We Want Cake
Credits: Dan Raspler (writer), Dev Madan (penciler), Keith Champagne (inker), Bill Oakley (letterer), Noelle Giddings (colorist)
Creating an elaborate trap that involves novelty candles, a potato, cooking oil, a microwave, a balloon, and a birthday cake, Junior apprehends the Birthday Boy. The blind students (whose blindness is represented by not giving them pupils, making them resemble something Harold Gray would've drawn...or maybe Lenil Francis Yu on a deadline) are rescued and Junior publicly acknowledges the Young Heroes for helping him become the best hero he can be. This surprisingly takes up most of the issue, but there are a few character subplots:
Monstergirl’s parents reveal to her that she was discovered in a space egg as a baby. Her father opens a trunk in the basement, but can’t find the egg.
Bonfire adopts the dog that was sniffing around the team’s headquarters last issue. She confides in Frostbite that Monstergirl’s thirst for power bothers her.
Off-Ramp travels through space and encounters Princess, a woman from his past who flies around on a magic carpet.
Zip-Kid meets a few of her fiancé’s friends. In a shocking turn of events, the scene heavily implies that the Italian stereotype’s associates are involved with organized crime. Thankfully, this was published in 1998, so we’re spared any references to GTL or the Smush Room.
Most of the character work in this issue consists of vague hints of what might be ahead (although the book’s close to cancellation, so who knows), so it’s pretty light on the soap opera. The main action story is amusing, leading me with an even stronger desire to see Batman fight Birthday Boy someday. Using Monstergirl as a parody of Superman’s origin also works fairly well, but it’s hard to guess where exactly this is going. It’s not as if Superman parodies are anything new, but this is the first time I’ve ever seen the parents misplace the alien craft that brought their child.