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Written By: Keith Giffen Art By: Scott Kolins, Romulo Fajardo Jr., Josh Reed Cover Price: $2.99 Release Date: September 28, 2016
*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*
Okay, are all you Blue Beetle fans ready to see our hero kick a little ass and take a couple names as we jump back into this series? Let's see where Ted and Jaime's relationship takes them on their quest to find out more about the scarab, while also taking out the trash in El Paso. I personally love the Blue Beetle, but found the Rebirth issue lacking a bit and hope beyond hope that it picks up here because I'll be depressed as hell if I finally got a Blue Beetle title that I've been clamoring for since the last one was cancelled and it ends up I don't like it.......... That would just be the worst. Hopefully that isn't the case though so let's jump into this issue and see what threats Jaime faces here. Let's check it out.
Our issue begins with Jaime telling Brenda all about this recurring dream that he's been having, where Dr. Fate is fighting a giant Blue Beetle in what seems to be ancient Egypt. While Jaime's had weird dreams before, the thing that makes him question where this one is coming from is the fact that he isn't Blue Beetle in the dream, but rather observing the situation and since we all saw Kent Nelson tell Ted Kord in the previous issue that he knows that the scarab is actually magic.......... Well, it appears that this dream is a little more serious than something you can just brush off as eating a bad meatball sub before bed.
Our issue then goes on to show us Jaime's school day......... or at least the part of it where there's a mandatory assembly, where Ted Kord is the main speaker, telling kids about what a future they could have with Kord Industries and since Jaime is already ticked at Ted for the amount of time he's taking up in his life, he's seriously steamed seeing Ted showing up during his school day. This leads to Ted getting a hold of Jaime after school and the two going on a mission because Ted received some intel from a gang member about young gang members disappearing all over town.. who happen to have meta human powers.......... and once they get to the first house of a supposedly missing meta-human gang member, Jaime probably wishes that he simply ditched Ted and went home to do his homework.
In the end, Jaime battles the supposed missing kid, who goes by the name Blot, who apparently has the power to travel through shadows and for some reason believes that Jaime is the one behind his sister and mother being taken........ which we don't learn anything about because all Blot does is go on and on about Jaime taking them and how he better bring them back. After battling Blot in the house and in the shadow realm, Jaime eventually comes out on top, but as the issue closes we see that this was all a setup for Jaime to wear Blot out so the rest of his meta-human gang could come in and take their compatriot.
That's it for this issue of Blue Beetle and I have to tell you that I was exhausted after reading this issue because of all the back and forth between Jaime and Ted. It was just excessive as hell and while I understand that Keith Giffen just wants to add some levity to this series, it just comes off forced as hell and annoying because while you want a decent read, all you get is characters bickering back and forth, while the dialog covers most of the page. It's just too much...... which is weird because while they say a lot of things in this issue, they never really get to anything that's important. The bickering goes on and on and when you finally get a nugget of story, it quickly moves back into bickering and snide remarks. I found out in this issue that Ted Kord was once Blue Beetle in this Universe and instead of learning more about that or Ted going into details about what Dr. Fate said to him about the scarab........ It just goes back to him verbally poking at Jaime and Jaime just being pissed off about it. The story is overshadowed by something that feels like it wants to be a "Who's On First" bit with it's quick remarks and ultimately we don't learn anything because of it and none of it comes off as funny. Luckily though, the art was enjoyable in this issue, but with the writing the way it is, I can't say that I'm looking forward to continuing this Blue Beetle series and that kills me.
Bits and Pieces:
While I love Blue Beetle, I hate the dialog in this issue because it just comes off forced as hell and makes it so neither of our main characters is likable and also overshadows the story because it not only covers most of the panels, but also sacrifices information you want to read about for simple quips that go nowhere. Luckily the art in this book is decent because besides for that, I found myself really disliking everything that this issue had to offer.