Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The Shield: Who He Is, and How He Came to Be, III

And now the final segment of the origin of ... THE SHIELD!


When last we left the Shield's origin, Joe Higgins, having discovered the secret of the SHIELD formula, strapped himself down on the Table of Pain and Pleasure for 12 hours to become THE SHIELD.
Forget exploding planets and bats in the study. THIS is an origin panel, people.

With no one to witness it except his faithful sidekick, the Green Chinese Lamp, Joe Higgins transforms into THE SHIELD. Even more amazing, the fluoroscopic rays interact with the chemicals to dye his blank costume into an American flag pattern, to which he need only add stars.

What are the odds?

Joe tests his powers as the Shield using every-day objects you find around the house, such as....


The Flame Room
The Kodak Insta-matic Machine GunThe Crushy-Walled Room and International Shadows Project InstallationAnd, last but not least...
the World's Largest Open WindowNo doubt a souvenir of his Dad's stint in Cy Coleman's Defenestration Follies of 1940.

Now confident in his superpowerhood, the Shield reveals himself to J. Edgar Hoover by changing clothes in front of him. And, no, I will not show you the panels; this is a family blog.


This is followed by an extended sequence of setting a trap for bad guys, then beating the crap out of them and hanging them off flagpoles, in order to reach the Big Bad: Hans Fritz.

As previously mentioned, the action quotient in Shield stories is high, but the level of discourse is not. So when Fritz escapes via a trap door (inGENious!), the Shield has clearly not yet prepared himself with a signature saying (as I have).
"Hey!" Joe, you really are a stupid American swine.

So, Joe simply kicks in the trap door with his famous pointy-toes of justice, then goes skittering along the underground passageway looking for all the world like Penelope Pitstop running from the Hooded Claw:

Then the Shield captures Hans Fritz in one of the great comic book sequences of all time...


First of all, to get out of the passageway, Joe doesn't just remove the exit door with his superstrength. No, no. This is THE SHIELD we're talking about here. To the Shield, there's only one way to deal with such an obstacle:
If Geoff Johns does not at some point reveal that the Shield is related to Hal Jordan, it shall be a tragically missed opportunity.

Follows then the Shield's patented "running leap at a plane taking off" maneuver.
Washington trivia: During the '30s and '40s, there were entire neighborhoods where all the buildings were yellow, orange, and lime because no one could afford any other colors.

The villain, however, is unimpressed and says the Golden Age equivalent of, "So, hang on the plane; whatever, dude." Then the Shield pulls another Shieldtastic trick that ranks just below setting himself on fire and launching himself at an enemy ship:
Props to you, Joe.

Maybe somebody else has done that, but I've never seen it. And did they do it with their legs, while humping a nosecone and snarking? I think not. The Shield rocks, people.

Having captured the men who framed his father, Joe offers his on-going services to J. Edgar Hoover, who accepts, provided Joe passes his "examination". Ahem.
Subtext? What subtext?

And so was born.... THE SHIELD.

10 comments:

SallyP said...

The SHIELD and J. Edgar Hoover exchanged Christmas cards for YEARS!

I also love the way that the SHIELD runs, he always remembers to point his toes!

And yes, He has to be Hal's grandfather or uncle or SOMEthing. Using your head to crash into things HAS to be genetic.

Nightwing Wannabe said...

I have just one thing to say...and it isn't shantay, shantay, shantay.

With no one to witness it except his faithful sidekick, the Green Chinese Lamp...

I laughed my butt off when I read that line...I have no idea why...myabe because right before it I was looking at the picture and wondering just how the heck he strapped himself on to the table completely without any help...it would leave a free hand. Thank goodness for Green Chinese Lamp... ;)

elbichoemboscado said...

I disagree with the Nightwing Wannabe...

"And, last but not least...
The World's Largest Open Window"

is the funniest line i've ever read in a very long time. I have no idea why, too, but...

Instant Classic. Bwah-ha-ha-ha...

Steve Mitchell said...

DC should revive Secret Origins long enough to run your annotated Shield origin. Defenestration Follies of 1940 rang my bell!

Blockade Boy said...

I'm just waiting for Geoff John's version of the Shield's origin, wherein the "fluoroscopic rays" are brutally painful, causing the Shield to weep bitterly while moaning, "Why ME?!"

Oh, and the Green Chinese Lamp would conceal a bug from a shadowy, amoral government task force. (Like the Department of Motor Vehicles! ...I dunno.)

Anonymous said...

So if the disco lights had instead made a pattern like a Confederate flag, Joe would've said "Aw crap, I guess I have to destroy the federal government now. Fate has decreed it!"

This is a guy who plans his day with a bowl of Alpha-Bits.

Chance said...

The World's Largest Open Window looks out onto a cityscape that knows no perspective.

I imagine all the inhabitants are immune to vertigo.

Phillip said...

Well, the color scheme has already made them nauseous, so maybe they don't notice the vertigo...

rap said...

This gives a whole new meaning to the term "continuity implant."

Shon said...

I consider everyone ought to browse on it.
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