Pretty, Fizzy Paradise

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Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Because Wes-Abuse never stops being fun!

It has occurred to me that I have been dreadfully remiss in my duties. It has been ages since I have engaged in that wonderful pastime I love so much: Golden Age Sandman abuse! Because Wes Dodds, great though he is, is also, occasionally a flipping moron.

Let's look at one case in point, originally from Adventure Comics 85, "The Unholy Dreams of Gentleman Jack."

Okay, to fill you in, "Gentleman Jack" is an ex-con who has nightmares of getting beaten up by the Sandman. He's got lots of money and decides to get revenge now that he's out! He also sets up his house like a prison with rubber bars, which is kind of swanky and brings back flashbacks of playing in the Mcdonald-land Hamburgler playset as a child for me. But I digress.

Anyway, he sends the Sandman a mysteeerious letter:

To give them credit, both characters seem pretty certain that this is going to be some sort of exciting and dangerous situation, read: a trap. Still, I tend to think Wes is being a bit of a dick here. He could turn the kid down more gently!

And I have to give Wes more credit, because unlike a certain rodent-guised compatriot during the same time period, Wes does occasionally angst and worry about dragging a kid along for all of this. See?

Though, honestly, when Wes usually expresses concern for his partner is when they're both chained upside down above a burning fireplace. This is rare because Wes at least tries to do something useful. On the downside, it means he's leaving behind the half of their partnership that actually has a working brain.

So Wes goes in, meets up with Jack, chats for a bit then:

Wes is sadly not very bright.

Anyway, Wes is captured and shoved into an airtight chamber inside Jack's manor, which is designed to slowly suffocate him. There is no way to escape and with his sidekick at home, there's no one to come to the rescue!

Because as all comic readers know, sidekicks ALWAYS obey their mentors! Right, Sandy?


Anyway, proving his usual improved competence over his mentor, Sandy actually scopes out the place first, recognizes Jack, overhears Wes's fate, and manages to sneak all the way into the depths of the manor!

Unfortunately, he rolled a critical miss on his dexterity check. (Geek joke!)

The tragic truth is, that while Sandy is smart, quick witted, adorable and competent. He's also a major klutz. I have to say, as much as he's my tied-for-favorite comic character ever, there is one thing I deeply resent about Sand in the JSA. He's never, that I recall, tripped over ANYTHING.

See, this promotes a false image! It promotes the idea that a klutzy child can grow up to be someone reasonably graceful and coordinated. As a once klutzy child myself who has just today tripped over THIN AIR in the parking lot of my work place, I call shenanigans.

But back to the story. Fortunately, Sandy is experienced enough to know that the best way to compensate for this sort of thing is to shoot the crap out of things!

Of course, this leads to the ass-kicking portion of today's show, culminating in, what else? Wes being a dick.

How big of you to take back what you said, Wes! How's that oxygen you wouldn't be breathing if the kid didn't manage to shoot, while being throttled by a bad guy? And by the way, that letter at the end...NOT your best work.

Though I'm mollified, as always, by Sandy's expression in that last panel. It's just so clear, that as much as Sandy idolizes him, he is well aware that his mentor is full of shit. That sort of thing is really what makes the partnership work for me.

Wes is still a moron though.


  • At May 01, 2007 10:52 AM, Blogger SallyP said…

    I've got to admit, that this is a hoot. I'm not quite sure if Wes is quite up to Snapper Carr standards of imbecility, but he's certainly trying.

    Sandy of course is just adorable. And the scene where he trips, is almost Hal Jordanian in its clumsiness.

    Great stuff.

  • At May 01, 2007 12:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I always liked that "There is no land beyond the law" poem, although it's not really appropriate when he's fighting ordinary crooks. I first saw it in the JLA/JSA/7 Soldiers team-up circa JLA #100, where he left a copy after kicking Genghis Khan's ass -- now THAT was cool!

  • At May 01, 2007 2:26 PM, Blogger kalinara said…

    The poem has style, I admit. I just like ripping on Wes. :-p

  • At May 02, 2007 1:25 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    i'm just disturbed that sandy the golden boy is looking for opportunities to get in a shot with his poon gun.


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