REV: End of Month Reviews #59 - November 2008 [spoilers]
saxonbrenton at hotmail.com
Mon Dec 8 02:00:52 PST 2008
[REVIEW] End of Month Reviews #59 - November 2008 [spoilers]
Academy of Super-Heroes #94 [ASH]
Enforcers #4 [Misc]
Lady Lawful And Doctor Developer Christmas Special #1 [ASH]
The Unfinished Sentence-Verse #11 and  [usVerse]
It's a quiet evening on the desk shift right now, so I'll finish off
this month's EoMR - not that there's much in this months issue in any case.
Academy of Super-Heroes #94
'Billions Served II: Counterparts'
An Academy of Super-Heroes [ASH] series
by Dave Van Domelen
The Freedom Alliance makes its debut, and as a result the villain team
Rush gets hammered from all sides. There's not much that I want to babble
at length about here, so I'll restrict myself to two points. There first
is to savour the obvious implication that the mysterious backer of Sam
Walters and his Freedom Alliance is one of the Impossible Five, setting up
the Alliance as a slightly different ally group this time (dupes rather than
knowing franchise partners). Whether this is misdirection or not remains to
be seen, but the fact remains that the simple notion of it and of Walters
beginning to worry that he's being had is brimming with schadenfeude.
Secondly, where did the Freedom Alliance get the intel on where Rush
was? This may be a minor or even irrelevant point, but on the other hand
it may be a complication that could seriously weaken the Alliance (if, for
example, the info was forwarded as part of an Impossible Five doublecross;
or if it could be traced back to a mole in the Combine's law enforcement
'Pairs, Part 2'
A Miscellaneous [Misc] series
My first reaction to presence of the aliens was: 'That's pretty neat'.
My second reaction was: 'Where the heck did that plot element come from,
anyway?' because it kind of zooms in from left field. In fact, looking back
on part 1, I would have guessed that we would have seen more on Graybeard's
antics, and considering that the anticipated theft by Graybeard of the
Neptune 3000 submarine had been the cliffhanger for last episode I also
would have expected Graybeard's antic this issue to be the lead-in rather
than the conclusion. In that regard the pacing seems a bit odd. Ah well,
I guess Graybeard can wait, since he seems to have all the markings of a
long term villain who'll be getting up to long term plots. Those aliens,
Well, I'd better describe the situation. An extraterrestrial
bureaucrat named Plon gets back from a mission, only to discover that
one of the planets under his care - the Earth - has had its number of
superhumans drop below its threshold of 40 down to 36 while he was away.
He and a companion are duly dispatched to Earth to rectify this. Now, this
in itself would be interesting enough if Plon and Slad had some sort of
purely practical purpose - and it seems they do, since their supervisor
voices the hope that "the enemy" hasn't found out and taken advantage of
the situation. However, in addition to this, in the next scene Plon
expresses distaste for empowering a criminal, to which Slad responds that
they both know there has to be a mix of moral and immoral to maintain a
proper balance. Now, that sounds almost mystical. But then again, the
setting that Frumpy has been writing about contains the standard 'kitchen
sink' mix of super science and magic that is typical of four colour
superhero universes, so it shouldn't be too surprising.
Lady Lawful And Doctor Developer Christmas Special #1
An Academy of Super-Heroes [ASH] series
by Andrew Burton
I had some comments that I wanted to make here, but quickly reviewing
past EoMRs I see that it was basically a repeat of what I wrote about in
the _Lady Lawful And Doctor Developer Valentine's Day Special_ in February
of this year. So I'll briefly summarise what I had in mind and then just
do a plot summary.
As normal for this series, the stories tend to take the form more of
character-based vignettes than of an ongoing adventure serial. In
particular this story, being a special, comes across as the sort of self-
contained narrative that could be published in an anthology series.
The plot in brief is a string of scenes from Christmases across
several years, 1994-1997 and 2016. Anybody familiar with the LL & DD
stories will not be surprised by the premise for the first scene: that
Doctor D steals cast-off toys, repairs them, and then ships them off to
needy children. Lady Lawful, not fully aware of what his nefarious
scheme is, has come after him, been captured, and worst of all righteously
berated. And that's about as close as things get to active, on-screen
superhero action adventure - although the background details of the
superhero lifestyle affect much of the family activities of Cameron,
Jennifer, and Jennifer's parents June and Wilson. Of particular note
is Cameron's reaction to the notion that the secret ingredient to making
Christmas cookies is love, which is simply delightful. The final scene,
like the first, should contain no surprises for long time readers:
Doctor D bonds with his adopted family as a way of abating his grief over
his departed wife.
Saxon Brenton University of Technology, city library, Sydney Australia
saxon.brenton at uts.edu.au
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