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Friday, February 14, 2020

Character Spotlight on Monica Lake

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, Monica Lake.

The People in His Neighborhood: spotlighting the characters who have made Booster Gold such a star

It's a common practice for anyone seeking to become a celebrity to attach themselves to other celebrities. When Booster Gold was new on the scene, he was no different.

In order to maximize his client's marketing potential, Booster's manager, Dirk Davis, scheduled a very public dinner date for our hero at The Imperial, "one of the finest restaurants in Metropolis," in Booster Gold #3 (1986). The lucky (or opportunistic, depending on your point of view) starlet is Monica Lake, star of The Love Cruise.

© DC Comics

Due in equal parts to Booster's vanity and Monica's disinterest, the date did not go well.

© DC Comics

Despite the inauspicious start to their relationship, both Booster and Monica recognized the practical public relations value of continuing their association. By the next issue, Booster Gold #4, Monica was already in touch with Davis about staging another encounter. In Booster Gold #9, she revealed explicitly what she hopped to gain by the relationship.

© DC Comics

For a time, the plan seemed to work. The media couldn't get enough of the couple. Rumors of an impending marriage between the couple started immediately ("his first, her fifth"!), and continued for months.

Gradually, this made-for-tabloids romance began to strain Booster's personal relationships, most notably with his secretary, Trixie Collins, who felt that Booster was demeaning himself (as seen in Booster Gold #10). Booster eventually agreed. After a near death experience and a trip to the future, he re-evaluated his life and decided that there was no room in it for Monica Lake, resulting in a blow-up between the two in the pages of Booster Gold #16.

© DC Comics

© DC Comics

It was not the last Booster would see of Lake, however. She may not have gotten what she wanted from their year-long partnership, but Booster sure did. He had successfully elevated himself into the celebrity social echelon, and the former couple would cross paths again at celebrity parties, such as the art gallery opening of painter Paul Morris' latest show (Booster Gold #19).

© DC Comics

Neither Booster nor Monica come off looking very good in hindsight, but that's sadly true of all too many relationships. In all fairness, they were both immature. Booster was barely 20 years old at the time, and Lake couldn't have been too much older despite having already been married four times. Keep that in mind this Valentine's Day: if you want to maintain the magic in your partnership, don't be a childish jerk.

To answer the question of whether creator Dan Jurgens based Monica Lake on any real celebrities, click here to read my post from May 8, 2015.

Interested in meeting other "People in his Neighborhood"? Get to know Trixie Collins, Daniel Carter, Jack Soo, Rani, Dirk Davis, Skeets, Mackenzie Garrison, Rip Hunter, Michelle Carter, and Nurse Devlin.

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Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Recommended Reading

Tomorrow is Valentine's Day, the holiday for spending time with the one you love. Obviously, that means Booster Gold.

To help you out, I present my Essential Booster Gold Reading List:

The Classics
Booster Gold Volume 1 (1986) #1-15
These issues by character creator Dan Jurgens establish everything you need to know about Michael Jon "Booster" Carter: athlete, gambler, thief, hero. All future Booster Gold stories were built on these building blocks.

Blue and Gold
Justice League (1987) #4
Justice League International Volume 1 (1987) #7-9, 25, 32-34
Justice League International Annual (1988) #2
Formerly Known as the Justice League (2003) #1-6
Blue Beetle and Booster Gold are the greatest bromance in DC Comics. Relive their glory days in the "Bwah-ha-ha" era created by Kieth Giffen and J.M DeMatteis.

Time Master
52 (2006) #1-52
Booster Gold Volume 2 (2007) #1-6, 0, 7-10, 1,000,000
Booster Gold's rebirth really began with his lowest moment in 52 #7, but to really appreciate the story, read all of 52, then wash it down with key issues of Booster Gold volume 2 led by Geoff Johns' take on the new Time Masters.

New 52 and Rebirth
Justice League International Volume 3 (2011), #1-12
Action Comics (2018) #993-998
Dan Jurgens returns to refine Booster Gold for the modern, post-Flashpoint DC Universe.

That's not to say that there aren't plenty of other great Booster Gold comics. Once you get through those, consider taking a look at the entire run of Justice League: Generation Lost (2010) #1-24. I also recommend Justice League Quarterly (1990) #1 and Justice League Unlimited (2005) issues #2, 30, and 43, just to name a few.

So this holiday, pour a glass of wine, turn the lights down low, and snuggle up with your favorite comics, Booster Gold comics.

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Friday, February 14, 2014

Valentine's Day, Booster Gold Style

A little tip from Booster Gold:

© DC Comics
Booster Gold, Volume 1, #3

If you're taking your significant other out for a romantic dinner, don't spend the whole evening talking about yourself. Oh, Booster!

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Thursday, February 13, 2014

Gifts Make the Man

I think "downhill" is the best way to summarize Booster's experiences in the New 52.

Last week's poll question: In which individual Winter Olympic event would Booster Gold most be most likely win a Gold Medal? (44 votes)

In which individual Winter Olympic event would Booster Gold most be most likely win a Gold Medal?

Tomorrow is Valentine's Day, and Valentine's Day is all about the romance. What's Booster's secret to winning the heart of his Valentine's Day date?

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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Lessons from Booster Gold

What do you do if you, like Booster Gold, literally have women beating down your door?

© DC Comics

Booster, you smooth talker, you.

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