So let's catch up with Batman's plan to draw the Cryonic Man (what Batman calls him)/Philip (what he calls himself) out of hiding and in a position to get arrested. Yes, it's technically entrapment. The idea is to use a noted pioneer in artificial organs as bait. I'm assuming one of the Outsiders is playing the part, because that's Batman as the chauffeur (Alfred doesn't mind him raiding his closet).To his credit, it works, although Bats kinda hoped the attack would be at the hotel, you know, where there are lots of innocent bystanders that could get hurt (gotta make Geo-Force do SOMEthing) and property to damage. Not that there aren't other cars in the Gotham Tunnel, but that should represent fewer people.
And Batman respects that it's a better plan. So ok, Batman reveals he was the chauffeur, and Black Lightning was hiding in the back seat. So who plays the part of Nobel laureate Dr. Marcus Dorland?
That shock of hair tells me Geo-Force in heavy make-up, but it's more likely shapeshifting Metamorpho. But that would be wrong. Those guys are with the rest of the Outsiders. So it can only be the real Dorland, or some patsy that owes Batman a favor. And Batman doesn't mind him seeing BL without a mask. Hmm. We shouldn't worry too much though, because we don't see the guy ever again after this point. He's probably hunched over looking for his glasses, but think about it. The Cryonic Man has come for HIM and then just forgets about him? Well, so does Batman, who promptly leaves the car. So does Lightning, who steps all over him to get out of the vehicle...
Let's come out and say it: So does Mike Barr. And if Batman admired the Cryonic Man's strategy, there's nothing to recommend about his. Couldn't you have protected the car a little better? Throw Halo in the trunk? Have Metamorpho BE the car? Have the team driving in an escort vehicle? But no, Batman has to run off to get them. FAIL! Speaking of fail:
And I'm not talking about Black Lightning, I'm talking about Barr. I've got an electricity-powered hero and he's not immune to his own voltage?! You'd think super-conductivity would have made him MORE effective, not less! Meanwhile, why does Batman have to run off?
His radio can't get out of an open tunnel! Must be a bitch to listen to the news while commuting in Gotham. You'd think he'd have that licked, what with living in a cave and all. Maybe if he didn't spend his time watching Star Trek with Halo all the time, he'd have tackled his shoddy electronics problem. And where ARE the Outsiders? (We're very far from Grant Morrison's super-prepared Batman here.) Oh, there they are.
I wish I had a joke here, but I've been distracted by Metamorpho's creepy disembodied head. Let's just go back to Batman's Art of War:
The goal is to capture the Cryonic Man. Batman has a whole team at his disposal, but leaves Lightning in the lurch fighting alone and getting his ass kicked by poor physics. He sends Halo to help, but KEEPS THE REST WITH HIM. OUTSIDE THE TUNNEL. Including the two most powerful Outsiders. Including the one that has actually fought and defeated (even if he let him run away) the Cryonic Man. It's a good thing he quit the JLA because they would have revoked his membership. Not that Halo isn't a competent superhero...
Ha! I couldn't say that with a straight face. Here she wonders if there's a relation between her stasis beam, which freezes people, and Cryo's ice beams, which do the same. Grasp at straws much? Hey, maybe she's Superman's cousin cuz he has heat beams too! Or Shrinking Violet's ancestor, cuz you know, there's a purple aura. We know you haven't thought up an origin for her yet, Mr. Barr, but really, do you think any reader with half a brain will believe this to be a viable clue?
"...I'll make your auras way more competent and yet it will make you short out!" But what the Barr giveth, the Barr taketh away. And vice-versa:
This comic: Check the quarter bin. That expression: Priceless.
Next: The Outsiders as traffic cops!