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Review: Booster Gold #32

That old magic comes and it goes.

Booster Gold's disastrous retrieval of an artifact from the Legion of Superheroes' past lands with him an adoptive "daughter."

The Good

When it was on, this comic had a great density. I know that sounds odd, so I'll stress again that, when it's on, this felt like it was giving me the kind of bang for my buck that you used to get more often in comics. There was no "decompression" here, with a wealth of panels per page filled with fast paced, snappy dialogue (and lots of it!). Batista's really the one who shines here, putting down art that deftly dances in between the many, many word balloons. I was really impressed with the amount of detail he put in, particularly in the double-page spread that was truly jaw dropping.  Once the script gets over an especially eye-rolling hump (more about that in the Bad) I was feeling the mix of comedy and pathos that's spun here. The gag about BG showing up a few days too earlier in the future, and the consequences of his foolish mistake, was such a characteristic moment for everybody's favorite superjock.

The Bad

There's a 6 or 8 page long portion of this issue, starting right after the double splash, that almost made me want to put it down. The Giffen/ Dematteis superhero comedy magic wasn't working at all there. It was dense thicket of what felt like the same two corny jokes repeated at least four times a piece. Things picked up later, but I really was about to set this down and move on to something else because the "old school density" I enjoyed throughout the rest of the issue actually made it that much harder to slog through that section.

The Verdict - 2.5/5

As for JLI throwbacks go, I'd recommend checking out Generation Lost instead of this. It was better done. The very beginning and the last half of this sail well, but that 8 page portion in the middle I mentioned was such an eye-roller, it tasks the rest of this issue with trying to make up for its mistakes. I will say, without qualification, that Batista's work is a joy to look at, though. I'm looking forward to more old school fun next issue (with an even more personal look at BG's reaction to Maxwell Lord's return) but so far, I'm wishing Dan Jurgens had stayed on.
6 Comments Refresh
Posted by Grim

i thought this one was so-so, but i would have given it an extra point. I was trying to figure out why this issue didnt feel like the old Booster, and then i realized it was pretty much because they where trying to finish a story and be done with it.
 But the issue at the same time felt EXACTLY like a good old booster story. Super villain likes then tries to kill him? A bad choice leading to badness? A little girl bugging him about peeing why their under siege from the broken looseness of all-hell? Sounds like booster to me.
 I think the writing was perfect, but the plot was fail-ish... or the other way around. idk. Batman will probably figure it out...

Posted by doordoor123

Would you say this is a jumping on point?

Posted by Theodore

I love Booster... haven't read this one yet though. Without Jurgens I'm worried.

Posted by Sir Duke

Yeah, I am really worried for this book without Jurgens.  Booster Gold under Johns and Jurgens' pen was not a comedy book.  Comedy seems to be where Giffen wants to take this though.  The whole 'Booster went back on the wrong day?  Womp-womp' element was offensively jarring.  It could have worked in a lighter story, but given that Booster had just seen a horrific massacre, it was incredibly disrespectful to the story.  The interview Giffen gave Comic Book Resources also has me really worried.  Giffen has a definite handle on this new, mature Booster Gold, but not on the overall tone.  For a story about time travel, Johns and Jurgens always had the theme of 'going forward.'  They built up allies, villains, and a mythos all of Booster's own.  Giffen looks to be happily undoing all of that as he just mines the same old JLI material he's been doing for years.

Posted by Rod12

Supposely Dan Jurgens will eventually return to the series in an interview I read somewhere he is taking a year off from the series to work on something else then he will return.

Posted by mrjoshua

I didn't even finish this issue. I love Buster Gold but this was terrible. The comedy wasn't funny and I had know idea what was going on. Midway I didn't care how it ended. I stopped and went on to something else. I hope the next issue is better than this.