Sunday, May 1, 2016

Young Justice #13

Hell's Heck's Angel's Part 3 Dis, Dat and De Other

Peter David – Writer
Todd Nauck – Pencils
Lary Stucker – Inks
Ken Lopez – Letters
Maureen McTigue – Associate Editor
Eddie Berganza – Editor

The dog pile on Supergirl is courtesy of Todd Nauck & Lary Stucker with some Wildstorm colors! Unfortunately, Wildstorm thought the little demon succubi things were green, when they're really brown with grey, metallic wings. But that's just a minor nitpick on an otherwise great cover. I love the evil Young Justice with their glowing red eyes. And it is really cool to Supergirl take them all on at once. In fact, it's so cool that I'll show another picture of these guys fighting.

We pick right up where we left off, with the possessed Young Justice battling Supergirl in Dante's Inferno. I especially love Impulse's evil grin — just look at that! Anyway, Supergirl throws Wonder Girl over her shoulder and right into the charging Superboy's path. Superboy warns W.G. to get outta the way, saying he can't stop. Wonder Girl says if he has time to say he can't stop, then he does have enough time to stop. But he doesn't, and collides with his teammate, knocking her into a rack of leisure suits.

Supergirl tries to appeal to the most sensible member of the team, Robin, saying he's obviously not in his right mind to be attempting a frontal assault against her. But he doesn't listen, and head-butts her. Supergirl tosses him at Arrowette to get her to stop sniping, then flies out of Impulse's reach and decides to take out the demon-things latched on the necks of Young Justice. Supergirl blasts the one on Robin with her flame vision, but this causes both Robin and the creature to scream in pain. Arrowette and Wonder Girl start shouting that Supergirl is trying to kill Robin, and nobody will listen to Supergirl try to explain herself. She realizes that these creatures have bonded too tightly to Young Justice and removing them might injure the teen heroes, or worse.

As Dante gleefully watches on, Superboy engages Supergirl in an aerial battle. Supergirl tries to encourage Kid to shake off the demon, but he yells at her for preaching and judging him like every other adult. Superboy says he's glad he'll never be an adult, and slams Supergirl into a cliff. This causes a bunch of rubble to start raining down on Dante's victims below, so Supergirl utilizes her flame wings to protect them. One of the victims, Tammy Neil, calls Supergirl Ember. This is the second time Supergirl's been called Ember, but before she can dwell on the subject, Wonder Girl and Superboy both hit her hard.

We then cut to the Cook County Jailhouse, where the police guards are perplexed by Red Tornado's odd behavior. For a long time, the android just silently stood in his cell. But now he's having what appears to be a one-sided conversation. But what the police don't know is that Red Tornado is talking to Martian Manhunter. J'onn tells him the Justice League is discussing the best way to aid him, but Red Tornado refuses their help. He does, however, suggest the League choose Captain Marvel to watch over Young Justice if he's permanently incarcerated.

Red Tornado then asks J'onn to leave him alone, claiming the psychic link is putting a strain on his circuits. J'onn points out that he's been showing far too much emotion for a mere machine, but Red pleads with him again to leave. J'onn complies, and once he's gone, Red Tornado falls to his knees and buries his head in his hands, further perplexing the guards. Agents Fite and Maad then arrive, and tell the guards to leave.

Back in Dante's Inferno, Dante recognizes Supergirl's wings as a sign that she's an Earthborn, the very creature that Dis warned him about. Realizing that Young Justice will never be able to stop her, Dante begins flying away in search of more help. Supergirl notices this, and is able to get all the possessed teens off her long enough to begin pursuing the real villain.

Superboy wants to go after Supergirl, referencing a recent fight he had with her in his own series. But Robin says if they want to pay her back, then they should hurt her where she lives. Impulse asks if he means taking away her credit cards, but Robin pounds him on the head and calls him a cheesehead. Robin means literally going after where Supergirl lives, Leesburg, Virginia.

So the kids head over to the Super-Cycle, which is still in lockdown mode. Arrowette points out that it's not listening to Robin's commands, and he calls her Princess Peroxide. Robin decides to forget about the Super-Cycle, saying he saw which way Supergirl entered the cave, and if they backtrack that way, they'll probably be able to find Leesburg. Impulse kicks the cycle, calling it a stupid machine. But it responds by pulling out all its guns and firing at Impulse as he scampers away.

Back at the jail, Fite 'n Maad offer Red Tornado a deal — his freedom for the mist girl. Fite says that they're willing to let Red Tornado keep working with Robin, Superboy, Impulse, Wonder Girl and Arrowette, since they're all more or less normal kids. But the mist girl is apparently in a completely separate class, and she has to be kept apart ... forever. Red Tornado thinks about this for a moment, then asks, "What mist girl?" The A.P.E.S. agents angrily leave, but are soon replaced by a middle-aged couple. And the woman introduces herself as Red Tornado's daughter ... in a manner of speaking.

We then check in at the hospital, where Kathy Sutton is still recovering in bed. Traya says they need to help her daddy, and Kathy agrees, although she's not sure what to do. A passing custodian is singing the "Splish Splash" bath song (of all songs!) and the sleeping Secret hears the lyrics and begins dreaming of taking a bath. In her dream, Secret is a normal girl, relaxing in a nice bubble bath while listening to a boom box. Someone enters the bathroom, whom Secret calls a creep. She threatens to tell her mom and tells the intruder to leave. But the stranger picks up the boom box, says, "Enjoy the abyss, Sis," and throws it in the water, electrocuting Secret.

Secret wakes up screaming, "No!!!" The custodian hears this and opens the door to the closet she was hiding in. Secret shouts at him, and he runs aways thinking she's a monster. Secret then retreats through the vent and returns to Kathy Sutton's room. Kathy recognizes Secret from her dreams. But Secret just wants to be left alone and bursts out the window.

We then visit a Hunters Appreciation Day rally in Leesburg. The speaker holds up a copy of Young Justice #7, complaining of the way hunters were depicted in it. Arrowette interrupts his speech with an incendiary arrow, and Wonder Girl and Superboy start tossing trees in a big pile, scaring away all the hunters. Impulse asks Robin what's next, and Robin says they'll turn the town into a parking lot, starting with this big fire ignited by Arrowette.

Back at the jail, Red Tornado's visitors say they're Mort and Amelia Hibbert. Amelia says her mother was the original Red Tornado, explaining her previous comment. Mort says they're activists who are worried about Red Tornado's adopted daughter, as well as the children Red mentors in Young Justice. Mort says they're planning on doing something about the kids' safety with or without his help. As the Hibberts leave, they hand the android a card that says Old Justice.

Supergirl finally catches up with Dante in an ice cave. She demands that he release Young Justice, but he just laughs at her, revealing what appears to be a giant lava lamp. But inside the lamp is a living blog called Dis. He praises Dante for his work, then breaks out of the glass, telling the Earthborn she's his.

This was a pretty fun issue, sadly hampered by a few weird things. I love evil Young Justice, especially the rude Robin constantly mocking his teammates. And the fight with Supergirl was great, although I could have used a bit more of it, particularly from Impulse. He didn't do too much this issue, although his interaction with the Super-Cycle was great. And the slow unraveling of Secret's past was amazing. And it was nice to finally get started on the Old Justice storyline. We were promised they'd appear in issue #10. I don't know why that got pushed back so far, but I am excited for it.

What I didn't like, and rarely ever do, was all the allusions to demons and angels. I don't know, I'm just not really into all that stuff. And it feels really out of place in this series, which recently battled the Acolyte, who turned out to be a fraud. I also got just a bit uncomfortable with the hunters' rally. I can handle the casual breaking of the fourth wall that this series usually has, but this one felt like Peter David overtly saying, "So, you didn't like my views on hunters in issue #7? How about this?!" I'm not a hunter myself, so I'm not offended by this viewpoint. But I do dislike stories that get too heavy-handed with their political messages. Another oddity of this rally was the conspicuously blank poster and podium. It's unlikely that Todd Nauck would leave such large areas completely empty. I suspect editorial removed some potentially upsetting words and images.

The letters column only had room for two letters this month. Jay McIntyre, of Colmar, Penn., liked seeing the Psyba-Rats in Young Justice #8 and would like to see more of them. He also wants to learn more about Secret and the Abyss.

Achal Oza, of Santa Barbara, Calif., liked seeing the Supermen of America in Impulse #47 and says they should appear in Young Justice sometime.

Next: Check out Supergirl #37 for the conclusion of "Heck's Angels." Will Supergirl's hometown go up in flames thanks to our team? And just what the heck is that thing in the bottle?

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