Tag Archives: Grant Morrison

Dainel Clowes’ “Eightball” — A Personal Reminiscence : Part Two

CIr3TKgVAAAH9XQ

What were your comics reading habits like in 1989? I was still in high school, but man — was I ever in the mood for something different. At that point, Watchmen was hardly the distant memory it seems today and the reverberations of what Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons had done were still being felt far and wide across the mainstream super-hero landscape. Yes, the superficial trappings of that already-seminal-by-then  work had been effectively cheapened and co-opted by “The Big Two” almost across the board — most books were suddenly much “darker” and “more realistic” — but by and large it seemed like DC and Marvel were in the early stages of trying to figure out “okay, where do we go from here?” now that their entire formula had been so successfully deconstructed right in front of everyone.

I would argue, in fact, that they’re still trying to answer that question some three decades later. Grant Morrison was doing his level best to respond to it in Animal Man (and would soon do the same with Doom Patrol),  while Neil Gaiman was successfully building upon the classical- literature foundations of Moore’s prose in the pages of The Sadman, but for the most part it seemed like no one was willing to pick up the gauntlet Moore and Gibbons had thrown down. Vertigo was still just a pipe dream in Karen Berger’s mind and the publishers still had nothing like a firm grasp on what a “mature readers” comic really meant even though they’d just published one that, essentially, blew the doors open and should have resulted in a veritable onslaught of genuinely good and interesting titles.

Rather than embrace this new reality fully, though, DC and Marvel opted to do what they pretty much always do — batten down the hatches, keep pumping out more of the exact same shit they’ve been doing for decades, and hope to dumb everybody back down to the point where predictable dross seems normal. Sadly, it worked — and it continues working to this day.

Fortunately, there was a burgeoning “alternative” comics scene that started to blossom in the early ’80s,  thanks in large parts to the efforts of brothers Gilbert and Jaime Hernandez (and, early on, third sibling Mario) in the pages of their magnificent Love And Rockets, and these guys felt no need to tap into the current zeitgeist of superhero comics because, well — they just plain didn’t give a fuck. Soon, their ranks were buttressed by the likes of former Weirdo editor Peter Bagge, who unleashed his first “solo” series, Neat Stuff, in the middle part of the decade,  and one Daniel Clowes, whose early “professional” work saw print in Weirdo (among other places —including, would’ja believe, Cracked, during the legendary editorship of Mort Todd). This new generation of “non-mainstream” cartoonists was far more influenced by the likes of Robert Crumb and his wife, Aline Kominsky-Crumb, as well as by Kim Deitch, Mary Fleener, S. Clay Wilson, and assorted other underground luminaries, than they were by, say, Gerry Conway, Roy Thomas, or any of the other (sorry, but it’s true) second-rate, highly-derivative superhero comics creators of their youth. You know who I’m talking about — the guys who drove the bus into the ditch that Moore and Gibbons had just tried to pull out of.

Weirdo gave these artists and others (like Clowes’ good friend, the criminally-underappreciated Rick Altergott) the chance to rub elbows, metaphorically speaking, with a number of the great just-referenced underground cartoonists of years past  by putting all their work side-by-side in the same magazine, but by the late ’80s many were certainly looking to spread their own wings a bit further than a standard multi-creator anthology series would allow. The Bradley family had proven to be popular characters in Neat Stuff, and Bagge soon sent eldest brother Buddy off on his own to join (and in some cases to invent significant parts of) the nascent “Generation X” or “slacker” scene just underway in Seattle in his own solo book, Hate, while Clowes created Lloyd Llewellyn, a magazine-sized series starring a perpetually-disinterested, “too-cool-for-school,” proto-aging-hipster named — well, you guessed it.

It went just about nowhere. After seven issues its publisher, Fantagraphics Books (pretty much the “go-to” publishing house for independent cartoonists at the time, with Drawn + Quarterly still a few years away from bursting onto the scene), lowered the boom on poor old Lloyd citing poor sales, but head honchos Gary Groth and Kim Thompson, who had maintained a somewhat tight editorial control over the just-failed series, were amenable to giving their writer/artist more free reign with his next project. He’d played things their way and it didn’t work. What harm could there be in trying things his way this time?. Forget commercial considerations, Clowes figured, they’re hardly relevant in the world of marginally-selling indie comics, anyway (or at least they weren’t at the time). If he was only going to get one more crack at this whole thing,he was going to do what he really wanted to do .

43700-7153-51089-1-eightball

 

What he really wanted to do, as it turns out, made its debut in Eightball #1, cover-dated August of 1989, and it was a book with no real set “format” — just a loose collection of stories that were in no way affiliated with each other apart from coming from the same mind and pencil (and, okay, pen). Clowes’ intentions were clear — he’d  be making it up as he went along, following his own muse, and the publishers could either take it or leave it.

They took it, and we should all be damn glad they did. In the first issue alone we got the opening salvo of the surreal David Lynch-ian nightmare that was “Like A Velvet Glove Cast In Iron,”  we met uber-stereotypical “young hotshot” comics creator Dan Pussey (and his boss, an octogenarian sleazeball named Dr. Infinity who was obviously based on Stan Lee), we were treated to the Jack T. Chick-on-crack religious fanatacism of “Devil Doll?” (later reprinted in  traditional tract format for inclusion inside a Jello Biafra spoken word album), and hey — Lloyd Llewellyn even made a brief return appearance to help bridge the gap.

It was amazing. It was astonishing. It was every other time-worn superlative my brain can’t think of right now. And you know what? It still is.

tumblr_mbqufrKQEq1qemxfbo1_500

Oh, sure, Clowes didn’t invent the single-creator anthology by a long shot — there were, in fact, several others running at the time — but he absolutely got the balance exactly right here. The long-form narrative grounds the book and ensures readers will be back for more. The shorter works take aim at easy and popular targets (Christian fundamentalists, the comic book industry) with as much flair and panache as they do well-deserved venom. Toss in a couple of one-or-two-page gag strips to keep the old-school underground fans happy (I particularly loved the visual adaptations of interviews with nursing home patients that Clowes cobbled together from David Greenberger’s Duplex Planet ‘zine), and you’ve got a winner.

clowes1

Okay, make that a modest winner. Eightball #1 wasn’t exactly the talk of the comics world when it hit, but it sold out its initial run of something like 5,000 copies and went back to press no less than five times. Good luck finding a first printing at anything like a reasonable price these days (still got mine! Hah!) No earth-shaking tremors reverberated out of it, by any means, but   it definitely went some way towards cementing the idea that, while the mainstream was definitely moribund on the whole, there were interesting things happening in comics at the margins. And they were about to get exponentially more interesting pretty quickly.

I talked in our first segment about the four creative “phases” Eightball went through in its 15-year history, and “phase one” began right here. For lack of a better term we’ll call if the “Velvet Glove Phase,” and we’ll take a nice, long look at the story that was at the heart of it in our next segment. Hope to see you all back here then!

Advertisements

AlieNation: Skrull Kill Krew by Emily Scott

Greeting, Legions, and welcome back to Madness Month here at The Unspoken Decade! I don’t know that I truly understood the meaning of the word “madness” until I experienced a certain ongoing basketball tournament Dean Compton-style, complete with days of games on multiple screens and more junk food than anyone in their right mind would ever consume, but now I am well prepared to take a look at some lunacy in the comic book realm. If you haven’t already, I strongly encourage you to take a glance at Dean’s take on Ghost Rider #33 and Darry Weight’s Venom: The Madness, but if you’re in the mood for madness of a slightly more irreverent nature, there’s no better place to turn than 1995’s Skrull Kill Krew.

Created by writers Grant Morrison and Mark Millar and artist Steve Yeowell, Skrull Kill Krew was published under the short-lived Marvel Edge imprint, which included many established Marvel titles like Ghost Rider, Punisher, and Daredevil. As the name would suggest, and since it was practically the law in the mid-90’s that things be made more extreme, Marvel Edge trafficked in edgier fare, and Skrull Kill Krew is nothing if not on the fringes of normalcy. From the first cover, it’s obvious this comic is going to have some fun and not be too concerned with how it goes about doing it.

Skrull Cover
This is a great cover for this book – it perfectly captures its tone and content…but I can’t stop fixating on there only being two ellipses. WHY? If I ever stop being bothered by things like that, it will be the first indication I have been replaced by a Skrull.

We first meet Krew members Ryder and Moonstomp, who bust in on a history class, blow away the teacher, making the “she’s history” joke you totally see coming but would be disappointed if it weren’t there, take out a student, announce they were aliens, and dismiss class more flamboyantly than anyone since Alice Cooper. It’s a fitting introduction for this motley Krew because it’s exactly what you’ll get a lot more of in the rest of the books. Not to say that there is no depth to this series, but it doesn’t deviate far from the pattern of find Skrulls – make snarky quips – violently dispose of Skrulls. It’s entertaining, but anyone looking for something more probably wasn’t paying much attention to the cover up there when they picked this up.

One other thing the Krew does is recruit new members, but considering their recruitment techniques don’t look terribly different than their Skrull extermination techniques, their potential members can be a little reluctant. Dice, a surfer dude who has been experiencing strange visions and mood swings, runs from them, quite understandably so, as the Krew has shot his girlfriend after announcing themselves as “two seriously violent individuals” and started chasing him down with all the subtlety you would expect from people who mow down alien infiltrators in crowded public places.

Skrull Dread
I’d like to read the issue where they just can’t figure out why they aren’t meeting their recruitment goals.

The smarmy blonde British guy is Moonstomp, who we learn is a white supremacist who likes to deal out his violence with a claw hammer even though he could morph himself into any weapon. The black guy is Ryder, who we infer hates Skrulls enough to work with a white supremacist to take them out. The title doesn’t last long enough for them to get much character development beyond that, but the story doesn’t particularly demand any more of them.

Their partnership exemplifies some of the best and worst of humanity, something simultaneously beautiful and ugly. One on the one hand, it’s comforting to think that if there were an outside threat, we would put aside our differences and work together as a species to ensure our own preservation. On the other, it’s disheartening that it might take something decidedly more foreign than people of other races to make us finally set aside those prejudices and come together as one human family. I said that this story was not without depth, but this is the sort we get – not really examined in any meaningful way but there if you care to look for it.

Skrull Depth
The only depth they’re concerned about is how deep they’re burying these Skrulls, amirite??

In the second issue, we get an explanation of the Krew’s origin and powers. The gist is that in the 60’s, the Fantastic Four defeated some Skrulls impersonating them. Reed Richards, demonstrating what Ryder rightfully calls a “highly idiosyncratic sense of humor,” hypnotizes them into thinking they are cows and left them to graze. (You know you’ve read too much Greek mythology, when you find yourself wondering if Mr. Fantastic planned on boning any of the bovine.) During the Kree-Skrull War, they were changed back into Skrulls, but this time when they were defeated and turned back into cows, the Alien Activities Commission decided to do something weird and gross and send the cows to the slaughterhouse.

Skrull PETA
PETA would have a field day with this.

Those cows were turned into burgers, and some of the people who ate them died, some were unaffected, and some, our protagonists, were infected by the Skrull meat in a way that gave them powers like shape-shifting, ability to detect Skrulls, and near indestructibility, as well as an increasingly violent and irrational urge to off the Skrulls. The unfortunate side effect, though, is a bad case of dying soon, as the virus eats all of someone’s brain tissue in a few years. (This comic was created at the height of the Mad Cow Disease scare in the UK, and while it doesn’t necessarily have anything profound to say about media-induced panic or the horrors of mass food production, it capitalizes well on that panic, and using the cows was a clever way to integrate an older, fairly minor idea into the modern world.)

Just as the Fantastic Four all got different powers as the result of their exposure to cosmic rays, so too do the Skrull Kill Krew get unique powers from their Skrullovoria Induced Skrullophobia that reflect their personalities. Spiky haired punk rocker Riot, named because she is a Riot Grrrl and this is the super 90’s, transforms into a huge prickly insect. Dice’s powers manifest at random. Catwalk, the supermodel, turns into a giant cat. The most compelling affect of their powers, though, belongs to Moonstomp, who appears to be the only one exhibiting any of the degeneration yet. He has multiple dark patches on his body that are spreading, and it would have been interesting to see if a fairly flippant book would have handled a white supremacist turning black with any kind of subtlety.

Skrull Spread
Who would have thought that the most controversial thing about this would end up being the mention of Bill Cosby?

It’s not just playing on the idea of Mad Cow that makes this comic feel so much like a product of its time. In fact, of all the 90’s comics I have looked at for The Unspoken Decade, this might feel the most 90’s of all. It’s more than the “edginess,” the over the top violence, or the fact that the Krew all look like they stepped straight off the set of Hackers. There’s something about the anything goes, nothing-to-lose, nihilistic tone that transported me straight back to the mid-90’s, but it’s hard to separate how much of that is the comic, about a group of invincible feeling young people, and how much of it is a product of the fact that the height of my own invincible feeling growing up took place in the mid-90’s watching movies like Natural Born Killers and talking about how nothing really mattered.

Skrull Hackers
In addition to Moonstomp and Ryder, our Krew is rounded out by Baby Spice, Annie Lennox after she stuck her finger in a light socket, and…an amalgam of every character Matthew Lillard has ever played.

Something decidedly un-90’s in this comic is an appearance by the Man out of Time himself, Captain America, which feels incongruous for a number of reasons other than time. Not only does Captain America have a completely disparate mood from Skrull Kill Krew, but, as Dean pointed out when we were puzzling it over, if they were trying to use a big hero to sell more books, someone like Wolverine would have been a better option in 1995. It’s possible they used Cap just because he would have been such a random choice. It’s also possible they use him specifically because he represents an old-fashionedness and supposed conformity they were trying to flout.

The last reason would make the most sense to me because it would explain the diatribe below by Ryder that doesn’t really fit into the rest of the book otherwise. I can tell I’m no longer my younger cynical 90’s self because instead of thinking, “Yeah, you tell that old jingoistic bastard!” I just wanted to yell at Ryder not to talk to Captain America that way. I also want to balk at the idea that he could handle Cap so easily, but I suppose this is his comic and all.

Skrull Cap 1

I can tell I'm no longer my younger cynical 90's self because instead of thinking, "Yeah, you tell that old jingoistic bastard!" I just wanted to yell at Ryder not to talk to Captain America that way.
…then Ryder stormed off to blast Rage Against the Machine and talk on the phone about how Cap just doesn’t, like, get it, man.

The actual storyline involving Captain America doesn’t seem especially important, but the book gives the impression that it might have led to something significant had it continued. Basically, the President of Slovenia is flying into America, and Cap is at the airport to greet him. Baron von Strucker has other plans, though, and intends to take the president, and Slovenia, for himself. The Krew show up looking for Catwalk, who happens to be on the same plane, and realize the president is a Skrull. Strucker buggers off when he sees how many superpowered people are about, and the Krew, realizing the president is Skrull, tussle with Captain America, who thinks he is just protecting an important person. Oh, those wacky superhero shenanigans! Cap tells Nick Fury what happened, and Fury divulges that he knows exactly who Ryder is.

That revelation seems to be the most important part of the whole story, since it teases an even bigger reveal about Ryder, but I suppose that reveal will have to forever reside in Speculation City. At least we get this great moment with Strucker. Take that, fascist:

I feel like that impersonal message is the Nazi equivalent of Hitler writing "Have a nice summer" in your yearbook.
I feel like that impersonal message is the Nazi equivalent of Hitler writing “Have a nice summer” in your yearbook.

The other big cameo in these issues is the Fantastic Four, which makes sense, since Reed Richards’ actions caused this whole chain of events in the first place. The only problem is that it’s not the Fantastic Four at all; once again, those menacing Skrulls have impersonated them. There is some nice Twilight Zone-esque stuff at the beginning of the comic as we see a town completely get taken over by Skrulls from the perspective of a traveling salesman, but otherwise, there isn’t much in the way of plot to get in the way of multiple pages of the Krew beating up on the Fantastic Four replacements.

Skrull Four 1Skrull Four 2

Even for an evil alien, that Skrull Human Torch is just way too stoked about them being dead.
Even for an evil alien, that Skrull Human Torch is just way too stoked about them being dead.

Once the Krew have dispatched with the Fauxtastic Four, they turn their attention in the last issue to the town, which has been entirely replaced with Skrulls. This title was originally meant to be ongoing, but when it was cancelled, editor Tom Brevoort convinced Marvel for one more issue, making it into a mini-series. While it’s always nice when series get a resolution, Skrull Kill Krew has so little going on in terms of plot or character arcs that it’s really a resolution in name only. But when the majority of its action involves the killing of as many aliens as possible, I suppose there could be no better resolution than the all out mayhem that accompanies the mass slaughter of an entire town of them.

Skrull Kill
Pictured: the entire comic. Seriously, nothing happens in this issue except this gang killing an entire town of Skrulls. That’s it. It’s all variations on a theme.

I hope when I keep saying that there isn’t much going on plot-wise that it doesn’t come off too disparagingly because the other thing completely lacking in Skrull Kill Krew is pretense. It never once tries to be something it’s not, not for a moment, so while it’s most decidedly not a masterpiece, it most certainly is what it sets out to be, which is a rollicking good time. The sort of comic where you can kick back and enjoy some wanton destruction and not bat an eye because someone’s powers, which they acquired by eating ground up alien, cause them to turn into a human slot machine whose jackpot is becoming pure energy. Yes, that happens:

I would never joke about something like this.
I would never joke about something like this.

It might not be a huge letdown that the series didn’t go on longer like some other comics I’ve read recently, but it is nice to know the Krew made a reappearance in Secret Invasion and got a second mini-series in 2009. What was even more intriguing, but also slightly disappointing, was learning that there was talk of making a Skrull Kill Krew television show, which would be the perfect medium for this bunch of freaks. Had it been made, I’m sure it would have held a plum spot on the list of shows from my adolescence that were cancelled too soon.

I hope you’ve been enjoying Madness Month here at The Unspoken Decade, which will conclude with the maddest thing yet! Dean Compton will be allowing an interloper into our midst, one Mr. Paul O’Connor from Longbox Graveyard, to discuss his view on 90’s comics. If you don’t know some of Dean’s thoughts already, you might have forgotten what website you’re currently on, but Paul is a Bronze Age guy, so opinions may vary wildly! You don’t want to miss it!

 

 

On the Street Where You Live…-By Angel Hayes

Welcome back, lovely readers.

Last time we spoke there was blood everywhere and cheesecake on the corner. Now I implore you to follow me in the way-back machine from 1994 to 1990.

Follow me to meet up with our ever ostracized….Doom Patrol.

Doom Patrol V2 #35 - Page 1

Welcome to where all that you can think you may will into existence

Doom Patrol (v2) #35 – Down Paradise Way – 1990 – Vertigo Comics

The covers of Doom Patrol V2 comics are a singular art. If you thought my passion for holographic covers were impressive (and/or unnerving), we have only just begun.

il_570xN.581475884_5wne

The Carpenters know that life is just entropy. Much like the Doom Patrol.

There is nothing quite like Grant Morrison’s Doom Patrol.

Much like the way breezes feel best in the spring and rain doesn’t bother you if your day has no obligations, it can only be experienced not explained.

The grotesque but colorful covers give way not to a magical land, but one of pure will. Imagination is not king here. He is God. Gruesome, uncaring, and ultimately what all beings are capable of.

Phew. Let’s take a breath.

We open on a rather plain looking lady for the cover we’ve just be traumatized by.

Doom Patrol V2 #35 - Page 2

She looks like LADY SCIENTIST or LADY WRITER off of the flash cards from Careers the Board Game.

She’s searching for Danny. And as luck would have it, Danny appears!

Doom Patrol V2 #35 - Page 3

We can all identify Paradise by hobos with booze in their hands.

What an amazing splash page.

Featuring literal subtext (a true weakness of mine) as Danny responds with, “Hello, Sara.” Amazing choice of colors by keeping mundane elements such as the concrete and brick their normal colors. It makes the surreal fantasticism pop out and right into our already charmed hearts.

I starred at this page for no less than eight minutes when I first encountered it. Drinking in the lines, the focal points, the curves of the light posts, the unexpected joy brought to life via whimsy in the bittersweet atmosphere of a back alley city street.

We continue as Sara and Danny catch up much like old friends tend to do…except with Danny, it’s way more fucking badass.

danny speaking capture

Danny is the ultimate texter.

Welcome to Danny.

A being whom I consider to be one of the most wonderful things ever willed into existence. The nostalgia of walking where you had once been. The melancholy that follows when the places your memories were made have been destroyed. All of this makes perfect sense with Danny. Much like Lovecraft’s The Street, he sees all and feels all. He experiences it with you, just like the sadness you feel for lost and forgotten places can permeate your mind.

Also, Berlin is always Divine.

We now switch from the fabulous Danny. To our homegrown outcast heroes, the Doom Patrol themselves.

They’re moving out, and like everything and anything in Doom Patrol stories Robotman, Cliff Steele, just doesn’t get it.

Robotman

Kids who want two front teeth for Christmas have nothing on Cliff.

Robotman is a straight man’s straight man. So straight even his skin is steel (rimshot).

He’s our human throughout Doom Patrol even though he’s a robot….I PROMISE IT WILL ALL MAKE SENSE.

The chief (who is like professor X with no need for mental abilities because he has a gun and beard that could kill bears) decides it’s time for the Doom Patrol to swap HQs. He has important beard-related/destroying-the-world-sometimes-saving-the-world things to do, and this old warehouse isn’t cutting it.

Cliff is understandably pretty angsty and upset about his metal can body that he is continually being promised an upgrade for. Sounds like he’s stuck in the cell phone contract cycle.

The next page features Joshua Clay (Tempest) and a small extra from Planet of the Apes known as Dorothy.

We see a setup room to test her abilities ala danger room (X-Men rips off of the Doom Patrol a lot. They just decided Scott Summers was better than a robot who was a race car driver – tsk tsk.)

dorthory

 Dorothy makes Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends look terrifying.

Dorothy’s special abilities allow her to take beings from her own mind and pull them into reality. She has difficultly controlling the manifestation of them. The Good, the Bad, and the 3am Acid Trip all come out.

Let us get out of this nightmare and move on to a dream.

Doom Patrol V2 #35 - Page 9

I told that you’d know Paradise by the booze in the hobo’s hands

This is the beauty of Danny the Street. A sanctuary for the lost, one with opinions and an understanding of the human condition. Danny swept up the downtrodden and provided them with happiness. Paradise is reached when the ones who have nothing can be happy and healthy. Danny the Street is paradise for all of those who find him.

Now that you’ve got your smiling faces on just like Doom Patrol I’m going to slap that smile off your adorable face with a shift in tone.

Doom Patrol V2 #35 - Page 10 Doom Patrol V2 #35 - Page 11

Don’t we all want that button in our kitchens? Never mind – Do NOT Want.

First of all, what a shift in tone (feeling that slap?). Our surrealistic focal points and dancing hobos have no place here. Rigid lines and flat colors rule the panels here making the oppression complete. Normalcy is the only thing allowed here.

Also bonus points if you figured out that he stabs her with a stylized heretic’s fork.

This is something Doom Patrol pulls off like no other. These are the events so weird no one else wants to even look upon it.

Let us meet the benefactors of our strange events that will come to pass.

nowhere

Oh, that’s where I left the surrealism…in the basement, of course.

Mr. Jones introduces us to The Men from N.O.W.H.E.R.E.

Mr. Jones has already proved to be easily provoked and full of terrible. Surely, those that follow him would look like evil K-9s with elf shoes and purple trench coats.

These guys gave me many a nightmare as the series went on. They are exactly what I would destroy first should I ever will them into existence.

Let’s check in on our philanthropic outcasts, shall we?

groupsupportA alchemist’s dream, a robot, a man in a wheelchair, a split personality disorder patient, and an ape girl….Well, I tried to make a joke but this is the saddest group therapy ever.

Doom Patrol is getting out their feelings and trying to figure out where to go from here. Rebis (formerly Negative Man) is chill and Crazy Jane can’t decide what she feels in between all the turmoil inside her.

We go over the plans; Dorothy needs to pee. Moving on.


Doom Patrol V2 #35 - Page 15

Doom Patrol V2 #35 - Page 16

This is what I imagine all normal suburbanite dinner parties that I don’t get invited to are like.

The Men from N.O.W.H.E.R.E.’s speaking patterns are horrifying. You can hear them being telegraphed out. Horrible thoughts gargled with cruel intentions, words of hate pumped out with ease.

Not even wifey’s googly eyes can ease the terror and that is what googly eyes are for.

Something about the nonchalant mixing of the transmitted hate speech and yellow wallpaper with tulips makes the back of my spine contort. It also makes me not trust all bed and breakfasts.

Back to my family and yours, the Doom Patrol.

Doom Patrol V2 #35 - Page 17Doom Patrol V2 #35 - Page 18

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These are really just here to show off Crazy Jane’s Amazing Room. Hence why they’re small.

Crazy Jane is helping Rebis indulge in vanity, and Cliff, well, he just wants something to happen.

Back to Mr. Douchebag Jones

Doom Patrol V2 #35 - Page 19

I can’t overstate how amazing it is that Danny the Street is a Transvestite. 

So like most things angry privileged “normal” people can’t stand, Mr. Jones aims to destroy Danny the Street.

Let’s talk about that amazing and foreboding last panel.

Not only do The Men look intimidating the color contrast of that evil laughter and the misaligned placement of it. Gives me the willies. The overbearing shadows they cast and the perspective of them looming over us is enough to make me want to close my eyes. The shadows they cast are weapons just as powerful as the dark thoughts they stir in my mind. The steam rises off of them to show they are not just weapons of hate, but purely logical machines of it.

Phew. Let’s turn on the lights.

Things cheer up over the next two pages to show Danny the Street’s Perpetual Cabaret!!!

caberet

Phantom Limb’s Uncle. Complete with Shiny Suit.

Every is well with the cabaret until someone is said to have been killed. KILLED ON DANNY THE STREET! Our only sanctuary is desecrated.

pooreddie

 

My heart breaks. 

Sara, our resident lady scientist/writer, needs to find out who shattered her world. Wandering out to protect Danny she finds what we all fear.

The niggling doubts that say we are different and our differences make us weak. That normal is the only acceptable route for existence and life.

The force of doubt and hatred that is

THE MEN FROM N.O.W.H.E.R.E.

Doom Patrol V2 #35 - Page 23Nothing cute or witty. Just terror.

Their intimidating words, the looming figures like boogeymen who never leave our closets or our panicked late night thoughts.

We see them face to face. With all the industrial terror behind them ready to replicate.

 

They appear to try and destroy Danny the Street. The being of benevolence, the lonely place we stumble upon when we are trying to find ourselves, his lights always shining through our darkness.

Sara manages to warn Danny while escaping their ill-aimed shots. He must quickly try and escape; however….

Doom Patrol V2 #35 - Page 25

This is normal for the Doom Patrol.

Where is a street to hide?

-Angel Eena