Friday, 2 May 2008

Captain Comet - Can You Dig It?

I am a sucker for comic shop bargain bins. Normally a trip my local comic shop consists of perusing the shelves and picking up the new issues I want to buy that month then with whatever money I have left cleaning out as much of the bargain bin as I can. Every so often in amongst the issues of 'Guy Gardener:Warrior' and 'Darkhold - the Book of Sins' that seem to permanently reside there you can unearth a gem.

Mystery in Space #8 is just such a gem.

Okay I'll admit to only buying this book because it starred the Weird who is a freaky Jim Starlin character who got a 4 part mini-series way back when. Let's face it I wasn't about to buy the book because it starred Captain Comet was I? I mean when was the last time anybody bought anything because it starred Captain Comet?

Imagine my surprise then when I came out the other side of this comic thinking that Captain Comet was bad mutha of Shaft-like proportions:
Who is the man that would risk his neck for his brother man?

We join the story just as the ELC are about to drop a boatload of their evil telepathic monks on the Captain's head (Note: That was ELC, as in Electric Light Corporation, not to be confused with the ELO as in Electric Light Orchestra. Not that a story that consisted of Captain Comet battling Jeff Lynne and a band of his deadly psychic monks wouldn't also be kick ass). Anyway, as I was saying - Captain Comet, killer monks, big trouble.

In the olden days the Captain probably would've given them a mild electrical shock, or read their thoughts about what a loser he was - or something equally lame. With Jim Starlin at the wheel though the Captain doesn't mess around when it comes to dealing with mind-reading religious nuts in questionable capes. Instead he takes care of business John McClane style.Yippe-Ki-Ay you Mr. Blue Sky singing motherfu - no wait ELC not ELO, I forgot. Anyway after he blows up all their grunts the big bad guys of the ELC: bald, alien computer nerd Prime-7 and the clergyman with the cool name Deacon Dark send the Weird out to wack the Captain.

Some telepathic hijinks ensue, the Deacon gets defrocked, literally and Captain Comet gets punched in the jaw a whole load of times. It's all good stuff but it's really just whetting our appetite for the Captain's big showdown with Prime-7 at the end.

With all his ELC cronies out of commission Prime-7 decides that wasting a whole space station full of innocent people doesn't seem like too excessive a way to off the Captain. Before he can do the deed though the Captain decides that blowing the shit out of a whole spacecraft full of innocent people doesn't seem like too excessive a way to stop Prime-7 from wasting a whole space station full of - - well you get the idea.Are we noticing a pattern here?This is where all those other Captain Comet writers of the past have been going wrong. Forget lame psychic powers and cheesy electrical blasts. Just give the guy a little clicker wired to a hundred of tons of explosives and let the good times roll.

Bless you Jim Starlin. You, Captain Comet, his little clicker and the complete disregard for innocent lives that go with it have made the explosion lovers here at 'YouAreComic' very happy, if somewhat sick and demented, people. All for a bargain price too. What more can we ask for?

PS: Did I mention this book also has a talking dog?No? Well it does.