Wednesday, October 24, 2018

The Cheetah Unleashed: Barbara Minerva in the Post-Crisis DC Universe

Episode #19

Look for us on iTunes, ShoutEngine or the Internet Archive, where you can also directly download an art-tagged MP3.

Frank returns after a year's sabbatical to find... most of the other Amazing Amazon comics podcasters have podfaded and the movie sequel pushed back seven months to 2020? Perhaps now more than ever, the world is waiting for a Barbara Minerva / The Cheetah III podcast! This episode covers nearly every Cheetah story from 1986-2011, from her debut to her origin and overall career prior to the New 52 reboot! Included is Underworld Unleashed, a well regarded event mini-series from 1995, which a group of bloggers/podcasters join us in exploring for a crossover all our own!

Underworld Unleashed #BestEventEver We don't have a Magic Sphere, so if you want to communicate with us about the podcast...
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  • Sunday, September 2, 2018

    DC Comics 1993 Editorial Presentation: Justice League America

    There wasn't much related to the DC Trinity featured in "1993: The Year of Change" editorial presentation that didn't get published, and thus is readily available for anyone looking for it. Diana's entry featured Lee Moder's “Experience The Majesty” and a reasonably accurate description of the year's stories, although the promised Demon Etrigan and Supergirl guest appearances failed to materialize.

    Ditto Justice League America, wherein the Amazing Amazon had already taken over as team leader in the wake of Superman's "death." The earlier, better J.L.A. stories were incongruously reprinted in Superman and The Justice League of America Vol. 2 (despite his perishing in a non-reprinted comic set two issues into the trade.) I suppose the gambit paid off, because the sales on that trade were good enough to warrant a continuation into Wonder Woman and Justice League America Vol. 1 & even more incredibly Vol. 2 (which would more accurately but less commercially be considered a "Judgment Day" crossover collection.) These are unfortunately among the worst regarded League stories ever published, and the covers to the original issues were so bad (and non-Wonder Woman-centric) that DC actually sprung for Tom Grummett to draw two new ones (common in the old days for collections, but a rarity now.) I dig the first one especially, so I'm not sorry DC neglected to use the Dan Jurgens/Rick Burchett promo image above. I'm not aware if it ever appeared anywhere else.

    DC Comics 1993 Editorial Presentation

    Saturday, September 1, 2018

    1993 Wonder Woman “Experience The Majesty” house ad

    Heralding the arrival of Lee Moder as new (and relatively short-lived) artist on the book (before he bailed/was pushed out and replaced by the more infamous Mike Deodato Jr.) Also reintroducing William Messner-Loebs after a rocky start with "Operation: Cheetah" and the controversial Noble Pyrates arc by retelling Diana's origins and revisiting Themyscira.

    Thursday, May 31, 2018

    “Wonder Girl's Mystery Suitor!” (July, 2000)

    On a shore of Paradise Island, Queen Hippolyta looked on as her teenage daughter Diana used her Amazon bracelets to deflect lightning bolts during a rainstorm. Aphrodite appeared in the heavens to condemn this frivolous use of the pantheon's gifts, and ordered Diana to find an appropriate suitor by sundown to prove herself worthy of the Goddess of Love's continued patronage. Diana was swiftly propositioned by her Silver Age beaus Mer-Boy and Bird-Boy, but she only had eyes for a beautiful new arrival, Centaur-Boy. This suitor demonstrated great powers, but was also terribly conceited, only wishing to talk about himself. Though she struggled with her desire for him, Diana ultimately lassoed him to demand the truth. "Your beauty is only skin deep, Centaur-- and I could never love anyone whose flaws outweighed his charm! You're part of Aphrodite's test, aren't you?"

    And so it went that Centaur-Boy was a mere illusion, and Aphrodite congratulated Diana's passing the true test to gauge her understanding of "the value of the love that powers you... No matter what the threat, you must always be true to your heart-- and never give it to one unworthy!" Centaur-Boy vanished, leaving Wonder Girl to contemplate whether she would someday choose between Mer-Boy and Bird-Boy.

    “Wonder Girl's Mystery Suitor!” was a short back-up story in Silver Age 80-Page Giant #1 by Mark Waid & Ty Templeton

    Tuesday, May 8, 2018

    Silver Age: Teen Titans (July, 2000)

    In an adventure set during the early days of the Teen Titans, Wonder Girl Donna Troy was helping her friends read their fan mail, and said of one solicitation to take her to the prom, "Ha ha ha. Tell him my eight-foot alien boyfriend doesn't like me dating other guys." An autocratic lawman at the beachfront property of the ultra-rich Seaside used hi-tech mind control and a well armed masked gestapo to create a town of Stepford teens. Individual young people manage to temporarily rebel and send letters seeking the aid of the Titans. Wonder Girl suffered the archer Speedy's incessant flirtations while investigating with Robin, Kid Flash and Aqualad. Soon, the team was forced to battle Sheriff John Law's police force, captured, and tortured. In Wonder Girl's case, she was held in space by magnetic poles repelling shackles holding her arms and legs. With Robin unable to think, Speedy came up with a plan that used Donna's magnets to help free the team. Donna complimented Speedy, which only invited more advances.

    Meanwhile, the alien Agamemno caused the foes of the Justice League of America to swap bodies with our young heroes' mentors. Batman in The Penguin's body, Aquaman in Black Manta's, and Flash in Mr. Element's sought help from their charges, but found that they were off on a mission. Tracing the Titans to Seaside, the trip was unable to convince their wards of their true identities, and a three way clash ensued involving Sheriff Law and the Titans themselves being mind-controlled. Eventually, "The Penguin" helped Robin overcome his conditioning and capture Law's men, while the Sheriff himself appeared to perish and the "villains" made their escape. In a story largely centered on Robin, the Boy Wonder never does manage to figure out that Batman and Penguin have swapped places, despite some rather arch tells. "The Tyrannical Terror of Sheriff Law" was by Marv Wolfman, Pat Oliffe, and Andrew Hennessy. For my taste, there were far too many turnabouts without much actual progress, and the premise was exactly the sort of arch throwaway nonsense that makes me continue to avoid actual Silver Age Titans material. Oliffe draws a lovely Donna, but she isn't given much to do.