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“The Old Standard”

Volume 1, Issue 4, November 2015
Released September 2, 2015

Cover Price: $2.99
Estimated Issue Sales: 13,040 Rating
  • Currently 4.0/5 Stars.

Bat-Mite, Vol. 1, #4. Image © DC Comics



Writer: Dan Jurgens
Penciller: Corin Howell
Inker: Corin Howell
Colorist: Mike Atiyeh
Letterer: Tom Napolitano
Assistant Editor: David Pina
Editor: Jim Chadwick
Cover Artists: Mike Atiyeh, Corin Howell

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Cover Description: Booster Gold, Skeets, and Bat-Mite are stalked by Gridlock.

Brief Synopsis: Booster Gold enlists the help of Bat-Mite to fight a villain who can manipulate time.

Booster Gold's role in this story:
Featured (Booster Gold plays a prominent role)

Costume Worn: MARK XIII power-suit

This story has been reprinted in:
Bat-Mite (2016)

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Page 6, panel 1
Booster Gold and Skeets have arrived at the apartment of Reagan Bennington and Dylan "Weed" Weeden in search of their housemate, Bat-Mite. Booster makes several joking references to the cartoon Scooby-Doo, Where Are You? because Weed looks like Shaggy. (Thanks, Booster. Now when I read Weed's dialogue balloons, I hear Casey Kasem's voice.)

Page 6, panel 4
PRODUCT PLACEMENT: Bat-Mite teleports Booster from the room, depriving the reader of seeing Booster appear on panel with his latest endorsed product, Booster Puffs Cereal.

Page 8, panel 1
BUSTER GOLD: Bat-Mite calls Booster "Buster." Writer Dan Jurgens re-introduces this classic gag to readers of the New 52.

Page 8, panel 5
PRODUCT PLACEMENT: Bat-Mite reveals that Booster Gold has endorsed Hero Britches adult diapers. Their slogan? "We've got your backside!" (Booster claimed he had "never, ever" endorsed such a product in Justice League International Vol. 3, #1, but that was clearly because the opportunity had not yet presented itself.)

Page 9, panel 5
Bat-Mite makes fun of Booster Gold's name. Given that this issue is written by Dan Jugens, the man who created and named Booster Gold, Jurgens is probably poking a little fun at himself here.

Page 10, panel 2
HIS STORY: Booster has been awfully quick to reveal his history and his "real" mission as time cop to Bat-Mite. Likewise, Skeets can't help repeating that Booster's powers were stolen. They're both playing fast and loose with Bat-Mite, who isn't known to be the most stable personality. Still, a little origin recap is always a good thing for new readers. At least Booster is still a time-cop in the post-Convergence DCnU.

Page 10, panel 6
Bat-Mite calls Skeets "Jiminy" in a reference to Jiminy Cricket, the sidekick to Walt Disney's Pinocchio. Like Jiminy Cricket, Skeets is usually the voice of Booster's conscience.

Page 11, panel 1
FASHION ALERT: Thanks to Bat-Mite's reality-bending powers, Booster Gold's costume has received a makeover to appear more "Batmanish." The costume is now nearly all black with spiked shoulders and spiked gold gauntlets. Booster's star has been replaced with a skull. It's worth noting that throughout this issue, Skeet's fins have been drawn upwards, like the ears on Batman's cowl.

Image Copyright DC Comics

Page 11, panel 4
While trying to determine a new name for Booster to match his new look, Skeets considers "Gold Monger" (a reference to the James Bond villain in Goldfinger), "Gold Lantern" (a reference to the Justice League Unlimited episode "Greatest Story Never Told"), and "The Man with the Golden Arm" (a 1955 Frank Sinatra movie about heroin addiction). Eventually, Bat-Mite settles on "Black Gold," which really isn't too bad.

Page 13, panel 2
Inside Gridlock's lair, Booster appears to find comic books with covers featuring Captain Carrot. (Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew was first published by DC Comics in 1982.) However, Booster says they are "mint-in-box," which is clearly a reference to toys. As of 2015, DC has yet to release any official Zoo Crew action figures.

Page 14, panel 4
Gridlock's motivation is to stop time and preserve culture where he liked it best. Jurgens now appears to be poking some fun at comic book fan-boys who rail against change. I've never been a villain in a DC Comics book before. Frankly, I'm flattered.

Page 15, panel 5
POWER DOWN: When Bat-Mite redesigned Booster's costume, he took away Booster's forcefield. Oops.

Page 18, panel 5

Page 19, panel 5
BORROWING THE CAR: Booster goes back in time one hour to rescue a photo album that Bat-Mite would destroy. Since we have already seen the destroyed photo album, that must mean that at some point in the future, the album must be returned to its place in the past so that it can be destroyed and the timeline can be restored to its "proper" order. (Whew! Not only is Booster playing fast and loose with his origin in this issue, he's also not very good at his job!)

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Boosterrific Review: This issue includes a metatextual discussion about the dangers of unchecked nostalgia, an ideal subject for a time-traveling hero like Booster Gold. The only thing keeping this adventure from perfection is the art of Corin Howell. Though Howell's loose, cartoonish style is usually a fine choice for the silly antics of Bat-Mite, the context of ridiculing "grim 'n' gritty" and other comics' tropes would be more pointed if the art gave us more detail.

Boosterrific Rating:

  • Currently 4.0/5 Stars.
Worth Its Weight In Gold.

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