Posts tagged ‘Speedy’

Action 632 – Green Lantern meets Lord Malvolio, the Phantom Stranger chases Tannarak, Black Canary in live theatre, Nightwing finally shows up, and a suspicious change of mood

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Nightwing joins Speedy not only on the cover, but even in their story in Action 632.

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Owsley, Bright and Tanghal start this Green Lantern story as he pursues the alien, but he gets pulled off course, and this plot thread is left behind as we meet a new villain.

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Lord Malvolio has a Green Lantern ring, in a period when very few did.  He seems unaware of the Guardians of the Universe, and, indeed, his costume shares similarities with that of Alan Scott, whose Green Lantern was also independent of the Guardians.

He demands that Hal serve him.  Hal, of course says no.  Malvolio gets mad.

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Tannarak threatens the Phantom Stranger, and then leads him on a merry chase in this chapter, by Kupperberg and Carillo.

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Cassandra Craft and Dr. Thirteen are right behind them, as Tannarak heads to the big cats section of the zoo, drawing the beasts to him.

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Oh no!  It’s super-cat!

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Wright, DuBurke and Marcos reveal that the killer actress has the heroin hooker as her prisoner in this Black Canary chapter, and that her motive has to do with her dead daughter.

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She is clearly losing it, and attacks Black Canary from the stage in the middle of a performance.

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Lots of double agents, bombing, and general misery in Northern Ireland in this Nightwing and Speedy story, by Wilkerson, Giarrano and Mandrake.

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Nightwing finally shows up, which is nice.  But he still manages to stay enough in the background that this is solidly a Speedy story.

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The Blackhawks are about to take a flight into madness in this chapter, by Pasko and Burchett.

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The Nazis kill Constance Darabont, replacing her with their own operative.

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When Janos comes to meet her that night, he finds a far more friendly woman than the one the team had dealt with the previous day.  As they fly off in the morning, she makes the team coffee.  Only Fredrikson is suspicious, and with good reason.  She has spiked it with LSD.

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Action 631 – Captain Atom concedes, Black Canary figures something out, the Phantom Stranger’s friends and enemies, Speedy goes to the parade, and Lady Blackhawk gets taken

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The Phantom Stranger begins a four-part story in Action 631, and gets a cover appearance to celebrate that.

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Owsley, Bright and Tanghal end the team-up with Captain Atom and Green Lantern, although I wouldn’t say they resolve it, or bring it to a conclusion.

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After blasting each other, and being trounced by the alien, who escapes, Captain Atom decides that this is really more of an outer space issue than a military one, and basically gives up and leaves.  Green Lantern sets out to find the creature.

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Wright, Duburke and Marcos have a third murder in this chapter of Black Canary’s story.

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This time the actress disguises herself as a man, in order to get picked up by a gay guy, her next victim.  The man recognizes her, and knows why he is being killed, although the reader does not get informed.

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The Phantom Stranger begins a four-part story, by Paul Kupperberg and Fred Carillo, that brings back supporting characters and villains from the Phantom Stranger’s old series in the 70s.  Cassandra Craft, a blind psychic and the one-time romantic interest of the Stranger, had not been seen since appearing in Superman in the late 70s.  She gets attacked by Tala, the Phantom Stranger’s first foe, who had last appeared in the late 70s in a Phantom Stranger/Deadman team-up in the final issue of DC Super-Stars.

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Cassandra comes to see the Stranger, who is spending the evening chatting with Dr. Thirteen.  I believe his last appearance was around 1980, in his own series in the pages of Ghosts.

Cassandra tells the Stranger about Tala’s return, but then Tannarak arrives with a blast.  Another of the Stranger’s old foes, he had appeared the most recently, in the Phantom Stranger’s back-up series in Swamp Thing in the early 80s.

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Cherie Wilkerson and Tom Mandrake are joined by Vince Giaranno on pencils as Speedy solos in this supposed Nightwing and Speedy team-up.  Terrorists are on the train, but Speedy gets the little girl to safety.

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But there still is a child victim, during the Orange Day Parade, as the older sister spots a bomb, and dies getting it away from the crowd.

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Lady Blackhawk gets kidnapped as Pasko and Burchett open this story.  But Janos has no idea, being off picking up Constance Darabont.

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Darabont is cool and professional.  Janos seems to have gotten over the aviatrix, for all his mourning earlier in the story.

 

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.

 

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

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

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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

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

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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.

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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.

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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.

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

Action 618 – Green Lantern vs the Freakshow, Blackhawk hits the air, Wild Dog goes to the press, Deadman returns, and Nightwing ends

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Nightwing and Speedy in a classic Batman and Robin pose on the cover of Action 618.

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Green Lantern battles the Freakshow in this chapter, by David, Howell and Starr.  It takes him a bit, but Hal gets the best of them, and then tracks them to Hawkes industries.

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As the story ends, Hal meets both Lillian and Veronica Hawkes.

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Janos and Frederikson go from fighting over Lady Blackhawk to laughing at her in a very real, if very male, opening to this Blackhawk chapter, by Pasko and Burchett.

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The team take little time to fly to the right place, landing at the plantation where they aviatrix is being held.

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Wild Dog turns to the press for help about Wild Pup in this chapter, by Collins, Beatty and Nyberg.

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He pretty much begs the tv reporter to not heroize Wild Pup, or even him, trying to explain how dangerous this is for the kid.  The reporter is far less concerned about the boy’s safety than she might be.

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Wild Dog takes a spare minute to capture a serial killer.

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Deadman returns, but the series takes on a very different feel as Kelly Jones joins Mike Baron and Tony DeZuniga.

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This storyline deals with rival voodoo priests.  Deadman encounters a nasty one in this story, who is able to see him.

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Nightwing and Speedy have their team-up come to a close with this story, by Wolfman, Patton and Poston.  Dick brings Lian to meet Roy, recuperating in the hospital.  Roy admits that there never was a CBI mission, he was going after Cheshire to get Lian all along. He wanted Dick’s help, but couldn’t admit the read reasons.

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Nightwing’s actions in this final chapter almost merit calling it a solo series, as he also takes down Cheshire single-handed.

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And it’s nice to see Dick and Starfire together at the end.

Nightwing’s series would return.  This first run was heavily criticized for being more of a Speedy story than a Nightwing one, but the next would be even worse for that.

 

 

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