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Sunday, October 12, 2008

Adventure Comics #453 - Oct. 1977

sgComics Weekend Aqualad stars in a solo feature in Adventure Comics!

During Aquaman's successful run in Adventure Comics #s 441-452, writers Paul Levitz and David Micheinie had introduced a sub-plot where Aqualad meets someone who can answer the lifelong questions he's had about his past.

But since there was only a limited amount of space in each issue, Aqualad's storyline never developed all that far. So when Aquaman was "promoted" to returning to his solo book, DC took the innovative step of spinning Aqualad (and his unresolved storyline) into his own strip, staying in Adventure Comics.

I had never read these stories, and over time I completely forgot about that there even was an Aqualad solo strip.

So imagine my delight when, after picking up the three issues that feature Aqualad, I saw that they were written by our pal Paul Kupperberg! Cool-o!

So for today and next weekend, we'll be talking about Aqualad's search for his past and see what happened. The first chapter opens up this way:
Aqualad demands to know whatever the Idylists know about his past, and why they are keeping the information from him.

They deny they are hiding anything, which causes Aqualad to storm off. While he swims away, he reflects on the events of the last couple of days:

...as well see here, Carl Potts (and inker Joe Rubenstein) render an effective Aquaman. Not every artist was great at giving Aquaman dynamic, realistic poses while he was underwater, but I like Potts' take on Arthur here.

But of course, this story isn't about Aquaman! As Aqualad ponders his fate, he decides to try and get info another way. He waits until when most of the Idylists are asleep, and breaks into their hall of records! He then enters a private chamber, and is overwhelmed by the sheer volume of material in front of him.

But he doesn't get the chance, because he is surprised by a gang of the Idylists, who demand that he leave, they've told him all they know!

Aqualad isn't buying it:
To be continued!

Luckily, author Paul Kupperberg manages to "man up" Garth a bit, getting him away from the whiny jerk he was the last page of Aquaman's story in Adventure Comics #452--complaining about his and his mentor's relationship as Arthur is holding his dead infant son in his hands.

With only six pages to work with, not a whole lot happens here, but the story moves fast (I've read some six page comic book stories that read like The Congressional Record) and Carl Potts' work is here is effective and solid, making for a good little tale. Be here next weekend to see where Aqualad's search for his past takes him!


Anonymous said...

I never knew these issues contained an Aqualad back-up. I always see this issue when looking at Adventure Comics back issues at stores or cons.

I have never bought it, as intriguing as I find the cover. Superboy just doesn't thrill me unless he has Krypto by his side. Or the Legion of Super-Heroes.

Now, had I known there was an Aqualad story in the back, that certainly would have tipped the scales for me.

Now I'll have to seek them out.

Anonymous said...

Ohh Aqualad...yeah, he needs SOMETHING after that horrible issue with poor Artie Jr......of course, the entire Aqua-family did...namely for that issue to have been erased. Still, I've always liked Garth, so I'm interested in this story. He's a pretty cool character, as far as sidekicks go, super strong and all that.

Paul Kupperberg said...

Hey, let's see how much longer the Shrine can go being all about ME!!!!

rob! said...

next friday-saturday-sunday--All Kupperberg, All The Time!!

Anonymous said...

Haha, that sounds like a plan!

Paul Kupperberg said...

I'm down wid it!