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Longshot #5 (1986, January)

May 25, 2015

I didn’t post Saturday because I swapped shifts with someone. But today, by Nocenti and Adams, “Deadly Lies.”

Deadly Lies

That’s a pretty bitchin’ beard.

Gog boasts about absorbing the Earth’s magic. Longshot tells the kids to stay back, while he demands Gog spill his secrets. Butch tries to sneak behind him with his gun, but Gog whacks him with his tail. Taht angers Longshot. So it’s fight time! During the fight, Gog tells Longshot he was a rebel, and Gog a rebel hunter, but Longshot got lucky and fell into a portal that dragged Gog along. He blames Longshot for everything that’s happened, and Longshot feels guilty.

Meanwhile, at Rita’s house, Mojo is telling Rita she’s disgusting. He talks about slaves being created based on his race’s most horrible myths, and now he finds the myths are real. Spiral threatens to leave Mojo and stay on Earth, but he points out her extra arms would make her a rejected freak. He asks Rita to tell him where Longshot is, but she refuses, so he brings her through a dimensional portal.

Back at the fight, Gog is kicking Longshot’s ass. He tells him his luck makes others unlucky. He says Longshot’s selfish, wanting to keep Gog alive so Gog can tell him about his past. Longshot decides it’s time to get dangerous. He grabs onto Gog and threatens to kill him, but Gog laughs, and throws him off. He tells Longshot about his lover, and his children. Then the goat-headed demon shows up. He tells Longshot to get up, but he just sits there. The kids walk away, thinking Longshot’s a coward. We learn goat-guy is named Quark, and he stayed behind to help Longshot. Quark is forced to flee.

In New York, Dr. Strange learns of the recent portal openings, and goes to check it out.

Longshot is wandering around, confused and angsty, wishing he could go back to being a blank slate.

In another dimension – one between dimensions – Mojo, Spiral and Rita arrive on a boat. Mojo has Rita tied to the prow. Mojo continues to ramble on while the ship sails through twisting dimensional seas, torturing Rita.

Longshot reads the statue he’s sitting against, and gets another flash of his own memory. Traveling through dangerous territory to find his creator. He sees a mechanical butterfly that looks perfectly real. He wonders if there’s a difference between fake and real, and then a pixie shows him his Creator’s home, which is somewhat fancy. A weird caterpillar-like thing asks him why he’s there, and Longshot says he’s chasing a dream of the man who may have built him. Out of the caterpillar steps Arize. Arize admits to creating Longshot, and Longshot says his race is slaves, and they need help. Arize reveals he built powers into Longshot, and asks Longshot to read him.

So now we get a flashback within a flashback. In the beginning, all were spineless, until Arize built frames that allowed creatures to look up instead of down. Somerefused spines, and the Spineless Ones became the rulers. They wanted slaves, so Arize built them. He refused to build WMDs, though, and got turned out. He tells Longshot the slaves have to rebel.

Longshot wakes up in the present, and decides to go to Rita for help. The place is a mess. Dr. Strange is there, feeling sorry for the dead animals. He asks if Longshot knows what’s going on, but Longshot is focused on finding Rita. Strange convinces him they need to take out the creatures that followed him first. They teleport back to Gog, and Longshot keeps him busy while Strange works on a spell. Gog sprouts two more arms, to go with the two extra eyes he already has. Once he’s filled up, Strange shouts at Longshot to pierce him. Longshot throws his knife, and Gog explodes. Rather grossly. Quark comes back in, and Longshot remembers more of his past, trying to get his people to rebel, but not succeeding very well.

Quark warns Longshot that luck is fickle, but Longshot says he needs to clean up his messes, and do it his way.

Mojo’s presence actually ends up hurting this issue, to an extent, but not in the way you’d expect. Mojo is just too damned entertaining, and it makes Gog that much less interesting as a result. Gog is the main villain in this issue, but it’s hard to be particularly interested in him, because I want to see more of Mojo. Longshot’s angst gets tiring fast, too. So the issue just kinda drags a little in general. There’s precious little social commentary in this issue. The art is still good, but it still grays out a lot of backgrounds and characters, which is an effect I just don’t like.

So all in all, this is perhaps the weakest issue of the series so far. Luckily, the final issue is great.

 

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