It's Friday, so it's time for another installment of Flashback Friday! Yeah, I still need to work on a proper intro for this feature... Oh well, one day... Anywho, I really haven't had the chance to read all THAT many back issues this past week, since I was studying for finals and stuff, but as always, I did manage to read a substantial amount of books, at least enough to make this post worth doing I'd say. Before I get started, a few quick things. First off, this link had me laughing, because it just proves what I've always known, I'm living with a goldmine!!! Who knows, in only 70 short years my massive comic collection could be worth MILLIONS!!! OK, that's enough of my deluded fantasies, on to the reviews!!!
Showcase '96 #12(Winter 1996): This comic contained three stories, one on Sarge Steel(which was painful), one which was a look at the life of Jesse Quick(which wasn't all that good), and the reason I brought this issue, a story on Vril Dox teaming up with Brainiac 5 to deal with the original Brainiac. This story was alright, but to be honest, this was one of those comics I definitely could have went without buying/reading... Score: 4 out of 10.
Wolverine Weapon X: Adamantium Men TPB(contained Wolverine Weapon X #1-5): The Wolverine portions of this trade were really top-notch, unfortunately, this trade didn't solely deal with the Ol' Canucklehead. So the positives here were the story(mainly the Wolverine portions), as well as Maverick(!!)showing up. FYI, Maverick is one of those obscure 90's Marvel characters that I tend to like so very much, so him appearing in this trade was definitely pleasing to me. As for negatives, the whole secondary story about the reporter who was trying to bring down the evil corporation Wolvie and Maverick were dealing with. If not for the annoying reporter stuff, I'd have scored this trade A LOT higher. Score: 8 out of 10.
Ray #21(Feb. 1996): I'm not even going to try to describe what happened in this comic, because I doubt I could... There was a whole slew of stuff pertaining to Black Condor that just flew WAAAY over my head... Get it? “Black Condor”, “FLEW over my head”? Ugh, yipes was that bad! Anyway, the comedy aspects of this issue were so strong that I actually wound up enjoying it in spite of the story. Score: 7 out of 10.
Ray #22(March 1996): This was another issue of the Ray with some really enjoyable comedy stuff going on, especially the scenes between Ray and his girlfriend(who was driving him insane!). Besides that, Ray finally meets up with his crazy little brother, Joshua, and Death Masque kidnaps Ray's mother(who STILL doesn't know Ray is her son)in an attempt to force a final confrontation with Ray. All in all, some really great stuff here. Score: 9 out of 10.
Ray #23(May 1996): And then the bottom fell out... This was by far the worst issue of this series yet. Let's just say that the long Death Masque storyline ended here and leave it at that, because this one was BAD! Score: 2 out of 10.
Ray #24(June 1996): For the most part this issue dealt with the aftermath of the catastrophe that was the last issue. Ray's mother now knows he's the Ray(but she still doesn't know she's his mom), and she has also decided to look after Joshua. Some weird woman from the future arrives and forces Vandal Savage to fire Ray from his computer job, and after Savage does as he was asked, she cuts his throat. Finally, Ray discovers his father alive and well, and not dead like he previously thought. Score: 4 1/2 out of 10.
Ray #25(July 1996): This comic takes place several year in the future, where we discover that Ray has become the most powerful being on the planet, both superpower-wise and money-wise. Basically old Ray is a major jerk, and his two best friends are Triumph(some guy who used to be on the JL Task Force)and the Flash(Bart Allen!!!). Ray has a girlfriend he mistreats, and that Bart is pining for. After really being a ass to the girl one day, she runs away from Ray crying, and Bart decks Ray, knocking him out cold. Bart then tries(unsuccessfully I might add)to put the moves on the girl, but even though old Ray is a horror, she refuses to break it off with him. Meanwhile, old Ray gets shot in the head by some of his enemies. Old Ray's girl and friends find him, and the girl convinces Bart to help her go to the past in an effort to prevent Ray from becoming the jerk he'd wind up being. Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.
Ray #26(Aug. 1996): I'm not really sure why, but this issue is STILL dealing with old Ray in the future. Old Ray is slowly dying, but before he passes, Captain Atom(who is a being of pure energy in the future)grabs the dying Ray and transports his energy into the distant future where he offers old Ray the chance to atone for his lousy life... Yeah, it was as bad as it sounds... Score: 3 out of 10.
Ray #27(Sept. 1996): This issue is the conclusion to the pretty awful future Ray storyline. Future Ray winds up doing the right thing in the future and then returns to his body to die. Trust me, the least said about this issue, the better! Score: 2 out of 10.
Ray #28(Oct. 1996): This is the last issue of the Ray series. Basically it wraps up most of the loose ends in the series. Ray's father finally tells his mother that Ray is her thought to be dead son, Ray gets a new girlfriend in the girl from the future(the girlfriend of his evil future self)and he gets to finally have a mother to son talk with his mother. All in all, this issue was a decent way to end the series, although there was SO much more that needed closure... Score: 8 1/2 out of 10.
Robin #1(Jan. 1991): This was the first Robin mini-series, NOT the Robin ongoing series. Bruce feels that Tim Drake is ready to take to the streets of Gotham with him for the first time, but Tim still feels he needs more training. In order to help Tim get ready, Bruce sends Timmy to France where he could be trained by a world renowned martial arts master. Tim trains and somehow winds up getting stuck battling an Asian street gang. Score: 8 out of 10.
Robin #2(Feb. 1991): Tim rescues a former DEA agent from the Asian street gang(which we learn is lead by King Snake). All throughout this issue, Tim is being followed and watched by Lady Shiva, who wants to face King Snake since he is supposed to be the deadliest fighter in the world. Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.
Robin #3(March 1991): Shiva finally meets up with Tim and along with the ex-DEA agent, the three join forces to try to take down King Snake's gang. Unfortunately, Snake's gang manages to get a hold of a sample of the Bubonic plague from an old Nazi laboratory and escape from Tim and company, which leads to Tim, the DEA agent and Shiva hopping an airplane in the hope that they can stop the gang members from handing the plague over to Snake in Hong Kong. Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.
And that's all I've got for this week. So I finally finished up the Ray books(which ended pretty poorly, considering how good the early portion of the series was), and started the Robin series('s). I actually have A LOT of Robin comics to get through, the last two issues of the first mini-series, then two other mini-series, and then the ongoing series which ran for well over 160 issues, so expect the next several Flashback Friday's to be chock full of Robin comics. Of course I'll have a few other titles thrown in, but for the most part, prepare yourself for Robinmania! That's it for this week, thanks for reading, and Long Live The Legion!!!