When his career military family gave him two brothers that excelled and Thomas remained average, Thomas felt an enormous amount of pressure to catch up. He joined the Air Force as his siblings did but still didn't do as well as they did. He was eligible to join the G.I. Joe Greenshirts Recruitment Program as did his siblings, Barrel Roll and Bombstrike.
On his final field mission, they came under the attack of Cobra troops. Blackout performed poorly and was soon court-martialed. Before going to prison, a COBRA attack left the authorities to believe Blackout was killed. The Cobra troops took Blackout back to Cobra Island. Blackout thrived being out of his siblings shadows and became loyal to Cobra Commander.