TITLE: Stars and S.T.R.I.P.E. #6
COVER DATE: January 2000
COVER PRICE: $2.50
WHAT I REMEMBER...
I already covered most of what I remember about the genesis of this title and Geoff Johns early career here, as well as my blistering expose into Young Justice over here.
So what does that leave us to talk about before we get to the meat and bones of the review?
Not much, but we should point out that this is the second part of a two-part story guest starring Young Justice. At this point in the story, Stargirl and Impulse have been transformed into aliens while attempting to stop their invasion.
The Subs Part Two
- Writer: Geoff Johns
- Penciller: Lee Moder
- Inker: Dan Davis
- Colors: Tom McCraw
- Serperations: Heroic Age
- Letterer: Bill Oakley
- Editor: Mike Carlin
We pick up the story in mid-battle as Stargirl, S.T.R.I.P.E., and Young Justice are trying to subdue the group of aliens who have transformed both Stargirl and Impulse into aliens themselves. It appears to be just a physical change, as Courtneys's sarcastic teenage attitude is still in effect.
Superboy, meanwhile, lets his hormones do the thinking as he saves a pretty young bystander. He uses his tactile telekinesis to disassemble the gun that the alien was using to transform everyone. Realizing that the tide of battle is turning against them, the aliens teleport away.
The heroes decide to split up, with Red Tornado, Superboy, and Stargirl heading off to look for the missing members of Young Justice. That leaves S.T.R.I.P.E., Robin, Impulse, and Stargirls friend Mary to reverse engineer the ray gun.
Robin and S.T.R.I.P.E. are able to put the ray gun back together, but it's Courtney's friend Mary who manages to figure out how to make the gun work in reverse.
They don't have too long to be ably impressed, as Impulse's transformation takes a turn for the worse.
What was just a cosmetic change has now progressed to the next level. In full evil alien form, Impulse uses his super speed to snatch the gun.
Back at the alien's spacecraft, Red Tornado and his crew attempt to track down Wonder Girl, Arrowette, and the Secret. It's soon readily apparent that they've been transformed as well. With the now fully transformed Stargirl at their side, they make short order of Red Tornado and Superboy. Now taken into custody and transformed, things look bleak indeed for our heroes.
On board the alien spaceship, we learn that the Earth was just a proving ground for the alien's ray gun. Needless to say, with several transformed superheroes as proof, the test was a runaway success.
The next step of their nefarious plan is now ready, a live interstellar auction for the Life-Gun technology. Before the auction can begin, however, we find out the fate of Robin and S.T.R.I.P.E. as they approach the spaceship, now fullly transformed into aliens themselves. It would appear that Impulse was successful.
Appearences can be decieveing however, as Impusle sneezes and blows off the blue make-up that they were using to disguise themselves.
It's a trick!
Using their reverse-engineered alien ray gun, Impulse soon transfroms everyone back to human with his superspeed and it then takes only seconds before the aliens are on the run.
Just as they have the main alien cornered, they are unceremoniously ejected from the spaceship as it blasts off into space, leaving the heroes and their failed commander behind.
When things have settled down, Young Justice offer Stargirl a spot on the team to which she politely declines. After all, she is a card carrying member of the JSA by this point.
The issue ends with a bit of an epilogue, as the Dragon King and Shiv destroy the fleeing spaceship. No one invades their town, and now they are ready to take on Stargirl and S.T.R.I.P.E. themselves!
SO, WHAT DID WE LEARN...
You know, it's funny, but Geoff Johns has been such a dramatic driving force for so long that I completely forgot that he used to be funny. This book was actually a lot of fun, being both lighthearted and briskly paced.
That's something we haven't seen from Johns in a while. From Infinite Crisis and 52, to Green Lantern and Blackest Night, he has been such a strong storyteller with the massive universe spanning dramatic stories, that it's a nice twist to see him have a little fun with a title.
It's also been a long time since I've seen any of Lee Moder's work, but his pencils here are the perfect compliment for the tone of the story. It's energetic, quirky, and also a lot of fun.
People always say that comics aren't for kids anymore, but I would have no problem letting my kids read this title. And the best thing? It had enought going for it that I enjoyed it too!
All in all, it deserves a spot on my bookshelf right next to Leave It To Chance, for just such an occasion.
Related links for your surfing pleasure...
- Geoff Johns' official website