Thursday, February 09, 2017

Last week we took a look at a Blue Devil story from Showcase '93, and although we didn't scan it at the time, it ended with the third or fourth return of BD's first villain, the devil Nebiros.

Going back through the blog, we've seen him in passing from Blue Devil #1 and Secret Origins #24; in this Showcase appearance Nebiros seems a little more bug-eyed than usual, but it keeps him from being too scary. Or completely generic, like today's book! From 2013, DC Universe Presents: Black Lightning and Blue Devil #14, "Grave Matters" Written by Marc Andreyko, pencils by Robson Rocha, inks by Oclair Albert.

This was part of the New 52 relaunch, an anthology title that had already cycled through Deadman, the Challengers of the Unknown, Kid Flash, and Vandal Savage. Revamping and pairing up Blue Devil and Black Lightning--two characters I'm not positive met before in the old continuity--their villains Nebiros and Tobias Whale were also redesigned. In Nebiros's case, the redesign is a bit too generic demon monster, less gangly weirdness and more biped beefcake. I had a hard time placing him or differentiating Nebiros from Nekron or Skeletor or such. His legs look a little more funky on the last page, though.

Black Lightning's look seems pretty traditional, while Blue Devil open-chested shirt is a bit weird. It's also a bit weird that BD kills several thugs this issue, seemingly blasting their souls right out of their bodies. Andreyko does a couple interesting things with BD's origin, though: the suit being a "demon skin suit," a legacy from Dan Cassidy's grandfather, who used mystic artifacts and creatures to make B-movies. If magic was powered by belief, making them laughingstocks drained their power. (Which might be causing Dan problems: the more success he has as Blue Devil, the more he believes, and the more powerful and uncontrollable the suit becomes...)

1 comment:

Mr. Morbid's House Of Fun said...

I really didn't care for this reboot either, surprise, surprise, and if handled better, maybe the whole demon skin suit thing might be ok, it was all in which it was handled to me. Just sounded more complicated and hookey(ier) than it should've been.