Sunday, March 14, 2010

Comics Review: WALT DISNEY'S COMICS AND STORIES #704 (Boom! Kids, February 2010)

Andrea Castellan picks up the pace in part two of "Mickey Mouse and the World to Come," tossing Aztec world-cyclical legends, mysterious satellites, and an evil would-be usurper of a European monarchy into a narrative that already seems a bit overstuffed (how is Doc Static's past going to fit into all this? And what about Scarecrow's brain? Sorry, got my "universal wires" crossed for a second there). Eega Beeva also returns as a "visiting consultant" (I guess) for a secret American agency devoted to exploring mysteries of the X-Files variety. It is Eega who reveals to Mickey (the eye-shaded "captors" of whom turn out to have been employees of said agency) that the flying robot that carried away Minnie is one of a flotilla of giant metal men destined to "[destroy] our world and [create] the world to come!". The would-be beneficiary of the chaos does, indeed, turn out to be The Rhyming Man from the Gottfredson-Walsh "Atombrella" continuity. Castellan draws "Rhymes" (well, what else would he be nicknamed?) in the late-1940s Gottfredson mold, with an added touch of slickness. Given that "Rhymes" originally planned to use poison gas to take over the world, the sort of drastic, globe-curdling crisis-mongering that he's engaged in here seems very much in character. So, too, does his apparent intent to betray his temporary ally, the scheming Crown Prince Nikolai of the "small, peaceful" country of Illusitania. Add a few shots of Minnie in (relatively demure) bondage, and we've got what is shaping up to be a modern classic that takes inspiration from Gottfredson without being slavishly imitative. To make things wholly modern, however, I hope that Minnie gets to actively join Mickey and Eega (and Doc Static??) in foiling the plot.

Um, "Peg-Leg Pete and the Alien Band" continues in this issue, as well. It's kind of difficult to tell because there's no title header (just a "story [or what passes for same] so far" text box) and the sub-feature consumes a total of three pages. That's not a back-up feature, that's back-up garnish. And when I jokingly compared the aliens who've kidnapped Pete to The Way-Outs, I didn't expect that the writer would take me so literally...

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