Monday, April 3, 2017

Young Justice #30

Round Robin

Peter David – Writer
Todd Nauck – Penciller
Lary Stucker – Inker
Jason Wright – Colorist
Ken Lopez – Letterer
Tom Palmer Jr. – Assistant Ed.
Eddie Berganza – Editor

Robin's in the middle of it in this issue's cover by Todd and Lary (still only one "r") and the colors of Ian Hannin. I don't care too much about Robin's girlfriend, Spoiler, nor am I particularly interested in any love triangle involving her. But I am really interested in this new, berserk side of Secret. Seeing her going after a fellow hero in such a savage manner is more than enough to make up for the lack of other Young Justice characters on this cover.

Our story begins with Traya, Cissie, her mom, and her new agent, Frank Balkin, having lunch at Guy Gardner's famous restaurant, Warriors. Cissie is overwhelmed by not only the prospect of having an agent, but also being surrounded by so much superhero memorabilia. And it really doesn't help that our party's waitress just so happens to be dressed as Arrowette. The restaurant is crowded, and with all the costumed waiters running around, there's soon a collision between two different Supergirls and a Power Girl. Frank tries to ease the tension by joking about the Elongated Man, Plastic Man and Stretch-O colliding and causing all the customers to rubberneck. The joke does not go over well.

So the agent tries to get down to business, telling Cissie that she is a champion of the people — people who now want to see her. Cissie says she's not interested in having her face on T-shirts or cereal boxes, but she's interrupted by a girl a little younger than her. The girl has bushy hair, braces, bad acne, and a T-shirt with Cissie's face on it. She calls Cissie her heroine, saying she used to be so miserable in school until she watched Cissie on TV. This inspired her to take up archery, which has helped her make new friends and gain confidence. The girl says Cissie saved her life, and she asks for an autograph. Soon, Cissie is surrounded by fans, including a couple of the waiters. Bonnie assumes Frank set this up, but the agent says this is purely spontaneous.

(Now let's take a look at all the "heroes" we saw at Warriors: Plastic Man, Atom, Flash, Superman, Guy Gardner as a Green Lantern, Mister Miracle, Blue Beetle, Metamorpho, Martian Manhunter, Black Canary, Doctor Fate, Ambush Bug, Firestorm, Aquaman, Blue Devil, Zatanna, Captain Marvel and probably a few more I missed.)

We then cut to a lonely highway, where a cop has pulled a man over for speeding. But the man surprised the cop when his back was turned and pointed a gun at his head. The policeman begs for his life and tells the man that he won't get away with this. The gunman says he stole both the car and the gun, so nobody will be able to track him down. The only way the cop will get out of this alive, he says, is if some "supertype" shows up to save him at the last second.

Suddenly, a boom tube opens up right above the two men, and out of it pops Young Justice on the Super-Cycle and Lobo's Space Hog. Robin is shocked to see they've returned to Earth instead of Myrg. Wonder Girl is happy to be home, hoping they were only gone for one day. But Impulse is worried about his new spaceship. Empress says Doiby should be able to pilot it back, but Bart reminds her that Doiby is staying on Myrg.

The commotion distracts the gunman, giving the policeman an opportunity to disarm the man and handcuff him. He thanks Young Justice for their help, but none of them knew what was going on. As they fly away, Wonder Girl points out that it was very generous of the Forever People to let them keep the Super-Cycle, but Impulse says that just the thing anyone would say if they didn't have their own spaceship. Lobo has grown tired of Impulse's complaining, so he offers to fly back to Myrg himself and retrieve the ship. Bart is very happy with this offer, and Lobo says it'll give him a chance to open the spaceship up and make some modifications. As he takes off, Robin worries that the Top Teen will return to Earth with half a dozen angry races on his tail.

Frank and Bonnie drive Cissie and Traya back to their boarding school, and Cissie admits she's actually looking forward to working with an agent. As Traya points out, the money was a big factor in her decision, since she might now be making enough to put her through grad school. Plus, it'll put to rest Bonnie's dreams of launching an Arrowette action figure. When Cissie opens her door, she finds Cassie waiting for her. Reflexively, Cissie cowers into a ball and begs to not be teleported away or to have a mask put back on her face. But all Cassie wanted to do was give her a rare flower she found on New Genesis.

Robin returns to Gotham City and meets up with Spoiler. They have a slightly rough conversation about Robin's refusal to reveal his secret identity to Spoiler, but she goes home on good terms with him. However, Spoiler didn't realize she was being trailed by Secret, who feels like Spoiler is mistreating Robin, and she attacks Spoiler in a jealous rage. Robin must have suspected that Secret was trailing him because he calls Superboy to ask where Secret is. Superboy, who has somehow scored a full body massage with Empress at their Catskills resort, tells Robin he last saw Secret hovering behind him in mist form.

Robin remembers how Secret asked him out and was despondent when she learned he already had a girlfriend. Fearing for Spoiler's life, Robin decides to make a call to Red Tornado. And Spoiler's life really is in danger. While she does manage to get in one hit with a brief electric shock, Spoiler is no match for Secret, who is angrier than we've ever seen. At the end of the fight, Spoiler desperately points out that Robin will not be happy with Secret if she kills her. Secret darkly responds with, "Oh, I'm not going to kill you. Although you're going to wish I had!"

Red Tornado arrives not a moment too soon and neutralizes Secret with a whirlwind. He only releases her when Robin says she's had enough. Robin then has a talk with the two girls about respect, privacy and trust. He eventually gets them to agree to stop fighting, but they both had their fingers crossed behind their backs.

It's really good to get back home after spending so much time in outer space. And everyone (well, most everyone) got a chance to unwind. I kind of wish we got another panel or two of Impulse, but we'll get plenty of him next issue. What we did get, I really did like. Cissie's story is still really interesting and developing at a great pace. And while I still don't care for Spoiler or what this issue set up for Robin's ongoing series, I am fascinated by Secret. It can't be a coincidence that she had her biggest meltdown shortly after meeting with Darkseid.

Our letters to the editor begin with Brian Seidman, of New York, praising the art team for their work on Young Justice #26. He's also a big fan of Li'l Lobo's addition to the team, saying his dynamic with Robin reminds him of Batman and Guy Gardner back in the JLA. Brian also is eager to learn more about Secret.

Michael Bregman, of Gan-Yavne, Israel, recalls how Young Justice #1 gave him mixed feelings. He felt the series was too silly for his tastes, but he stuck it out and was pleased to see how it developed dramatic depth as it went on, while still being able to balance the incredible silliness. Michael isn't sure about the violent Lobo joining the team, but he does enjoy Cissie's subplot. He also asks for a Point Men miniseries. Now for the new ads.

Without the coupon it's called shoplifting. Snickers Cruncher. This coupon is unfortunately placed on the back of the cover, meaning every reader who wanted to enjoy a free candy bar had to cut a huge hole right in the middle of the cover.

A dark future ... an uncertain past ... no one left to trust. Oni for PlayStation 2.

Your world will never be the same. Farscape on DVD and VHS.

Serving suggestions: mild, medium or momentary black-out strength. Tang.

Hey, Kids! Comics talks about Kevin Smith's new Green Arrow series and an Elseworlds series called Superboy's Legion.

Feed your soul. Corn Nuts.

Sim Coaster on PC CD-ROM.

Peanut Butter Advisory: Unexpected Content. Peanut Butter Twix.

My money's on the chick with the lion. Portal Runner.

Champions come in all shapes and sizes. Mario Tennis.

Paper Mario with a "free demo" — a picture of Mario you could cut out.

Milk mustaches don't last long when you're a sponge. Which means I may have to drink another glass of yummy chocolate milk. Or two. Or three. Or four. Spongebob Squarepants.

Next time, we'll meet a foe from Max Mercury's past in Impulse #71.

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