Friday, September 02, 2016

Taking Head Week #7: CAW and the Unsatisfying Conclusion

So the Hawks have rescued the Head McGuffin and Miss Sparklejuice from obscurity (and CAW) and are heading to return them to the Nine Unknowns, the people irresponsible enough and lazy enough to have lost them two thousand years and never looked for them or made replacements.  Great idea.

"Aren't we tandomly wonderful?!"  
The Hawks are totally That Couple You Hate On Facebook

The hidden sanctuary of the Nine Unknowns, unhidden by the Hawks' portable absorbascon.  

Wow. There actually are nine of them.  That's a level of fidelity I wasn't expecting in a Hawkstory.

First of all, the Hawks are NOT humans.  Second of all they are in mid-air; so they haven't set foot anywhere yet.  Third, what the HECK are you wearing?!  

Why not just take them to the Midway museum? 
They'd be broken within a week.

The Nine Unknowns take the Hawks on a tour of their sanctuary, because, although nameless like EVERYONE else in this story, they are still polite hosts, which is impressive since they haven't had any guests in 50 years.

Hey, that means... someone visited them in 1914. Any guesses?  A young Sonny Blandish?  Arne Saknussen? Vandal Savage? Enemy Ace?  Yeah; probably Enemy Ace.  Hans got around.

The spinning indic-arrow at the left of the machine really makes this panel.  Also, I have zero doubt that there's almost always strange radiation in Hawkgirl's body, just on principle.

The Hawks are so constantly afflicted with tingling sensations for some reason or other, that they don't even think twice about it anymore.  All those special pleasure-enhancing lubricants, no doubt.

Figuring that the radiation was just CAW's way of trying to find the sanctuary, the Nine Unknowns (or at least The One Unknown Who Talks A Lot) turns on the sonic shower and purges the Hawks of the strange radiation.  

It's a lot like the Decontamination Room of Sexiness on Enterprise, isn't it?

It's beneath the GANGES?!  Um, yeah.  No, thanks. NO treasure is worth going into the Ganges River.

As the now radiation-free Hawks return to Midway City, they are tailed by an evil limo.

Why would you need to tag the Hawks with special radiation to track them? Is there anyone easier to spot on earth?!?

And who is IN that evil limo? Why, the leaders of CAW:
Shadrach, Mishach, and Abednego.

Uh-oh, they have the power of serialocution. That's dangerous.

That's some multicultural WORLD evil, right there.  A fedora, a fez, AND a turban. I'd be more impressed if I didn't know Jervis Tetch could kill these guys in 60 seconds.

Their back-up plan is a pretty clever fake-out, actually, The REAL target (um, currently) is the portable absorbascon Hawkgirl is carrying, which can tell them anything damn thing the plot requires. 

Which is WAY more useful than a Universal Death Ray, 
by the way.  What are going to do with a ray that kills everybody?  

Is this the point where I mention that the absorbascon SITS IN THE HAWK'S OFFICE at the museum all day and could be stolen easily?  No. No, it is not.

So Manny, Moe, and Jack press the button that should kill the Hawks and...nothing happens. Because of course the Hawks have been purged of the offending radiation.

"Next time, Gadget!"

What an impossibly byzantine plot.  No wonder CAW hasn't taken over the world.  More like the Criminal Alliance of Frustrated Impotence, if you ask me.

I still love CAW, though, because they are true villains and not mere crooks.  Real crooks would just have shot the Hawks during one of their frequent, obvious fly-bys and THEN gone after the Head McGuffin and Miss Sparklejuice.  

That's why the Hawks don't live in Gotham.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Talking Head Week #5: One Night in Bangkok

In search of the solar lamp to power the talking head, in flies Hawkgirl to Bangkok (Oriental setting), guided by the Absorbascon (which I imagine now using the voice of Murray Head).

But aren't we all guided by the Absorbascon, in some way...?

Unlike Hawkman, she beats the CAW men to the target.  Why? 

"We'll never make it in time to meet Dad & Daphne at Cafe Nervosa!"

Because pesky golden-skinned natives are slowing down the CAW men, who are oh-so-peeved that their schedules (pronounced in the British manner) are thrown off, because these NATIVES have the nerve to have a different culture with different priorities, such as protecting their territory.  Savages!

"You know, I was SO disappointed we didn't get the Montmarte assignment, 
I hear you can pick up ancient talking bronze heads at the Marche Des Puces for a song!"

"NILES! Will you kindly concentrate? You almost missed one."

Why, it's all Frasier and Niles can do to pick them off with their Wonder Weapons (tm).  How TEDIOUS crime can be.

Meanwhile, Hawkgirl literally drops into the monastery from the sky and says "Give me the Ancient Thingy!" To which the monks reply, not, as one might expect, "YAAH WTF A TALKING BIRDWOMAN WITH BIG EARRINGS!?!?", but rather, "No. Bugger off."  All that meditation makes you a cool customer, you know.

"Pinioned princess"? *snort*!

Note also that the Lamp now has acquired a name: "Deva". It's pretty clear; the writers make this stuff up AS the panels are being drawn, I'm convinced.  Because otherwise they would notice stuff like Punjab not having a name or any clear connection to anything other than his role as Exposition Fairy or the fact that the lamp we've been talking about throughout the story suddenly has a name, while the Taking Head (which really SHOULD have a name) does not.  That's the equivalent of "this is my computer. which I call 'my computer'.  And this is its battery, which I call Miss Sparklejuice."

Speaking of Miss Sparklejuice, can you think of any female hero in comics LESS appropriate to call 'princess' than friggin' Hawkgirl, who wears a caestus and wields a mace?  More like a broad-winged broad, if ya ask me.

So our 'pinioned princess' does the heroic thing to get the Deva Lamp: she lies.

Gotta hand it to the writers, though, for knowing about stupas and Gautama before there was an internet.  Maybe they used the Absorbascon.

"Of course I trust you, Winged Woman. You're white and have the creepy unnatural eyes of an avian predator, much like the T-1000."

Hawkgirl bullshits her way to finding the Monk's Lost Ancient Thingy; she knows where it is because the Absorbascon tells her, not because of the lamp.  She just deceives the superstitious simpleton of a monk. Which is technically much nicer than stealing the damned thing, and legal.

Semi-dickish.  But still legal.

You'd think with a sci-fi device that can tell them where any lost ancient thingy is located, the Halls would be MUCH more famous archaeologists than they are.  I think they just use it to replace all the ancient weaponry they break or upgrade in every story.  Or maybe there's a conspiracy against them lead by Zahi Hawass. Do NOT trust that guy.

Apparently, in Bangkok you'll find a God in every golden cloister.

"Ha, gullible monk, satisfied to tears with your pointless reliquaries, while I hold the power of the sun in my hand! You are MINE, Miss Sparklejuice!"

Meanwhile, Frasier and Niles take a practical (and wholly dickish) approach to Lost Ancient Thingy acquisition:

"Ooo, good POINT, Fraiser!  The Crane Boys will solve this mystery yet!"

Sigh, "This protonic amplifier will blast her out of existence!"  And NOT the Deva Lamp? Or will it just fall to the ground and shatter into a thousand pieces?  Tsk. Boys and their Wonder Weapons!  This is why CAW can't have nice things.

Naturally, since a CAW man just said she can't possibly avoid the protonic amplifier beam, Hawgirl avoids the protonic amplifier beam.  The Absorbascon, apparently, has an anti-CAW-trap app that warns her just in time.  'In - three - hundred - feet, take a - starboard turn."

That's it; from now on my iPhone is now called a 'portable Absorbascon'.  

Much like Google maps, however, information from the portable absobascon takes too long to unscramble.  So Hawkgirl puts on her tricked out caestus.

"Okay, boys; wait'll you feel my pankrationic amplifier!"

The...the Humanliminator? FINE, Hawkwriters, fine. YOU WIN.

Having used her sci-tech caestus to detect the CAW men, Hawkgirl flies straight into a giant now-invisible tree at 60 mph, snaps her neck, and dies, while her uncaring port'absorbascon intones "you made a -wrong - turn back there."

No, not really. That's what SHOULD have happened. Or Hawkgirl should have used the nasty spikes on her science-caestus to pull fatal holes in the CAW men's face. Instead she just tosses Niles around like a ragdoll and whacks his head against a nearby tree at 60mph.  

Niles; less crowing, more shooting.

"Oh! This isn't like Maris's judo class at ALL!"

It bears repeating: Hawkgirl is always a bad-ass and will **** you up.

90% of CAW's budget goes to either R&D or goon elocution classes.

Odd. That Wonder Weapon seems to have had no effect on Hawkgirl at all.  I mean unless it's a Grapevine Gun that makes you do line-dances uncontrollably.  Wave 'em in the air like ya just don't care, 'princess'!

Regardless, it doesn't stop Hawkgirl from zokking Frasier.

ZOK is the sound of Hawkgirl kicking your ass, btw.

Hm. Is there perhaps more to the Grapevine Gun than we realize...? We shall see.