“Death and the Maiden”
Writer: Gail Simone
Artist: Duncan Rouleau
Publisher: DC Comics
After the first two issues of these Helmet of Fate one-shots, it truly did seem that there was going be a simian-based leitmotif that was going to run through these books. After all, Detective Chimp starred in the first one-shot, and the Egyptian god, Thoth, assumed the appearance of a baboon for no reason at all.
However, with the release of Black Alice, we have now been given two consecutive issues that contained no simians whatsoever. Yet, despite the lack of either a gibbon or gorilla, this latest one-shot is my favorite of the bunch.
Simone delivers an amusing (if not entirely authentic) story of what high school life is like for non-conventional kids, in this case goth girl Lori Zechlin, a.k.a. “Black Alice.” We see a day in the life of this girl who is not-so-secretly Black Alice, a young woman who can utilize the abilities of any other magic-based character in the DC universe.
Here we see what happens when she tries to exert control over the Helmet of Fate that appeared at the foot of her bed after Lori prayed to Athena for a spear and a helmet. The story is amusing and has just enough verisimilitude to make it seem legitimate to any reader who was a non-conventional kid in high school. What’s more, Simone doesn’t force any goofy dialogue into the story for the sake of trying to be cute or funny.
Now if she had only been able to bring in a gibbon....
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