"The Moon's a Balloon"

Writer/Co-Creator: Dan Mishkin
Penciller: Alan Kupperberg
Inker: Bill Collins
Letterer: Bob Lappan
Colorist: Michele Wolfman
Editor: Alan Gold


An odd, orange-skinned man running crazily about with a razor blade interrupts [Blue Devil] and [Sharon] as they stroll through the park. After a tussle, the Blue Devil witnesses the man rise up as though lighter than air, only to plummet back to the earth, and subsequently escape. The man, it seems, has some sort of power over balloons, and makes a friend in a young balloon animal shaper who attempts to remove the man's heavy boots. Doctor Klyburn from [S.T.A.R.] shows up and enlists Blue Devil in taking the orange guy into custody, but when caught, Dan opts to help him remove the boots. The man immediately begins sinking into the earth, but stops when he is able to inflate himself like a balloon and rejoin the mother ship to return to the stars.


Blue Devil: *Hoosh* He caught me off guard. But I can't let someone get away with just kicking the tar out of me! No, sir, not me! I'm so smart, I always give 'em a chance to do it again!

Officer Bert Porelli: You?! Look, buddy, I saw your movie an' all, but this is real life!
Blue Devil: And I've got real super-powers! Don't you read the papers?

Blue Devil: Are you nuts? There's too many people around to start shooting! And anyway--the man's a craze-o, not a crook! You just try to keep everybody calm while I go rescue those kids...and then I'll catch up with the bald-headed banana cake!
Officer Porelli: Oh, yeah? How's jumpin' on the carousel gonna save the kids?!
Blue Devil: Actually, I'm only using it to get enough momentum so I can catch the ferris wheel express! Up one more car--and I ought to be able--to bring Jack and Jill back down the hill...without breaking anybody's crown! Though you may all break into applause if you'd like!

Bryan Buck: I figure that the problem is those boots he's wearing. Take 'em off--and he gets to float free like he wants to!
Blue Devil: You might be on to something, kid! It sure makes more sense than what Doc Klyburn was saying! Is this a latch over here?
Bryan: Yeah, but be careful! Did I tell you about how it gave me a-- (Blue Devil is electrocuted) --shock?
Blue Devil: YEOOWW! *Ahem* Anything else you forgot to warn me about?

Doctor Klyburn: It wasn't very smart, I guess, to trap him in the boots--but his gravity effect was destroying our lab! We assumed...we assumed we were helping him!
Blue Devil: Don't blame yourself, Jenette! The alien couldn't explain himself--and you had to make an on-the-spot decision! Anyhow, it all turned out okay in the end.
Sharon: Except for losing our lunch reservations.



In the letter column, Alan Gold claims this to be his last issue as editor of Blue Devil. This isn't quite true as it would turn out, though this gets a bit confusing. Barbara Randall did the letter columns for the next three, the final three, issues. Alan and Dan Mishkin would switch roles for [BLUE DEVIL No. 29]--that is, Dan edited and Alan wrote. Dan is credited as the "Story Editor". Then Alan's name would be attached as editor to the double-sized [BLUE DEVIL No. 30]. Barb Randall, it seems, functioned wholly as editor of the final issue, and received the difficult duty of announcing the title's cancellation in the thirtieth. This issue comes in a long line of almost wholly self-contained and utterly silly Blue Devil stories. The last really crucial continuity-affecting semi-straight issue was probably issue 18 or 19, and Alan had been talking up for some time in the letters column a return to a more serious, story-arc-based take on the character beginning with the thirtieth issue. He was really excited about what he, Cohn, and Mishkin had cooked up. Sadly, these stories were never to see the light of day. In the letter column to [BLUE DEVIL No. 31] Barb Randall actually makes reference to finished pages done by Denys Cowan for the new story arc. It's regrettable that those have been lost. So clearly, I think, the cancellation came as a surprise to everybody.

This issue features the winner of the "Why I ought to be in Blue Devil" Contest. The letters column reproduces his winning essay submission, in which he accurately points out that the Blue Devil has no skill with balloon animals and could use a sidekick, like the author, who can shape balloons to his liking. This gave Dan Mishkin the germ of an idea for the plot of this issue, and the winner actually features in a good portion of it as a young man who befriends the misunderstood alien.

By the way, as far as I can tell BLUE DEVIL No. 28 is the last appearance of Jenet Klyburn in DC Comics.

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