Tags Matching: eclipso

Eclipso: the series.

Actually never got around to reading this one til the other night, though I had read the Eclipso: The Darkness Within crossover when it came out and thought it was pretty sweet. Just never had the time. Boy did I miss out, because this is some pretty great Suicide Squad style stuff here. Really makes me wish Keith Giffen had been given a better shot at his run on that title. There’s even art on a couple issues by original SS artist Luke McDonnell…

The gist of the story arc is that Eclipso has taken over an entire South American country, and it’s up to his arch-nemesis and former host Bruce Gordon and his fiance to convince the heroes of the DCU to stop him. But because it’s a sovereign nation, none of the big guns or the US government will help. Which of course leads him to every one’s favorite black ops mastermind, Amanda Waller. Along the way we get the new origins for Eclipso (The Darkness Within had taken him from generic super villain to ex-God of Vengeance), which include a skirmish with Sherlock Holmes. While not an actual Suicide Squad story, it might as well be, as along with the Wall we get regular appearances by notable Squad members Major Victory, Nightshade, and Nemesis, as well as characters who appeared in the book off and on like Manhunter and Peacemaker. Meanwhile a mysterious Stranger (yes that’s a hint) is collecting the black diamonds that Eclipso uses to spread his power through out the world…

It’s seriously one long 18 issue story, which alas fails to meet a satisfying conclusion. Everything feels rushed and it wraps up with a literal deus ex machina courtesy of the Spectre. Still, the journey is a good one, and it’s cool to see Giffen work in things from Eclipso stories past like his feud with the Phantom Stranger.

Recommended.

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I’m A Bit Disappointed In Us.

It was the 4th of July this weekend, and we let the entire weekend go by with out touching on a single patriotic comic. No Captain America, no Superman… not even an entry on the American Maid.

I don’t know if I’d go so far as to call us commies, but we kind of blew it.

So here, let me make amends…

How does this make amends? It’s not just the American flag backdrop, it’s because this issue was the first appearance of THE FORCE OF JULY~!

I know you’re saying “who” right now. There’s a reason for that: despite having an awesomely ridiculous name, The Force of July were essentially the DCU’s version of pro-wrestling jobbers, and existed primarily to get their asses handed to them every time out.

The only original member who really ever meant anything, let alone survived their Suicide Squad appearances, was Major Victory (aka the unconscious guy being held up on the above SS cover), who actually ended up IN the Squad for the remainder of the series before ending up one of the D-listers who were massacred to put over Eclipso as a major DC Universe villain in Eclipso #13.

Fortunately, you can’t keep a good cheesily awesome concept down, and during Infinite Crisis an all new version of the Force turned up in Battle For Bludhaven, this time using the name Freedom’s Ring (sadly, new versions of original members Mayflower and Sparkler would not appear. And by “sadly”, I mean “fortunately”).

They may look cooler, but Freedom’s Ring just doesn’t roll off the tongue the way Force of July does. You might say it doesn’t have the same “ring” to it…

In the end, the name change really didn’t do them any good, as the team continued their reign as the DCU’s government JOB Squad: the new Silent Majority and Lady Liberty didn’t even make it out of issue 2 alive, and the new Major Victory received a major league beating courtesy of his own severed arm when new team member (and Captain Atom’s lone notable super villain) Major Force went berserk and pulled it off of him like a chicken wing. Since then Major Victory has reappeared with a new arm, we’ve gone through 2 more Lady Liberty’s, and the team has been absorbed into a similar government team called First Strike, serving as opponents of the new Uncle Sam and the Freedom Fighters.

So yeah. Total D-list jobbers. But man. Force of July. What a great name.

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