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Sunday October 19, 2008 8:03 pm

DC Comics’ Booster Gold Is Still Great!

Posted by David Torres Categories:

I’ve been reading comics on and off for almost 25 years.  I began as a “Marvel Zombie.”  For those not familiar with that term, it means that I only read Marvel comics.  That however all changed in 1989 with the release of the first Tim Burton “Batman” movie and then decided to start reading Batman, the comic book.  The first issue I picked up was Batman #433.  That was part one of John Byrne’s “The Many Deaths of Batman.”  This was a “silent issue” meaning no dialogue or captions were printed to help tell the story - only pictures.  I do believe Gordon said one word, but overall it was silent issue and I was hooked. 

As time passed, I began reading other DC titles.  I loved the “Death of Superman” storyline and Mark Waid made me love Wally West and the Flash.  Then came James Robinson’s Starman.  That book is the bible to me.  I love that book so much, I got a tattoo of the Starman symbol on my left shoulder.  I stopped reading comics for a while, but I found my way back and I’ve been reading comics again for about six or seven years now - mostly DC books, by the way. 

And one of those books is Booster Gold.

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Comic Book Resources

I discovered Booster Gold when I began reading other DC books in the early 90’s.  I never cared about the character.  As a guy who grew up watching the Super Friends, I was more interested in reading the more traditional established heroes like Batman, Superman, and the Flash.  A few years back when DC killed off Blue Beetle, Booster Gold was pushed to the forefront which resulted with the return of his own monthly title.

The title was co-written by Geoff Johns (one of my current faves) and Jeff Katz.  The book would have Booster along with Rip Hunter traveling through time to different moments in DC history.  If something was wrong with the timeline, they would find a way to make things right and save the universe.  DC had me at Geoff Johns, but they cemented me to the ground when they said time travel.  I LOVE time travel stories.  I love history.  I love reading stories about the past.  So a character traveling through time was going to be interesting to me. 

Recently, it was announced that the original writers of the series, Johns and Katz, were leaving the series after a year.  Many times new creative teams don’t work out and the book morphs into something completely different than when the book was first introduced.  The current Teen Titans series is a perfect example.  After Johns left the Titans, the quality of the storyline (at least for me) went down and I no longer cared about these characters.

After Johns and Katz left, a two-part story was written by Chuck Dixon. This has been followed by a story by Rick Remender.  Remender is known for his work with Image on titles such as Fear Agent and Strange Girl.  The first issue of his run deals with Starro the Conqueror attacking Rip Hunter.  Starro uses Rip Hunter to go back in time and infect everyone with its spores, thus taking over the world and changing history.  Basically everyone now walks around with the Starro starfish spore on their face. 

Over at Comic Book Resources, a review was posted about this recent issue.  The reviewer: Timothy Callahan gave the issue one and a half stars out of five.  We all have our opinions; our likes and dislikes.  Some people think Grant Morrison is genius and that All-Star Batman and Robin is one of the greatest books on the shelves today - I completely disagree with those opinions.  But, I love Bosster Gold and I had to write a rebuttal and strongly disagree with Timothy Callahan’s review.

From his review, Mr. Callahan states that he was not a huge fan of the book.  He states that the book has been a decent read and compared the premise of the book as a super heroes version of the old shortlived NBC series known as “Voyagers,” a favorite of mine as a kid. Callahan opens his review of the issue by saying, “I’m going to go ahead and declare this series broken. ”  I was surprised by this statement because since Johns/Katz left the book, I don’t think the book has fallen off at all.  This is still one of DC’s best books out there.
Callahan uses the word, “pointless” in his review and this is so far from the truth.  I’ve really come to like and enjoy the character of Booster Gold.  Similar to the way Mark Waid made me care about the Flash, Johns and Katz have set up a story that has made me care about Booster Gold.  You feel for Booster because he’s finally doing all of this great stuff and no one knows about it.  They can’t know so villians can’t go back in time and kill him or Rip.  He’s the unknown soldier patrolling the time stream fixing all that has gone wrong. 

With the return of his sister Michelle, his ancestor Daniel, and the revelation that Rex Hunter is his son, similar to the Flash, Booster has his own little core - his own family.  I care about all of these characters and I want to see where things go from here.  I hope this book continues on the road that has been set and that Booster’s creator Dan Jurgens who will take over as writer, doesn’t make me look like an idiot and run this book into the ground.

I also want to mention that Mr. Callahan also goes on to bash the artist of this current story arc, Pat Olliffe.  I do agree that this is not Pat’s best stuff, but Callahan states he never liked anything else he’s ever done.  That blew me away because one of the reasons Tom Deflaco’s Spider-girl was so great was in part due to Olliffe’s work.  If you still haven’t read any of Spider-girl, please read the early trades of this title.

That’s it for today.  See you next time.



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