which point his plan to use an impostor President to take control of a panicked Earth will ensue. McCullen also arranges for the deaths of his own troops should they be captured, has the President's security detail killed, and keeps the Baroness as his enslaved puppet to seduce, even ordering the death of her public husband out of mere jealousy.
- In the Extended Action Cut of Retaliation, Firefly is a sadistic pyrotechnics expert who happily works with Cobra for the chance to see "the look" on the faces of his victims when they die. Killing his way inside a prison in his introductory scene, taking the time to mercilessly gun down two defenseless security guards after bombing their partners, Firefly also leads the massacre of the G.I. Joes, killing dozens upon dozens of unsuspecting soldiers. Later mocking Roadblock over this slaughter of his friends, Firefly is tasked by Cobra Commander in securing the Project Zeus control case so the Joes can't stop the weapon, something Firefly quickly accomplishes, nearly murdering fellow Cobra agent Zartan in the process just because he dislikes the man. Firefly is utterly smug in the fact that millions will be killed by Zeus thanks to him protecting the control case, disregarding the lives of his own men as he tries to enable Zeus to fire.
- Operation HISS tie-in comic: Major Sebastian Bludd is a mercenary hired by Cobra to cover up its criminal activities and enable the escape of Cobra Commander from imprisonment. Using nanomite technology to turn entire factories of workers into living statues or bloodthirsty soldiers, Bludd kidnaps a variety of military soldiers to use as hostages, executing one simply because his rank is higher than "major". Bludd demands the release of Cobra Commander, threatening to start detonating bombs across the entire world and kill thousands of people if his demands are not met, and illustrates the threat is real by blowing up the Golden Gate bridge, killing everyone on it with smug satisfaction before ordering a variety of other bombs be detonated—though noting to spare Sydney, Australia from any of them, as he has family there he wants to kill with his bare hands very soon.
- Action Force: In this British comic retooling of the classic G.I. Joe franchise, Baron Ironblood, later Cobra Commander, is a sociopathic terrorist obsessed with subjugating or destroying all he surveys. Having created the terrorist organization known as the Red Shadows in a murderous campaign, Ironblood uses them to perpetrate various atrocities throughout the comic, from attempting to wipe out entire cities to planning full-scale invasions of countries at a time, promising to paint the streets red with blood, until, finally annoyed at his constant losses, Ironblood betrays his entire organization to be wiped out by Action Force, ditching them to their fates while he restyles himself as Cobra Commander, creating a new group called Cobra in the process. With this new group, Cobra Commander's evil only increases, as he tries to kick-start wars, enslave London, and finally infect all of humanity with a plague, the cure for which he will only give to those who will bow down to him. Cobra Commander is also a horrific boss to his minions, subjecting them to training that kills dozens of them at a time, executing them for the pettiest of slights, and feeding them to ravenous beasts regularly for his own amusement. Be it as Ironblood or Cobra Commander, this power-hungry madman would let no man, woman, or child come between him and his goals, and he kills thousands of them to illustrate this point.