Action Comics Weekly #621 (Secret Six)
“Guess What We Learned in School Today?”
Writer – Martin Pasko
Pencils – Frank Springer
Inks – Frank McLaughlin
Colors – Carl Gafford
Letters – Albert DeGuzman
Editor – Robert Greenberger
Welcome to Secret Six day. I apologize that this one is coming out a few hours late. Guess I haven’t completely shaken the vaycayin’.
We open back at the Pentagon, where Director Walter Fenedy is meeting with that bald mustachioed fella… who kinda reminds me of a G.I. Joe, but I couldn’t tell ya which one (Outback? Ambush?). Anyhoo, Baldo tells Fenedy that the V74 virus found its way out of the lab because of someone named Traeger. Fenedy is shocked to hear that the virus is “out”, which makes me wonder just how much attention he’s been paying to the news. Either way, he orders Traeger “wasted”. Elsewhere, Tony is still hitching a ride through some California towns of varying size… while certain they’re being followed.
Back in D.C., Fenedy is handed the wrist-communicator that Drake (the Hunter Thompson-looking guy who died last week) had taken from Tony. We learn that it was designed by their R & D folks for Mockingbird’s use. This concerns Fenedy, as it certainly means that the Secret Six are back in business. Again… does this guy pay attention to anything?!
We jump back to Tony and his driver. They realize they’re being tailed by a helicopter. Thanks to some fancy driving, however, they cause the whirlybird to crash into a low bridge.
Back at HQ, Vic, Maria, and Gus are conducting some research about the original Six. Remember, August Durant was involved with the V74 research that was/is going down at Jefferson University. The very same place where current Sixer, LaDonna has gone “undercover”.
Let’s just head there. Maria calls LaDonna to question her about an exorbitant hotel bill she’d turned in. LaDonna explains that she had to hide out off-campus until the woman she’d be “replacing” left. Makes perfect sense to me. At the same time, elsewhere near campus, Steve Traeger is visited by that one fella who snuck off to make a phone call last week. Turns out, Traeger’s getting the blame for the “livestock stunt”. I’m not the only one confused here, right?
As Traeger fights off his would-be armed assailant, LaDonna watches her roommate shower? Okay. Our chapter ends with Traeger busting into LaDonna’s place to ask for help. For what it’s worth, he refers to her as “baby”. Hmm…
Alrighty… we’ve got a little bit to unpack here. I beg you to pardon my potentially density, because this was quite the heaping pile of information and story to digest. Where to even begin?
We got this Fenedy guy, right? Director of the Pentagon… and yet, he doesn’t seem to know much of what’s going on. By all accounts, he should be aware that there’s a tainted meat epidemic coming out of Farmer Ralph’s… and, I gotta assume that he should realize that the Secret Six are back.
Let’s look at LaDonna… who, doesn’t look like she’s in any sort of disguise, right? I mean, outside of having her disfigured facial features covered, she just looks like LaDonna. Not sure how this helps her infiltrate the University… and, what’s more… how does she manage to make Steve Traeger think that she’s his “baby”? Am I reading this wrong… or is this just some ridiculously convenient storytelling?
Let’s look at Traeger. He’s assaulted (and nearly “wasted”) by that one dude. I’m not sure who we’re supposed to be rooting for here… if Traeger is responsible for all of the meat-related deaths, he shouldn’t be depicted as a fella whose just trying to defend himself, right? I mean, it might just be “current year”, but if I see an unarmed black dude attacked by a gun-carrying white guy… I’m going to be rooting for the guy without the piece. I’m guessing this will be fleshed out in the coming weeks… hopefully it’ll be easier to follow than this outing.
Overall, this was a lot of information… and it was delivered in a fairly disjointed way. I’m hopeful this one finds its rails pretty quick, because I’m beginning to run out of interest.
Tomorrow: Superman Day… everyone’s favorite!