Booster Gold #35, out last Wednesday, was an action-packed issue, and regular readers will know what that means…not a lot of plot to comment on, so this month’s Gold Exchange will be a little short. Still, there were some major forward-motion moments for the plot, and some interesting, possibly foreshadowing bits of dialogue for writer extraordinaire J.M. DeMatteis and columnist mediocre yours truly to comment on…so let’s get right to it, shall we?
The Gold Exchange: OK, so seriously: What’s the deal with all the tentacles? Not only is there a tentacle monster attacking Booster on the cover of this issue with no tentacle monster inside…but there’s a tentacle monster attacking Booster on the cover of December’s #38 (with a different cover artist, yet)!
J.M. DeMatteis: Haven’t you heard? Tentacles are in! Tentacles are hip and happening! Tentacles are—
Okay, I have no idea. Ask Mike Carlin.
GX: I like that everyone in the book, including the bad guys, have appropriated “The Almost-But-Not-Quite Book of Destiny” as the actual name of the MacGuffin here.
JMD: Almost-but-not-quite everyone.
GX: I know the villains here are new, but we haven’t seen the princess’s race, either, right? She looks vaguely familiar.
JMD: The idea was that this is an early incarnation of what would eventually become Sorcerer’s World.
GX: I’m surprised DC allowed you to go back and use the ‘90s version of the Darkstars. Was there any trouble with that?
JMD: If there was, nobody told me. It’s set in the past, so I can’t see where there’d be a problem.
GX: So…if Ted knows that Booster’s from the future, will that be a plot point? Or just a nice way of re-establishing for new readers the relationship they have.
JMD: More the latter, but, given time, it could be the former. (How vague can I be?)
GX: So does Future Booster have a hairpiece? According to everyone here, it’s thinning—but when we’ve seen him in previous issues of Booster Gold and in the Time Masters mini, after the birth of his son and so presumably at least a year into the future, his hair’s just fine!
JMD: Someone can be thinning on top and not have a bald spot, so it’s something subtle…but still a noticeable difference. Just wait a few years, Russ!
GX: Why didn’t the supremely-powerful sorceress lady just use the book to beat the crap out of Hieronymous instead of throwing it out the window once she had it in hand?
JMD: She wasn’t quite strong enough to beat the crap out of him. She’d just had the crap beaten out of her.
GX: Fans who noted with some dismay how mean Barda was to Booster last issue will take a little solace in the fact that, A) she explains her actions with a monologue here and, B) she really picked on Ted more this issue. Next issue will she be spreading the cruelty around?
JMD: Barda takes a hike about halfway through the next issue, but she manages to put Booster’s head through a wall before she goes.
GX: What made Scott and Barda the choices for this story, anyway? It could just as easily have been JLI-era (ringless) Kilowog in Barda’s place or something.
JMD: Scott and Barda are favorites of ours. I loved their JLI-era attempt to build a life in the suburbs. To be “normal folks.” Plus you have the marriage, their incredible love for each other. And the fact that Barda is tougher and stronger than just about all the guys in the JLI. It was a blast writing them again.
GX: I like that when they decide to stay and liberate the world, it’s Barda’s call; keeping Booster from making that call or being really a big part in it keeps his mission intact. Was that intentional?
JMD: Uh…yeah. Sure. Absolutely! We’re brilliant, aren’t we?
GX: I also like the fact that the Book in this story allows for a change in the time travel norm—Booster can pretty much count on the fact that whatever happens, happens, because the presence of the book could screw it all up anyway. Was that a reaction to the troubles of writing a time-travel story based so heavily in the past?
JMD: See above answer.
GX: Is Rani’s mechanical prowess part of being from the future, or is she somehow “special?”
JMD: Rani will play a big part in an upcoming story…so we’ll be learning a lot more about her.
GX: Any clue on how “Ted Kord, Chipmunk” makes any sense?
JMD: Once you read the next issue, it will make total sense…y’know, in a nonsensical kind of way.