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Firestorm: The Nuclear Man #32

Posted: Friday, December 15, 2006
By: Bruce Logan



"In My Fatherís House (Epilogue: What People Do)"
Writer: Stuart Moore
Artists: Jamal Igle (p), Keith Champagne (i)

Publisher: DC Comics


This issue of Firestorm: The Nuclear Man is a three-in-one story. Along with tying up the remaining loose threads of the "In My Fatherís House" story arc, and being the seemingly obligatory Firestorm Holiday Special issue, it is also the swansong of the creative team of Stuart Moore, Jamal Igle, Keith Champagne and David Baron, (Writer, Penciller, Inker and Colorist of this current run of this series).

After last monthís "unfusing" and subsequent death of Tokomak (Hewitt), Firestorm, or rather, Jason is in quite the dumps. With Hewittís last words still echoing and haunting his thoughts, and Professor Stein nowhere in sight, Jason would like nothing more than to hole up in a nice dark corner. Thankfully, with Lorraine stepping in to help him with the problem of the remaining dollies, especially the big one/robot in space, and Gehanna taking up after that, he doesnít have the opportunity to sit down and play the self-blame game. Moreover, with both Lorraine and Gen acting his soundboards, Jason is also able to get many of his thoughts sorted out. From the unlikely non-combative, semi-friendly duo of the last dolly and the Pionic Manís hunt for a rental apartment to Steinís own introspections to Lorraine and Mikhail getting some quality time alone, all happens here. And just to tie up things nicely and maybe to justify the title of this arc, (after all the father-son interaction we had here), Moore injects some holiday spirit there too, thus bringing an acceptable if slightly rushed closure to that as well. Then again, he had to finish up and clear the deck for the next writer to come on and spread out his wares.

After last two issues' accompanying guest pencillers, in this issue Jamal Igle takes care of all the visuals. I'm not a fan of this sort of team-up. I for one was glad to having just Jamal back, so much so that I didnít even mind that a few of the panels seemed a bit rushed. No offense to either Steve Sadowski (#30) or Freddie E. Williams II (#31) but the whole "synching" up styles, it does not quite work out as well as a single artist. Though not quite a jarring a mishmash of colored and b-w panels, having two different pencillers does interrupt the smooth flow of the artwork and by that way, the overall comic experience. With Igle set to start on Nightwing with #129 (Feb í07), fans do not have that long of a wait to experience his work again.

Conclusion: While it was nice to see there being some actual "side-effects" of what Jason did to Tokomak, especially how "personal" it is/was to the Firestorm trio (Jason, Lorraine, Stein), I am especially thankful for Moore not pulling a "WiR" (Women in Refrigerators) routine on Gehanna. In a time when many a writer plays this "shock value" card, it is nice to read a writer treat supporting characters as actual people and not just clay pigeons in a shooting gallery.

You can find more reviews by Bruce Logan at www.xcave.net



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