You’ll Never Walk Alone into the Furnace of Unstable Molecules!
Credits: Dan Raspler (writer), Sergio Cariello (penciler), Keith Champagne (inker), Bill Oakley & N.J.Q.(letterers), Scott Baumann (colorist)
The villainous Ratpack demand the whopping sum of $3,000 in protection money from a local school, prompting the officials to contact the Young Heroes. The heroes easily defeat the crooks, winning a clear PR victory. Oh, was there a cliffhanger last issue? It’s dismissed by a quickie dream sequence, which establishes that Bonfire’s memory has been erased and her attraction to Thunderhead is back with a vengeance. This is even juicier…
Hard Drive is devastated when Monstergirl, upset that he saw her true form last issue, breaks up with him.
Monstergirl quickly changes her mind after the Ratpack fight and leaps into Hard Drive’s arms. “I need you!” she cries. And her mood swings aren’t over yet…
Frostbite is actually starting to enjoy this hero gig, showing more signs of altruism than Hard Drive’s exhibited so far.
Bonfire has a “girl chat” with Monstergirl and discovers she’s been secretly dating Hard Drive. All Bonfire can think about is Thunderhead, though. Raspler is still coming up with cute character bits for Bonfire. She refers to the other heroes’ battle in space as “last issue,” and is genuinely thrilled when Thunderhead shows off his new powers. It’s a simple idea that the girl just loves superheroes, but Raspler really has fun with it.
Thunderhead discovers that he now has electric powers, which makes his costume design a lot less arbitrary. Later, after the fight is over, Bonfire lures him into the school’s library. They have a slightly PG-13 love making sequence, which brings us what just might be the first appearance of a condom wrapper in the DC Universe. Oh, but what’s this? This “Bonfire” secretly morphs into a grinning Monstergirl later that night. She’s had shapeshifting powers for one issue and she’s already using them for kinky sex games!
So, even if Hard Drive’s exposure turned out to be a red herring, Raspler is still finding new areas to explore. This issue brings us the most bizarre Monstergirl behavior yet, as she flip-flops on her relationship with Hard Drive over the course of a few pages and beds (what appears to be) her best friend on the team’s boyfriend. There’s one element of trashy soap opera going on here, but there’s also a legitimate suspense regarding the character and her motives. Either way, you want to see what happens next.