Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Birds of Prey #10 (Oct 1999)

Previously in Birds of Prey...

Birds of Prey #10: "The Wrong Guy" is written by Chuck Dixon with pencils by Greg Land, inks by Drew Geraci, and colors by Gloria Vasquez.  The cover was done by Land and Brian Stelfreeze.

Last issue began with a splash page of the Iron Brigade, the high-tech-looking elite guard of the nation of Koroscova, pointing weapons at Black Canary.  This was followed by a double page splash of Black Canary standing there letting weapons be pointed at her, this followed by a fourth page of Black Canary taking out the Iron Brigade with as much effort as it takes to put on her costume.

This time we have the exact same formula, except on page two Black Canary is standing with a naked Guy Gardner, recently released from a genetic testing cell, and the mad scientist who put him there.  Also, the fourth page features Guy Gardner trashing the Iron Brigade while Black Canary tries to figure out how her former Justice League International partner got there.

Oracle tells Canary that the man isn't Guy Gardner, but rather "Joe" an alien clone created from Guy's DNA with Guy's memories.  Joe as much as confirms this to Black Canary and explains why he's in a Koroscovan prison instead of, like, a different prison.

Meanwhile, Koroscova is none too thrilled about a satellite super-laser being used against their property.  Koroscovan's government has a frank conversation with the President of the United States, and before long, the U.S. is putting Marines near Koroscova and the whole world is wide awake.

Back at the gulag, Oracle warns Black Canary that Koroscovan fighter jets are en route to bomb the place and kill "Joe".  At the same time, the more the mad scientist Popolynsklinov speaks, the crazier and nastier he sounds.  On a hunch, Oracle calls the humanitarian organization that hired her to rescue Popolynsklinov, but the woman she speaks to says they have no record of him as a political prisoner.  Afterwards, the woman leaves her office and meets a mysterious stranger, confirming that she did her part to set Oracle up.

Oracle now suspects Popolynsklinov wasn't a political dissident as she was led to believe, mostly when he says he volunteered for the chance to experiment on an alien clone and gave it super powers!  She does a little more research and discovers he is a legit mad scientist wanted for war crimes.  And she freed him, whilst violating international boarders and, y'know, laws.

Joe Gardner continues to wreak havoc with his new powers by throwing jeeps around the gulag and blowing crap up.  When Black Canary tells him they need to leave before the MIGs blow them all to hell, he grabs her and the doctor and flies away.

Joe leaves Canary and Popolynsklinov on a mountaintop for safety, but before he leaves he pulls Dinah in close for a big kiss.  Then he flies off toward the jets.

Dinah is so disgusted that Basically-Guy Gardner kissed her she might not even notice the fact that he's punching jets out of the sky and waging a war against Koroscova.  Koroscova, on the other hand, has no doubt taken notice.  As has the rest of the world.  The issue ends with Oracle watching the news as the United States, Koroscova, and any other interested player get ready for war.

As usual with a Dixon/Land comic, this issue took about ninety seconds to read.  There are some interesting developments--I like that Oracle is being manipulated so we know she's not infallible.  I also like how Dixon didn't spend too much time on the overly complicated history of Guy Gardner up to this point.  It's not important, and I wouldn't want to be more confused than necessary.

Greg Land's art isn't as offensive in this issue as in others, but there are still a ton of big panels and splashes that speed up the story without giving the impression of added value.

Come back next Tuesday for a review of Birds of Prey #11.

1 comment:

  1. Took me about the same amount of time to read this issue, too!
    Ugh, Guy Gardner, ok Joe but its still Guy in all but name only - he was everywhere in those days and he Got. On. My. Nerves. So having 'him' here in BoP just felt annoying.
    On the plus side, the conspiracy angle involving Oracle was chugging along nicely.