Posts tagged ‘Maggie Sawyer’

Action 600 – Superman and Wonder Woman kiss, Lois Lane is sad, Lex Luthor hurts his hand, Jimmy Olsen helps out, and Superman vs Man-Bat

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John Byrne scripts all of the stories in Action 600 (May 1988), an oversize anniversary issue, which is also the last issue before the book undergoes a dramatic change of format.

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George Perez joins for the first story, which continues the Superman/Wonder Woman embrace that concluded the last issue of Adventures of Superman.  After the kiss, Superman realizes he may have jumped the gun a bit, and the two cool down a bit, and get to know each other.

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Diana gets an emergency message from Hermes, and the couple head to Olympus, which has been invaded by Darkseid.  He makes the most of the situation, as Superman and Wonder Woman arrived in different places, and dispatches Kalibak and Amazing Grace to toy with them.

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The scheme is pretty simple.  Superman is shown that the Wonder Woman he is fighting is really Grace, and Diana gets a similar reveal with Kalibak.  Then the two heroes confront each other, both believing the other is really an enemy.

Simple, but also not too hard for the heroes themselves to figure out.

Darkseid abandons the unconquerable Olympus, and the heroes decide to just be friends…for now.

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Roger Stern, Kurt Schaffenberger and Jerry Ordway join Byrne for the Lois Lane story, her first solo story since the reboot of Superman.  She infiltrates and busts up a crime ring, but her story is relegated to the back pages of the Planet.  The Superman/Wonder Woman romance gets the front page.

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Lois mopes about a bit, and thinks about her relationship with Superman.  Clark shows up, wanting to lend a shoulder to cry on, and the tension between them seems to be ending.  Until an emergency calls him away, and Lois fumes even more.

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Dick Giordano and John Beatty do the art on the Lex Luthor story, which sees him attempt to blackmail Maggie Sawyer about her sexuality.

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Maggie neither bows to his pressure, nor steals the evidence when she has the opportunity. As she explains to Dan Turpin, she is willing to stand up and fight for who she is, and what she has achieved.

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It’s not a very good day for Lex, who also is told by Gretchen Kelly that his kryptonite ring has poisoned his hand, which will have to be amputated.

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Swan and Anderson re-unite for the art on the Jimmy Olsen story.  Sadly, it’s the least involving story in the issue.  Superman gets knocked for a loop when the radiation from Krypton’s explosion reaches the Earth, collapsing.

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Jimmy carries the hero down into a mine shaft, getting him as far away from the radiation as possible.

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The issue ends with another team-up story, with Mike Mignola handling the art as Man-Bat makes his post-Crisis debut.

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Man-Bat is surprised to find Superman down in a cave, and even more surprised when the ailing and hallucinating hero attacks him.  Man-Bat basically spends the story defending himself.

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Hawkman shows up on the final page, informed by Jimmy Olsen of Superman’s situation.  This leads into the story in Superman the following month.

As for Action Comics, it goes on hiatus for a while, returning as Action Comics Weekly.  Happy anniversary, Superman!  As a present, we are reducing you to two pages in the comic that started your career!

 

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Action 595 – Superman’s ghost vs the Silver Banshee

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Byrne and Williams introduce a new villain for Superman, and a mysterious ghost star, in Action 595 (Dec. 87).

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Maggie Sawyer, the head of the Metropolis Special Crimes Unit, and her second in command, Dan Turpin, had both been introduced in the pages of Superman in the last year, and have their first appearances in Action as they pursue the Silver Banshee, a woman who appears to be able to kill with her touch, as she searches bookstores in the city.

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Superman’s attention gets drawn.  The Banshee is unable to kill a man who she thought she had already attacked, an important clue to the nature of her powers.  She has no such trouble with Superman.

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And leaves him lying dead on the ground.  It’s not her touch that is fatal, it’s her voice.  Which is kind of obvious, if you know her name is Silver Banshee.

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Lois Lane and Lex Luthor are both shocked to hear about Superman’s death.  Lois actually handles it better, Lex is so jealous that he did not kill him.  The Justice League are mournful, and we see Batman, Black Canary and the Martian Manhunter.

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Perry White chokes on his words as Superman’s ghost visibly rises from his coffin during the funeral.

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Superman’s ghost fares much better than Superman did against the Silver Banshee.

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Her frustration leads to a scream that seems to destroy her, but there is clearly much more to this villain, and she returns in the pages of Superman within the year.

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The Martian Manhunter was really the ghost.  Superman was almost killed by the Banshee.  Her power seemed cued to identity, the reason she was not able to kill the man she thought she had met before. The Martian Manhunter could not be killed by Banshee, as she thought she was trying to kill Superman’s ghost.

A good intro for the villain.  Showing Martian Manhunter early on made it easy to figure out though.

Detective 861- Kate seeks out Bette, and the Question and the Huntress vs Zeiss

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Jock joins Greg Rucka as they begin a three-part story that teams Batwoman with Batman, and concludes her run in this book. in Detective 861 (March 2010).

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A new villain is introduced.  A knife wielding murderer of young women, Cutter.  Batwoman has her first fight with him early in the issue, but is wounded, and he gets away.

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Batwoman also has her first encounter with Maggie Sawyer, who has no idea that this is the same woman who she has started seeing.  To be fair, the meeting is brief, and in darkness, and the fake hair is a good decoy.

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Batman is also on the case of Cutter, and meets with Commissioner Gordon to discuss it.

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Kate also seeks out her neglected cousin, Bette.  There is a casual reference to her tennis pro days, a nice reminder that this is the same person who has appeared with the Titans.  And Kate is not the only one who sought out Better that day.  She is also being scoped by Cutter as his next victim.

The story continues in the next issue.

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Rucka and Hamner do a good job turning the tables on their own cliff-hanger ending from last issue, as it becomes clear that the Question and Huntress knew Zeiss was following them, and were just waiting for him to arrive.

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Despite his ego, and getting some good shots on Renee, it’s two against one, and he has no chance.  But the women convince him to flip on his paymaster.  They stage a scene, so he can send his employer a picture of their supposed deaths, and he gets paid.  He turns over the name of the one who paid him, and readily admits he has no idea if it’s the big guy, or just another operative.

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The women are pleased with themselves, but Tot is not.  He has harsh words for them, working with and releasing a murderer, and claims the original would have been ashamed of them.

The story continues next issue.

Detective 856 – Batwoman runs with the wolves, and the Question won’t be unmasked

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Batwoman continues in Detective 856 (Oct. 09), by Rucka and Williams III.

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Some of the art by Williams is just so amazing.  In fact, I find the art at times overshadows the story, but that’s about my only critique of it.  The monster turned out to be Abbot, once a devotee of the Crime Bible, he and others have turned against Alice, as she takes over the organization.  They get to safety, and her father tends to her wounds and poisoning.

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Kate is back up on her feet in time for a big party by her step-mother that night. We finally get to see Bette Kane, who had been mentioned in earlier issues.  She is Kate’s niece, giving her the same relationship to Kate Kane as Betty Kane had to Kathy.  She is the same woman who has been appearing as Flamebird in Titans stories since Crisis, a sidekick without a hero.  The Batwoman series brings her in slowly.

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On the other hand, there is nothing slow int he romance between Kate and Maggie Sawyer.  They talk about their exes, but the spark between them is clear.

Perhaps I should have mentioned when this changed format, that currently not only does Detective Comics feature two series starring women, both women are lesbians.  Kate and Renee had once been a couple.

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And as for Renee, Rucka and Hamner have her being questioned by Vargas, who is not able to remove her mask (it’s chemically bonded to her skin.)

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She gets free, and another name on the chain, and Vargas gets shot by his own men, who apparently have more gusto than aim.

The story continues in the next issue.

 

 

 

Detective 784 – a new murder copies a very old one, and Josie Mac gets promoted

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Patrick Zircher and Aaron Sowd join Ed Brubaker on Detective 784 (Sept. 03), which begins a three-part story that teams up Batman with Alan Scott, the original Green Lantern.

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Jim Gordon opens this story, as he fights off muggers in a park.  There is a statue of Alan Scott (never shown before), commemorating his days as Gotham’s guardian in the 1940s.

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Gordon finds a grisly sight at the base of the statue, and one that seems vaguely familiar.

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Batman consults with Gordon, and they agree that the murder likely has something to do with Green Lantern, whose weakness, not widely known, was to wood.

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Alan Scott also hears about the murder, and recalls finding a similarly carved victim at the base of the statue more than forty years earlier.  Doiby Dickles cameos in the flashback.

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Batman finds what must be the killer’s lair.  The suspicion that this is a copycat killer seems off-base, as the lair has newspapers from the 40s, but is still being used.

The story continues in the next issue.

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Josie Mac returns for a one-shot story,by Judd Winick and Cliff Chiang.

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Her partner at Missing Persons is retiring, moving to California to become private security.

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But she is moving up as well.  After so many successful cases, Josie Mac gets promoted to the Major Crimes Unit, under Maggie Sawyer, and becomes a regular player in the book Gotham Central.

Detective 771 – Batman does not like Checkmate, and Two-Face does not like Josie Mac

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It’s Bruce Wayne: Fugitive, Part 12 in Detective 771 (Aug. 02), and Batman continues to be interested in anything other than his own case, according to Rucka, Lieber and McKenna.

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Crispus Allen and Renee Montoya stake out the courthouse as Sasha Bordeaux’s trial begins, in case Bruce should happen to show up.  He doesn’t, of course, but Alfred does, out of respect for the woman, even though they had never met.  Alfred’s behaviour just does not match that of a man who would help a cold blooded killer flee justice, and Allen is having serious doubts about Bruce Wayne’s guilt.

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Through David Said, Batman gets to communicate with Checkmate, and learns that they know who is behind the poisoned heroin, but will neither do anything about it, nor tell him who the man is.

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Maggie Sawyer calls Allen on the table, after Alfred complains of his harassment.  Maggie insists Allen must find something, anything, to charge Alfred with if he wants to keep the heat on him.

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And David Said and Batman identify the poisoner.  Said informs Batman that the man is NSA.

The story continues in the next issue.

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Josie Mac and Batman take on Two-Face in the penultimate chapter of her first storyline, by Winick and Chiang.

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Two-Face winds up between them, and tosses the child off a catwalk.  Batman dives to rescue the boy, and Two-Face takes advantage of the distraction to grab Josie Mac, and put a gun to her head.

The story concludes next issue.

Detective 766 – Bruce Wayne: Murderer begins

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After a prologue in the one-shot Batman – the 10-Cent Adventure, which ended with Bruce and Sasha discovering Vesper Fairchild’s dead body in Wayne Manor, the Bruce Wayne: Murderer storyline starts off in Detective 766 (March 2002), by Greg Rucka, Scott McDaniel, and Jesse Delperdang.

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Maggie Sawyer leads the investigation, with Montoya and Allen as the detectives on the case.

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Montoya finds it hard to believe that Wayne would be guilty, but all she is really going on is that he bought her flowers as a present from Harvey Dent.  Crispus Allen, going by the evidence, is sure he is the killer.

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Much of the story takes place in the interrogation rooms, as Montoya works on Sasha, and Allen tries to break Bruce.  Of course, no matter what the pressure, the two do not break.

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They play the recording of Vesper’s 911 call, which includes the sound of her being shot.  The cops treat this as damning evidence, despite no killer being identified in the call.

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The story closes on Alfred.  For the past few years, he had been serving as Tim Drake’s valet as the boarding school he attends.  But with Bruce in so much trouble, it’s time to return home.

The story continues in the next issue of Batgirl.

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