Thursday, March 6, 2014

Lois Lane #1

I suppose naming this comic book "Superman: Lois Lane" is marginally less insulting than naming it "Superman's Girlfriend Lois Lane."

I hope the next Superman-related comic book DC puts out is called "Superman's Bitch Jimmy Olsen."

One thing you can say about Kenneth Rocafort's cover art is "Are they still publishing "Choose Your Own Adventure" books?" You can say some other stuff too if you want. That was just one thing. You could also have said, "What is all that purple shit in the street?" Or maybe "Why is there a gigantic Sphinx-like bust of Lois Lane in the middle of the street in downtown Metropolis?" Perhaps you might even have said, "Why the fuck would I want to buy a comic book about Courtney Cox?" But if you said that, you probably weren't looking very closely at the cover. Also why would you even say that? I would totally buy a comic book about Courtney Cox! You might have also said, looking over at your friend shuffling on the carpet of the comic book store awkwardly waiting for you to get your funny books, "DC must have had a shortage on "M"s. Get it? See down here in the corner? Ha ha."

I'm probably not the right person to be doing any kind of review on a Lois Lane comic book. I assure you, right here up front so you know what you're getting into, I will be handling it without any dignity at all. I will probably make a joke or two about things going up her ass. I will treat her career as a "journalist" with no modicum of respect. If you're looking for a thoughtful, intelligent piece on why DC should embrace this feminist icon and produce a monthly book with Lois Lane, this is not it. Although, just for the record so you know where I stand (you should email me a brief synopsis of your own thoughts so I am on equal footing with your footing), I would love a monthly Lois Lane book. Not one where she's battling monsters and hoping Superman rescues her (not that she needs it! But to get some of the good old frottage as he carries her around to place in the old spank bank for later). I want a comic book about her investigating superheroes and discovering their secret identities and ruining their lives for the sake of her own career. That would be truly the best.

Stop being so dramatic, Lola! You were in a coma for about two days and most of that time was spent flying around as an astral projection!

Even without being in a coma, sleep is irritating. I love sleeping and I love dreaming but I really wouldn't mind spending that extra time doing something while conscious. I also resent every second of my day spent acquiring and eating food. I don't mind pooping though. That's time well spent.

Lois Lane begins by speaking about the etymology of the word Nostalgia. I've seen this before in comic book form since it was used in that episode of Mad Men where Draper has to give a presentation on the Kodak Carousel. It seems we've entered a time when we're not just nostalgic for home but for the word nostalgia itself. That sentence doesn't really make any sense but you probably wouldn't have thought twice about it if I hadn't grabbed your arm, stopped you, and pointed down at it. Although now it sounds like I'm calling you stupid or imperceptive! I mean, compared to Lois Lane, I think we're all profoundly stupid and imperceptive. At least she knows the true meaning of the word nostalgia unlike that poor lost soul Don Draper.

You can tell I'm ready for the next season of Mad Men! Get on with it already!

Lois is thinking about nostalgia because she's about to have a ton of it when her sister crashes through a window into her house speaking their old childhood secret language and looking for help. Lois's sister's girlfriend has been kidnapped and she needs help. But first, it's time for more of that pain from an old wound/painful yearning to return home. I can see why Don Draper chooses to say the thing the way he says it. It's so much more poetic, especially when seen through the experiences of his own youth and military past. The current Don Draper exists only because of an old wound. He has no actual home to yearn to return to. He has only an old wound and the corpse of the original Don Draper to return to. Whatever was before that, Don had no interest in. At least back during that episode. The end of Season 6 shows that Don is beginning to finally feel the weight of nostalgia crashing down upon him.

I should probably stop talking about Don Draper and get back to Lois Lane. Or maybe I should concentrate on their similarities! No, no. I'd better just move on. This isn't college essay week here at Eee! Tess Ate Chai Tea. Fuck, it's never college essay week here! That shit is hard work. Mostly because you have to present coherent ideas that make an interesting point. It's easier to just come up with that profound nonsense I mentioned earlier.

I did just learn, after asking Lord Google which was the last season of Mad Men so I could type "Season Six" instead of "the last season of Mad Men" so the sentence would retain its specificity even after a new season ends, that Season Seven of Mad Men begins April 13th. Yay!

Okay, no more Mad Men! I'm going to concentrate on Lois Lane now.

Lois has a memory about her mother and how her mother told her society can suck it big time and then she died. Maybe that's not an exact quote or an exact timeline of events but I warned you I wasn't going to take this as seriously as you might have liked! Maybe you want to hear how Lois's mom taught her to think for herself. Maybe you want to hear how Lois's mom told her that she and her sister get to define themselves, that they get to incorporate or eject any part of their lives that they wish, that they are in complete control of who they will grow up to be and how they think about that person. But I'm not going to point out any of that shit. Lois's mom died and Lucy grew up knowing only Lois as a mother figure. Which is why she's come to Lois for help now that her girlfriend has been kidnapped. Although they must not have remained as close as Lois would have liked if her sister is calling her girlfriend her "roommate." As if Lois doesn't already know her little sister is gay. Lois is the best investigative journalist in the DC Universe!

Oh my God! In those old Marvel vs DC issues, did they ever pit Jimmy Olsen against Peter Parker?! How could they have not? Now I want to read those old issues and they'd better fucking exist or I'm shooting a puppy. Hey Marvel and DC from the past? Do you want to be responsible for a dead puppy? Then hopefully you considered the consequences of your actions when you wrote those team-ups and had a photo-shoot-off with Olsen and Parker! Judged by J. Jonah Jameson and Perry White (who later in the comic book wind up marrying each other).

It's a little bit creepy that she picked a girlfriend that looks so much like her sister. And a cat that looks so much like Jimmy Olsen.

Lucy's girlfriend Amanda had been taking pills that were supposedly helping her with an illness she had. She got them from someone named Ostermann which doesn't sound anything like it's probably a long-lived Nazi doctor that enjoys experimenting on the human race. This sentence should probably be set aside to apologize for any readers named Ostermann but instead I'm going to use it to remind myself to watch that Nature show tonight on PBS about Honey Badgers. The pills were making Lucy turn into some kind of demony monster thing. And eventually, a group called The Cartel came to collect her. They call themselves The Cartel because they're boring and unimaginative and must be of the generation that thinks simple, one word names that completely express what the thing is or why it exists are the best. So a restaurant should be called Eat. An art gallery should be called Snoot. A coffee shop should be called Perk. And a group that kidnaps people and engages in smuggling, fencing, and monopolistic price gouging should be called The Cartel. Actually, I'm being too imaginative with some of these!

Lois suggests that this is a job for Superman and Lucy says, "Fuck that illegal alien." And Lois goes, "Really? REALLY?" And Lucy is all, "We can't just allow everybody to live how they like! Some people, like white male alien supermen, really should be controlled somehow." This reminds me of my mom's philosophy on why she hates Middle Easterners: "Everybody needs at least one group to hate." Good point, mom! I think I'll make my group "racist moms."

Lois hits the streets in a montage of questioning people that might know something. This group of pictures as she chases down her lead needs some music behind it. I've recently hired my iTunes to score my comic books so let's find out what music iTunes thinks should back this scene: "All the Way" by the Indigo Girls. Hmm, not bad. It sort of changes the mood of the scene from tough journalist getting answers from even the scariest of street toughs to sensitive moment as she digs around to help one of the few people in her life whom she loves through a terrible tragedy.

Once she begins getting scent of The Cartel and its location, Lois calls in Jimmy Olsen to borrow one of his cameras. And the scene between them is precious.

I hope this Lois Lane One-Shot outsells Superman (which is always crap, each and every month Lobdell's name is on it!) this month. Could a Lois Lane monthly be the book that finally gives Bennett a home?

One important thing I've learned so far from this comic book is that Lois Lane sucks at spelling. Just like the blacksmith from Smallville!

Ha ha! So embarasing!

Lois finds that The Cartel is somehow linked to a new drug being sold on the streets of Metropolis. That drug is the one Amanda, Lucy's girlfriend, was taking. As Lois tries to buy some of the drug, she and the dealer and his thugs are captured by members of The Cartel. It seems they're cleaning up the streets. Perhaps they're just taking away the people that have transformed into monsters while on their drug so that people can't see the consequences of it. Or they might be good guys and The Cartel is a drug rehabilitation group. Maybe they're like The Initiative from Buffy? Hey, that's another group with a stupid, minimalist name!

So pretty much exactly like The Initiative.

As a prisoner of The Cartel (or the agents called something else because who knows what is true because Lucy is a drug abusing liar), Lois is placed inside a cell within earshot of very important and probably secret things being said. And these people know who she is, so they must really want the story to get out. It's the third oldest trick in The Book (right after pretending your wife is your sister and tricking your father into getting drunk and having sex with you)! Kidnap the hottest reporter in journalism (by hottest I mean most efficient not best looking. Technically Cat is a reporter too), pretend you're holding her prisoner but keep her in a closet near your office, talk really loudly and slowly while enunciating very carefully, and finally allow her to escape using her wits and charms. Then she rushes off to the office and bangs out a front page news story that will win her a Pulitzer. I don't know why they'd want this story out they. It seems Ostermann's drug was supposed to be used to heal people but instead it incorporated the DNA of any creature that came in contact with the use. So kind of a win/lose/mutate kind of situation.

Oh yeah, the most important thing that Lois learns? Her sister was also taking the drug! Which I hinted at earlier when I called her a drug abusing liar.

Lois Lane escapes using her wits and charms because I said that was going to happen and it did. I haven't leveled up in a while as a Master Comic Book Reader, so even though that prediction that she escapes isn't worth very many Experience Points, it's enough to make me a Master Comic Book Reader of the West Wind.

Lois finds The Initiative has lost all control of its drug addicted captives when she breaks out. After freeing Amanda, she helps to keep people safe alongside Captain Masonic Symbols Face. Lois is not just a reporter; she's a hero! And even though she could instantly call Superman by whispering, "I'm not wearing any pants," she chooses not to because she promised her sister Lucy that she wouldn't get him involved. Besides, she can take care of herself. The only reason we always see her getting rescued is because Superman is obsessed with her and overprotective. Dude, give her some space.

And finally, Lois and Amanda escape on a gigantic mosquito flea. Okay fine. I didn't see that coming. But that doesn't cost me any experience! It's not like missing an upcoming plot point is like being touched by a Wraith.

As Lois flies away on a half human/half mosquito/half why the fuck is it so big creature, I begin thinking about Lucy Lane. Didn't she appear in an early issue of Action Comics or Superman? Didn't Lois try to set her up with Clark? Lois really doesn't know her sister is gay, does she? But Lois does say earlier in this issue that "everyone is a bit blind about family." Even the greatest investigative reporter in the world!

I'm surprised Lois hasn't quit her job yet. The era of the great investigative journalist ended a couple of decades ago. Now news programs are just filled with talking heads either regurgitating official messages received during a press conference or vomiting up their own opinions concerning everything as if it were real news. News reports are filled with people on the street interviews which I've never understood. Report events not how people on the street didn't ever think the event could happen in their neighborhood. Stop reporting on local incidents that only matter to the individual the incident happened to! Stop showing viral videos. It's not really "news" if it doesn't matter to the populace at large and also if that populace has already seen it which is why the video went viral and you stupid news flunkies heard about it. Stop interrupting network shows with local election results that can be found on every other station or online or just revealed at the normal news hours. Shut up with your breaking and exclusive news brags on every fucking story. Eat my bunghole. You know what's better than news or stories or reviews done as fast as possible so you have the glory of being the first person to respond? Quality. Fucking quality, assholes. You can probably find a definition of it online even though that definition won't tell you the importance of it. Immediacy seems to be everybody's number one concern these days. Fuck immediacy. Take some time with this shit.

Always the reporter no matter what the cost! Hell, she was going to publish Superman's secret identity if it hadn't been eaten out of her psyche by Parasite.

Apparently Captain Masonic Symbols Face is actually just called The Agent. This is where I would link to my comment earlier about these jerks not having any imagination but I hate using hashtag HREF hyperlinks. Also I'm lazy.

Lois asks Superman to go check up on the other addicts after she gets home with Amanda and the giant flea mosquito which turns out to be Lucy. Captain Masonic Symbols Face pleads with Lois to have some discretion and not report the story since his group were taking care of it and detoxing everybody addicted to the drug. And finally Lois and Lucy hug or something sappy. I wasn't really paying much attention because there were no monsters or fighting or anything. It was just some nostalgic crap about not flying and not being caught and never letting your sister something or other alone.

Superman: Lois Lane One-Shot #1 Rating: More Lois Lane comic books please. And either a back-up feature with Jimmy Olsen or make sure he guest stars a lot. Also keep Bennett in the writer's seat. And lose the "Superman:" part of the title. Lois doesn't need to piggy back on Superman's face to get readers. Although that would probably get a lot of readers. The most readers even! But she doesn't need to!

1 comment:

  1. Amanda explains why everyone suddenly goes apeshit when Lois eventually reveals Superpooperman's identity.