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Saturday, May 28, 2011

Showcase '96 #1 - Jan. 1996

Comics Weekend "Charted Courses" by Phil Jimenez and Scott Kolins.

Almost a full year before Tempest, Phil Jimenez wrote a solo Garth/Aqualad story, that appeared in the first issue of the anthology book Showcase '96:
Atlan explains they are at a portal to another dimension, the one that Garth knows as home. Garth explains that he's not ready to go home, believing he needs more time to train with Atlan.

Atlan tells Garth he is destined to go home and fulfill his destiny--something Garth doesn't want to hear, that his whole life has been mapped out for him. Atlan warns that, if Garth chooses to stay, he will be forced to face the guardian of this grotto, named Thedir Mon:
Garth takes care of the guardian fairly easily, ending with him blowing it up into little pieces after he encased it in ice. Surrounded by floating bits of ice, Garth sees each of the pieces reflecting an image of...himself, from many years ago. Garth smells a set-up!

He confronts Atlan, who admits this was a little test. Garth is more than a little annoyed, but nevertheless he agrees to now go home:
...the beginning!

Special Thanks to F.O.A.M.er Daria Brooks, who mentioned this story a few weeks ago in the comments. I didn't know it existed before that, so I went and got a copy of the book, figuring the best time to recap it was right after our look at the Tempest mini. Thanks Daria!


Wings1295 said...

I think I read this back in the day, I wonder if I have it, too, somewhere. Good post, Rob!

JasonMotesBowles said...

MAN! There was UGLY artwork in the 90s! That cover was like a punch in the face! At least Scott Kolins' stuff was much more appealing, although it's still kinda 90s.

Joe Slab said...

These are the kinds of little gems you will only find on the Aquaman Shrine! Thanks rob!

JD said...

Never knew about this Tempest prequel story either, I'll have to hunt it down too. You'd think they'd have gotten Jimenez to do the cover being he probably had the best looking art in all of this issue. Oh well, them's the '90's for ya! And yes, thanks rob! for giving exposure to so many forgotten gems here! :)

Tempest127 said...

Thanks for covering this one, Rob! As stated, this was a wonderful tale written to lead readers into the later Tempest mini-series. I remember that Phil said I was the first to realize that Garth's new codename would indeed be Tempest because of this story. It also includes vital elements from Garth's original mini feaured in Adventure Comics. As a Tempest fan, it is interesting to follow the progression of how Garth attained his powers, from this depiction of his training through the Tempest series and then to "JLA: Black Baptism" wherein Felix Faust fuses his being with the souls of all past Atlantean mages, including that of his father, King Thar. (That was the only time Arthur was present for Garth's magical development). This is why I've said that when Geoff Johns killed Garth, he effectively killed off all Atlantean magic.