Sunday, July 13, 2008
(Warning up front- we're about to get really geeky)
Look, I miss Ted Kord too. He was a fun, jolly guy, and I still get a bit choked up when I crack open my OMAC Project TPB and see Max Lord but a bullet in dear Ted's head. He was smarter than Batman, and had moxie to the end ("Rot in hell, Max.") but simple fact is he's gone. Dead. I would say Bucky Barnes or Jason Todd dead, but that doesn't mean what it used to: J'onn J'onzz dead maybe? Anyway, enjoy the fact Ted is still out there on Carlton Earth with Vic Sage as the Question doing their thing and realize that drama means conflict and conflict means change.
What I am getting at is this-- if you refuse to read Blue Beetle because it is Jaime Reyes and not Ted Kord you are, in the vernacular, a big doo-doo head. The most consistently entertaining regular Superhero title in comics right now is Blue Beetle. Sixteen year old Jaime Reyes is what Peter Parker used to be- interesting. He's got a wonderful supporting cast, many of which are his teenage friends. What do you know, after 70 years of superheroes, there's a title that acknowledges the world is different for these people. These teenage kids aren't worried about drivebys and terrorists-- they are in a world where aliens and supervillains regularly attack the planet! They want to do something about it. Jaime and his buddies are still going through teenage stuff, but in the middle of that, he's kinda getting a kick out of having superpowers. Good for him!
Something else this titles does most don't, is you can pick up pretty much any issue, and get a whole story. Indeed something ingenious John Rogers does on his run as writer is tells a number of good one-shots with cool guest stars, and then does a couple issues tying it all into an arc- if you haven't read those issues, the tie-together stands on its own telling you what you need, and if you did read them, ok.
Also unlike the abominable changes that overtook Checkmate and All-New Atom when they changed writers, the rotating authors on Beetle actually keep the character consistent, and make him someone I want to read about.
In short Blue Beetle is fun, well written, doesn't require you to read thirty other books to know what's going on, and features someone who may be the only ethnic superhero from a major company who doesn't give in to stereotyping. He's a Hispanic kid from El Paso, and acts as such without become DC's token Mexican character.
And if you miss Ted Kord like I do, seeing Jaime learning how to be a superhero from reading Ted's notes should be a real treat.
Please go buy this book while you still can. I am sure DC is going to kill it; it is actually entertaining and not full of CRISIS!!!!!!
You might even get an occasional Bwaa-ha-ha! If you know what I mean by that you are a big geek. Welcome.