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Art By: Emanuela Lupacchino, Mirco Pierfederici, Ray McCarthy, Sean Parsons, Hi-Fi, Tom Napolitano Cover Price: $2.99 Release Date: December 9, 2015
*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*
With the many misunderstandings of Starfire, it's amazing to me how well Kori has adjusted to simple small town life....... or Key West life..... I don't know what Key West life is like because I'm not a Rockafeller so I'll just go with small time life and use the power of imagination to fill in the gaps. Besides how well Starfire is doing, it's even more amazing to me that the people of this town have become so taken with her because of how xenophobic the world seems to be all of a sudden in the real life and in comics...... you know, like we've seen in Superman. I don't want to say it's just because she's hot, but....... yeah, it's probably because she's hot. Knowing that she's the hottest thing under the sun, Starfire in the previous issue took down Soren Hook, when she thought he killed Sol and even took out an intergalactic bounty hunter, who arrived on Earth and intended on collecting Kori and bringing her back to his employer. That's a lot of things going down in one issue and I guess that means it's time for a little R&R here and getting to know Sol a little better. Hopefully, Grayson showing up in this issue won't go and ruin her date and bring back those old feelings within her. Let's check it out.
Our issue begins with Starfire getting done work........ which may or may not just involve her talking to dolphins and she heads off with Sol to have a romantic night out on a dinner cruise. The one thing that I dig about Sol, except for him being a Coast Guard hero and handsome as hell, is the fact that he calls Kori out on screwing with people. I'm with you Sol, there's no way that Kori can legitimately be this naive and hopefully if he keeps calling her out on it, she'll just let it go completely and we can get past all the misunderstandings.
When the two enter the ship to begin their evening, we see that Dick Grayson is conveniently going on board as well, but his night seems to be less about a romantic interlude and more about tracking down some bad people who plan on doing bad things......... You know, Grayson stuff.
On this night out, we get a straight forward look at how Sol is dealing with dating again, since we saw in the previous issue that his fiance, who was in the Coast Guard as well and who went out to save some people during a hurricane....... Well, that's all we got last issue, but we e continue to see that story here, when Sol thinks back during a kiss that Kori and him share and we see that he was stopped from going out to look for Maria because the storm became too bad and his supervisor held him back..........which leads to Maria's funeral, where the situation becomes even more heartbreaking when Sol gets a late message from his lost love, pretty much saying goodbye and how she loves him. After that last bit, we snap back to the kiss........ and talk about a boner killer. Sol isn't sure that he's reading to move on, even though it's probably the best for him instead of simply moping around like a sad sack........ damn though, I may be dead inside, but that flashback scene even got me feeling sad. So yeah, pretty straight forward story....... Too bad we don't get that with Grayson's part because I don't exactly know what's going on with that. So Grayson got on board this ship to stop some people from selling a piece of technology, that when combined with another piece of technology could lead to millions dying. That I get, but what I don't get is the artwork depicting him taking these bad guys down because there had to be a mix up somewhere in who was supposed to be in what panel. We've got Dick disguised as an older gentleman thanks to the sonic screwdriver of the DC Universe, the hypnos, but still somehow gets outed and then we see him run to the side of the boat and drop the briefcase he was after into a getaway motorboat........ only problem is, I'm pretty sure it was supposed to be the main bad guy. Things get even more confusing to me when Grayson is all of a sudden in his normal Grayson gear and even though we saw the driver of the boat get knocked out, the boat takes off full of people...... So damn confused.
In the end, Kori sees her old friend and love miraculously alive....... since she still thought he was dead and all and Dick gets her to blast the motor on the getaway boat and then fly him out to retrieve the object of his mission. Kori plays that whole misunderstanding thing again, but I swear she knows exactly what she's doing when Dick tells her how dangerous the device they retrieved is in the wrong hands and Kori straight up destroys it so it will never fall in those hands. Dick is pissed, but not pissed enough to play off all his Dick charms and even though Starfire began the evening on a date with Sol, she ended it and this issue by making out with Dick.
That's it for this issue of Starfire and as much as I've hated the whole misunderstanding schtick that this series seemed to use in excess, it looks like it's finally calmed down a bit and reached it's Goldilocks moment, where it's not too much or too little....... It's just right. Normally, I would begin stroking the hell out of the art in this title, but here it actually became the biggest problem in this issue because characters were in panels that they shouldn't have been and because of this, I was really thrown off about what was going on in the majority of the stuff dealing with Grayson...... Not to mention that Grayson just appeared in his spy garb out of nowhere and even though we had a moment in this book where Starfire did the same (I didn't mention that in the Explain It!), that part was easily explained away and served a purpose........ just not so much with Grayson. The characters though were written great and this is probably my favorite issue that dealt with our title character....... which makes the art problem just a shame.
Bits and Pieces:
Grayson makes another cameo in what seems to be his DC Comics world tour, since he keeps showing up everywhere lately and even though I initially thought that it would be a cheap guest star role to drive up the sales of this book, I have to admit that I really dug his involvement in this issue and hope that he continues to tag along for awhile because I'm curious to see what history that Starfire and Dick share in this continuity. While this is probably my favorite portrayal of Kori in this series, what appear to be some snafus in the art made some of this book really confusing to read and that's a shame because usually the art is some of the best that DC has to offer.