Wednesday, January 20, 2021

L.E.G.I.O.N. '94 #65

L.E.G.I.O.N. '94 #65 (April 1994)
title: "Bad Medicine"
writer: Tom Peter
penciler: Arnie Jorgensen
inker: James Pascoe
colors: Gene D'Angelo
letters: Gasper Saladino
editor: Dan Raspier
cover: Barry Kitson

Recap: When Stealth observed Vril Dox with their child and witnessed the baby speaking like an adult, she assumed that Dox was responsible. After discovering that Bek stowed away about their ship, Marij'n was furious that he ruined her romantic trip with Comet. She became even more furious when Comet seemed to take the development in stride and made her anger clear by kissing Bek in front of him. Lady Quark was dispatched by Dox to retrieve Bek but got attacked by a powerful duplicate of herself. The being appeared to kill Lady Quark and leave her body floating in space as it departed for Ith'kaa to complete her mission. She arrived and demanded Bek's return. Although they agreed, she lost patience with how slowly they were moving and ended up in battle with Comet, which appeared to end in his death in a cave-in.

The child eventually convinced Stealth that his father was not responsible for his intelligence, at least not through any sort of experimentation. Although he felt free to begin speaking at his normal level around his mother, the child continued to hide his intelligence from the rest of L.E.G.I.O.N. 

The core team was dispatched to the planet Nuhass to investigate a series of abductions. They themselves were taken captive and at first suspected the culprits were slavers. It turned out that those responsible, led by the Brain Bandit, were extracting chemicals from people to make drugs. The Bandit took a particular interest in Stealth because of her unusual physiology and ordered that the other prisoners be injected into space.

The core team (other than Stealth) have been ejected out into space with the other prisoners  but Borrb teleports back inside and attacks the Brain Bandit's doctors.
He struggles with the controls but teleports Telepath inside, who is able to figure out how to return everyone back into the ship. One of the doctors recovers but Borbb and Telepath disappear before he can do anything to stop them.

Last issue, the Brain Bandit appeared to be in charge. But now he seems to be reacting to the chemicals extracted from Stealth in a negative way, and both the doctor, Kroker, and nurse look on, fascinated.
The doctor sees this as an opportunity to take over. Standing over the Brain Bandit, he declares that he is in charge now.

Meanwhile, Phase and the core team are trying to help everyone who was ejected from the ship and returned, while Telepath updates Lobo on their situation. While Lobo has been present for their entire mission, he was sedated for most of it so he would not jeopardize their undercover status.

Doctor Kroker leaves the Brain Bandit alone with Stealth, thinking he is incapacitated, but he is mistaken. The Bandit frees Stealth and heads for an escape pod but is interrupted when her body suddenly begins to mutate. 
He is pulled into the pod and ejects from the ship while Stealth continues to mutate. Doctor Kroker has found Borbb injured and is examining him when Phase interrupts. Kroker calls for his nurse, who he assumes will help him, but instead she assists the L.E.G.I.O.N.

Stealth bursts through the wall and everyone is horrified by her new form. Well, except Lobo.
The nurse gives them a syringe and tells them that they need to inject Stealth. While Lobo distracts her, Borbb teleports onto her back and injects her. Stealth calms down and slowly returns to normal. While they were fighting, the doctor attempted to flee but was unsuccessful.

They wonder what happened to the Brain Bandit but he has been left wondering space in an escape pod. On Cairn, Strata thinks about Garv, who she believes has been acting as a costumed vigilante. She is wondering how to get his attention when she stumbles upon a costume shop and gets an idea.

This is one of those issues where things move so quickly that the summary is pretty short but it was a fun ride. Stealth's transformation added a nice horror element and I hope we get some follow-up on that, rather than it staying a mystery, but its been so long since I read this I am not sure. Her unique physiology and mysterious origin have always been a fascinating part of this series.

I was surprised that the Brain Bandit turned out to be something of a joke. I felt a twinge of disappointment at first but ultimately appreciated the twist by Tom Peter. And seeing the doctor step up and take advantage of the situation was nice even if his plans soon fell apart.  This storyline wrapped up at such a rapid pace that it will not go down as one of my favorites, but I still liked it overall.

I do hope the series turns its attention to Strata soon because we have been teased on that for a very long time. Thats been a consistent aspect of this title through every creative team, getting storylines foreshadowed for a very long time. While my memory is vague, a quick glance at the cover of next issue suggests I may finally be getting what I want. So please check back with me next week for what may hopefully be a reunion between Strata and Garv!


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