Wednesday, October 31, 2007

D-List Monsters of Super-Hero Land: Anthony Lupus, Part Three

To recap, Bruce Wayne is in Alaska, with the mission of bringing back known werewolf Anthony Lups, so he can donate bone marrow to his sick niece. Wayne and his supposedly rugged EPA pal, "Clayton", locate Lupus' remote cabin, but nobody's home. So the EPA guy basically decides to just take over th' dang place. Hey, what do you expect? He's from a government agency! Eminent domain, baby! Also, he has some troops he'd like to quarter there...

Oh yeah, and then Lupus finally shows back up, in pog form monster mode. And he's miffed.


Awright, Seasoned Professional Gerry Conway, you're asking me to believe Batman is frozen with startlement, just because a werewolf barges into the room? I'm sorry, but even for the Pre-Crisis Batman -- y'know, the one who acted more like a swashbuckling hero and less like a weirdly-omniscient Green Beret? -- that's a little hard to take. The guy battles space aliens on a daily basis alongside the Justice League, and he takes one gander at a werewolf and he's all aghast? Hell, why not just go ahead and dialog him like a society matron in a Marx Brothers film? ("Oh, this is positively scandalous--!")

Thankfully, Batman snaps out of it, and applies a little fire to the situation...


...And Lupus takes a dive head-first into the snow, in a bit of Vaudevillian slapstick one doesn't usually see in werewolves. Outside of "Scooby-Doo" cartoons, that is.

Clayton can't help, because he's fixated by Bruce's ass.... which Bruce has been booty-poppin' with metronome-like regularity throughout their life-and-death struggle. I'd say he was doing it unintentionally, except for all his rhythmic grunting. UGHN! Ugh-ugh ,UGHN! UGHN!

Conway's relentlessly clunky prose struggles to impart suspense, as it declares that the hero has achieved "a kind of safety." (Similarly, a Gerry Conway story gives the reader a kind of entertainment.)

And now that we've entered the tale's final act, I suppose there's no more homoerotic subtext to be gleaned from--


Of course, I may be mistaken.

And then the formerly "top" dog, Clayton, scrams out of there in a closeted gay panic.


I guess Bruce shouldn't have crooned "Bess, You Is My Woman Now" to Clayton when he was just starting to wake up.

Alone at last, Bruce indulges in some pretentious moralizing... Conway Style!


Wait, wait, wait... so he's saying the EPA guy is like a werewolf, because he refuses to believe in werewolves... no, wait, he's saying the EPA guy is like Lupus because the EPA guy doesn't want to believe in the supernatural, and Lupus doesn't want to... not stop killing endangered species? Wait, what? No, that can't be it. Let's see, he's saying that Doctor Thirteen, I mean, "Clayton", won't accept evidence of the paranormal, even when it tries to strangle him to death, and Lupus won't accept evidence... that he shouldn't kill endangered species? Maybe? Aaaagh! My head hurts.

At least, with Clayton out of the way, Bruce feels free to dress up as outrageously as he wants!


Just in case he ever met another werewolf? I'm boggled!

Just think how much "contingency plan" crap must be cluttering up the Batcave! Hell, by rights, the Batmobile should be about the size of a Greyhound bus. "Robin! Run to the Bat-Bus and see if you can find that bottle of mummy repellent! The powder, not the liquid! ...No, the one for Aztec mummies--!"

After some missteps, like capturing an actual wolf in that goofy net, Batman finally ends up in a life-or-death struggle with Lupus, atop the Alaskan pipeline, because it's topical. And their battle is just loaded with juicy Conway narration! ...That's "juicy" like a fart, by the way. I'll give you a few highlights, but you really ought to read the whole page if you have time.


This comic came out the same year that as the song "Leather and Lace." Coincidence? I think not.


Meh. That's not arbitrary enough, Seasoned Professional Gerry Conway! A truly arbitrary name would be something like "Vice-Admiral Cheddarballs Clambake-Smythe" or "the Scrunchinator" or "HoboCorp."

But whatever you want to call it, Batman prevails, and he finally gets Lupus into that net.


When you've been super-heroing as long as The Blankity-Blank Batman, you can make an outrageous promise like that without even cracking a smile. Keep hope alive, Lupus, but I can guarantee that Batman's going to spend about as much time working on a cure for you condition, as Superman does, concocting a way to get Mon-El out of the Phantom Zone. In other words, don't throw away the tattered pants just yet.

Tomorrow: Poison Ivy, a tree monster, and a sun hat so big, it would freak out Jervis Tetch.


Anonymous said...

No, no. Y'see, Lupus has closed his mind to...not being a werewolf, maybe. And Clayton has closed his mind to being rational. No, wait. Clayton is a bureaucrat, while Fear leads to Anger, and, that was something else.

No, that one was good. Clayton is afraid. Fear leads to Anger. Anger leads to the Dark Side. The full moon is visible on the Dark Side. Therefore Clayton is a werewolf. Just like Lupus. Ta-da!

Interestingly, Batman has a fifty pound metal net that he carries around just in case, but Professor Milo's Werewolf-B-Gon(TM)? Nah, that'd be expensive and unweildy.

Also of interest is Brucie's hair in that Thoughtapalooza panel. Wow.

Jon the Intergalactic Gladiator said...

Of course Batman has mummy repellent, he also has shark repellant Bat Spray.

Bill S. said...

Vice-Admiral Cheddarballs Clambake-Smythe sounds like one of the 700 Hoboes. I had to check to make sure it wasn't!

You can fly away from the werewolf, but you can't fly away from your feelings, Clayton!

Scipio said...

"Your humanity is all the separates you from the beasts"?

Um ... isn't that true of everyone?

Jeremy Rizza said...

Anonymous: Ah, now it all makes sense!

Jon: I thought that was only on Earth-TV.

Bill S.: Was that an "Arrested Development" reference? Because I kind of love you for it.

Scipio: It's Conway Logic, Scip. Try not to think about it too hard, or you'll go bonkers.

Anonymous said...

A Conway script is like some weird experiment in writing each panel totally without the context of any other panel.

Anonymous said...

D-List, I think not! Batman 255 is a classic, atleast by us monster fans.