- Booster Gold
Showing posts 1 - 5 of 12 matching: powers
Wednesday, November 15, 2023
What makes a hero super? The super powers! From awesome strength to zero-to-sixty speed, great superpowers are the most useful tricks in every famous costumed crime-fighter's tool kit. Michael Jon Carter knew this, and that's why he started his career with a time machine.
Power suit, energy rays, force field, flight ring... "Booster" Carter could steal every super power in the Space Museum, but none of those would make the citizens of the 25th century forget that he had committed the ultimate crime: shaving points in a college football game.
To move on with his life, Booster would have to think outside the box. He'd have to think in a sphere. Specifically, he'd have to think in Rip Hunter's Time Sphere.
Rip Hunter and his distinctive time machine, the "amazing" Time Sphere, made their debut appearance in Showcase #20, 1959. He and his 20th-century companions, calling themselves Time Masters, would continue to improve the Time Sphere's design as they traveled from one end of history to the other with many adventures in between.
At any given time, there were several operating spheres, any one of which could have ended up in the Space Museum of the 25th century for Booster to, um, borrow. Although Booster broke that first Time Sphere, he has since had the opportunity to use some of Hunter's other Time Spheres for other temporal journeys both with and without the Time Master, beginning in 1987's Booster Gold #13, and as recently as 2021's DC's Cybernetic Summer.
Though the story of the time-traveling globe doesn't end (or begin) there. As we will eventually learn, while Rip Hunter may have invented the Time Sphere, he certainly did not invent time travel. Or even spherical time machines.
As revealed in Booster Gold volume 2, #1,000,000 (2008), Rip Hunter is Booster Gold's son. Later issues of Time Masters: Vanishing Point will demonstrate that Rip traveled through time as a child with his father. That crates a paradox, since it's impossible that at some point in the future, Rip Hunter could have gone back in time to create the circumstances that led to his own birth.
But it's not impossible that at some point in the future, a super-intelligent alien from another planet could have traveled backwards in time and laid the groundwork for Booster to do so. That alien is Brainiac 5.
In addition to inventing the Force Field Belt and Legion Flight Ring that Booster liberated from the Space Museum, Brainiac 5 also worked with the 30th-century Time Institute, perfected the time-traveling Time Bubble that his fellow Legion of Super-Heroes would use to have time-travel adventures with Superman beginning with 1958's Adventure Comics #247.
Clearly, the Time Bubble precedes the Time Sphere. Since Brainiac 5's history is in no way connected to Michael Jon Carter's, it is no stretch of the imagination to speculate that Brainiac 5 or the Legion of Super-Heroes made trips through time that somehow created the impossible sequence of events that lead to Rip Hunter appearing to create the machine necessary for his own birth. Fortunately, Brainiac 5 also has the power to resolve such space-time paradoxes.
As seen in Time Masters Vanishing Point #3, Brainiac 5 has access to the uniquly powerful Miracle Machine, a device that turns imagination into reality. With a power like that, even the most difficult paradox can be untangled with a thought.
That panel makes it clear that time-traveling Rip Hunter knew Brainiac 5 from an early age, so it's probable that the future Time Master's time-machine design was influenced by the Legion of Super-Heroes' pioneering inventor. When a design works that well, why change it?
(Footnote: Amusingly, there is also a time-traveling globe from the future in 1951's Batman #67. Although the Batman of the 31st-century takes credit for inventing it, he wouldn't be the first person to steal a Time Sphere.)
Friday, July 7, 2023
Booster Gold makes only a small cameo in Millennium #4, and we only hear about him in Millennium #5 when we (and Mister Bones) eavesdrop on a conversation between siblings Jade and Obsidian.
Millennium #5, words by Steve Englehart, art by Joe Staton, Ian Gibson, Carl Gafford, Bob Lappan
It's not until Millennium #6 when we see our hero finally return to full-page action. Three pages of action, actually. And I have to say he puts on a pretty good showing for himself despite siding with the Manhunters.
Booster's rarely-seen Absorbing Field wins the day, temporarily incapacitating both Batman and a Green Lantern. Even if you are on the wrong side of this conflict, Booster, that's impressive.
And that's why this is one of My Favorite Pages.
Friday, October 15, 2021
You know most CBR.com listicles just annoy me, but every once in a while, they say something I agree with.
For example, take "DC Comics: 10 Sidekicks Who Need To Break Away From Their Mentor" by Derek Faraci.
8. Skeets Plays Second Fiddle To A Goofball
Of all the sidekicks in comics, Skeets may get the least respect. A super-intelligent robot that holds all of human history up to the 25th century in its databanks, Skeets works alongside Booster Gold to help the hero from the future become the greatest hero of today. But Skeets only shows up when Booster bothers to turn him on. When Booster was a member of the Justice League International, he boxed up his sidekick up and left him in storage, which is just plain rude. With its smarts, its lasers, and its sense of humor, Skeets is more than ready to branch out and do its own thing.
Yes! In Skeets' case, striking out on its own might even seem like *less* work.
If you're paying attention, DC: yes, I would buy a Skeets solo comic.
Friday, July 3, 2020
What makes a hero super? The super powers! From awesome strength to zero-to-sixty speed, great superpowers are the most useful tricks in every famous costumed crime-fighter's tool kit. Michael Jon Carter knew this, and that's why he started his career with high-tech goggles.
Energy blasts, impenetrable force fields, flight: Booster Gold's best known powers are also the ones that show up the best on action-oriented comic book panels. But Booster's arsenal contains more than just power gauntlets and powered tights. He's also got a fancy pair of glasses which, while less flashy, can be just as useful.
Booster's goggles have been a part of his costume from the very beginning. Using components he stole from the Space Museum in the 25th century, Booster and Skeets integrated the goggles into the hood of his power-suit and fueled them with the same "little power rods" that supplied energy to his other technological abilities, as detailed in Booster's very first chronicled adventure detailed in Booster Gold volume 1 #8.
Though their technology isn't traceable to any particular hero or villain, their powers were clearly inspired by the incredible range of abilities of a certain Man of Tomorrow's Kryptonian eyes.
Booster has used the goggles' infrared filters to help him defeat the mad bomber Mister Twister in Booster Gold #5 (1986) and infiltrate the 1000's waterfront stronghold in Booster Gold #12 (1987). The magnifying ability came in handy when the Justice League needed to find a weak point in the otherwise indestructible hull of the alien Klaarsh spaceship in Justice League Quarterly #7 (1992), and the telescopic function was useful when traveling into the Old West to help Jonah Hex bring the warped Hootkins Gang to justice in All-Star Western #20 (2013).
Super strength is great if you want to break through walls, but a hero always knows which walls can be broken safely. Knowledge is real power, and nothing is better at gathering information than high-tech magnifying infrared goggles, just like the pair Booster Gold wears.
Friday, May 8, 2020
What makes a hero super? The super powers! From awesome strength to zero-to-sixty speed, great superpowers are the most useful tricks in every famous costumed crime-fighter's tool kit. Michael Jon Carter knew this, and that's why he started his career with a telepathically-controlled flight ring.
As a student of history, Michael "Booster" Carter modeled his superhero persona on Superman. In addition to strength, invulnerability, and long-range energy beams, he'd also need to be able to fly. To that end, he stole a Legion of Super-Heroes Flight Ring, created by Brainiac 5 in the pages of Adventure Comics #329 (1965).
In its original design, the ring was a simple metal band that provided a telepathically-controlled anti-gravity effect for those Legionnaires who could not fly under their own power. They soon became standard issue equipment for all Legionnaires. Even Superboy had one, though he rarely had need of it except in those few cases where he lost his powers, such as the time he visited Earth's past and found it lit by a red sun.
(If you squint at the panel above, you can see a flight ring there on Superboy's hand in this panel from Adventure Comics #133, also in 1965. This is the first time Superboy wore a Flight Ring.)
Brainiac 5 wasn't content with having a ring that only allowed flight. He eventually gave the ring other abilities, including sending emergency distress signals. He also improved its appeal by converting it to a gold signet-style ring showing a raised letter "L" in the center (first appearance in Adventure Comics #347). That's how the ring looked when it found its way into Booster Gold's arsenal in Booster Gold #1 (1985), and that's more or less how it looked when Booster Gold joined the Justice League in Justice League #4 (1987) and escaped from a Bialyan prison in Justice League International #17 (1988).
Booster's ring was originally depicted with a letter from the Roman alphabet. However, it sometimes was seen showing Interlac, the "inter-galactic universal language of the 30th century" which first appeared in Adventure Comics #379 (1969). By Booster Gold volume 2 #1 (2007), Booster's ring had changed to the stylized "L" on a black background that had been in use since Legion of Super-Heroes #41 (1993).
How could one ring alter its appearance so much? Well, the Legion of Super-Heroes have a tendency for getting involved in reality-warping time travel shenanigans. In fact, that's how a Legion of Super-Heroes ring from the 30th century ended up in the 25th-century Space Museum in the first place.
When Booster's debut in the 20th century drew the attention of the Legion of Super-Heroes, Brainiac 5 realized he had to leave his own flight ring in 1985 for Booster to be able to steal it in 2462 (as seen in Booster Gold #6). Therefore, the ring was available for Booster Gold to steal only because he had already stolen it. (It's best not to think too hard about that.)
If it sounds like Booster Gold creator Dan Jurgens was making things up as he went along, he was. His original plan, as revealed in Booster Gold: The Big Fall, was that instead of stealing Brainiac 5's ring from the Space Museum, Booster would have stolen Superboy's rarely used original ring from the Superman Museum!
That plan was scuttled by the events of Crisis on Infinite Earths, which erased Superboy's adventures from history. Thus the original origin of Booster Gold's flight ring became just one more casualty of the universe-destroying Anti-Monitor. What a jerk.
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