Guy Gardner #11: Back in the Days

gg11-coverTGH: Greetings, glorious Guy Gardner groupies, and welcome to a brand new Guy Gardner story. As you’ll recall, Guy quit his job last issue, which is weird since that was a pretty good gateway to introducing new characters and locations.

QP: Even though it had barely been used in the previous 9 issues.

TGH: Chuck Dixon has taken over as writer, and it looks like we’ll be exploring Guy’s past, which looks to involve football and beatings.

QP: Lets be honest: that was predictable.

TGH: Will this help humanize Guy, instead of making fun of someone who apparently has brain damage? I guess we’ll find out in 4 weeks when this story concludes!


QP: Fortunately, we don’t have to think about deep topics like child abuse for a few pages, as we start out in space, with some rando Green Lantern. Who, honestly, kinda looks like a bad racist stereotype.


TGH: Graf Toren, who we don’t know anything about, explores a spaceship that flies into his jurisdiction, and is ambushed.

QP: The space invaders use a yellow tractor beam to capture him, which implies they’re pretty familiar with Green Lanterns, a fact that I’m sure will not be used to work to Guy’s advantage later.


TGH: They steal his ring, and then…something, but Guy doesn’t want to get ahead of himself, so we jump over to him.

QP: Guy and General Glory are fighting Kobra, which I swear to God I thought were Marvel’s E-list villains, not DC’s. Of course, they’re kinda dressed like Hydra foot soldiers, so that may explain it.


TGH: I guess since Guy quit his other job he’s just been handling normal street crime like before, which is oddly refreshing to see once in a while. General Glory is pissed because they were on the way to a Steven Seagal movie and this is cutting into their schedule.

QP: Guy is complaining that General Glory wants to go see a Steven Seagal movie, which honestly sounds like it’d be right up his alley.

TGH: Come on, Glory, you’re supposed to be a Captain America parody. Surely beating not-Hydra should take priority.

QP: Methinks this may be an instance of the old unreliable narrator, vis-a-vis who is dragging whom.

TGH: Possibly. Meanwhile, the aliens who kidnapped Graf are watching Guy with the intent of kidnapping him too.


QP: They look like hentai monsters.

TGH: Apparently they’re supposed to take Hal, but I think they can tell from there what a boring choice that would be.

QP: There’d be a lot of grandstanding and hypocritical moralizing and also racism.

TGH: Also, Guy would be happy to know that his power level is higher than Hal’s.

QP: He’d probably volunteer to be kidnapped if they told him.


TGH: The Hal/Guy debate spares nobody, on this planet or elsewhere, so the aliens have to start murdering each other over it. Ultimately, Guy “wins.”

QP: Guy and Glory beat Kobra, and Guy waxes on about their giant tank just long enough to be de-materialized mid-quip.


TGH: Guy easily escapes their prison, since yellow is not a problem for him, and starts beating the crap out of the aliens. Sadly he is stabbed in the neck by one of their arm needles.


QP: I believe “probed” is the correct terminology.

TGH: Guy mentions during the struggle that he had been teleported 60 million miles, which makes me wonder why they had to set a trap for the other Lantern at all.

QP: Maybe he was just conveniently in the area.

TGH: They could have kidnapped all of them by now if they wanted with that technology.

QP: Although in fairness, Mars is 60 million miles away at the farthest, so maybe it’s a range issue. Like, maybe they bought the bargain basement interplanetary teleportation system and can only teleport from one planet away.

TGH: These alien threats need to work on their budgets. Like maybe take some money away from the camera that listens in on their conversations up close and just pinpoint their location.

QP: Maybe if they weren’t so busy squabbling they could get their budget in order.


TGH: Maybe not have a naked Hal Jordan on your ship if you haven’t even kidnapped him yet. Maybe have three types of chips in the vending machine instead of eight.

QP: It’s just a waste of resources.

TGH: Anyway, Guy passes out after the struggle and wakes up in a room with a bunch of Green Lanterns, including Graf from earlier.


QP: One of them is a cute lizard, and one of them is Grizzlor. I’m not sure which space sector Eternia is in.

TGH: They explain that they decided to call the aliens the Draal (but admit that they don’t know what they’re actually called, so did they just take a vote or something?) and that there’s no way out of that cell. Guy disagrees of course, and plans to show them how it’s done.


QP: I’m sure that’s a thing he can easily do now that he’s just a completely normal dude with no powers. He doesn’t even have a sweet leather jacket to protect him.


TGH: He also mentions that the JLA are probably looking for him right now.


TGH: They are not.

QP: Unless his code name is Tee Vee Guide.

TGH: That sounds like a name Max Lord would give him after he tried to rejoin in Guy Gardner Reborn.

QP: Pretty much.


TGH: The Lanterns tell Guy that nobody’s coming for him, since the Draal will be sending a duplicate back to Earth to take his place, like they did for the rest of them.

QP: The hentai aliens show up to probe Guy, and he decides to put up a fight. Which, again, no powers, dude. I don’t know what you think you’re gonna accomplish against aliens with multiple prehensile limbs.


TGH: Guy gets jabbed yet again. Yo Guy, you best protect your neck.

QP: The Green Lanterns stand around and nod about Guy being a brave idiot as he’s dragged off for more probing.


TGH: Guy wakes up the second time on a table next to his naked clone. I think he might have gotten his biggest boner yet.

QP: This is actually the secret origin of Guy’s second right foot. The aliens messed up when they cloned him, you see.

TGH: The clues were there all along! It’s all connected! Anyway, time for Guy to get face-fucked.


QP: The aliens drop a Japanese spider crab on his chest, like you do.

TGH: They should have called these guys the Freudians.


QP: And the crab I guess injects Guy with LSD or something, because he starts tripping balls and hallucinating being a kid again. I should note: a kid with the exact same stupid haircut.


TGH: In order to clone Guy completely, his duplicate has to know everything about him, so now Guy gets to relive his life for the sex crab.

QP: Guy’s mom comes in to his room and tells him to get downstairs for breakfast. And not to bother his dad, because he’s in a child-whupping mood.


TGH: His dad’s all mad because some damn GREEKS are moving in next door.

QP: In case you were wondering where Guy got his intolerance from.

TGH: His dad makes fun of Guy’s haircut at breakfast. Maybe Guy kept it out of pure spite.

QP: Seems likely. His dad really seems like such a joy.


TGH: Guy ends up knocking his juice over and gets wailed on by his dad while his mom turns her back. That’s delightful. “Mom does her best to defend me, as usual,” as she drinks her coffee. Pretty shitty, mom.

QP: This guy is like if Archie Bunker was also a sadistic fuckwad, and not just a bigoted one.

TGH: Guy’s late for school, due to the beatings.

QP: No one takes any pity on him, unfortunately.


TGH: As Guy tries not to get caught coming in late, we learn that his brother Mace was some sort of football superstar. Everyone loves to remind Guy all about it, including the teacher who inevitably catches him.


QP: With the way they’re talking him up, I have no doubt his brother is gonna turn out to be an impressive shithead.


TGH: Guy’s flashback ends on a positive note, as he waits for the principal, and then to be sent home for another beating. The Lanterns wait for Guy to wake up and tell him that further mind probes will go ever deeper.


QP: Robo Lantern gives him shit about not flying off the handle with the hentai aliens, so instead, Guy flies off the handle with him.


TGH: It’s worth it just to witness a robot experience shock.


QP: Guy vows to break out, and calls them all “candybutts” which is certainly an insult I’ve never heard before.

TGH: And with that, part one draws to a close.

QP: It wasn’t a bad issue, all told.

TGH: No, the writing was pretty good, and it’s at attempting to give Guy at least one layer.

QP: Well, Chuck Dixon tends to be a decent writer. His run on Nightwing was pretty good, if I recall. Though, Nightwing is what you would call a sympathetic character, so that may help.

TGH: If Guy somehow grows from this, it will be a miracle.

QP: I would not put odds on him getting anything out of this except punching.

TGH: Maybe once Chuck gets the sympathy hooks in he can go to town. If he’s even staying past this arc.

QP: Also that.


QP: Mail is pretty boring this issue. Except for the bizarre letter praising Guy for smashing whore houses and saying that’s their favorite thing that Guy has done. Which…okay.


QP: Several letter writers admonish him for being shitty to Ice. And someone admits to placing a $50 bet on Guy beating Goldface. Who took that bet? Who said, “You know, I’m pretty sure that the protagonist of this book that is essentially a vanity piece for a fictional character is gonna lose, and I am willing to bet serious money on that?”


TGH: The letter writer still managed to lose that bet anyway since he worded it to say Hal had to lose the fight too. As we all know, the only people to lose a fight with Jordan in that issue were the readers, thanks to Hal’s boring bullshit.


TGH: Libby Singleton praises Guy Gardner as an inspiration for overcoming disabilities.

QP: Libby Singleton has…interesting tastes. I am amused at the idea of Gilbert Gottfried playing Guy, though.


TGH: That would be the worst movie. I bet it’s coming in 2018.


QP: Next issue blurb promises Guy being a complete shit to everyone else in the DCU.

TGH: Sounds like a stretch.

QP: Very out of character.

90’s Ad Showcase:


QP: METEOR MAN. A movie I have literally never watched.

TGH: Yeah, I don’t know much about this one, except that Frank Gorshin was the evil drug lord, and he’s not even in the ad! It should be him front and center! “FRANK GORSHIN verses the meteor man or whatever.”

QP: Luther Vandross is in this movie. I did not know Luther Vandross even attempted an acting career.

TGH: He probably attempted a cameo career.

QP: Luther Vandross has exactly 7 acting credits, one of which is Sesame Street. Another of which is Eureka’s Castle. In which he played the Grand Wizard. Sometimes life is stranger than fiction.

TGH: Apparently the Bloods and Crips team up to save the neighborhood.

QP: I feel like we need to watch it. This isn’t streaming anywhere. How disappointing.


TGH: Appearing in person: baby Rob Liefeld, and a generic 90’s villain. There’s no way that guy doesn’t know Judo or something.

QP: It’s Jim Shooter, who I think was in charge of the Marvel for a good chunk of the 80s. He started writing for DC at 14.

TGH: Google image search confirms that he has never not been evil.

QP: He’s also responsible for Dazzler #1, which makes him a hero in my book.

TGH: Yeah, he’s had his hand in a lot of cool stuff. Like many Bond villains before him.

QP: Indeed. And can we talk about how Rob Liefeld had already ruined comics and moved on to Image by age 26? This stuff always amazes me.

TGH: Man, I haven’t ruined anything yet.


QP: The DC Universe update is…really weird this issue.

TGH: Yeah, it’s kind of terrible.

QP: I want cutesy updates about the creators’ lives. I want silly “how to draw Lobo” comics. I do not want some dude’s attempt at humor.

TGH: Like, they’re trying to be funny, but if this is the best writing you have, then maybe don’t let us know that. They make fun of putting Lobo in everything to sell comics. A little too on the nose there, guys! Then they make a Guy Gardener joke. The joke is that he’s an immigrant, because immigrants are gardeners.

QP: Just terrible.


TGH: Mario is Missing: the game specifically made for grandmas to send to disappointed grandkids for Christmas.

QP: “I hear you like to play the Marios on your Nintendo NES systems.”

TGH: It even has a phone number to call to order a copy. That is such a grandma thing to do!

QP: How many video game sales in the 90s were just confused grandmas who had no idea what they were buying? Or like all those low budget Disney princess direct-to-vhs knock off movies.

TGH: Also, educational game, turtles and lizards are reptiles, but a turtle is not a lizard.

QP: Bowser’s not a lizard, but his henchmen may be. You don’t know. Don’t generalize.

TGH: They’re all turtles and mushrooms.

QP: What’s a bob-omb then?

TGH: A bob-omb can be pulled out of the ground, so maybe it’s a plant.

QP: Or the fish things? Or a piranha plant?

TGH: Birds?

QP: Is a Lakitu a bird? What about Bullet Bill? They can’t all be birds. I don’t think you really know all that much about the biology of the Mushroom Kingdom.

TGH: Neither did Grandma Games, LLC.


TGH: All the cool kids wanted Mortal Kombat anyway.

QP: I don’t think I ever knew Sonya’s last name.

TGH: I played the hell out of this game. I wasn’t good or anything, but still.

QP: I’m not sure I ever played the original. Mostly the one with a billion different Scorpion and Katana clones. Maybe MK3?

TGH: MK2 and 3 both had their share of palette swaps.

QP: Fighting games are very creative.

TGH: Mortal Kombat had blood and murder. Nobody noticed.

QP: Truth.

Next Time:

QP: We find out that Guy’s mom eventually wised up and called protective services on her husband. Guy’s life continued completely normally from there on.

TGH: Guy actually murdered his whole family and has been hiding it this whole time.

QP: Also possible.

TGH: The aliens turn him in and become heroes. It turns out that all of those Lanterns had skeletons in their closets and they were just trying to help everyone with a weird naked clone scheme. It makes perfect sense in their culture but much is lost in translation.

QP: Their penal system is far more advanced than ours, but also much more confusing.

TGH: “We call to the stand Naked Hal Jordan Clone.”

QP: Seems probably more reasonable than whatever we’ll get.

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