What happened in comics this week? Hughie met some super-losers, S.H.I.E.L.D. went old-school, and Buffy shacked up with an old friend. It's Need More Dazzler! This one goes out to you, Ms. Summers.
The Boys 41 (Dynamite)
Writer: Garth Ennis
Art: Darick Robertson
In Part Two of "The Innocents," a morbidly obese superhero named Bobby Badoing gets his "wee-wee stick" jammed under a fold of fat. His teammates must help their corpulent comrade, and Bobby ends up pissing in their faces. Yes, Garth Ennis has brought his "lovable buffoon" archetype to The Boys, and after the G-Men and Herogasm, it's refreshing to meet Super Duper, a saccharinely sincere group of supes who suck at their job. This gang of superzeroes (sorry) would fit right in with Arseface from Preacher, Mr. Bumpo from Punisher, and almost everyone from Hitman.
I'm sensing that Super Duper is The Boys' universe's ersatz Legion of Superheroes (Bobby = Bouncing Boy, Stool Shadow = Shadow Lass, Black Hole = Matter-Eater Lad). Super Duper's den mother, Auntie Sis, is a protagonist with potential. She has a chipper mien but knows how small potatoes her band of do-gooders is. She realizes that the Seven and Vought American run the show and tries to stay off the radar as much as possible. She's browbeaten and pragmatic – these are the makings of a totally cheer-worthy hero down the road.
Speaking of heroes and analogies to other Ennis titles, Butcher's bound for his "Cassidy moment" any day now. Butcher's lost his luster a while ago – he's too smug, unhinged, and secretive to relate to anymore. It's going to be fun to see his veneer of sanity shatter all over Hughie's face.
S.H.I.E.L.D. 1 (Marvel)
Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Art: Dustin Weaver
The first issue of S.H.I.E.L.D. introduces the newest granddaddy of all retcons – S.H.I.E.L.D. is a secret society of famous geniuses that has existed since time immemorial, defending the Earth from interstellar threats ranging from Galactus to the Brood. It's sleek storytelling filled with Easter eggs to fans (Apocalypse fighting alongside Imhotep!), and the script offers a neat purview of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s battles throughout history. As for the main plot, a mysterious man named Leonid joins the S.H.I.E.L.D. elders under ancient Rome, his superpowered father "the Night Machine" starts attacking everyone, and Tony Stark and Reed Richard's grandfathers (?) show up to stop him. It's pretty slim for an introduction but has the makings of a fun ride, granted the plot doesn't collapse under its own self-importance.
Buffy The Vampire Slayer 34 (Dark Horse)
Writer: Brad Metzler
Art: Georges Jeanty
So now that we know Twilight's identity, what's in store for Buffy? Raunchy, earth-shattering sex. Literally. The jury's still out on this issue. On one hand, I like the overall luridness of the plot, Buffy's yin to Angel's yang, and the great cosmic metaphysics tying the slayers to the vampires. On the other hand, the sight of Angel and Buffy lambadaing naked in the stratosphere seems way out of place in the grand schema of all things Buffy. I mean, Buffy's always had a supernatural, apocalyptic vibe, but we're getting into some borderline Zardoz territory here. Reality-warping sex is a risky play - this could be a watershed moment or a groan-worthy speedbump in the Buffy mythos.