Action Comics Weekly #622 (Secret Six)
Big Dead Man on Campus”
Writer – Martin Pasko
Pencils – Frank Springer
Inks – Frank McLaughlin
Colors – Carl Gafford
Letters – Albert DeGuzman
Editor – Robert Greenberger
It’s Secret Six day… and, at this point in our story… I feel like we’ve got to employ the pegboard and yarn to see who’s who, what’s what, and where’s where. What I’m trying to say, is there’s a lot of stuff to keep track of here!
As ever… we’ll do our best!
We open with Tony having taken the wheel of the getaway car, and the helicopter that had been in pursuit crashing into an overpass. So, uh… I guess what I’m trying to say (without actually saying it) is, “Picking up where we left off…” Anyhoo, as we continue, I get this odd feeling like we’re supposed to have known the lady who owns the car? I mean, they way she and Tony are conversing… they seem kinda “familiar”, don’t they? I dunno… I suppose if we were to find out she has a “MEGABUX” licence plate, we could suggest this was Mel… though, I might just be blonde-profiling.
After a stop at HQ, where Gus is being given the reins, we check back in with LaDonna. She’s a bit skeeved out by Steve Whatshisface having burst into her dorm in nothing more than a bathrobe… and really isn’t much of a fan of him changing his clothes right in front of her. Looks like her “role-play” skills need a bit of help.
Time passes, and Vic, Maria, and Luke land their VTOL on nearby Theodore Roosevelt Island. Steve is still telling his story to LaDonna, including how “Billy” pulled a gun on him. Elsewhere, “Billy” (Abrahams) is making a call to Fenedy. I feel like there’s just wayyy too much going on here.
Fenedy, it’s worth noting, is in the lab with a bunch of white-shirts trying to figure out what makes Mockingbird’s communication watches tick.
Back in LaDonna’s dorm, Steve keeps droning on… up to and including, admitting that he sold those two V74 minipigs. He does this with his back turned to LaDonna, who takes the opportunity to change faces, and cock her pistol.
She leads Steve, at gunpoint, across campus. During which time, he shares the story of August Durant. While at a Communist Bloc Party (wonder if that’s anything like a Capitalist Block Party?), he unwittingly drank the virus culture, and before he knew it… his body was covered with lesions. He only survived due to some sort of medication that put him in remission.
LaDonna continues to guide Steve, and they approach the William Crandall Memorial Stadium. At this point, however, a car speeds up on them. Our girl pushes Steve out of the way, and pulls out some gymnast moves to avoid becoming street pizza.
She lands, and… somehow, blows the car up! That’s one bad-ass pistol she’s packin’… ol’ Steve wouldn’t have had a chance!
The pair rush inside the Stadium, and onto the football field… only to find themselves surrounded!
I feel like a broken record here… well, more so than usual. This was good, but boy-howdy was it crammed! It feels like there’s wayyy too much going on here to comfortably fit into eight pages.
We get a number of “asides”, none of which get adequate (or any) time to breathe. I guess if we just look at this as “LaDonna’s chapter”, it could work. LaDonna hasn’t gotten much time to shine during this ACW-incarnation of the Secret Six, so it is kinda nice seeing her get some panel time. Though, if her whole purpose here is to steal the identity of a co-ed, she probably shouldn’t be so skittish about seeing a little, uh, “student body”. Luckily, Steve didn’t appear to notice LaDonna’s trepidation, and proceeded to spill every last bean about his part in the V74 mishegoss.
As for the asides… I can’t help but to think that we’re supposed to know the woman Tony is “carpooling” with. It might be nothing, but, their banter feels a bit familiar. Fenedy is still trying to figure out the Mockingbird Watch. “Billy” is still lurking. Lotta stuff going on… perhaps too much stuff.
Tomorrow: More Pasko as we wrap up our second Blackhawk arc!