Sunday, March 22, 2015

Detective Comics: Endgame #1

How many anarchists does it take to screw in a light bulb? One.

I really hope this comic book doesn't spoil the end of Snyder's Endgame. I'm sure it will just be about a bunch of people punching a bunch of other people with Joker grimaces on their faces in their faces. Sometimes my editor thinks I should rework my sentences so that they aren't so convoluted but then I put my finger in her face and scowl, "No! Where is the fun in that?" But then I wish I'd said "Where is the fun in that?" in a more convoluted way. And often I just wind up feeling guilty for talking back to my pretend editor when she's just trying to do her pretend job improving my pretend writing skills.

This issue begins during the Joker Riots of Whatever Year This Is (not to be confused with the Joker Riots of Whatever Year Came Before This and the Joker Riots of Whatever Year Came Before That, et cetera, et cetera (Fun Fact! My pretend editor's name is Et Cetera (I might be stretching the definition of "fact" and "fun" with that fun fact))) before Detective Yip shot Lonnie in the face for being a youth on the street during a time of crisis. No wait! It probably occurs after Lonnie got shot by Yip and was released from the hospital with his Anarky gift mask or else how could Lonnie decide to don a mask he doesn't own and become Anarky to help stop the anarchy caused by The Joker?

You see, The Joker's anarchy is the bad kind of anarchy. It's the kind of anarchy that most people think of when they hear the word. It's the kind that movies and comic books would like you to believe would take the place of civilization if our system of laws were ever to be thrown in the toilet. It's belief in this kind of anarchy that causes an outcry for more control of the populace and encourages fascist regimes to take control. So Anarky has to use the good kind of anarchy (some might say "vigilantism") to stop the spread of the bad kind of anarchy!

Anarchy is really the most mature of all social philosophies and political ideals. It posits the theory that we are all fucking adults who can take care of ourselves. Most people want a nanny state and a protective father figure ensuring their safety so they can blissfully walk about with their noses stuck in their cell phones. But order and control is just an illusion and we're all in a perpetual state of denial. The law of everybody's neighborhood is actually anarchy. At any moment, if just a tiny fraction of the population decided to do whatever the fuck they felt like it, the system would break down. That means that the system is just an illusion that we have all agreed to for our own selfish reasons. That's anarchy, people! Citizens (white ones, anyway) might feel safer knowing that there is a police force to protect their lives or, more importantly it seems, their property. But even if a neighborhood police force didn't exist, people would still protect themselves. So now you'd have neighbors living in the exact same community but having to maintain their own protection. Basically what you'd have is the same thing you have now but probably more weapons and deadbolts in every single house in your neighborhood. But you'd almost certainly still have the same community. All that road warrior bullshit? It might happen in like Texas or something (not Austin) but most people are still going to be decent people if "the law" were to suddenly not exist. The evidence is all around you every day. Sometimes people do shitty, murderous, nutty things and they'll do it whether laws exist or not. Anarchy is not something to be feared! It's an ideal to be striven for!

Did I use "striven" correctly? Fuck it! Of course I did! I'm an anarchist and I can use it however I want!

He is an anarchist. He does know he doesn't have to sign his name at the end of each text, right?

That's the only page I've read so far but judging by the cover, Lonnie is going to don the Anarky mask and get to work protecting his mother and, I guess, Gotham by whatever means necessary! By the end of the issue, he'll have spray painted the Anarky symbol on the Bat Signal and have jerked off onto the back of a homeless person's head while listening to some radio friendly "punk rock" like Sublime, Green Day, or Blink 182. Anarchy!

Lonnie winds up getting shot at by some Joker cops (or normal cops. Really, what's the difference, amirite?) and meets a guy named Dax. Dax has an "X" in his name, a septum piercing, and a mohawk hairstyle (originally made famous by General Mohawk during the civil war. I think) which instantly identifies him as an anarchist and totally chill dude except when it comes to discussing society at large! Lonnie is about to hear some truth down in here! And probably some really crazy shit about Project Cloverleaf and how AIDS was created to kill black men and was, in the late seventies and early eighties, an actual ingredient of malt liquor.

Who would have guessed?! They're punks!

Dax's friends are Dre and Riko. They're anarchists too! When Lonnie asks if they're heroes, Riko (or Dre) says, "Nah. We're just us." Now that whole "just us/justice" thing might have been clever the first bazillion times people began to use it. But here it's clever again because of the theme of anarchy and how everybody is responsible for their own happiness and safety. And guess what helps make somebody's selfish desire for happy and safety to come about? Keeping your community happy and safe as well! So you see, an anarchist has a truly selfish reason for helping to keep their local community safe. So Dre, Dax, and Riko don't need the cops. They have "just us."

Also, Lonnie turns out to be some genius hacker that goes by the name of Moneyspider. A hacker! Those guys are total anarchists! And his mom is a stripper. Pure anarchy!

I might be shouting "Anarchy!" too much. I think everybody gets what the comic book is about. Sorry.

Does anybody sense a crazy, wacky Anarky title in the style of Burnside Batgirl? Can you say "Anarchy"? Sorry.

Ann Nocenti spent six issues writing dialogue for some truly beautiful characters drawn by Trevor McCarthy and not once made them interesting or gave me any reason to care about them. Dax and his gang look like your average, run-of-the-mill comic book characters and, in just a few pages, Brian Buccellato has created a group of kids whose monthly comic book I would pick up and read.

Trevor McCarthy really did draw an adorable looking Zell. Although she could have been a little chunkier.

Lonnie ditches his new friends to go save his mother as you probably know if you actually read the page I scanned so why am I typing this paragraph? But what you might not have known is that they decide to go after him because he's Moneyspider! Or because they just liked the cut of his jib. Is that sexist?

Oh my god! They fly?! I guess gravity is a law and fuck laws, amirite?! Anarchy!

They're not actually flying. That was just the artist's interpretation of three kids jumping from one roof to another in the most absurd way possible. But if you're going to be a hero in Gotham and have any hope of starring in your own comic book, you've got to be able to jump from one rooftop to the next.

The Anarkids run into the Batfamily in the middle of a Jokerfuffle. They don't have time to help them save a stripper because they judge. So they send Spoiler to help them out.

Since Batman Eternal, Spoiler apparently got her hands on some kind of growth formula.

Spoiler's plan is to shoot a few Joker Citizens with tranq darts but Lonnie has a better plan! Spray paint joker smiles on masks fished out of the strip club's dumpster, spend an inordinate amount of time cleaning the buffalo wing sauce and ranch dressing off of them, put them on, and storm the strip club! Then it's hugs and dollar bills all around! Happy endings for everybody!

Detective Comics: Endgame #1 Rating: Since this issue ended with a "The Beginning..." closer, I'm going to jump off a limb and say this is a pilot for a monthly Anarky series depending on how well it sells. I'm all in for that series as long as Buccellato is writing it. How about instead of teaming Buccellato up with Manapul, give him Justin Gray for awhile! Then Jimmy Palmiotti can use Manapul and we'll see if more magic happens! Or at least maybe some writer's block curing handjobs.

No comments:

Post a Comment