Countdown Lowdown #23

The Bottled Imp

Here’s the lowdown…

  • It would seem Countdown gets better the fewer the story lines they try to cover in the issue… and less Jimmy Olsen shows up
  • This is a huge Superman-Prime issue… it opens up with SM-P at the Source Wall… the barrier that keeps the multiverse separated
  • SM-P has traveled into the 5th dimension trapped Mr. Mxyptlk and Annataz Arataz (an alternate version of Zatanna from Earth – 3), he is now interrogating both them inside of a hidey-hole of the Source Wall
  • SM-P needs Mxyptlk’s help in his quest to destroy all the “fake” Earths and in process gives a nice 4 panel review origin of himself
  • While Mxyptlk continues to get tortured and have the tar beat out of him, he keeps on taunting SM-P with what is actually some pretty good writing
  • Dini and Giffen both have well-deserved legend status… but the usual writing in Countdown has been melodramatic versions of their own work at best
  • Mxyptlk shares that he has been haunting Earth for centuries in various names… Loki, Anansi, Coyote… that he is the trickster god and that he couldn’t help SM-P if he wanted to
  • SM-P figures out because of his nature, he cannot kill Mxyptlk… SM-P then has a tantrum fit, re-emphasizing his lack of emotional maturity and destroys the hidey-hole they were all in, trying to bury both of his captives
  • With the help of the Earth-3 witch, Mxyptlk escapes while Annataz chooses to stay and faces destruction to atone for cruel things she had done back on her own earth 
  • Eclipso finds Mary Marvel, after her escape from Apokolips, and beguiles Mary into staying with her
  • Lord Havok’s fleet continues cross-galaxy with Ultraman aboard, destroying everything in their way in the name of Monarch… which includes a Dominion Fleet of ships
  • This cameo of the Dominion here is perhaps supposed to be symbolic of showing how this cross-over event really kicks the tail of yet another early 90’s throw-away DC cross-over event
  • Scott Beatty writes a quick but entertaining origin of Mr. Mxyzptlk

This book is still not producing at the level is should given the amount of talent attached to it.  The story-telling devices in Countdown are starting to change, they are telling certain details of the big story through flashback between characters, this is a great touch… allows the reader to get the nitty-gritty without having to sit through twelve pages of it.  DC is learning from some of the mistakes of the first half of the Countdown series.  

Overall though, cheers to DC, Countdown is slowly getting better and seems to be trying to get it’s pace… so that maybe sometime soon it catch it’s stride.

Grade: C

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Updated: November 22, 2007 — 11:54 am

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