DAY OF VENGEANCE No. 4
Chapter Four: "Monkey Business"
|Associate Editor:||Michael Wright|
At the home of Lori Zechlin, [Detective Chimp] recounts his personal history for Lori's confused yet patient paternal unit while they await Lori's return. Captured in the jungles of Africa, the chimp was merely a wild animal, taken by an animal trainer for a choreographed stage show. Business was good until Bobo, as he was then called, ventured with Rex the Wonder Dog to Florida's Fountain of Youth, whereupon drinking from the fountain Bobo gained a mind-expansion, including the ability to talk to most animals, including humans. He became a real detective instead of a pretend one, but failing in that enterprise owing to impecuniousness, he took to drinking, and hadn't stopped since.
But now he's drying out, because, see, he has to save the world, but they need Lori Zechlin to do it. Just as her father is about to throw them out, [Nightshade] and Detective Chimp fall into a trance as they connect up with [Enchantress's] mystical convergence spell feeding Captain Marvel, who, by the way, is whooping the Spectre, causing fall-out all over the universe.
Unfortunately, the power being channeled by Enchantress has driven her mad, and she breaks the link to Marvel, diverting the magical energies to herself and turning on her team. As the mystics sending their magic begin to withdraw their support, [Blue Devil] lays Enchantress out with a haymaker. Unfortunately, Captain Marvel's dwindling power has allowed the Spectre to pull the Trident of Lucifer from Eclipso's gut so that they may both make their escape.
A moment later, Detective Chimp and Nightshade arrive from Dayton with Lori Zechlin in tow, Lori being otherwise known as [Black Alice], "quite possibly the most powerful teenager in this or any universe."
Detective Chimp: It didn't work out. I was great at solving cases, and hiring a chimp detective was a big novelty, at first. But with no legal standing as a person, much less a U.S. citizen, I couldn't enforce deadbeat clients to pay their bills.
Ragman: You still alive, Jim?
Nightmaster: I think so. Hurts too much to be dead.
Ragman: Am I?
Black Alice: Oh, my—! Dad, did you know there's a frozen monkey on the couch? And a hooker?
Nightmaster: We need to retreat and work out a strategy to fight her!
Enchantress: Oh, good. Another pig for my cookout.
Blue Devil: Yeah, Jimmy, that's one way to go. But I was thinking we'd try another way (he punches the Enchantress hard enough to knock her out). I'm sure your plan was good too, boss.
Blue Devil proves for the second time in this series that he's not afraid to hit a girl when the situation demands it.
I loved this scene, I really did. It was almost as though Bill Willingham wrote this piece just for me. It's similar, in a way, to the scene in [DAY OF JUDGMENT No. 4] in which Blue Devil is instrumental in defeating Nebiros owing to his penchant for delivering vicious uppercuts. DAY OF JUDGMENT was sort of silly in that it seemed a lot of trouble for Faust to go through resurrecting the Blue Devil just for his talents in brute force, but in any case, it was a fun scene. Willingham's scene here, however, is much awesomer.
The way that the Blue Devil patiently stalks up to the Enchantress and then, while everybody else is freaking out, knocks the stuffing out of her, was great characterization, and pretty true to the character as he was written back in the original series (in the sense that he could see a simple solution when others were inclined to overcomplicate things).
This installment of DAY OF VENGEANCE is, all in all, pretty great if you ask me. This is when you realize that Bill Willingham has the goods to overcome a rather dubious premise to deliver some rather exciting action and well-laid twists.
Plus, Detective Chimp is awesome.
This page last updated 30 September 2007.
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