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Monday, August 15, 2022
Goofballs Are People Too
Tales of the Human Target is due to arrive in your Local Comic Shop next week, on August 23. Tales is an anthology book, with stories featuring Guy Gardner, Fire, and Booster Gold. According to Newsarama @ gamesradar.com, Booster Gold was chosen because that's who Kevin Maguire wanted to draw. I'm very much okay with that.
That Newsarama article hyperlinked above is an interview between Grant DeAmitt and Tom King about a whole bunch of Human Target-related stuff. Importantly for Booster boosters, it includes an on-the-record discussion about why King keeps putting a dumbed-down version of Booster Gold in his stories:
Nrama: Okay, moving on, the next character that's in Tales is Booster Gold.
King: My favorite character in comics. I love writing him.
Nrama: Oh yeah?
King: I tell Dan Jurgens all the time, 'thank you for creating this character.' Even if I write him a little differently than Dan would write him, because Dan writes him a little smarter than I write him. I write him a little more goofy. But I love that sort of goofiness of him.
Nrama: Is that what attracts you to the character? The goofiness?
King: There are two things that attract me. Number one, I write these tragic, sad things. I never get to write funny. I love writing funny. I love comedy. It's a chance to get into that. And yeah, there's this like, don't tell anybody this, but I base him kind of on Futurama, on Zapp Brannigan and Kiff. You know how Skeets is his partner who, like, loves him and hates him at the same time? I love that.
I also love – this is the thing I got from Jurgens. What Jurgens understands about this character is, that in the end, Booster does the right thing and doesn't get credit for it. He's the superhero who's like, yes, he first thinks of himself. Yes, he first thinks of money. Yes, he's a goofball. But at the end of the day, he's really a really good person. He really is self-sacrificial. But just because of all that other bravado stuff, nobody gets to see that part of it. He's one of the nicest, best heroes in the DC Universe. Everyone assumes that because he's a goofball, he's not good. And I love that about him.
Nrama: So in the beginning of Tales, when he has that monologue about being just like Superman, he's actually right? He's closer to Superman than we give him credit for.
King: People forget that in 52, the big DC event, he was the Superman for a time. A character called Supernova. So again, you read that and you're laughing at him, but there is something in him that's just a little Superman.
The craziest part about Booster is that he had the stupidest plan in the world. He's like, I'm going to go into the past. I'm going to steal a bunch of tech and go back and be a superhero. And then he actually did it! He executed the stupidest plan, and it worked! There's something Brave and Bold about that.
That said, all jokes — and my personal appreciation for King's ouevre — aside, I don't want to discourage anyone from enjoying Booster Gold for whatever reason they find to enjoy him, even if their reason isn't mine.
Live and let Booster Gold.
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