[Acquired Taste Book Club] Fawcett Fun! All-Star Squadron #51-52 and Shazam! The New Beginning #1-4

Acquired Taste Book Club Week 6!


2019-12-06T20:00:00Z2019-12-13T19:59:00Z

Welcome to the Acquired Taste Book Club! We’re back to Fawcett Comics this week with another look at Captain Marvel!

Crisis%20Cap%20V2
Oh, also we’re back in the game for Crisis on Infinite Clubs.

In fact, we’ll be (sort of) picking up where we left off last week, with some of the All-Star Squadron’s Crisis on Infinite Earths tie-ins, this time featuring Earth-S, then home of Fawcett Comics’ stable of characters. Notably, Roy Thomas had also been responsible for the good Captain’s reboot back in the ‘70s after DC got their hands on him.

And for Billy’s integration into the DC Universe in the wake of the Crisis, Thomas was once again tapped for writing duties, as we’ll see in Shazam!: The New Beginning.

As one final bit of trivia, one of the covers on these All-Star Squadron issues (and the five from last week) was also done by Jerry Ordway, who would supervise Captain Marvel’s third reboot later in the ‘90s.

"Reading Assignment: All-Star Squadron (1981-) #51-52" and Shazam!: The New Beginning #1-4

All-Star Squadron:
All-Star Squadron (1981-) #51
All-Star Squadron (1981-) #52
Shazam!: The New Beginning:
Shazam!: The New Beginning (1987-) #1
Shazam!: The New Beginning (1987-) #2
Shazam!: The New Beginning (1987-) #3
Shazam!: The New Beginning (1987-) #4

ALL-STAR SQUADRON DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

  1. Crossovers and team-ups can be tricky to implement. What do you think of this one?
  2. While the last batch of All-Star Squadron issues are still fresh in our minds, how do you think these compare?
  3. For those of you who’ve read COIE separately or have been following along with DCUBC, how good of a tie-in is this?
  4. Why doesn’t Issue #52 have Booster Gold in it? I mean, other than the whole not-existing-yet thing, but that’s no trouble at all for a time traveler.

SHAZAM!: THE NEW BEGINNING DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

  1. Is this a good way to introduce Captain Marvel to the main DC Universe?
  2. How does it stack up against Jerry Ordway’s take?
  3. Black Adam had only a couple scattered one-off appearances before this. What do you think of his increased prominence and new origin here?
  4. This needs a talking tiger.

For questions or concerns, contact me @BatJamags.

Click here to learn more about the Acquired Taste Book Club.

Click here to join and get cool flair!

Track the #acquired-taste tag to catch more posts as they come out.

Next week: Beetle-mania!

It was okay, it wasn’t much of a crossover, meaning the crossover but didn’t overtake the story, which is fine for me. Seems like readers of the book could have bought just their series without having to buy Crisis, also, and been just fine, which is a good thing.

About the same quality wise. I liked both batches.

See question #1 :slight_smile:

You do raise a good point! I mean, if this lady can go back to be in a Chaplin flick, anything is possible:

ALL-STAR SQUADRON DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

It wasn’t all that much of a crossover as @ralphsix said, I did like the Captain Marvel team up though.

I liked both batches and they seemed the same insofar as quality is concerned.

As I said it wasn’t much of a crossover with the main story but that was fine with me. There are times that I like it better when a book I read isn’t overly involved in whatever big event is happening and this seems to have been one of those books back then.

I agree with you that it needed some Booster Gold in it for sure. Any excuse to have him appear in a story is good for me.

SHAZAM!: THE NEW BEGINNING DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:

I enjoyed it so it worked for me as an introduction of Captain Marvel into the main DCU.

I actually like both takes equally. They both left me wanting to read more so that’s a big plus in my book. Both writers were successful in modernizing the character without losing the core of the character, which I think is important in order to keep characterizations consistent.

Black Adam is one of my favorites so I loved his increased prominence here. His new origin isn’t really all that much different aside of being cast into an alternate dimension versus being sent to a distant star.

Definitely needs one of those.

Crossovers and team-ups can be tricky to implement. What do you think of this one?

I like it well enough. The first issue was fun enough, especially some of the heroes roasting the lame villains of this story – the bit with Dr Fate and…whoever the other guy was doing Abbot and Costello’s “Who’s on First” gag on Who was golden. :laughing:

The second issue was okay – far more connected to Crisis, but still feels like it’s own thing.

While the last batch of All-Star Squadron issues are still fresh in our minds, how do you think these compare?

It’s certainly far less convoluted and doesn’t contradict any continuity that I can see. If this is more indicative to what the All-Star Squadron book is like, I might like it more.

For those of you who’ve read COIE separately or have been following along with DCUBC, how good of a tie-in is this?

It’s not one that I think I would recommend people to check out if they want more about Crisis, but it’s okay.

Why doesn’t Issue #52 have Booster Gold in it? I mean, other than the whole not-existing-yet thing, but that’s no trouble at all for a time traveler.

He’s clearly slackin’ on the job. Or maybe since you’re talking about Beetle-Mania, he’s just a week ahead of us, and that’s why we can’t see him!

Well, this wasn’t his introduction, even to post-Crisis DC. Like the last issue points out, he was heavily featured in Legends, which was awesome. This was a decent origin story, though, but one with a fairly different tone than either Legends or Justice of had.

I liked both, but Power of Shazam becomes more fun.

Black Adam is one of the best villains ever. I liked him here but he’s better nowadays because his character is more complex.

Doesn’t everything?

1 Like

Sorry about no new installment today. Still busy with finals. I’ll see if I can get the next one up alongside World of Bats tomorrow. I should be able to participate in stuff more consistently after my last final on Wednesday.

2 Likes

It’s cool – finals are more important, hope you did well. Plus it gave me time to finish up with A New Beginning! :smiley:

Is this a good way to introduce Captain Marvel to the main DC Universe?

I’d say so. It’s a pretty clean origin, it takes a lot of what was from the original CC Beck material and modernizes it. It gives a clear motivation and idea of who the character is and what his story is before thrusting him into the next big event going on at the time.

How does it stack up against Jerry Ordway’s take?

All that said, I would say that Power of Shazam is vastly better than A New Beginning. Ordway is simply a better writer than either Thomas and both he and Peter Krouse do way better art than Tom Mandrake (who normally does WAY better art than this). At most I would say the cleaner, ground floor approach to him is easier to get into than Power, which I think kind of just threw us in the middle of everything and didn’t explain everything, but everything in Power is way more compelling than what we got here.

I will say this, though, the idea of Sivana meeting Mr Mind by finding him as the worm in a tequila bottle is hilarious and is now my favorite take on them meeting.

Black Adam had only a couple scattered one-off appearances before this. What do you think of his increased prominence and new origin here?

He’s okay. Honestly, I much prefer the more morally grey, benevolent dictator, sometimes JSA member Black Adam than the simpler take we see here. He makes for a good physical and strategic problem for Billy to deal with, though, and that really is half of what makes the antagonist important.

This needs a talking tiger.

Anyone who says other wise should be tossed into a portal into the Netherrealm.

The dimension, not the Mortal Kombat developers. …Great, now I’m thinking of Talky Tawney as a part of Injustice/MK and I have a mighty need.