Posts tagged ‘Dinah Lance’

Action 635 – Superman, Green Lantern, Black Canary and Blackhawk fight a dictator with too much power, and Green Lantern ends


Action 635 features a big crossover story, as well as the final chapter of the Green Lantern series, and another two pages of Superman.  Neil Gaiman had written a story for this issue, but a disagreement with John Byrne lead to it being set aside, and this one, by Mark Verheiden, with art by Eduardo Barreto and John Nyberg.

The story by Gaiman was printed, many years later, as a Green Lantern/Superman Special.  But it is very much an Action Comics Weekly story, with a number of cameos.  I’m sooo close to the end of my media library, and also of Action Comics Weekly.  And I debated writing about the Gaiman story here, or at its publication date.

So I am letting the media library decide.  If I reach the end of Action Comics Weekly and have space, I will make my final entry on this blog about Gaiman’s version.


The story they printed is servicable, but nothing special.  Weng Chan is flying Blackhawk Express, the delivery company the Blackhawks became.  On the flight is Clay, Hal’s old friend from his days at Ferris Aircraft, along with an experimental engine.  A south Asian dictator has shot down the plane, and taken them prisoner.


Hal is having dinner with Dinah Lance, and discussing their lives and problems, when he hears from Clay’s wife.


Here’s the dictator.  Nasty looking man.


Hal decides to set out as Green Lantern to rescue him, and Dinah comes along as Black Canary.


Using the engine, the dictator takes control of a giant purple energy monster.  News of this reaches Superman, who comes flying to investigate.  He and Green Lantern battle the monster and keep it busy.


Black Canary rescues Weng, and they get to the computer controls.


It’s Weng who figures out the solution.  Unplug the machine.


Owsley, Bright and Tanghal end Green Lantern’s run as they have produced it all along, with great art and dangling plot threads.

Malvolio has a long fight with Green Lantern, but the end reveals that nothing we have seen is real, so perhaps nothing Malvolio said is true.  Who is this mysterious man?

No one knows.  We never see him again.  The Green Lantern series that launches shortly leaves all this in the astral dust.



Action 629 – Green Lantern holds it together, Black Canary sees the show, the Secret Six explained, Speedy moves in, and Blackhawk mourns


Mockingbird’s unmasking warrants the cover of Action 629.


Captain Atom finds the alien in this chapter, by Owsley, Bright and Tanghal.


Captain Atom and the alien have a very destructive, if inconclusive, battle.  It wears on Green Lantern, who is trying to hold together the building above the fight.  The fight does bring down the building, and Green Lantern moves in to confront Captain Atom.


Dinah Lance meets the murderer in this chapter, by Wright, DuBurke and Marcos.


Dinah is providing flowers for the production of Peter Pan that the actress is starring in.  She watches some of the rehearsal, and learns a bit about the woman.


Carlo brings the new Secret Six to his home, and explains the true history of the group to them, and Rafael, in this story by Pasko, Springer and McLaughlin.


August Durant formed the group during the Cold War, after uncovering some extreme actions within the US government agencies.  As the team got older, Durant took Carlo into his confidence, as they picked the members of the new team, and created the various devices for them.


But the evil agency (who is encircling the house as this all goes on) had got wind of these plans, and rigged the plane to crash.  Carlo happened to be in a sealed monitor room within the plane when it went down, which saved his life.


Speedy solos, although Wilkerson and Mandrake still label this story as a team-up with Nightwing.


Now in Northern Ireland, the story immerses itself in the troubles.


Pasko, Burchett and Nyberg take a long time getting this third story going.  Janos is still grieving over the girl from the last storyline.  You’d think they knew each other for more than a day or two.


Meanwhile, we see that the villains are leftover Nazis.

Action 627- Green Lantern and Captain Atom, Mockingbird unmasks, Black Canary gets arrested, and Nightwing and Speedy begin


Nightwing gets the cover, as he (and Speedy) return to Action with two chapters in issue 627.


Owsley, Bright and Tanghal’s story becomes a team-up with Captain Atom, with the previous issue serving as a prologue.  Captain Atom comes across the alien, who has taken the form of an action movie hero.


It doesn’t go smoothly, and Captain Atom figures an attack means he is hostile.  Their battle draws Green Lantern, who suspects that this creature is related to the spaceship nearby.


Hal’s attempt to reach a peaceable conclusion are interpreted by Captain Atom as a diversion, and he blows up the alien’s ship.  Lantern is furious.  With his ship destroyed, the alien has nowhere to go.


Pasko, Springer and McLauhglin unmask Mockingbird, in a way, in this Secret Six chapter.  Mockingbird unmasks on front of Rafael, to prove that he could never harm the boy.  Of the six possible people who could be Mockingbird, this scene only makes sense if it is Carlo, his magician father.


But the rest of the story has the new Secret Six find proof that August Durant created the team.


Yeah, once again, Wright, DuBurke and Marcos have a problem with undynamic opening pages on the Black Canary series.


But the chapter is a good one.  Canary goes to hang with the street girls, and learns what there is to learn about the suspected killer, nicknamed the Deb, and her heroin addiction.  Canary helps the girls fight off some wanna be pimps, but gets picked up by the cops.


Michele Wolfman and Cherie Wilkerson have two chapters to start off the Nightwing and Speedy story in this issue, with art by Tom Mandrake.  Both heroes are billed this time, but it’s still more a Speedy story.


Dick is travelling with Roy as he heads to Ireland,his ancestral homeland, with Lian.  Roy uncovered some information about drug smuggling to Ireland, and was promptly fired by the CBI.  Nightwing and Speedy also run into drug smuggling on the ferry they take, and wind up in the Irish Sea.


They make it to land, and the story lets us know that “the troubles” will be a big part of this as well.

Action 626 – the dangers of duplication, Captain Marvel ends, Rafael gets free, Deadman ends, and Black Canary on the hunt


Green Lantern returns to Earth in Action 626, and one can actually perceive this cover as related to his story.  Loosely.


Owsley and Bright are joined by Romeo Tanghal as Hal heads back to Earth, and comes across an apparently hollow ship heading there as well.


But inside the ship was an energy being, which duplicates what is sees.  So it emerges from the ship in Green Lantern’s form.


The narration helps immensely.  The creature sees an explosive action film, and destroys everyone around him.  But there is no malice in this at all.  Simply mindless duplication.


Captain Marvel’s series comes to a close in this chapter, by Roy and Dann Thomas, Stasi and Magyar.

Captain Nazi proves not terribly inclined to follow the orders of the ones who created him, and is eager to join the poisoning of the reservoir.


There, he comes across Billy.  Recognizing him, he thinks Billy has been bound and gagged by his own enemies, and frees him.  Bad move.  Billy says the magic word, transforms into Captain Marvel, and then drops a hill on top of Captain Nazi. Poor guy doesn’t even make it to the end of the story.


An ending that announces an upcoming Shazam comic.  Which never came.  Captain Marvel would continue to appear sporadically, but would not get a series until the Power of Shazam reboot, which changed his origin, and removed this Billy Batson, and Captain Nazi, from continuity.


The action moves to Washington DC as Pasko, Springer and McLaughlin begin winding up the Secret Six.  The team has learned about the agency attacking them, and realize this is the same group Durant has been fighting, and that they brought down the plane with the original team.


Mockingbird is glad they no longer think he killed them.  Rafael manages to break out of his room.  he confronts Mockingbird, who is simply disappointed that he took so long to escape, being the son of a magician.


Deadman’s series also comes to a close in this issue, by Baron, Jones and DeZuniga.


It’s a body-hopping, knock-down drag out fight with Deadman, Madame Waxahachie and the evil voodoo twins.  With all possible bodies lost to them, they are reduced to living in rats.

Deadman returns, very shortly, in the Spectre crossover at the start of Invasion!


The body gets discovered as Wright, DuBurke and Marcos open this Black Canary installment.


We see the actress rejoicing in the news that the hooker is suspected, clarifying the guilty party.


And Dinah is certainly stylish as she goes out to look for the false lead.

Action 625 – Hal unites enemies, Billy gets caught twice, the Secret Six tie it together, Deadman pulls her out, and who spikes the drink?


While I like this image of Deadman, none of the supporting characters shown are in this story, or anywhere in his run in Action Comics Weekly.  And despite saying that he “wraps it all up,” issue 625 is not the resolution to his storyline.


Owsley, Bright and Marzan have Hal end the war in outer space, as his Green Lantern ring is a far more powerful weapon than either side has.


Of course, the result is that the two sides ally together against him.  This subplot is not resolved in these pages, but does get a follow-up in a Green Lantern Special in 1989.


Billy Batson falls right into Captain Nazi’s arms at the opening of this story, by the Thomases, Stasi and Magyar.  Billy is presumed to just be a rambunctious boy, but otherwise good little white racist.


But later, as they all go on an outing, Billy gets recognized by one of the other campers, and instead of taking part in arson, he becomes the kindling.


Some degree of explanation is given in this Secret Six chapter, by Pasko, Springer and McLaughlin.  August Durant had all the background and motivation to form the original Secret Six, as he worked to stop the people who had created the virus he was infected with.  Technodyne had been working with it, as well as the meat processing – it was what contaminated the pork.


The Six have pretty much put this together, as has Washington.  But why did Durant kill the rest of the team?


Baron, Jones and DeZuniga’s zombie-laden voodoo queen story is an awful lot of fun, and probably deserves better coverage than I am giving it.


Deadman manages to scare of the twins out of the girl she is inhabiting, and can hold onto her, preventing her from entering anyone else.  He uses this to get the other sister to leave the other sister.  But the ghostly girls then enter the bodies of Madame Waxahachie and her handyman.


Wright, DuBurke and Marcos give Dinah some workout time as Black Canary, because the bulk of this chapter follows the killer and her victim.


The hooker accompanies a man, Sarno, up to his room, then leaves shortly after.  We see that he is dead.  But was it really the hooker, or the actress dressed up as her?


Action 624 – what’s really needed, Nazi camp, backstory, an angry ghost, and Black Canary returns


Black Canary gets the cover of Action 624, as her series returns to the book.


Green Lantern is in a region where he his ring does not function as normal, and is being trained by the alien who brought him out there, in this story by Owsley, Bright and Marzan.


The being, called Priest, tells Hal that his rang and lantern are not needed for him to survive.  He almost dies putting this to the test.  But indeed, the lantern he used to charge his ring was not real, just an illusion created by Priest.  But aside from this storyline, this idea is not kept.


The Thomases, Stasi and Magyar have Billy Batson go undercover to a christian kids camp, which is a training and breeding ground for white supremacism.


Billy pretends to be completely into it, even when talked to by another boy who isn’t as racist as the camp demands.  But Billy is not sure if the boy is sincere, or this is a test.


There is even worse stuff happening, as an experiment takes place to make a super-soldier, and creates a version of Captain Nazi.


The Secret Six chapter in this issue, by Pasko, Springer and McLaughlin, is all backstory on the gay member of the team.  Since the group never appear again, and I am past 90% of the storage space on this blog, it gets one pic only. His boyfriend got killed, to be concise.


Madame Waxahachie brings Deadman to the Wildwood Plantation in this chapter, by Baron, Jones and DeZuniga.


The twins have animated the ghost of their dead father, for their own pleasure.  But when Madame Waxahachie makes him realize he is a ghost, he is none too pleased with his girls.


Wright, DuBurke and Marcos return, along with Black Canary, in a less confusing tale of vengeance.  Dinah is all pumped, having just landed a major floral contract.


There is a hooker and heroin addict, and an actress involved in the story, with a past link between them.


And when the story is right, DuBurke’s art works very well.

Action 615 – Green Lantern at the trade show, Blackhawk and Wild Dog return, Nightwing suspects Speedy, and Black Canary finds a body


Is it the cover of Action 615?  Or an ad for a new Friday the 13th movie?

Peter David is joined by Richard Howell and Arne Starr as Hal begins a storyline centred on the Hawkes sisters.


Arisia is working a trade show, and Hal is wandering around, amusing himself.  Veronica Hawkes debuts, but we only see her briefly, and from behind.


Two new villains attack the trade show, part of a group called the Freak Show.  Castle has powers I really like, teleporting and exchanging places with someone else.


Castle is fairly skilled at using this to manipulate an opponent, and traps Green Lantern in a yellow vault.


Marty Paske and Rick Burchett bring Blackhawk back, as Janos runs into Natalie Reed, the former actress with communist affiliations, the Lady Blackhawk of this era.


Janos accepts a dangerous mission, simply because the person asking is named Leslie, and is really crushed when Leslie turns out to be a man.


Collins, Beatty and Nyberg bring back Wild Dog in this issue as well.  He shoots a lot of criminals in this story.


But the storyline itself will focus on a young boy who sees Wild Dog in action, and becomes his biggest fan.


Wolfman, Patton and Poston do give Nightwing some solo time in this story, as Roy Harper is off tracking Cheshire.  Dick finds out the CBI have not informed the proper channels about their operation in England.


We see the softer side of Cheshire, as she tends to Lian.


After Dick catches Speedy in a lie, he calls the New Teen Titans to speak to Danny Chase, who tells him Roy is no longer CBI.  Changeling gets a line, but Cyborg, Starfire and Raven are just seen.


Wright, DuBurke, and Marcos approach the end of the Black Canary storyline.  Isn’t that an exciting page to open the story on, so near to its climax?


Dinah finds a dead body at one point.  That’s mildly exciting.

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