- Booster Gold
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Wednesday, May 25, 2022
For years and years, artists believed that the best way to show what a comic strip character was thinking was to put their internal dialog in fluffy, bubbly word balloons. According to comics historian Brian Cronin, credit for that innovation belongs to Rudolph Dirks' Katzenjammer Kids newspaper comic strip in the early years of the 20th century.
However, at the dawn of the 21st century, this method began to fall out of favor in mainstream American superhero comics. Old-fashioned, abstract thought balloons were gradually replaced by the more "realistic" approach of putting the same internal dialog in square boxes, as though characters are narrating their behaviors after the fact.
Since this transition happened incrementally over time, it passed largely without comment. Which made me wonder, "When was the last time that Booster Gold used a thought balloon?"
The answer to this question is Superman #124, cover-dated June 1997.
So far as I've been able to tell, Booster Gold never thought again.
It just so happens that this issue also marks the last appearance of Booster's clunky late-90s armor, so it also represents something of bookend to his 1990s adventures. If loosing thought balloons is the price we had to pay to get Booster Gold back in tights, I think I can live with that.
Monday, November 8, 2021
Blue and Gold #4 was originally solicited for October 19, but when issue 3 slid to October 12, it was easy to see that that issue 4 would be significantly off target, too. Expect to see it next week.
In the meantime, may I suggest that you read a book. Maybe the kind without pictures. Perhaps a book like The Death and Life of Superman (1993, ISBN 0-553-09582-X) by Action Comics writer Roger Stern?
You'll find this historic passage early in Chapter 8:
Now that's what I call literature!
Wednesday, September 29, 2021
Booster Gold has topped yet another CBR listicle, this time "10 Most Bizarre Alter Egos DC Heroes Have Used" by Scoot Allan.
Quoth the article:
1 Booster Gold Faked His Death And Disguised Himself As Supernova During 52
DC launched a weekly comic series called 52 following the events of Infinite Crisis that explored a year in the DC Universe without Superman, Batman, or Wonder Woman. A mysterious new hero known as Supernova appeared in Metropolis that kicked off an ongoing mystery about the man behind the mask.
While many thought it was Superman, it turned out to actually be Booster Gold, who had faked his death in order to stop his corrupted robotic pal Skeets. What's really bizarre bout the Supernova identity is that it was also used by Booster Gold's ancestor Daniel Carter and then stolen by Booster Gold's father from the future, making it a multi-generational costumed alter ego.
Secondly, the Supernova identity is more bizarre than even Scoot's two understated paragraphs imply. (Hint: it involves Superman pretending he's Batman.) For more information on the Silver Age comic book origins that inspired Supernova, I strongly encourage you read the July 2019 Boosterrific Blog post "Sunshine Supernova."
And thirdly, I'd say that Supernova isn't Booster Gold's most bizarre alter ego. That honor goes to Bloodspot.
Comic books are the best kind of weird.
Monday, September 6, 2021
The life of any comic book hero would be a lonely one if not for the many characters who have made up their supporting cast. Just as Superman has Lois Lane and Batman has Alfred, Booster Gold has also shared his adventures with quite a few people over the years. Today we look at one of those, his mother.
Today is Labor Day in America, a holiday to celebrate those who helped ensure that we don't have to work on holidays. Do you know who still has to work holidays? Mothers.
Mothers never get days off. It's a tough job, made all the tougher when you're poor, single, and have twin mouths to feed. That's true today, and will still be true for the mother of Michael Jon "Booster" Carter and his sister Michelle in AD 2462 Gotham City.
The birth name of Mrs. Carter remains a mystery to the public record. Her last name was borrowed from a man who turned his back on his own family, and her children always call her "Ma." But what's really important is that she loved and supported her children, even the conceited one who played college football.
When Ma got sick, can anyone blame Booster for turning to a life of crime to ensure that she got the treatment she needed? Isn't that what any good son would do?
And when Ma found out her son had cheated to pay for her treatment, can anyone blame her for being disappointed in him? Wouldn't every good mother hope that she had raised her children better than that?
Sometimes, when we're angry, we say things we don't really mean and can't take back. Booster Carter wouldn't even get the opportunity to try. To distance himself from his mistakes, he made the fateful decision to steal a time machine and runaway into the past. By the time he found a way back, it was too late.
There could be no reconciliation. Tragically, Ma Carter would never learn of her son's heroic self-redemption.
Or wouldn't she? Nothing is as straightforward as it seems in the life of a time traveler.
While Booster would live his life believing that he had missed his opportunity to set things right, fate had other plans. Years later (from Booster's perspective), an attempt to keep Superman from doing unintentional harm to history resulted in an accidental trip back to the Gotham City of 2642. Thus Booster Gold was given a rare a second chance to clear the air.
If you get a chance this holiday, maybe you should call your mother.
Are you interested in meeting other "People in his Neighborhood"? Follow these links to get to know Daniel Carter, Michelle Carter, Trixie Collins, Nurse Devlin, Dirk Davis, Rani, Skeets, Jack Soo, Mackenzie Garrison, Rip Hunter, Monica Lake, Doctor Shocker, and Blackguard.
Wednesday, June 2, 2021
I don't think I'd warned you this was coming, but today you can get your hands on Superman: The Man of Steel Volume 3, a reprint collection of twelve Superman comics from the 1980s. It just so happens that Booster appears in three of those:
Booster Gold sure was all over the place back in late 1987, early 1988. Ah, the good old days.
That last panel is just a cameo, but there's actually quite a good bit of Booster in this collection. Buy this reprint and make Skeets happy.
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