Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Damage #13

Picking Up the Pieces Chapter One

Words: Tom "Look at this Mess" Joyner
Pencils: Bill "Whatta You Mean It's Broke?" Marimon
Inks: Dan "Wasn't Me, Man!" Hillsman
Letters: Bob "Hey, I Just Fill in the Balloons!" Pinaha
Colors: Buzz "It Was Already Broken When I Saw It!" Setzer
Edits: Jim "Just Sweep It into a Pile" Spivey

This month's cover was pencilled by Bill Marimon, inked by Don Hillsman, colored by Daniel Vozzo, and color separated by Rob Schwager. And the part of Damage was played by The Beaver. It's a pretty intense and emotional cover, especially once you realize Damage is standing behind the grave of his girlfriend, Mandra Darrow, who died in Damage #10. But then the logic of the cover begins to break down when you realize Damage is standing behind Mandra's grave. Who does that? I think a simple adjustment could have fixed this.

Anyway, now that Damage's Fragments story line is finished, and the New Titans' Forever Evil story line is done, the gang is all back together, with the addition of Supergirl. And Arsenal has decided to hold a little training exercise for Damage's benefit.

Damage dodges a blast from Darkstar, then gives Impulse a hard kick to the chest, saying he knows Impulse always comes in from the same side. As the fight progresses, Damage gets angrier and more violent, and he actually hurts his teammates. The sparring session is immediately called off, and Damage uses this opportunity to chew out everybody in sight.

Damage calls Arsenal a parole officer, and says Terra treats him like a walking zit and Darkstar treats him like a baby brother. He tells Impulse that he knows the real world is like a slow motion video game to him, but Damage says he has a life and sometimes doesn't feel like playing. Damage then storms off in an angsty huff, and Supergirl asks if he's always like that. Darkstar says no, but there is some truth to what he said. Impulse disagrees, saying Damage's words weren't true at all, and he takes off. Terra tries to call Impulse back, but Arsenal tells her to let him go, knowing he'll get over it.

And that's the end of Impulse's involvement in this issue. But the rest of the story is rather sweet, as Green Lantern takes Damage to the funeral of his girlfriend. As is the rule with all comic book funerals, this one took place in the rain. Naturally, this rainy funeral is also full of plenty of tension, as most of Mandra's family isn't happy to see Damage, having blamed him for her death. And Damage is still quite upset at Green Lantern, until Kyle tells Grant that his girlfriend was also recently killed, and he wasn't able to attend her funeral. So the story ends on a rather tender, heart-breaking moment.

We didn't get a whole lot of Impulse here, but I did like what I saw. Bart's best friend on the team was Grant, and Bart really had a hard time seeing him snap like that. But Arsenal is right — Bart will bounce back from this quicker than anyone. Although I can't help feeling like their friendship is now permanently strained. We won't see the two of them hanging out very much after this. I also have to credit Bill Marimon for drawing Impulse a bit skinnier and more like Humberto Ramos. The days of Impulse being a short body builder are almost over.

Since the letters in Damage Assessments deal with Damage #10, we actually have a couple of references to Impulse this time.

Mary Catelli asks if the Titans have a way to find out who's been looking at what in their computer. And Jim Spivey answers, "Well, the Titans did have a way to check up on Grant — his name's Impulse."

H.M. West, of Chillicothe, Ohio, asks for an Impulse/Damage crossover with the new Impulse title, and Spivey says they were working on such a crossover, but realized it might be a bit more difficult after Damage's outburst in this issue. And I'm sad to say that we never got an Impulse/Damage crossover. Well, enough mourning over the lost friendship of Bart and Grant, and on to the ads.

A struggle for sound supremacy. You have a few extra dollars and here's two great CDs. What does one do? That's easy. Get them both. After all, they're on sale. Mike Watt, Ball-Hog or Tugboat? Chris Duarte Group, Texas Sugar Strat Magic. Available at all Musicland/Sam Goody stores nationwide.

Black Lightning. Buried by his past. By Isabella and Newell.

You'll never see prices like these again! A DC subscription ad with a bit of honesty. Damage #10 only cost $1.95, but issue #13 was $2.25. But with a subscription, you could get 12 issues of Damage for $19.40.

Where will comics' brightest stars be this May? On DC Comics Online! If you have a computer and a modem, order your free DC Comics Online starter kit with no obligation.

Death. Learn about it the hard way or read ... The Big Book of Death. 67 true tales of mortality by Bronwyn Carlton and a host of artists.

Next time, we begin the Crimelord-Syndicate war in Darkstars #31.

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