Saturday, November 26, 2016

...Something in the Water.

Last issue, Jaime went up against magic in the form of Eclipso, and may have made a new (girl)friend in the form of Traci 13! Where do you go from there? Weather! John Rogers and Rafael Albuquerque are back with issue #17 and a story called "...Something in the Water".

A vicious storm is hitting the resort town of Vista Verde, luckily Blue Beetle is on the scene to lend a hand! As he rescues a mother and her young son, the scarab informs Jaime that there are 422 more lives to save. It also detects dimension-shifted molecules in the water...Reach technology! Jaime gets the mother and child to safety, and suggests they seek shelter in a nearby hotel. The boy asks if Blue Beetle is going to "fight the giant naked bad man"...wait! What the what? Just then, a giant naked bad man shows up and smashes a building!

Back in El Paso, Paco tells a shocked Brenda about Jaime kissing Traci 13! Brenda asks if Paco thinks it's serious, while he asks if she's jealous? Either way, nothing's happening at the moment beyond the teens IM'ing each other...Traci is in Italy hunting a vampire!

The giant naked bad man (that makes me laugh every time!) reveals himself to be Typhoon, the Soul of the Storm! As in Firestorm villain Typhoon. And he's not all bad...he actually likes Jaime, he's impressed by the fact that Blue Beetle tried to talk to him first. Jaime wonders what he meant by first a second too long, and that's when Typhoon knocks him for a loop! 

He gets an update from Nadia back at the Beetle-Cave letting him know that Typhoon is a villain for hire who controls the weather...not exactly news as Blue Beetle is currently fighting to stay in flight in the midst of hurricane force winds. The scarab suggests a quick's been watching the X-Games. Suddenly Jaime is surfing the sky and getting in several shots against the giant naked bad man. Unfortunately, it just ticks off Typhoon and he turns the brunt of his power against the helpless people of Vista Verde. Jaime rushes to save them. It's a valiant effort, but not entirely successful.

Carrying the body of a dead boy into a nearby hotel, Blue Beetle demands to know why the manager turned people away, denied them shelter? The manager says his only responsibility is to the guests of the hotel. Jaime is about to deck him, when he starts thinking like Ted Kord. He calls back to the Beetle-Cave to track down the wealthy owner of a nearby oil rig. They patch him through and he informs the owner of the rig that Typhoon, David Drake, will destroy the oil rigs if he doesnt stop him first...but he can't until knows the innocent people are safe. Almost immediately the front desk phone rings, the hotel has a new owner...and the people Jaime is trying to save have been promised rooms, in fact, they've been promised all 5 of the top floors! Back at the Batcave, Bruce Wayne tells Robin he knows Blue Beetle lied about Typhoon targeting the oil rig, but he actually seems happy about it. 

Satisfied everyone is safe, Jaime heads back to finish the fight with Typhoon! Blue Beetle lures Typhoon offshore, out into the ocean. The villain is more than happy to oblige, pointing out that being out at sea will only make him stronger! 

As they approach the Wayne oil rig, Typhoon tries to blast Blue Beetle out of the sky, but misses, hitting the rig instead! Spattered with oil the villain is undeterred...until Jaime sets it, and Typhoon, on fire! The only way out is for Typhoon to power down his storm, giving Blue Beetle the win! 

It's a bit of a hollow victory though. At home Jaime's father tries to tell his son he's proud of him, but all Jaime can think of are the people he wasn't able to save. His father reassures him though that he did, and is doing, the right thing. He can't say it won't happen again, because it probably will, but his family will always tell him that he's a good man!

That was a great issue! Full of ups and downs! Jaime channeling Ted to outsmart Bruce/Batman? Brilliant! Taking down Typhoon with fire? Cool! A hero faced with the fact that he can't save everyone? Gut wrenching, heartbreaking, real! Thanks to Giffen and Rogers writing (and Hamner and Albuquerque's art of course) I'm liking Jaime more and more with every issue!

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