Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Senses-Shattering Saga of the Metal Men! Part 15!

The Metal Men are mostly pretty silly, and this issue's no different. I will say, though, I sort of miss the continuing story -- remember that? Been a while since one issue fed directly into the other. 

Being shrunk is basically something every superhero goes through. Wait, would you consider these guys superheroes? They mostly just finish stuff bad guys start, they don't look for people to help. Whatever, the point is, I'm surprised it took this long for this plot to occur... although technically that adventure on the giant planet covered it before.

I read ahead: no, Nameless won't be named in this issue, or for that matter any issue. The matter of her name isn't even alluded to in this one. Was she really a draw back in the day? Shudder to think. So the issue opens with Toy Story-style walking, talking action figures Doc invented for sick kids, because let's face it this guy has way too much free time.

Stealthy ads for other DC comics, nice! Incidentally, on the topic of Captain Storm and Johnny Cloud, few people realize that the Losers were all solo stars (or in the case of Gunner and Sarge, an existing team) before they teamed up.

And not to sound crass or anything, but I really don't think brain-injured children will be comforted by living toys with tiny working machine guns. Man, look at that line-up, though -- one superhero, five war characters. I sort of like superheroes just fine, but it really goes to show how different the whole comic landscape was back then.

Oh, and Doc has a new girlfriend, a model named Cleo. I don't know what these women see in him; he's no Mr. Personality, and between six 'kids' and his work he's got a ton of baggage.

Like all the girls before her, Cleo leaves in a huff shortly after Platinum does, angry at Doc for caring about his robot at all. Doc's not too broken up about losing his girl, or about Platinum having another one of her 'episodes', but then again this is like the tenth time those things have happened to him.

Platinum runs off in the flying saucer, and the other Metal Men catch up to her via Iron-thrown Tin boomerang (including Iron, just roll with it). Apparently she just wanted to blow off some steam by driving. To space. They get a distress signal from a nearby planet, but the flying saucer is hit by a weird beam that shrinks them.

Where this beam came from and why are never really bothered with, probably because it was figured nobody would care. And I guess I don't, really, so whatever. Gold turns into a stack of coins so the Metal Men can still operate the consoles, and Nameless is pretty turned on by it.

Is this another "women, am I right fellas?" kind of thing? Also, Gold's imagination seems pretty lacking these days, he's used that same coin form a bunch of times lately. We get it, gold is valuable. Remember the time you turned into a deck of cards, though? You're better than this, man.

I seem to remember a totally different kind of robot termites from a few issues back, but whatever. I wonder what kind of bourbon is in those barrels. Anyway, a decent fight breaks out, which is naturally handled in one panel as opposed to a whole issue like it would today.

This is a pretty sound victory for the Metal Men, despite Gold's silly tooth form and joke. The angered Termites, however, are already howling for revenge, and scurry away to gather reinforcements for a large-scale Earth invasion.

After a wacky comic relief interlude with the wooden barrel robots, the Metal Men give chase and head back to Earth, still at fun-size. They try to find something in Doc's lab that can make them grow back, but accidentally hit the button for Space Ghost's Stasis Beam. And yes, it was Platinum who messed up, because, you know, women.

The Metal Men are confused with regular toys and shipped to a charity bazaar, where a blind kid picks them up. Nobody else wanted them because unlike the other toys, the frozen Metal Men can't move or talk, but this kid's just a big fan. What is it with poor blind boys and the Metal Men? That night, he hears about the Termites collapsing a bridge, and is brought to tears by how helpless he feels. In a classic fairy tale moment, the tears fall on the tiny frozen Metal Men, who are soon up and moving and back to regular size. Uh, it was something in the saline. It's funny how this comic was supposed to be educational but turned out to be really nonsensical.

They hurry to where the Termites were last seen, but at normal size the little guys move too fast for them. The only solution: blow themselves up, stupid! This is accomplished by Gold forming a coil around the others until Mercury goes kerblooey.

You know, either these guys aren't the best at pattern recognition, or they're like the Venture Brothers and don't remember their many previous deaths. 

I'm a little concerned with the fact that the normal heroic sacrifice has mutated into attention-seeking group suicides more-or-less every issue. Doc investigates the explosion later out of simple scientific curiosity, and revives our metal heroes with the traces he recovers from the scene. Then the whole group heads back to that blind kid's house to thank him (and give him some real Metal Men toys). I hope they went to check in on Billy afterwards, reminded of him by this similar unnamed kid.

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