Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Birds of Prey #33

A perfectly good pun ruined by Black Canary kicking Amanda instead of punching her.

I seem to remember last issue ended with the Birds of Prey in a sparse African landscape being confronted by the Suicide Squad. Obviously, Canary and Amanda will be moving the action to a city later. Hopefully this fight takes place at Condor's funeral after King Shark bites off his head which was crushed by Harley's hammer and riddled full of Deadshot's bullets. I won't even mention where the boomerang wound up.

His pee pee hole! I couldn't resist mentioning!

I'm one of those people that can't help spilling beans all over the place. If somebody tells me something in confidence that I'm not supposed to mention to anybody else ever, I can do that. No problem. That secret is safe with me! Especially if it's a really boring secret since I have more important things to remember that involve me. But if somebody begins telling me something and then adds, "You can't tell X or Y I told you!" or "Q can't know that you know!" then forget it. All bets are off! I don't keep a fucking spreadsheet in my mind so I can keep track of who can know what information and who can't know what I know. Because if I have some information that is okay to tell any number of people, that information will be used for a really good fucking joke at some point! And that joke might be made in front of the people that aren't supposed to know the information or know that I know it or whatever.

The good thing is that I'm really honest about how unreliable I am with secrets! Most of my friends know that if I know something that shouldn't be known by somebody else, I shouldn't be allowed near the person that shouldn't know! So at least they can kind of keep me in check since I can't be bothered to remember all of that shit. And if somebody begins a statement with conditions on who can know the information, I'm very upfront about saying, "I don't want to know. If you value whatever thing you're afraid to lose if this person finds out, do not fucking tell me!" If they insist on telling me, then I insist on apologizing immediately for when I will invariably let the information slip.

That had nothing to do with Birds of Prey! Why don't I have an editor? Shouldn't an editor be sending this back to me with notes on it saying, "What the fuck was that, stupid?" and "Stay focused on the comic book, dickbreath." Then I'd have to fire them for using the term "dickbreath" because using that as an insult is like saying there is something wrong with people who like to put dicks in their mouths. And everybody with a dick knows that those people are fucking heroes.

I don't use the word "hero" lightly in my every day life! You'll never catch me calling your every day average soldier a hero! Seriously, show me that you saved a brown person's kitten or something and maybe I'll call you a hero. But to earn the title hero for just not knowing what to do with your life so you joined the military? Bah! If that's you and you want to be called hero, I need to see a dick in your mouth.

That was probably really disrespectful to military personnel, wasn't it? I blame the editor I don't have who would have stopped me from printing that last paragraph! Damn you, Matilda!

I just know my editor would be named Matilda. "Matilda the Hero" everybody in the office would call her. No, not because dicks and mouths! Because she would bring fresh baked, frosted brownies to work every day!

This issue is called "Pretty Lies and Ugly Truths." I really like that title because it's an ugly truth in and of itself. I once wrote some thing where I challenged Keats's phrase, "Truth is beauty; beauty, truth. That is all you need to know and knowing is half the battle." I think that's pretty close to the exact saying. Anyway, my response was thusly thus:

Beauty isn't really truth. Nor is truth beauty. Beauty is an illusion. A cover-up. It's misdirection and sentimentality and illuminating and inspiring and awesome. But truth is harsh and ugly and blunt and the bottom line. Art is a lie that both conceals and reveals at the same. And why would someone want to believe the lie? Who wants to live forever in eternal bliss when we have the cold, hard truth of the grave awaiting us? Right, Lyle?

Lyle was some guy that asked me a question back when I co-wrote a website called No Apologies! Press. He asked this question: "Why do some people, who seemingly live in the same world that I do, believe in a literal interpretation of the Bible, or a bunch of other like-type books for that matter?" Surprisingly, I took the side of the people that believe the literal interpretation of The Bible. Probably because Lyle asked his question as if I was automatically going to agree with him. Lyle, you dick! Stop trying to put the answer to the question inside the fucking question! But also thank you for naming my other project, "Lyle's Study Guide for the Literal Interpretation of The Bible for Dumb Dumbs."

"Tess! Start writing about the fucking comic book or no brownies for you, you shit-that's-having-trouble-sliding-out-of-an-old-lady's-sphincter!" Matilda would probably yell. What a taskmaster!

The fact that King Shark is eleven times bigger than he's been in the past is less disturbing than the pouches all over Deadshot's chest.

I've thought about it for awhile and I've come to a realization: I'm really excited about Ann Nocenti's Klarion the Witch Boy! She fucked up Green Arrow, Katana, and Catwoman so badly that I can't wait to see how much worse she can get turning Klarion's witchy powers into a metaphor for technology out of control! Oh she's going to shit all over that assignment, isn't she?!

What do you think Deadshot keeps in his ammo pouches? My guess is lipstick, lifesavers, a butt plug, and some handi-wipes. If they were bigger, I'd suggest he keeps some chum in one of them to partial out to King Shark like Scooby Snacks.

Oh, the fight has started! I should probably comment on that! So Condor uses his telekinetic powers to send Deadshot's bullets back at Deadshot, destroying Deadshot's wrist guns. It must take an awful lot of practice to think-stop bullets! How does that even work? I guess you don't actually have to see the thing you want to telekinetically control? I don't think anyone can actually answer that question because I don't believe anybody has telekinetic powers, no matter how many people I hear say they do on Coast to Coast AM.

What about those people that go on Coast to Coast AM to tell everybody what heaven is like! I can understand that they've either deluded themselves so deeply that they truly believe that any thought that enters their head is fact, so if they think, "Heaven has shooting ranges," then heaven must have shooting ranges. But what about the people that call in and believe these people?! Now they want to believe so badly that they're willing to listen to anybody that can self-publish a shitty little book that falls into George Noory's hands just when he's desperate to fill a slot on a slow night.

Black Canary battles King Shark and she's got some questions of her own, like "Does King Shark have ears?" and "How heroic would I be if it's a shark's penis?"

How cute! King Shark's belt buckle has a picture of his girlfriend, Dolphin!

Luckily for Boomerang who was going toe to toe with Strix, Amanda Waller intercedes and orders the Squad to stop fighting. She and Black Canary go way back. Really way back! Back to a time when Amanda was fucking Dinah's husband! I don't think they've had a chance to clear the air about that. Some words might need to be exchanged.

Four words in particular!

Is this where Amanda confesses about her and Kurt's love child, Havana?!

After Dinah flies off with Amanda, the Birds of Prey versus Suicide Squad grudge match continues. I think the odds have actually evened out with Black Canary gone. Deadshot sans guns versus Condor sans psychic power and charisma and anything likeable at all. Captain Boomerang sans Captain versus Batgirl sans sans. And Strix taking on King Shark and Harley Quinn. As for Dinah versus Amanda? I think that match up is too close to call. Although if it were Preboot Amanda, I'd put my money on her.

Jesus Christ, Christy Marx! In one page, you made the entire convoluted Team 7 and Black Canary history actually make some kind of sense!

I should probably give some of the praise to the Birds of Prey editors as well but fuck them! Are their names on the cover? Nope! The colorist is now more important than they are! Which, you know, is how it should be. Those editors need to stop thinking they're writing the books! Stop trying to come up with story ideas and just come up with where everybody's going for lunch.

Oh! It looks like he kept pistols in his pouches! That, um, makes, um...what?

The issue ends with the Birds getting the better of the Squad and Amanda telling Dinah, "You want the truth?! Well, you're not going to like it very much at all! It's worse than lies, you know?! It's going to be really bad! Your stomach will feel queasy! But I'll tell it to you! By God, I'll tell you the truth all right! I'm about to tell it to you! Here it goes! I'm saying it now:...." And then, Next Month: Things Fall Apart. Whatever! I wanted to hear about Havana!

Birds of Prey #33 Rating: +2 Ranking. This comic book has finally turned around! The only thing I still remember from the Swierczynski days is how to spell his name! Christy Marx has finally been able to make this book her own now that Kurt has been found and the Birds are working with Mother Eve. It just has one little fault. It's such a small fault that I don't think I should even bother to mention it. It's just that it's so annoying that I'd feel remiss if I didn't end my review by pointing out how Christy Marx is doing this book a disservice. The one thing she needs to change is the alive status of Condor. Just that! One niggling little detail! Fix that and this book is aces!

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