Mind Capsules – Aquaman #37 and Doc Savage Special 2014

Aquaman #37
Aquaman #37

Writer – Jeff Parker
Artist – Paul Pelletier
Inker – Sean Parsons
Colours – Rain Beredo

The Maelstrom continues as Aquaman must face Gorilla Grodd for the next piece of the puzzle to finding his long-lost mother.  Jeff Parker’s latest storyline is turning out to be quite interesting as he reveals the ties between Gorilla City and Atlantis.  Turns out that the city was actually inhabited by Atlanteans long ago who kept apes for servants and then after years of servitude, would overthrow their masters with the help of Grodd.  At least so Grodd tells Aquaman, and why should he lie?  Grodd has always been one of the most fascinating characters in the DC Universe no matter what time period he finds himself in, and to tie him to our aquatic hero is a great move as it gives him some background and characterization as well as adds another foe to Aquaman’s rogues gallery.  Parker also gives us a little history lesson about the gorillas and how they used to consume the brains of their leaders and how Grodd took it too far as he started to consume the brains of anyone whom he chose, thereby enhancing his psychic powers more than any other gorilla.  The mystery of Atlantis and the magical gates deepens, not to mention Atlanna who seemed to have quite the elaborate plan in place to make her escape, though just what her ultimate goal was and where she ended up still remain to be seen.  With every passing issue, this book continues to get better and better and far more exciting and it is one of the few DC books that has that classic sense of adventure.  The best part is, it leaves you wanting more and you cannot get any better than that.

4 out of 5

Doc Savage Special 2014
Doc Savage Special 2014

Writer – David F. Walker
Artist – Kewber Baal
Colours – Kelsey Shannon

For something a little different, Pat Savage headlines the latest issue of Doc Savage, which is also just a one-off.  It sees our heroine taking on the job of babysitting a little girl as a favour for her cousin, but it is no easy job as she is constantly faced with people who are looking to kidnap the kid.  For a ‘Special,’ one would expect a fairly good story with some exceptional art, especially in this day and age.  Instead, this just feels like one of those prestige format books that Marvel or DC would release in the 1990s in terms of quality.  It was no better, yet thankfully, no worse than what Dynamite is currently doing with the character but it does not feel like it was worth the price tag that they were charging for it.  It was a fine story, and it was enjoyable for the most part.  It was a little strange that Pat could not find a shirt to change into at some point despite what was going on instead of wearing the torn up rag that she sported for much of the book.  But when most of your audience is male, it makes sense to not have her do so it would seem.  The main problem lies in the fact that the cover was incredibly enticing, promising what looked to be a grand, pulp adventure like Doc used to have and instead all we received was a story that could you could see in any average ongoing title.  Simply put, Dynamite and the creators had a chance to do something special for their ‘Special,’ and while it was good to see Pat in a solo tale, it was not good enough.

3 out of 5

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