Spaceknight Saturdays: SpaceMAN Saturday

This Friday, I really phoned in the Nightmare Fuel feature, but that's in part because I knew this issue of Rom was coming up. In its 40s, the book is really starting to fuel my nightmares (really kicking in once the pink Dire Wraiths with the drill tongues show up, and that's SOON).

So a little recap, since it's been a week: Rom has come upon a luxuriant garden in the middle of the wasteland Marvel calls the USSR. Site of a nuclear test, its victims nonetheless frolic gayly having been saved by the computer intelligence only known as Quasimodo. Rom goes down into Quasimodo's cave and promises to give the A.I. his suit or armor if he clones him a new human body. As Rom, human again, gaily frolics out of the cave, Quasimodo and his allies, the Dire Wraiths(!!!), plot his unhappiness.

Let's join the gay frolicking, already in progress...
Meanwhile, Quasimodo reveals what's left of Rom once you take the armor out of the equation. He's that pile of crap in the glass box.
Wait a minute... Where are Rom's trademark red eyes?
Start customizing your action figures, folks! Quasi-Rom is nominated for Nightmare Fuel. Not that his pals are any less insomnia-inducing:
Quasi-Rom knows they'll end up betraying him, and in any case, can't stand their incessant power puking, so he blasts them into Limbo with his inherited Neutralizer! Hey, when in Rom...

(cough, cough)

Nightmare Fuel continues when Rom tries to join the Russian gay frolic and the fact the garden has grown on radioactive fallout catches up with them.
In a matter of seconds, Rom is also beset by nuclear leprosy, and he despairs.
That's just about when Dr. Dredd and his hyp-mo-tized Brandy-as-Starshine show up to kill Rom.
But yeah, that's not Rom! Quasi-Rom just doesn't have the chops required to beat Starshine, nor the tragic sense of irony to make dramatic speeches about having to fight his one true love. He has to quit the Spaceknight armor and head for the Internet ("1983? Aw crap, there's hardly anything in there!").

Brandy, of course, realizes what she's done. Note the interpretive dance to symbolize the contortions in her very soul!
Mia Michaels would be proud.

But Rom's not dead. Not yet. In human form, he attacks Dr. Dredd. And without a Neutralizer, he sorta has to do it old school.
Fueled up yet? Dredd dies and Starshine returns to find Rom dying from radiation poisoning and terminal grossness.
There's your tragic irony.

Next issue: REBIRTH! Remember that pile of crap?


Sea-of-Green said...

I loved this issue! I gotta thank you again for posting these, Scipio. I really, really wish Marvel would release these in trade form!

Sea-of-Green said...

OOPS! I mean Siskoid! Man, I can't believe I just called you Scipio. Not that I have anything against Scipio! :-)

Siskoid said...

I guess it's a compliment. :)

Anonymous said...

Nice Gift of the Magi moment for Rom and Brandy.

Brandy sure whipped some Quasi-Rom butt this issue. The range of powers she wields over the next 6 or 7 issues is pretty impressive.

Hey, Annual #2 is right around the corner, isn't it?

Love Live Spaceknight Saturdays!

Siskoid said...

Since it's a flashback, do you have any favored placement for it?

Anonymous said...

As the female Dire Wraiths are featured prominently in said flashback, Annual #2 should probably be inserted between their introduction in #47 and Rom's recommitment to winning the Wraith War in #48.

Annual #2 is a real palette cleanser for The Massacre. Talk about nightmare fuel. I still don't read #s 49 and 50 when I'm alone!


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