Saturday, 1 December 2007

Who'd Like A Cocktail? #11

"Well, cut my calories and call me skinny!" as Animal Man said back in Crisis On Infinite Earths #11. To my surprise, as well as Animal Man's, Countdown To Final Crisis gets its second Cocktail and in consecutive weeks to boot.

Teen Titans #53 was just too much - everything was crammed in with not enough room to breathe; while the series is normally excellent, Blue Beetle #21 was simply okay, possibly due to the fill-in writer; Garth Ennis's Dan Dare #1, while promising much, was simply a scene setter; amongst the other titles I picked up, the only other near contender was Uncle Sam And The Freedom Fighters #3 but, as you can see, it was Countdown that I went for.

At the risk of repeating much of what I said last week, Countdown's come in for some flak over the last six months but it appears to be shaking that off and moving the stories along, though some fare better than others - there's been no sight of Holly Robinson and the Amazons for some time now.

Mary Marvel and Eclipso managed to survive the attack by Lord Havok's ships in last issue and, it appears, Mary has finally realised Eclipso's no good for her.

Stuck on Apokolips, Jimmy Olsen's fortunes seem to swing from bad to good and right back to worse; rescued by Mr Miracle, the New God then forces Jimmy to play at one of those trust exercises that were so big in 1990's training seminars. Usually, one person gets another to fall backwards, trusting that the first will catch them, thus teaching them to be more trusting of others.

Mr Miracle's version, as shown on the right, is a lot more extreme risking the Fire Pits of Apokolips instead of the risk of falling flat on your backside. As one of the early Countdown posters said, Jimmy Olsen must die. The chances of it being at the hands of Mr Miracle, however, are fairly remote.

After the torture and beating he endured in last week's issue, Mr Mxyzptlk returns to the Fifth Dimension where he's met and consoled by his wife. Beaten to within an inch of his life, he decides to seal the entire dimension off from the Third and proclaims that he can never go back.

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that at some point, Mr Mxyzptlk will actually get back to the Third Dimension. Saying something will never happen in comics is a bit . . . well, silly really. It wouldn't surprise me if a few years down the line, the wholesale slaughter of The Death Of The New Gods not withstanding, we'll see the return of a hale and hearty Big Barda, Metron, Lightray and all the others that are currently being picked off.

But I digress.

The big reason Countdown got the Cocktail this week was the apparent culmination of Trickster and Pied Piper's story. While it's been a little hit and miss and some of Trickster's jibes about Piper's sexuality have seemed more bigoted than the sort of thing long-time friends can get away with, the shocking end to their story came as a hell of a surprise. Whether this, too, is something that can be undone - like Mxyzptlk's statement of not returning will be at some point - only time will tell. Either way, it's a hell of a cliff hanger and, once again, next week's issue can't come soon enough.

1 comment:

  1. i found this issue in a $1 dollar bin a few months ago. it's the issue in which Deadshot killed the Trickster.


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