ejne7: Comic art illustration of a Latina cop (Default)
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Back when I was spamming the place with Extreme Justice scans, a commenter named as one of several justifiable gripes about EJ the fact that it had Blue Beetle and Captain Atom as coffee-drinking buddies, when prior canon often had them at one another's throats.

In issue #20 (Oct '88) of Captain Atom, which I got for 40p at Kapow last weekend, I think I've found the solution.





We begin our tale at the JLI embassy, where Booster Gold is also seethingly jealous of perplexed by this buddy-buddy dynamic between Cap and Ted.


I like how Scott's body language is all "Truthfully Booster I could not care less."

The nominal plot of the issue has Cap trying to take down a villainous army general who framed him in his origin-story court martial board, and who is now stockpiling super weapons for an evil scheme. To defeat him Cap needs the help of Ted, whose R&D company said villain recently acquired. (Ted was rattling through companies like nobody's business at this point.) Ted is less than keen, to begin with:


Yep. It's what Cap's trying to tell him. And the "covert casebook" is full of charming histories of Cap and Dan's knockabout heroic exploits.

BUT - there is a twist in the tale. See if you can guess what it is from some snippets from the casebook:


Anyone else surprised to learn that it was Dan, rather than Ted, who pioneered the Bug? (Anyone else unconvinced "acquaintance" is spelled that way?) Or how about this:



Something a little... derivative about that dialogue? Well, if you thought it was suspect, you're more astute a reader than Ted, who fails to realize that the entire casebook is, in fact, a total fabrication by Nate, designed to make Ted like him.

But what a fabrication it is:



Yep. Captain Atom essentially *wrote self-insertion fanfic about himself being best pals with Dan* so that Ted would be his friend. And Ted falls for it hook, line, and sinker.




But with Ted on board Cap's able to bring down his villain, save the day, and wind things up with some totally fraudulent buddy-bonding.



Ted, I'd stick with Booster if I were you. You don't see Nate tending Dan's grave until the end of time.
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