Tuesday, January 25, 2011

BRIGHTEST DAY #14

“Acrobats”

Writers: Geoff Johns & Peter J. Tomasi
Artists: Ivan Reis & Joe Prado
Editors: Eddie Berganza

Synopsis

Boston Brand interrupts a heist committed by Mr. Freeze, and is saved by the newly-returned Batman.  Brand believes that the Dark Knight is destined to be the new champion of the White Light, and forces the White Lantern power ring to slide onto Batman’s hand.  The Entity tells Brand that he will only find the champion by embracing and living life, not by seeking out the chosen one.  After one of Mr. Freeze’s henchmen shoots and kills Brand, the Entity shows Brand that he never cared about anyone when he was alive.  Brand realizes that he wants his second chance at life, and he wakes up, restored to life.  The Batman has vanished, and Brand and Dove share a kiss.

Later, Batman contacts someone and informs them that they need to speak about Maxwell Lord…

Notes

Page 1:  Boston Brand and Dove last appeared in Brightest Day #13.

“A replacement has been chosen.”  So something happened, at this moment, to choose the new champion of the White Light…am I reading this correctly?  Was this person not known by the White Lantern yet? 

“You’re talking about old bat ears now that he’s back, aren’tcha?”  Obviously, the events of this issue must take place after the return of Bruce Wayne, as seen in Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne #6.  Wonder where they came up with that title…

Pages 2-3:  Cool shot of Deadman. 

Pages 4-5:  Hmmm, whatever happened to Deadman’s little elf-booties?  He is wearing regular old boots now.  ( I know, he’s been wearing them since Brightest Day #0, but I just got around to being annoyed by it…)

Page 6:  “You’re dead, man!”  Ha!  Those Gotham henchmen are so darn witty!

Page 7:  “At least when you brought us back, ring, you brought us back at the physical peak of our lives.”  Which is a good thing, or else Aquaman would be a one-handed squid-dude, Hawk would still be Extant, J’onn J’onzz would be sued for impersonating a Skrull and Captain Boomerang would look like Ron Jeremy’s creepy brother. 

Mr. Freeze, real name Victor Fries.  First appeared in Batman #121.  Wields a Freeze Gun and a an exo-suit that keeps his body temperature below freezing and enhances his strength. 

Page 8:  Batman, real name Bruce Wayne.  First appeared in Detective Comics #27.  Master strategist, world’s greatest detective, incomparable athlete and hand-to-hand combatant.

“It’s zero, Freeze.”  Is Batman making joke?  Or a pun?  A quip?  Seems like he’s lightened up a bit since returning from his romp through time.

Page 9:  Note that Batman is wearing his new costume, which made its debut in Batman: The Return #1.

“We’ve only met when I was an invisible ghost talking through other people.”  This is an interesting point, something you really don’t think about when you’re reading a comic book.  I would imagine that Batman, upon “meeting” Deadman for the first time, would have done a thorough investigation of the man, like he would with anyone he encountered in his travels.

“I also known you were part of a group of people, good and bad, who were brought back to life by one of Green Lantern’s light shows.”  An admittedly Batman-esque version of the events of Blackest Night #8.

“Thanks to Darkseid, I was lost in time.”  Darkseid seemingly killed Batman in Final Crisis #6.

Page 11:  “It can raise the dead.”  As seen in Brightest Day #0.

“It can make the Anti-Monitor shout ‘Ow!’”  As seen in Brightest Day #3.

Page 12:  Hey, White Lantern Batman…anyone else thinks that would make a pretty cool action figure? 

Oh, wait, sorry…

Page 13:  “You don’t care about anyone’s life but your own.”  This hearkens back to the Entity’s advice to Boston back in Brightest Day #7 – “You need to embrace life.”  By this, the Entity means all life, not just his own. 

Page 14:  Damn.  Boston’s got some pretty bad luck when it comes to guns…

Page 15:  The old guy is Boston’s heretofore unseen grandfather.  Not sure if he’s the maternal or paternal grandfather, but it really doesn’t matter all that much.

Page 16:  “I’m gonna see what’s on TV.”  Someone needs to slap that little Boston Brand upside that head and knock some manners into him…

Page 17:  With regards to the Big Belly Burgers setting, note that in Brightest Day #6, when Dove asked Boston what he enjoyed doing when he was alive, the Entity replied, “He loved cheeseburgers.” 

Poor Audrey.  She really had poor taste in men.

Pages 18-19:  The circus strongman is Tiny, the clown is Toby, and the blonde is Lorna Hill, owner of the Hills Brothers Circus. 

This scene takes place immediately before Boston Brand is shot and killed, as originally depicted in Strange Adventures #205 and retold in Secret Origins #15.

Damn, Boston Brand really was a first-class jerk, wasn’t he?

Page 20:  Panel Two is a recreation of the cover to Deadman #1 (which reprinted Strange Adventures #205-206 and House of Mystery #178), penciled by Neal Adams. 

“Even after I solved my own murder.  Even after I was promised I could move on.  I stayed here.  Invisible.  A ghost.”  A recap of Strange Adventures #215-216.

Page 22:  Okay, go on, get a room you two…

“It’s Batman.  We need to talk about Maxwell Lord.”  Honestly, I’ve been waiting for Bruce to return just so he could get involved in the hunt for Maxwell Lord. 

Two questions, though…

First, to whom was Bruce speaking?

And second, did the White Lantern power ring restore Bruce’s memory of Lord?  Or, because he was lost in time when Max wiped his existence from everyone’s minds, was he therefore unaffected upon his return?

Either way…cool.