“The Cold Truth”
Writer: Judd Winick
Penciller: Fernando Dagnino
Inker: Raul Fernandez
Editor: Rex Ogle & Brian Cunningham
After fighting back against Alloy, Ice’s powers have gone into overdrive and she has lost control of herself. While Rocket Red evacuates the Metal Men, Fire attempts to subdue her longtime friend. However, Ice’s power overwhelms Fire, and it is only when Ice remembers her true past and origin that she comes back to herself and halts her rampage. She breaks down in tears as she recalls that she killed her father with her powers. Meanwhile,. Booster Gold, Captain Atom and Blue Beetle prepare to leave Chicago to aid their friends, but are stopped when confronted by Magog. His mission? To kill Captain Atom…
Page 1: Lillehammer is a town in Oppland county, Norway, chiefly known for being the site of the 1994 Winter Olympics.
Nikolina is Tora’s younger sister.
Page 2: “When something bad happens, or something hurts, it’s very important that you be calm. Be quiet. Be small.” We’ll come back to this later.
Page 3: These are Marius and Else Olafsdotter, Tora’s parents.
“She is a little girl who has abilities. Our little girl. Not the return of an ice goddess.” And what’s wrong with being an ice goddess, hmmmm? Tora was okay with it before now.
Oh, yeah, that’s right; I forgot to mention that this little trip down memory lane is a complete retcon of Ice’s previously established origin. Again, we’ll come back to it later.
“All they will do is use her to steal.” The Is Bygd are a sect of the Romanifolket; presumably, they are thieves and con artists who profit off the misfortune of others. Marius fears that they will use Tora’s abilities to furthers their goals.
Page 4: Ice last appeared in Justice League: Generation Lost #11.
“The world knows her as a royal member of a magical tribe from Norway. An ice goddess.” There’s that talk of being an ice goddess again…
Page 5: Fire and Rocket Red last appeared in Justice League: Generation Lost #11.
“You got quite the beat-down from the Metal Men combo giant until you snapped into winter overdrive here…” Ice was battling Alloy, the giant battle-form of the Metal Men, when she went all wild and blizzardy, as seen in Justice League: Generation Lost #11.
Page 6: “Borscht” is a soup of Ukranian origin that is made with beetroot as the main ingredient. Sounds yummy. Not.
“Just try and be…calm.” Fire, telling someone to be calm? That’s a joke, don’t you think?
Page 8: Mr. Olafsdotter is Marius’ father. He is the head of the Is Bygd clan, and not a very nice guy, from the sound of it.
Page 9: Uh-oh, looks like Tora’s not heeding that advice about staying calm…
Page 10: People tend to notice it when you shoot ice out of your hands at them.
Page 11: “It’s Max. It’s gotta be Max. Max Lord is controlling you.” Sorry, but no dice. It is understandable that Fire thinks this, considering that Max took control of her and forced her to attack her allies in Justice League: Generation Lost #9.
Page 12: “Because you seem to have tapped into some kind of amount of power you never had before.” Ice’s power level has fluctuated over the years. At times she is quite adept at using her abilities, while at others she simply shoots ice at others.
Page 13: “And I can’t let you just kill me.” But in Justice League: Generation Lost #9, she told Captain Atom to kill her is he had to; she has definitely learned the value of her life in the past day or so.
Page 14: “It has to be Max.” No, really, it doesn’t. But thanks for playing.
Page 16: “We’ve waited 700 hundred years for her to return. Her people need her.” Secret Origins #33 explained that Tora Olafsdotter was from a hidden tribe of magic-wielding Norsemen. This story effectively erases that one from continuity. But what if the Is Bygd is this same tribe, only they came to the outside world centuries ago to wait until their princess returns to them so that she might lead her clan?
Sorry, just thinking a little outside the box here…
Page 18: Tora finally remembers her past and what she did the last time she lost control of her powers.
Page 19: “Just…be careful. Always be careful. Be quiet. Be…be…calm.” So…is this whole story, this origin retcon, a way to explain why Ice is quiet and reserved? Is there a legitimate reason why she can’t just be introverted; quiet and respectful without having a tragic event in her life forcing her to act this way? I don’t mind the change, I just question the need for it is all.
Page 20: “I’m not an ice goddess! I never was!” And this is where the origin change affects other stories. Now, I can accept that Tora’s mind invented the tale of the lost tribe and her status as an ice goddess to cope with accidentally killing her father; that I’m cool with.
And, yes, the War of the Gods story in Justice League Europe #31 in which the JLI battles the Norse gods and meets (albeit briefly” Tora’s tribe probably never happened, but, really, who but me even remembers War of the Gods?
What becomes problematic is that there was a story back in Justice League America #84-85 in which Tora returned home, battled her brother Ewald and got a power upgrade.
Don’t get me wrong; those issues weren’t brilliant or anything. I’m not bemoaning that they are no longer in continuity or anything like that. But the thing is that they led into a little Justice League-crossover called “Judgment Day,” that climaxed with Ice’s death in Justice League Task Force #14.
The reason she was killed was because she rebelled against the Overmaster’s mental influence. And the reason why she was under his thrall was because she was linked to the Overmaster’s power, which caused her power increase. And she was linked to the Overmaster’s power because she absorbed some of her brother’s power after his death.
Obviously she died, but the details of her death have yet to be revealed. Not sure if Judd Winick plans on doing this, or if he’s just going to sidestep the issue. I really don’t mind all that much, and I don’t feel the need for an 80-page Ice special that explains her entire life story…I’m just here to nitpick, that’s all.
Page 21: Booster Gold, Captain Atom and Blue Beetle last appeared in Justice League: Generation Lost #11.
I assume that Skeets is with Booster and company here, but is off on his own somewhere. Maybe trying to steal some cable, or use the lab’s wi-fi service.
“Even if they still think Luthor was behind the OMAC invasion, they’ll have a few ‘questions,’ that’s for sure.” In The OMAC Project and Infinite Crisis, Maxwell Lord activated the OMACs and sent them after Earth’s metahumans. Ever since Lord mind wiped the world to forget his existence, everyone is convinced that Lex Luthor was in control of the OMACs, as revealed in Justice League: Generation Lost #2.
Page 22: Magog last appeared in Justice League: Generation Lost #10. Lord sent him to attack and kill Captain Atom, by any means necessary.