- Booster Gold
“When Glass Houses Shatter”
Volume 1, Issue 11, December 1986
Released September 18, 1986
Cover Price: 75¢
Guide Price: $3.00 (as of 2013)
Hero: Booster Gold
Villains: 1000, Director of Death, Doctor Shocker, Shockwave
Supporting: Dirk Davis, Jack and Jill, Jeanie Collins, Jeremy Brysler, Skeets I
Setting: Metropolis, DCU, USA, 20th-century
Cover Description: PRODUCT PLACEMENT: Booster stands before a racing Boostermobile while doing his best Sonny Crockett impersonation.
Brief Synopsis: Booster battles the 1000 hired villain Shockwave but fails to prevent him from destroying Reilleau Towers.
Booster Gold's role in this story:
Featured (Booster Gold plays a prominent role)
Costume Worn: MARK I power-suit
Issue Notes: On the cover, Booster sports both a white star and a much shorter hairstyle than past issues.
Page 1, panel 1
Appearance of Shockwave. Off-panel news reporter Cal Emry describes the weather as "ninety-seven blistering degrees" on a Sunday morning in Metropolis.
Page 2, panel 1
Shockwave escapes from California's Nogales Maximum Security Prison with the assistance of the 1000. The albino Shockwave first appeared in Blue Devil #2, where he was stealing Kryptonite from S.T.A.R. Labs in Metropolis. He is in jail in California for destruction of property in Los Angeles.
Page 3, panel 1
According to Cal Emery, the events of the previous issue took place on the previous Friday night. Therefore only 2 days have passed since Booster Gold #10.
Page 4, panel 1
PRODUCT PLACEMENT: Booster appears in an advertisement for Brysler Motors' civilian model of Booster Gold's unique Boostermobile.
Page 5, panel 1
Booster's concerns about Brysler's mass production of the Boostermobile include the possibility of litigation if villains use the vehicle in a crime. United States law can certainly hold sellers responsible for the merchandising of a dangerous product, but in this case Booster would likely do better to worry about the danger it would cause to his image, not his pocketbook. (No doubt, Henry Ford was not concerned about lawsuits when fugitives Bonnie and Clyde used a Ford Fordor as a getaway car.)
Page 5, panel 5
Skeets reveals Aunt Jean's last name to be "Mrs. Jean Collins," suggesting that she is Trixie's father's brother's wife, a relation by marriage, not birth. The title of "Mrs." identifies a married woman, and she shares the maiden Trixie's last name.
Page 6, panel 3
Dirk tries to distract Booster, Skeets, and Aunt Jean about Trixie's disappearance by mentioning Booster's new haircut. (Nice try, Dirk.) Gone are Booster's long bangs. His much shorter hair looks slightly feathered, similar to Don Johnson's Sonny Crockett character on early seasons of the television show Miami Vice.
Page 7, panel 1
Second appearance of Jack Soo. Dr. Soo is identified as the "Vice-President of Research and Development" of S.T.A.R. Labs, no doubt a very prestigious position given S.T.A.R. Labs' prominence in the DC Universe. Dr. Soo is working on developing a costume that looks very similar to Booster's.
Page 9, panel 4
Booster fires Dirk over Dirk's irresponsible treatment of Trixie. Though the two will later repair their relationship when the Booster discovers the truth about Dirk's daughter, Booster will never actually re-hire Dirk back to work at Goldstar, Inc.
Page 10, panel 4
Skeets tells Booster that he is incapable of "kidding." It is unclear whether or not this is a joke.
Page 12, panel 2
BUSTER GOLD: Shockwave revives Senator Ballard's running joke of calling Booster "Buster." It still irritates Booster.
Page 14, panel 3
HIS STORY: The Director reveals that most of Booster Gold's wealth has come from clever manipulation of the stock market made possible through future knowledge of economic events. If this is true, even if Booster were to lose his fortune, one would presume that he would be able to recreate it, if he so desired.
Page 14, panel 6
FIRST APPEARANCE: First appearance of Sarah Davis. Sarah has previously only been seen on a video monitor. It is implied that Sarah and Trixie have been sharing a cell together in the 1000 headquarters. It is implied that, like Booster, Trixie had been previous unaware Dirk had a daughter.
Page 15, panel 1
Booster uses the exclamation "Shazam!" for the first time. "Shazam" is the name of the old wizard who granted the powers of the ancients (Solomon, Hercules, Atlas, Zeus, Achilles, Mercury) to young Billy Batson. By uttering the wizard's name, Batson becomes the super hero Captain Marvel. Captain Marvel's first post-Crisis on Infinite Earths appearance would occur in the Legends mini-series published in November 1986, one month prior to the publication of this book. Booster's use of Captain Marvel's trademark word of power is likely a synergistic promotional push for the Legends series.
Page 15, panel 2
POWER DOWN: Booster admits for the first time that most of his powers are fading. He estimates that his Booster Shots are half as powerful as they once were. Booster's revelation of his new found weakness shortly after his change in hairstyle may indicate a subtle allusion to the biblical story of Samson, a man of supernatural strength whose power was tied to the length of his hair.
Page 16, panel 1
BOOSTERRIFIC! COUNT: 4. Booster doesn't actually say the word here; he thinks it. And in his head he spells it "boosterrific."
Page 16, panel 3
Dirk reveals that the cats Jack and Jill were gifts to Booster from U.S. President Ronald Reagan after Booster saved his life in Booster Gold, Vol. 1, #9. Though the U.S. Constitution places limits on gifts that the United States President can receive, no restrictions are placed on the giving of gifts, either foreign or domestic.
Page 17, panel 1
The battle between Booster Gold and Shockwave on the top floor of Reilleau Towers has resulted in the destruction of the building, which collapses, taking with it Booster's penthouse apartment and the offices of Goldstar, Inc. This is unofficially the last appearance of Goldstar, Inc., which will not be seen again until Booster Gold #16, where it will be restructured into Booster Gold International.
Page 19, panel 4
With the assistance of Dirk Davis' stolen access codes, Doctor Shocker is able to override Skeets' programming and deactivate him. Though Booster notices a slight change in Skeets' behavior, he is unaware that Skeets is under remote control. This demonstrates that Skeets' "mind" is just as prone to hacking and outside control as any other computer is at the mercy of a skilled enough user.
Boosterrific Review: If for nothing else, Dan Jurgens should be commended for tying the gimmicked super hero vehicles of the Bronze Age into the mythos of his modern protagonist. Booster’s concerns over the potential liability of the use of his endorsement offers a refreshing peek at the all-too-often overlooked ethical side of our material hero.
Unfortunately, events of the issue come crashing down (quite literally) soon after Booster's dust up with Dirk Davis over the Boostermobile. This is the second issue in a row in which a fight scene between Booster Gold and a generic villain (Blue Devil’s recurring foe Shockwave) masks the growing schemes of the Director. This would be irritating if it weren’t for the changes to the status quo (goodbye, Reilleau Towers) and the refreshing humor that Jurgens brings to the fight (in both art and dialogue). While some may find Booster's solution to the problem of a rampaging Shockwave to be a little bit too silly to bear, it provides a satisfying foil of the darker elements of revenge and betrayal driving the plot in recent issues. Not the most even-handed issue of the series, but it does its job setting the stage for next issue's showdown between Booster Gold and the 1000.
Boosterrific Rating: Worth Its Weight In Gold.
Average Fan Rating: (2 votes)
One of the best covers of volume 1!
Enh. While I like the cover and the general destruction, I have to say the whole Dirk Davis angle was not particularly interesting.
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