Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Red Hood and the Outlaws #27

After Ra's is done here, he has to get over to Gotham to kick an old lady's teeth in.

Last issue, Jason Todd's memories came back when he realized all he had to do was remember them to get them back. And after they came back, he said, "Surprise! Every single thing that has happened so far was part of my plan! Maybe I'm going to become a vampire in the future and change my name to Harvest!"

Upon reading the first few pages of this issue, I have to offer a retraction for my first paragraph. The plan was not Jason Todd's at all. It was, of course, Ducra's. Although Ducra died quite awhile ago so she might just be a figment of Jason Todd's imagination which would mean that the plan is his plan after all. So I'm going to retract my retraction! Why can't I ever remember that the first rule of Collect Club is never admit you are wrong! Mabelchan would be so disappointed in me. And after all the Pineapple Kit Kats she sent me.

So after that flashback is out of the way so that everything can be explained (including the stupid bit where The Joker set off the trap that blew off Jason Todd's face and was supposed to make him forget everything but didn't take because that would have screwed up the Batman Inc Continuity even more than it already did screw up the Batman Inc Continuity), the action returns to Jason Todd's face-off (because he almost lost his face earlier this year. In the same way Red Hood's creator lost his face! Well, not exactly the same way. But in a like manner is what I meant) with Ra's al Ghul!

Jason Todd's mentor? He means The Joker, right?

The scan above was from the title page which answered this question that was ringing in my head: "Why isn't Julius Gopez's art looking as stupid as it usually does?" That's because some guy named Noel Rodriguez did some of the arting as well. I bet kids with the name "Noel" get picked on at school all of the time. And it's a shame, really. It's actually the parents that should be picked on. "You named your kid what? What were you thinking, you narcissist?! Also, it's the 21st Century and you didn't stick an extraneous "y" in his name? What an uncreative douche."

This issue is called "Demons" and it doesn't take place in space which is why I had to write an entirely new commentary instead of using my commentary from New Guardians #27. Darn it.

Jason Todd was chosen for this job because he's the only person capable of throwing the Legendary Dragon Punch which is capable of knocking the immortality out of somebody. It isn't quite as useful when some thick jock decides to attack you in a convenience store. Better to have a skateboard on hand in that situation. But if you ever meet up with an immortal? Dragon Punch. Always go with the Dragon Punch. Or possibly the Crane Kick.

But Jason Todd also wasn't supposed to get his memories back or else they could be used against him the way that Ra's al Ghul uses them against him on page whatever page is opposite the ad for The Wolf Among Us. Jason is forced to look at a bunch of Jokers and he collapses.

Oh yeah! Remember this guy? His name is December Graystone. That's even worse than Noel Anylastname!

If you name your kid after a month (especially one of the months that is basically just a number), you might as well name your kid after shapes. Dodycyhydron! Rhomboyd! Squarely! Octygonzo! I know. You think names like "December" and "October" are pretty. Do you have a mirror handy? Just take a good, long, hard look into it. Ask yourself, "What went wrong in my life? Was my childhood really as happy and decent as I remember it? Why the fuck do I think ridiculous words make good names? I bet I would look hot if I took off all of my clothes? I should probably take a naked selfie of myself and send it to Tess now." Do you feel better? You should because I have zero training in psychology.

Jason recovers from the Jokers looking at him because who the fuck wouldn't? Oh, I guess everybody else wouldn't judging by the surprise leaking out of Ra's al Ghul's stupid mouth hole. And then Jason Todd turns the tables on Ra's and creates an image of Talia! And Ra's is all, "Talia? Is that really you? You're not a trick, are you? Please don't hurt me anymore!"

Kory is having trouble defeating December and Roy is having trouble defeating Rictus (why didn't The Joker take that name? Oh yeah. Because it's stupider than December. Or Noel) so Cheshire has to help out.

By teabagging Rictus with her lady teabag.

I'm not sure how December is defeated. Why was December afraid of January? Because January February March! I think I did that wrong. Anyway, December goes away. Maybe he wound up wherever Bronze Tiger hid himself away. And then Jason Todd wins the day because he has friends!

But mostly because he knows the Dragon Punch.

Ra's al Ghul's reaction to the Dragon Punch is to throw his arms in the air and scream, "Nooooo!" You know, like every other villain ever after being defeated. Way to be a dumb cliche, Ra's al Ghul.

Before we find out the ultimate fate of Ra's al Ghul after being Sucker Dragon Punched, it's time for a new feature I have just now decided to call, "Old Trivia That's Probably Totally Wrong Now!" starring Trivia Pursuit Genus IV questions from 1996! Today's questions come from Card #25:

I got three right according to the answers on the back and not according to actual facts as they may be eighteen years later. Figure out your answers before continuing on!

So the first question (the Pee Pee category) I got wrong. Why is this category called "Pee Pee"? Are they all questions about New Jersey? Back in the original edition, if the Blue Category asked for a number, your best bet was to answer "Three." If it asked for a city, the most probably answer was "Chicago." In this case "Three Percent" was not the right answer. The answer was 100% which I take issue with. At the very least, I know one person lives in The Pine Barrens: The Jersey Devil! Although I suppose 99.(9)% has been mathematically proven to be 100%, so whatever. But still! There must be a whole slew of reality television hillbillies living in the Pine Barrens! Next on A&E: PINE BILLIES!

The second question (the Ash category) I answered correctly because I'm really good at knowing things that aren't true anymore. The answer was Cheers because everybody back in the eighties thought this was the smartest comedy to ever not be MASH. I'm sure it's The Simpsons now. I suppose I could consult Lord Google but fuck him. What makes him think he's any smarter than Viscount Trivial Pursuit?

The third question (the Male category) I answered "Dan Quayle" because there was a time when all stupid questions asked by politicians involved Dan Quayle. The correct answer is Edward Kennedy which is kind of obvious, maybe. I think Pat Buchanan and Ted Kennedy were nemeses back in the day. The day being Ancient Times.

The fourth question (the Snopes category) was the "Did anybody ever fucking get this question wrong?" question. Every card needs at least one question that even your seven year old that just had to fucking play with the wine drinking adults on game night can answer. Although I'm fairly certain that if this question were updated, the answer would be "The Human Centipede."

The fifth question (the Slutty category) I didn't even spend any time on because what is baseball? The answer was Frank Thomas. This question probably is still accurate but is it relevant? No, no it is not.

The last question (the Wild Card category) was easy not because anybody knows who the fuck Giovanni Vigliotto was but because they give the clue to the answer Jeopardy-style with the whole "sweet-talking" business. And also because Trivia Pursuit answers were never "fucked someone in the ass." So it had to be "get married."

Thanks for playing! If you want to keep track of your scores as the game continues across other commentaries, leave your score in the Comments or via a Reply. You could also brag about your score in the Secret Clubhouse of Secrets. But you have to find it first!

So where was I? Oh yeah! What happened to Ra's al Ghul after being called a weak-ass doody face?!

Once Ra's loses his new and improved Well of Souls Immortality (I'm pretty sure he gets to keep his old, tawdry and ragged Immortality), it transfers to Essence because that was Ducra's plan all along! And lots of people in the universe feel the shift of power from ugly, mean-spirited, impotent old man to fucking hot albino sex kitten!

Oracle likey!

Trigon also notices because why wouldn't he? Somebody new in the universe to rape! Even Madame Xanadu notices but then what else does she have to do except read her Tarot Cards and say, "Yeah, I knew that," whenever something happens.

New Light Bright White Essence appears to not kill Ra's. Instead, she tells him she'll let him live and not destroy all of his precious Lazarus Pits if he lets Jason and Roy and Kory walk away. I guess she's too good to kill him and she's willing to once again establish the truce between The Untitled and The All-Caste and Ra's, whatever fucking role he played in that shit. Bronze Tiger finally comes out from behind a stalagmite to offer Ra's a bowl of consolation cereal. "It's pretty darn good!"

Essence returns to the Acres of All to rebuild the All-Caste with S'aru (if you get my drift! *wink wink*!) and Jason Todd and the Outlaws decide to go "vacation in the worst place on Earth" according to the Next Month Blurb. I'm not going to guess where that is because I'll probably offend some reader when I say "Dallas" or "Cleveland" or "Canada."

Red Hood and the Outlaws #27 Rating: +4 Ranking. That was a solid ending to all the bullshit that's been going on in this comic book for months prior to Tynion taking over. Even Tynion's run felt like a lot of cleaning up the overflowing toilet Lobdell left on his way out. But fucking fuck, James Tynion IV pulled it off and really fit all the pieces together in a nice way. For once, I'm impressed with this comic book! Also, did anybody else feel like Gopez and Rodriguez (I think mainly Rodriguez but since the pages aren't expressly labeled with who drew what, I'll just mention them both) were trying to get a Kenneth Rocafort vibe with their art and the panel layouts? The panel layouts were more organized with less negative space but it still felt like they were trying to keep up (or get back to, anyway) the early look of this comic book.

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