Action Comics Weekly #628 (Blackhawk)
“… And a Time to Gather Stones Together”
Writer – Martin Pasko
Pencils – Rick Burchett
Inks – John Nyberg
Letters – Steve Haynie
Colors – Tom Ziuko
Editor – Mike Gold
What a day it is… not only do we welcome Blackhawk back to the rotation, but it is also our low-key THIRTEEN-HUNDREDTH DAILY DISCUSSION here at Chris is on Infinite Earths!
It’s been a bit of a milestone week here at the Palatial Christate… 1,300 Blog Posts today… and the Podcast’s 25th Episode dropped just yesterday! When it rains, it pours!
If you’re interested in checking out the (over-stuffed) episode, you can do so… right here!
With the celebratory ga-ga out of the way, let’s hop right into the story!
We open at Blackhawk Airways, Incorporated outside Singapore where one-eyed Nat is sobbing over a photo of her Son while new hired-hand “Mairzey” does her best impression of Leland Palmer ruining a dinner party. Nat’s bummin’ because her sister, Ruth has been taking care of her boy, but won’t be able to for much longer. What’s more, due to a lot of the “Red Scare” back home, Nat figures the only thing waiting for her there is a jail cell. So, it’s a tough situation all around. Mairzey suggests they go and tip a few back to take the edge off.
We shift scenes to the skies, where Jan and the Boys are returning home from the Van der Houten Affair. Claiborne is attempting to talk Janos into signing on and working alongside the C.I.A., but our man ain’t really digging the sound of it. At that moment, Marcia’s body is discovered in the back of the plane. When we last left off, I assumed that Janos himself found her, but I was mistaken… it was actually Chop-Chop who did!
Weng heads up to the cockpit to report what he’d found… and advises that, while Marcia still has a pulse, it ain’t lookin’ good. The team prepares for an emergency landing.
We jump to a small village outside of Munich, Germany. It’s referred to as a “Bizone” in the Ally-Occupied area of the country. There, a German doctor… or, just a doctoral-looking German guy holding a hypodermic… threatens a man who is gagged and bound to a cot. The Doc turns to a young man and sends him off with a package.
The young fella doesn’t get far before running into an entire military outfit. Not sure whose side they’re on… actually, not sure whose side anyone here is on… but, the point is quickly rendered moot. The young man gets all shot up… then bazooka’ed to bits! You and I might call this “overkill”, but I’m not about to tell these heavily-armed Germans how to go about their business!
We wrap up back in Singapore, where the Blackhawks are all headed to the hospital to check in on Marcia. From the looks on everyone’s faces… it doesn’t appear as though they’re in for much in the way of “good news”. Jan lashes out and lunges toward Claiborne.
Oh man, it’s great to have Blackhawk back in the fold!
I must say, I was a little surprised to be picking up immediately where we left off a couple months ago. I figured this would be a brand-new (mostly unconnected) adventure. I also assumed that Marcia was just “dead”. Didn’t expect for her to still have a pulse, and for her mortality to still be in question. Figured she was a “one and done” for ol’ Jan.
Other than that revelation (which may prove moot as we enter the subsequent chapters), not a whole heckuva lot to report here. Nat’s got some problems finding a caretaker for her Son… which, I dunno, kinda feels like an excuse to Pasko to beat the “Hey, McCarthyism was a bad thing.” drum? Well, at least the story is taking place during the Red Scare era, so it isn’t entirely without precedent. Still, I hope it doesn’t become a primary focus for this arc.
The aside in Germany was interesting. Don’t know what’s going on… or where it’s headed… or who we should be rooting for, but I’m interested to see how it unfolds.
Art is still top-notch. Really enjoy Burchett’s work… feel as though he’s a perfect fit for this period-specific story. Overall, just really happy to see this feature return to the lineup… this will be, however, Blackhawk’s final arc for this project.
Tomorrow: Batting Clean-Up!