“Blue & Gold Chapter 1: The Secret Origin of Booster Gold”
So… let’s see if I’ve got this straight.
A mysterious Blue Beetle from the future has returned to the past with some vaguely defined reason that Ted Kord must be saved from his nonsensical death. Somehow he knows more about time travel than Rip Hunter and has whatever powers his current situation calls for. For example, he can erase the memories of Dan Garrett and Jamie Reyes – the past and present Beetles – so that they have no memory of having helped save Ted’s life. Why do they need their memories erased? Why must the world go on thinking Ted is dead? How is he so important? We’re just supposed to trust that Johns and Katz will have reasonable answers to these questions.
Oh, and in this issue the ragtag team manages to avoid being completely annihilated by two of DC’s most powerful baddies ever.
It’s all too perfect, in the sense that it’s everything a Blue and Gold fan could ask for. Ted and Michael are important, competent heroes who are treated as guys who dispense jokes rather than as guys who are jokes – it’s the way they were always meant to be treated.
But because DC has so rarely treated them with the respect they deserve, and because this resurrection story involves so many convenient angles – the future Beetle seems to have whatever powers he needs, the rescue came off so easily, there are so many unanswered questions that seem suspiciously like they’ll never have good answers – that this whole story arc comes off reading like fan fiction, a criticism I leveled at it before.
Or the alternative is that the other shoe is going to drop – that all this is going to come to a screeching halt and Ted will go back to being dead and the status quo will be maintained, in which case we will have spent months and lots of money following a story that goes nowhere and breaks our fanboy hearts again. The next issue blurb hints at this possibility – the chance that resurrecting Ted had dire and unforeseen consequences for the timestream, and that Ted, hero that he is, will sacrifice himself once again and in doing so save reality as they know it.
Of course there is a third possibility – that Johns and Katz do have some reasonable answers to the aforementioned questions, that this story arc will end up making sense and the Blue and Gold will become a team once again, only this time they will be treated right.
However, I’ve learned from history, which is appropriate when discussing a time travel book. Booster and Beetle never get treated right, and once you’ve lost your best friend you never get her – er, him – back.
Of course fan fiction, by its definition, is an attempt to appeal to the fan, and I’ve got to admit this arc does that. Just seeing the cover to the next issue – Ted and Michael on a rooftop, fighting off an army of OMACs, makes my little fanboy heart flutter. It’s just so damn good to see them together again.
So if you’re a Blue and Gold fan, raise my rating for this issue one whole bullet, and make sure you pick it up. And if option three comes to pass and this whole arc ends up making sense and gives me Ted Kord back, well I’ll hop in a time sphere, go back a month or so, and raise the rating myself.
What did you think of this book?
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