Monday, August 1, 2011

Issues that Stood Out: The Plus Ones

Since this is the last month of DCU as we know it I'm continuing my trip down memory lane. Although these books aren't Booster related they were near and dear to me and in some cases helped introduce me to these characters. It all started when my sister got me into comics and got a bunch of team up one shots with "character a plus character b." All the ones she bought were pretty good but two stood out. SPOILERS even though their dated.

Robin plus Impulse #1:

This was the first time I read Impulse as well as the two characters being introduced to each other. It's a nice balance as it showcases both boys' lives as Tim is ever the devoted and patient detective while Bart is...well Bart. Their personalities really worked well against each other with Tim basically shrugging with the randomness that comes from the other boy. I think my favorite part in regards to Tim is how he's able to figure out who Impulse really is. Usually obvious details are overlooked in superhero comics so seeing someone call it out was a hoot. As is Barts' denial then outright begging Robin not tell Max he knows. Tim Drake has to be my least favorite of the Robins but when he's in this sort of team up he works the best. 

Batman plus Arsenal #1:

This was my favorite. The first time the characters of Roy Harper, Lian and Cheshire were introduced to me. There is nothing about this book I don't love. Seriously. Roy playfully banters with Dick at the start as he asks for aid in saving his ex-lover. Only Dick can't leave his city and there's only one person you go to for help in Gotham. There are a lot of things that make this story work part of it is the dynamics between Roy and Batman. See Roy is more than a little freaked out over the guy, something that actually dates back to a joke he tried to pull on him as Speedy--that didn't work. Despite his feelings there's something about Bats that makes him feel like he's a kid trying to earn a "well done." Of course this is Bruce.

Their interplay is great even though it's clear that Roy is the star even with Batman getting top billing. While not having a close relationship with Bruce he's still able to call him on his bull. He's hilarious throughout the whole thing, complex with his relationship with Jade and the bit that got my interest more than anything else: a great single father. Although he only shares one scene with Lian there's never any doubt that she means the world to him. To me that will always be something that set him apart from other heroes and I can only hope that status and Lian are returned to the character one day.

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