Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Writers Block: Booster Gold Getting Character Development or Character Derailment? Part 5

Dan Jurgens:

I knew that there were certain bits to Boosters' personality that would return when his creator took over writer duties. Some of it was good and some of it was a step back in his development. Take issue #15 from his second run for example. Out of nowhere Booster starts telling Skeets that they should make an action figure line including Peter Platinum--the guy who stole his money making legacy sending Booster further into a spiral of self doubt. This sort of mind frame doesn't fit the character anymore, not if it's not a front for outsiders. Happily Jurgens doesn't really use this trait much (although I thought the bit during Dixons' arc with Booster mentioning the bat profits to be had read as a Jurgens joke.)

While Jurgens doesn't make Booster quite the horndog some wrote him as there are little bits he incorporates that have a very retro feel to them. Even if Booster is a ladies man, and yes a little forward (as his infamous slap in JLI suggests) I can't see him still acting this way. Especially when he hasn't been shown as such under most of the other writers pens after his character development. I also imagined him being smoother than the type to call a woman "sweetcheeks."
Other than that Jurgens is pretty good with showing how Booster feels about his current job and the loss of friends. There's a strong connection with a theme that was in Jurgens' first run and Johns/Katz. It's sort of a between the lines sort of theme of Booster never able be completely open with anyone. (He definitely didn't tell Michelle everything.) There are topics like his father he doesn't talk about. He feels a longing for someone to understand him but can't. Either because of the Time Masters rules or his own fears of rejection. While other writers highlight his friendship with Ted Jurgens doesn't suggest that Teds' the only person he'd open up to. Jurgens in fact ends the stages of grief by having Booster come to terms with Teds' death and accept Jaime as his successor. Booster does follow up on Batmans' promise to be there for him though Booster admits to himself (hee) that Bruce isn't the sort you can have fun with. 
I will say that I find the heroes Jurgens choses to be dismissive of Booster to be better than the picks other writers have. Given Boosters' history with Superman it makes sense that he'd be unsure. During 52 he seemed impressed with what he thought was more than Booster was capable of. In the first issue he recognized what he did with Doomsday. Superman never knows what to expect but isn't the rudest. No that honor went to Hal Jordon.  
Boosters' bond with Rip is rather odd since he either feels frustrated with being bossed around by someone (he thinks) he'll never really know or someone he has a lot of respect for. A bond that obviously has/will have a lot of love, Booster just doesn't realize it yet.


  1. I've always wondered if Booster's more peculiar mannerisms and possible forwardness with women, doesn't just stem from the fact that he's from the future and dang it, things are a little bit different here in the benighted past. I've always gotten the impression that a lot of what Booster says and does, is all an act. He's doing stuff that he thinks he should be doing...not necessarily what he wants or feels.

    But yes, Hal is an ass to Booster.

  2. It's strongly been hinted at the future being sexually repressed. I think it is in Legion times but G/D once had Booster say there weren't any mini skirts in his time, Johns has Michelle say how no one in the present is judgemental/repressed like they are back home, and the fashions barely show any skin.

    Jurgens says that Booster just says the first thing that comes to mind or just to get a reaction if he's around someone with no sense of humor *cough*Hal*cough*. I think Boosters' still overwhemled by the cultural differences. A lot of it is a facade though.