Posts tagged ‘Frank McLaughlin’

Action 640 – Speedy ends, Glenda and Randu go to hell, a singer shows her gratitude, Phantom Lady gets the picture, and Wild Dog makes threats

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Wild Dog gets the cover for Action 630.

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Verheiden, Springer and McLaughlin bring the Speedy story to a close in this issue.

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The actor has kept a tail on Speedy, but when he finally sees her dying brother, he realizes that no one is trying to embarrass him.  That he has just been a jerk.  The two brothers reconcile.

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Speedy’s series comes to an end, teasing another case to come.  Roy returns in the next Green Arrow annual, but we don’t see him working for this agency again.

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Morgan le Fay gets the better of Etrigan in this chapter of Grant, Pacella and Wray’s Demon series.

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Things are not looking good for Glenda and Randu either.  They have followed a false trail, lead by the Philosopher’s Stone, and wind up entering Hell.  Etrigan winds up imprisoned by Morgan le Fay, but she does not pay attention to Jason Blood.  At this point, the Demon and Jason exist separately, and Jason sneaks up behind Morgan.

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A dog sealed in unbreakable plastic and a man holding up the subway with a water pistol full of gasoline are the main problems that Hero Hotline have to deal with in this chapter, by Rozakis, DeStefano and Wray.

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But the best moment is when the country singer, rescued in the previous issue, shows her appreciation, avoiding the muscly guy and going for the geek who actually saved her.

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Phantom Lady breaks into Guerreheart’s estate in this chapter, by Strazewski, Austen and Martin.

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She fights off dogs and guards, and hits the bad guy right in the face with her wrist laser.  She gets the picture that is being used to blackmail her father.  We do not see it, but Dee does, and is shocked.

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Wild Dog continues his spree of vengeance in this chapter, by Collins, Beatty and Nyberg.

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He heads after the big dealers, after getting their names from the gangster boy.  Two headbangers have come to buy drugs, but get held as hostages by the dealers when Wild Dog breaks in.  Wild Dog kills all but one of the drug lords, and the headbangers run for their lives.

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Action 639 – Speedy at the hospice, Glenda and Randu at Wookey Hole, Hero Hotline helps out, Superman starts a new story, Phantom Lady blends in, and Wild Dog gets mad

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Phantom Lady looks pretty proud of herself on the cover of Action 639.

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Speedy shows that actors are not as impressive fighters in person in this chapter by Verheiden, Williams and McLaughlin.

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Speedy tracks the actors brother to an AIDS hospice, which is being picketed by right-wingers.

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The Demon is not the main character in this installment of Grant, Pacella and Wray’s story.  Glenda and Randu are in focus, as they follow the Philosopher’s Stone to Wookey Hole.

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There, as Merlin suffers, Morgan le Fay is restored to life, without her hand. But Etrigan is not completely absent, watching over her return.

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A few different storylines are being followed through the Hero Hotline series, by Rozakis, DeStefano and Wray.  A country music star has been kidnapped, and there is still that cat plotline.

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But the story in focus this issue is a hostage taking at a liquor store.

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Superman begins another, very brief, storyline before Action Comics Weekly ends.  As before, Stern, Swan and Anderson are the creative team.  The hero deals with racism against Quraci immigrants in the US.

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Dee Tyler gets a good idea of what is bothering her father, the Attorney General, in this Phantom Lady installment, by Strazewski, Austen and Martin.

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Her father is hosting a costume ball that night, and Phantom Lady proves to be a popular choice, making things easy for Dee, who follows some men to her father’s office, and learns that he is bring blackmailed.

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Collins, Beatty and Nyberg continue with Wild Dog’s anti-crack campaign, hunting down the gangster boy who enticed the young kid into delivering drugs.

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Wild Dog catches up to him right after the guy has had sex, which leaves him in a very vulnerable position.  A few shots to the crotch is all it takes for him to give up the name of the man above him.

 

Action 638 – Speedy confronts intolerance, the Demon takes the bait, a new hero gets a name, Superman addresses his flock, Phantom Lady in combat, and Wild Dog loses his cool

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Yes, that really is a Kirby Demon cover on Action 638.

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Speedy continues his search for a missing man in this Verheiden. Williams and McLaughlin story.

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Roy goes to question the man’s brother, and action movie star.  When Speedy tells the man his brother has AIDS, the man accuses Speedy of lying to create a scandal.

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Grant, Pacella and Wray continue the Demon story, as Jason Blood calls on Etrigan to fight the monster that emerges from Sillbury Hill.

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Glenda Mark and Randu Singh also head to England, concerned about Jason.  None of the three realize that they are doing exactly what Morgan le Fay intended, but we learn this, as does Merlin, as he is being tortured.

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Rozakis, DeStefano and Schaffenberger give the new guy a hero name in this Hero Hotline chapter, as he heads out on his first mission, to get a cat out of a tree.

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Nancy and Sluggo appear to cameo as Hot Shot (as he comes to be known) shoots fire at the poor cat. It works.  But geez.

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Darkseid heads back to Apokolips, to have fun torturing and tormenting the Consortium.  Superman is left to address his followers, insisting that they should not treat him as a god.

It doesn’t really work.  We see this religious cult again following the Death of Superman.

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Phantom Lady continues her hunt for Guerreheart, the man causing problems for her father, in this chapter, by Strazewski, Austen and Martin.

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Phantom Lady’s holographic images prove quite useful as she stands up against armed men.  She even manages to capture one.

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Wild Dog is in a bad mood in this story, by Collins, Beatty and Nyberg, after the shooting of the child.  While his friends console him, and debate the situation, Wild Dog decides the time is right for drastic action.

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Wild Dog bursts into a crack house, and sets it on fire.

Action 637 – Speedy on the case, the Demon heads to England, Hero Hotline debuts, Darkseid’s reward, Phantom Lady goes clubbing, and Wild Dog gets bloody

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Speedy gets the cover and the lead story in Action 637.

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Verheiden, Williams and McLaughlin have Speedy searching the unwelcoming parts of Los Angeles for his missing man.

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He encounters a fair bit of hostility at the man’s former address, and learns that the guy he is searching for has AIDS.

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Etrigan shows his stuff in this chapter, by Grant, Pacella and Wray.  He is scary enough to get rid of the rival demon in the boy’s body.  But that was all just a warm-up for the real story.

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Glenda Mark sees the image of Morgan le Fay in the Philosopher’s Stone, and Jason follows Glenda’s vision to England.

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Silbury Hill, the ancient artificial mound, erupts, revealing a mythic looking rider.

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Bob Rozakis, Stephen DeStefano and Kurt Schaffenberger introduce a light-hearted new series, Hero Hotline, in this issue.

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It’s a breezy and bouncy tale, as young Billy Lefferts, who has the power to emit fire, starts a new job at Hero Hotline. The name of the company is pretty self-explanatory. Call for a hero when you need one.

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Stern, Swan and Anderson have Superman helpless against Darkseid.  Having empowered both the Superman worhsippers, and the Consortium, out to destroy them, Darkseid is not pleased that the Consortium fared so poorly against Superman.  So he sends them off to be tortured on Apokolips.

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Strazewski, Austen and Martin have Phantom Lady hit the clubs in her second chapter.  Her costume pretty much assures her entry anywhere.

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But the club owner she questions proves to be of little help in finding out what is troubling her father.  We do get to see some of her gear in this story, wrist lasers, and holographic images of herself.

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Collins, Beatty and Nyberg helm this chapter of the Wild Dog story, as the young boy Jack offered a job to gets lured by the bigger money in the drug trade.

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As a result, the boy is in a crack house when it gets raided by the police, and is shot during the siege.

 

 

Action 630 – Green Lantern vs Captain Atom, Black Canary saves the Deb, the Secret Six ends, Superman meets his followers, Speedy gets paranoid, and Blackhawk meets the president

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Superman can lift an elephant, but looks none too pleased about that on the cover of Action 630.

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Owsley, Bright and Tanghal have Green Lantern and Captain Atom go head to head for much of this chapter.

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It’s a big, but enjoyable, battle.  Captain Atom comes out the winner, but it’d a moot point, as the alien promptly takes him down.

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Wright, DuBurke and Marcos have Black Canary come to the rescue of the Deb at the start of this story.  With people thinking she is a murderer, she is finding it hard to secure a heroin dealer.  Canary saves her from some angry dealers, but the Deb gets away from Canary as well.

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Some lovely art, and a far better story than the previous one, but still not quite up to par.

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Pasko, Springer and McLaughlin bring the Secret Six saga to a conclusion in this issue, as the agency mounts their final attack on the group.

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Carlo winds up getting killed in the battle, so the original team are all dead, as they were believed to be.

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The new team disband at the end, although Mockingbird makes a final appearance, tagging a possible continuation.  There never would be one.

Instead, the name Secret Six would come to be applied to other groups, the first of which being a team of heroes in the Tangent Universe.

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Clark Kent is brought to the secret temple of the Superman worshippers, as the Superman worshippers haters approach. Superman determines that the powers they believe come from him really are coming from somewhere far away.

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Speedy continues his team-up story single-handedly, thanks to Wilkerson and Mandrake.

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Although he contacts the police about the fire-bombing, it turns out the police are in on it.  The story does evoke some good paranoia, as he has no idea who to trust.

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Blackhawk is summoned to see President Truman in this chapter, by Pasko, Burchett and Nyberg.  Recruited into the CIA, they are given the mission to escort a shipment of LSD from the European manufacturer.  At this point, it was considered a potential truth drug.

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But the Nazis know what the CIA are up to, and the Nazi lady plans to disguise herself as an executive from the drug manufacturer.

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

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Mockingbird’s unmasking warrants the cover of Action 629.

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

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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.

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

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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

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

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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.

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Meanwhile, we see that the villains are leftover Nazis.

Action 628 – Green Lantern and Captain Atom disagree, a second murder pinned on the Deb, Speedy takes the train, Mockingbird revealed, and Blackhawk returns

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Blackhawk has the cheap seat on the cover of Action 628.

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Green Lantern and Captain Atom continue their team-up in this story, by Owsley, Bright and Tanghal.

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Captain Atom has already referred the alien problem to the military, and Green Lantern is not pleased about that.  He has a better understanding of the creature, who had no malevolent intent.

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They both rush off to deal with the damage he is causing.  Hal is using his ring to stabilize a collapsing apartment, holding it until it can be evacuated.

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Captain Atom takes advantage of this, and flies off to confront and kill the alien himself.

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Wright, DuBurke and Marcos ended the last chapter with Black Canary getting arrested.  She fares better at the station, where she is recognized, and her work appreciated.  She is not only released, but her pictures and prints are destroyed.

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For the rest of this chapter we follow the second murder, of a drug dealer.  The actress comes to see him first, as a new customer, and poisons his drink.  The Deb is right behind, so once again she is believed to be the killer.

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Wolfman, Wilkerson and Mandrake continue to label this as Nightwing and Speedy, even though the story now follows Roy and Lian, on the train, with Nightwing nowhere in sight.  Issue after issue I became less interested in the story, and increasingly annoyed at this situation.

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There is a shady guy who runs into Roy on the train, and follows him through many chapters.

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Pasko, Springer and McLaughlin continue to wind up the Secret Six saga, as they find the bodies of five of the six people from the plane crash.  But then, we sort of already knew that was the case.

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More puzzling, after all the evidence that Durant created the group, is the revelation that Mockingbird is the magician, Carlo di Renzi.

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Pasko, Burchett and Nyberg begin the third Blackhawk tale seconds after the first, with Janos still mooning over the corpse of the aviatrix from the previous story, as the team form their links with the fledgling CIA.

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And we get a glimpse of the bad guys, German scientists doing what appear to be nasty experiments on humans.

 

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