Sep
27

Downcounting Presents: Upcatching: A FBB Event in Three Parts (Book I: #32: “Girls Gone Wild”)

Posted by on Thursday, September 27th, 2007 at 02:59:58 AM

So much to do, so much to say… again, apologies for the delays, I hope no one got bored and bought these books instead of being patient. Welcome to UPCATCHING: A Funnybook Babylon Event in Three Parts!!! For this article, we’ll be catching up with issue 32 is titled “Girls Gone Wild”. Yeah, if they’re not going to put any thought into their titles, neither am I. Part II will take a look at today’s Countdown #31, and Part III this weekend will be a massive exploration of Countdown Tie-In books, aka the Comics Where Things Happen Sometimes. Part III will be exploring two of the most hilarious twist endings of recent memory, so if you haven’t spoiled yourself, get on a search engine or ask at your local comic shop about what happened at the end of Amazons Attack #6 and the Green Arrow/Black Canary Wedding Special. That should give you just about enough time to wrap your head around how ridiculous both of these were, and be prepared to read more about them this weekend. So now, let’s get down to it, Downcounters – MOUNT UP!

You know, you’d think that “comics girls gone wild” would be a search that would produce results in the fanart community.pp.1-3: Here’s a GIRL GONE WILD now! Mary Marvel, who stumbled upon a Magical Chinese Market a few weeks ago looking for more power is now entering into a deal with Klarion the Witchboy, who I guess as the Boy King of the Sheeda/the entire future human race has nothing better to do that hang out in a Magical Chinese Market. Klarion encased her in some magic bubble to ‘get something to barter with’, then the bubble exploded and it caused a ruckus. He then offered Mary his “services” in getting more power… in exchange for a portion of her power. Because, again, the Boy King of the Sheeda could really use some extra power. I assumed this was some sort of magical equivalent of the old adage “you’ve got to spend money to make money” but now this week we find out the whole thing was to help Mary “control the powers raging within her”. Mary reasons that she’s got so much power she can “afford to spare him a spark”, which makes sense since her entire story arc has been about her lusting to gain more magical power from Zatanna and now the Magical Chinese Market. Mary agrees, at which point Klarion turns into an evil Plastic Man and stretches his arm and hand out to tie up Mary. I guess Klarion is going to suck all the power out of Mary and let Teekl eat her corpse! None of this has any precedent or parallel to what we’ve seen of Klarion before, but hey! Mary zaps this shit out of him and considers killing Klarion, at which point a MYSTERIOUS VOICE tells her:

“Good! Your hate has made you powerful. Now, fulfill your destiny and take your father’s place at my side! Strike them down with all your hatred, and your journey towards the dark side will be complete.”

Wait, that was the Emperor in Return of the Jedi. That was the basic gist, though. Mary resists the MYSTERIOUS VOICE’s urges to murder, but decides to fly out and meet up with the MYSTERIOUS VOICE anyway. Man, who could this MYSTERIOUS VOICE be?

Next Week, the Rogues become Buck Privates!pp. 4-6: Hey, Piper and Trickster aren’t wild girls! I feel gypped. Last week, they got deposited in a ‘safehouse’ by the Flash while he investigates their claims that Deathstroke aims to disrupt Green Arrow and Black Canary’s wedding! And when they try to escape, they’re attacked by a mummy! Piper tries to soothe the mummy’s hot heart with a cool island song, but the Flash shows up to confiscate the Rogues’ gadgets. Luckily, Piper can make a cool island song with a telephone (?) and the mummy falls asleep! Once again, these two men, notorious wanted murderers, now stripped of their “weapons” and placed in a safehouse by the Justice League who tentatively believe they are innocent of murder, who will also likely be murdered for betrayal by any supervillain they cross, decide the best bet is to run away from the Justice League. I suppose that’s why they are not members of Flash’s Genius Gallery. The safehouse being guarded by a giant magical mummy turned out to be your standard midrange hotel, by the way.

pp. 7-8: Hey, remember last week how Project Cadmus picked up Jimmy Olsen and promised to help him figure out his strange powers? Well here we are this week, and they arrive at Project Cadmus, and they promise that they will help him figure out his strange powers! Just in case you think these were wasted pages, we’re introduced to Dr. Serling Roquette, a brilliant genetic scientist who basically looks and acts like Boom Boom from Louise Simonson’s New Mutants. She’s actually a supporting character from the Kesel run of Superboy, and is looking and acting pretty much like she did in those stories, so kudos to the Countdown crew for getting that angle right for once. She probably is secretly Granny Goodness.

My faith renewed!  “superhero stripper” got some hits.  This is really lovingly rendered.pp. 9-16: And now the majority of the issue is given over to Black Canary’s bachelorette party! This is also covered to a goodly degree by the JLA Wedding Special and Green Arrow/Black Canary Wedding Special, but if you haven’t read those two comics, don’t worry – they don’t really match up with this sequence anyway. Here’s what we learn:
– Oracle looks up fake nudes of her Birds of Prey teammates on the internet
– Everyone hates pomegranate martinis, except that Lady Blackhawk chick, who loves to make them for everyone.
– Oracle and Lois Lane are looking to get FUCKED. UP. at this party.
– Despite their superhuman physiology and their godlike powers, Supergirl and Wonder Girl want to get ripped to the tits just like their mentors, and can think of no better way to do this than try to sneak drinks from the bar.
– Zatanna is still pissed at Mary Marvel, not for being a huge threat and murderously bitchy, but for almost beating her. No other partygoer, most of whom recently had to fight to keep Black Adam from killing like everyone on the planet, seems that concerned about Mary Marvel having Black Adam’s powers and showing signs of becoming kill-happy. I mean, yes, fine, save the world, great. But tonight they are looking to drink til the art in this issue looks pretty!

You’d think “supergirl drunk” would be another sure-fire hit, but no.  Please accept this green beefcake as a substitute.But in the midst of all of this boozing, a mummy appears! I guess, uh, because he got hoodwinked by Piper and Trickster, he’s looking for them? Or coming to warn Zatanna that the Rogues escaped? I assume not, since Zatanna magics him away, but maybe she’s just EROT PU MORF EHT ROOLF PU? Anyway, the Rogues, in a bit of “hilarious” contrivance, manage to have “lost” the mummy, and decide that they’d better lay low… in a male strip club! This is already Blue Oyster Bar level “hilarity” since Trickster’s revealed himself to be a hysterical homophobe already, but it’s a male strip club full of superheroines! Oh, and the fucking mummy they were trying to escape from! Oh, those Rogues, they sure do get some rough luck, don’t they? They end up escaping from the strip club in all the confusion (and Supergirl and Wonder Girl discover that BOOZE IS GROSS – this has been a public service announcement from DC’s “Trickster Love Da Kids” campaign) and get to tear out of the strip club in a sweet sports car! ROAD TRIP!

pp. 17-18: Last week, the adventures of the C-List Monitor Posse synced up with December’s Green Lantern #26 as Kyle Rayner, fresh off the Sinestro Corps War joins the gang! Not to be out done, this week they preview December’s Countdown to Final Crisis Presents: Challengers of the Beyond: The Search for Ray Palmer: Red Son as Kyle “accidentally” crosses paths with fan-favorite Countdown Arena gladiator Red Son Superman, before depositing them where his ring thinks Ray Palmer might be – Earth-3, home of the Crime Syndicate!!! Uh oh! After a brief respite that allows Kyle and Jason to fight over which one of them gets to be Donna Troy’s BOYFRIEND, the CSA shows up, claiming that the CLMP must be some of the Jokester’s friends… I sense a big fight (and an appearance from the most sensational character find since Forerunner) NEXT ISSUE!

Were YOU able to solve the Mystery of the Mysterious Voice?pp. 19-20: And to wrap up with another senses-shattering cliffhanger, we finally discover who the MYSTERIOUS VOICE influencing Mary Marvel is – IT’S ECLIPSO! See, this is how you set up a mystery, people! Unlike certain other mysteries, DC “played fair” with this – if you looked at the clues, like all the scenes with Eclipso saying she was going to corrupt and influence Mary Marvel, you might have pieced together the fact that it was Eclipso. It’s also possible you picked up Countdown to Mystery and noticed that Eclipso said she was going to try to corrupt Mary Marvel in that comic, too. Or you’ve read any interview, press release for Countdown that’s been released since March or so. It’s subtle, but the puzzle pieces all fit. Bravo, DC!

Thus ends Book I of Upcatching! Stay tuned for Book II very soon, with an amazing revelation on par with this week’s mindblowing Eclipso reveal!

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