Friday, April 17, 2009

Rayboy's Review: Booster Gold #19 (DC Comics)

Booster Gold: The Greatest Hero You’ve Never Heard Of!

It says so right on the front cover of DC Comics Booster Gold #19 (June 2009) by writer/artist Dan Jurgens & inker Norm Rapmund. I hate to quibble, but I have heard of Booster, and I’ve been flipping through various issues of his series since it was relaunched, but I hadn’t actually bought a copy until now.

I have enjoyed Dan Jurgens earlier work on such series as Legion of Super-Heroes, Teen Titans and the original Booster Gold series in the 1980’s, but these days I am a really hard sell on new books. Heck, I seldom start watching any television series from the get go, and it’s not that I have to wait for something to become a hit before I check it out – just the opposite in fact – it’s just that I distrust much of what passes for funny book entertainment these days; most current comic books have grown too "dark" or too "adult-oriented [Yeah, right!], or they are incessantly, inbred (dominated by a small coterie of egomaniacs and their lemming-minded sycophants) and then they only pander to the same dwindling comic shop crowd, instead of reaching out to the general population (as virtually all comics used to). Enough of the rant!

"Reality Lost Epilogue" begins with Rip Hunter secretly helping Princess Koriand’r (aka Starfire) escape from her Gordanian captors prior to the classic Wolfman/Perez/Tanghal New Teen Titans #1 from the early 1980’s. The action then moves to ancient Egypt, where the current Booster Gold and another Booster who has been snatched from the recent past, are mulling over events of the last few issues; where for instance, the duo has apparently saved the time-stream. There is some really nice color work here by Hi-Fi; particularly in how the glare of the sun is suggested, to great effect, in several panels set in the Egyptian desert.

Before the twin Booster’s make their escape back to the future, a five page sequence reveals the reaction of Booster’s sister Michelle (aka Goldstar) to the news that she had been dead, and was only recently saved by Rip Hunter & Booster – neither of whom managed to tell her this information themselves. Needless to say, she isn’t happy and it appears that after she magnetically zaps Booster’s droid pal, Skeets, Michelle uses the available time travel technology to disappear to a place/and or time of her own choosing – without leaving a clue for her brother to follow.

The issue closes out with "current" Booster restoring "past" Booster to his actual historical time-frame (after a convenient mindwipe strips him of his memories), and then popping back into his own future just in time to salvage Rip, who had been left at the mercy of the Gordanians. Both time masters now have to deal with the ramifications of Michelle’s absence.

I bought this issue to see if this was a title that I could commit to and I admit that I was more than pleased with it. Dan Jurgens has long exhibited a fine talent, he can write a very entertaining story and he definitely brings his A-game to the penciling chores. Norm Rapmund is a good choice of finishing artist also. I’ve already mentioned that the coloring on the book is topnotch, so if you are bored with everything else on the stands, please check out Booster Gold. I also have to mention that since Booster has apparently found his niche as the guardian of the time-stream, based on what I’ve seen of the last several issues where he's interacted with or participated in most of DC's major crossover events of recent years, it’s like this title alone is a mini-event in and of itself.

No comments: