You'd think that it'd be an easy lay-up for a town called Springfield to pick a cartoon character mascot for an upcoming convention. And to their credit, the public officials of Springfield really nailed that when they handed the keys to the city, that symbol of its values, to the most thieving, scheming, and annoyingly loud villain of the American way.
Remember that time that Cobra Commander made a guest appearance in Springfield? Not the show, the actual place. In 2015, the city of Springfield, Illinois celebrated the masked shouter by giving him the official key for his service to the city and let him make an impassioned speech:
"Springfielders near and far, I accept your Mayor's generous gift. And let it be known that I too bring a gift for every man, woman, and child of this city that is so near and dear to my heart; an invitation to join with me. Join Cobra!"
In reality, Cobra Commander was feted for the publicity the town got from the animated series episode "There's No Place Like Springfield," which had led to the city hosting a large G.I. Joe Con. But that means they gave CC the key to the city for an episode where he takes over the city, plants humanoid infiltrators everywhere, and turns it into a kind of Truman Show for G.I. Joe's Shipwreck (better known as Bee Gee Aquaman) making him think he was a regular old Joe about town. All of this just to mentally traumatize Shipwreck for info, which eventually escalates to Cobra melting his loved ones into goo, including his fake wife and child, and burning down his house.
But the question remains: why pick the firebug torturer who once tried to steal an entire U.S. state to represent your All-American city over, say, Snake-Eyes, or Rule 34 Gorton's Fisherman, who was the victim in the ep? Well, Springfield, the capital of Illinois/corruption, has been home to not one, not two, not three, but four governors jailed for corruption scandals, including Corrupt Hall of Famer Rod Blagojevich, who tried to sell President Obama's old senate appointment for cash. So yeah, it wouldn't be a surprise if Springfield's current mayor, Jim Langfelder, picked Cobra Commander because he found his home number in an old office Rolodex.
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Top Image: Springfield Mayor's Office