Category Archives: Wildcats

Legion Lost Vol.2 issues 14 – 16

Written by Tom DeFalco

Wildstorm concepts:   Gen13 - Caitlin Fairchild WildCATS - Warblade

All-star WesternThese issues are the Legion’s final adventure, a story so big they need to call in the Ravagers as special guests. That means more Caitlin, and Harvest and his Ravagers also appear, so we get more Warblade!

A member of the Legion was sent to investigate a death-scream from a distant planet, but he came back to Earth in bad shape, followed by a mysterious assailant, Daggor. He works for his Conqueror Supreme, a being that he hopes to summon. At the same time, the Legion had been visited by Captain Adym, a superior from their future on the 31st century. He was drawn to the past because there was a breakpoint – a critical juncture in space/time that threatens the very fabric of reality.

Since the entire team seems to not be enough to take on Daggor and his mounted animal, Thraxx, Captain Adym calls on reinforcements; he calls Detective Jocelyn Lure, another native from the 31st century. However, this distress call is also picked up by Harvest and his Ravagers.

Back in Arizona, where the Legion is battling, Daggor unleashes some sort of probe onto the ground; he then releases an army of robots which grow from a microscopic size to being human-sized. Right when the Legion starts being overwhelmed, Harvest arrives at the place. He carries three Ravagers with him: Psykill, Warblade and Leash. Harvest knows he can’t mould the world to his liking if it is annihilated by aliens, so he declares a truce with the Legion and starts helping them.

Meanwhile, Jocelyn visits Superboy, who’s staying with Caitlin and the kids who escaped from The Colony. She helped Superboy find Caitlin, so now in return she wants his help. Only Caitlin and Ridge manage to make it past the portal, following Superboy, before it’s closed. So four new players enter the playground. Superboy isn’t interested in helping anyone; he loses focus of everything once he sees Harvest, and rushes to him to know more about his origins. Too busy to talk, Harvest activates a subliminal trigger in Superboy, turning him berserk with just a few words. Driven mad, Superboy starts punching anything in his way, finally helping in the battle and destroying dozens of evil robots. Warblade tries to make fun of him, calling him out on finally living up to his full potential of being a destroying machine for Harvest. But Superboy has been driven berserk, not dumb. Warblade promptly earns a good punch that throws him flying.

Caitlin is more willing to help the Legion, remembering that they owe them one from the Culling. Suddenly, the ground starts breaking open, forming a huge crater from the spot where Daggor launched a probe. A huge weapon appears from the crater, and Gates from the Legion recognizes it as a world-killer!

Meanwhile, the rest of the heroes continue fighting the army of robots. Ridge finds himself back-to-back with Warblade, fighting together just like in their old days in the Ravagers. Warblade says Harvest is willing to forgive Ridge from leaving his team, and that he can come back in exchange from one small favour… Never mind, though, we never hear that favour. It was supposedly going to be revealed in the “Ravagers” book, but it got cancelled, so whatever.

Captain Adym is scared; this whole event isn’t supposed to happen according to the future he comes from. If they don’t win the day, not only Earth will be destroyed, but also the quintillions of lives who will be born in the future! But the Legionaries don’t want to help him detonate a bomb which could obliterate half the continent; they don’t want to sacrifice millions to save quintillions. Harvest IS willing to help, though. He sends Adym into the past and orders his men to leave; now that they did what they came there to do they don’t mind leaving the rest to die in battle.

Ultimately, the day is saved when Gates opens a door to the nearest black hole, and he takes Daggor, his beast Thraxx, the world-killer and Adym’s bomb away. This is the end of the Legion’s adventures, but Long Live the Legion!

Next: Ravagers issues 8 – 9, written by Michael Alan Nelson.

Ravagers issues 5 – 7

Written by Howard Mackie

Wildstorm concepts:   WildCATS - Warblade Gen13 - Caitlin Fairchild

All-star WesternOur story begins two days after we left off, with the kids having a tour of the safehouse they’re now staying at. They couldn’t do it before because they were busy cleaning up their wounds from Brother Blood. All the while, Superboy waited anxiously, dying to get a chance to talk with Caitlin and maybe learn something about his origins.

Niles Caulder, who owns the place and seems to know Caitlin intimately, guides the tour; he takes the kids to an arena where they’ll be able to train and improve their abilities. This is uncomfortably similar to what they did in The Colony, so everyone get mad and leave. Caitlin tries to insult Niles, but he says the kids need to be treated like weapons. If Caitlin didn’t think that, she wouldn’t have brought them to him. When Niles leaves, Cait is angered, so Superboy basically picks a bad moment to try to have a heart-to-heart with her. When he touches her, Cait reacts by throwing him at a wall.

Superboy understands that Cait simply needs to work out her frustration on someone, so they agree to brawl while discussing what Superboy wanted. As they fight each other, Cait explains she didn’t enter N.O.W.H.E.R.E. because of Superboy; she can’t shed any light on his origins. She entered the organization to know about herself, because she knows less about herself than she does about Superboy.

Right when Superboy is starting to lose it at the realization that no one can really help him, they’re interrupted by an alarm claiming Code Alpha. Apparently Thunder lost control of his powers and they need to sedate him. Even though they manage to calm him down, he keeps convulsing and passes out. Caitlin and Niles, using their knowledge as doctors, realize there’s an implant in his brain; a kill-switch that has been activated. Now that they know this they manage to find a counter-signal to slow it down. Problem is, removing it would probably kill Lightning, and if Harvest put it there then the rest must have kill-switches too. And that’s not all; the microscopic device read “Colony #18,” like there’s many other Colonies out there. This closes the deal for the kids, who don’t want anyone else out there to suffer their fate. They rush to the arena, anxious to train and improve, finally having become a team. Superboy is accepted into the team temporarily, as he really needs somewhere to belong to.

Now that the team finally has their origin story out of the way, the following issue starts as they train in the arena, in a virtual scenario very much like the danger room of the X-Men. Niles is talking with Red Robin of the Teen Titans, who assures Niles the Teen Titans will have his back if his kids ever lose control. Niles still sees the kids as weapons, encouraging them to embrace their training in The Colony, to become fearful warriors. He wants to keep up the training, but Caitlin, ever the sensible one, says enough is enough and takes out the kids for a day out. They visit Venice Beach, California, where the weird is norm and a monster like Ridge won’t bat an eye. It’s the perfect spot, except they don’t get a lot of time to hang out, because they’re called in for a mission.

Caitlin immediately starts arguing with Niles that the kids aren’t ready to go out into the field, and some gifts aren’t going to change that; Niles has bought them brand new costumes and a high-performance ship. But they must go through with the mission; Niles has got intel on N.O.W.H.E.R.E. making a move on another young kid, so they can’t let that happen.

The team promptly travels to Brooklyn, NY. They need to look for a girl named Lisa – but they’re met by Brighteyes and Windshear, who had been captured back in issue #1. Apparently, Keeper brainwashed them, turning them into Ravagers for Harvest. Capturing the girl, Lisa, is meant to be their first solo mission. A fight ensues. Working together, the good kids manage to beat the Ravagers, but there’s a problem. Rookie Ravagers on their first mission never go unsupervised! Warblade and Rose are right there, and the kids can’t run away this time.

All the while, Lisa has been watching the spectacle, hidden behind a tree. As it turns out, she has the power of seeing possible futures in visions of what might happen. As the Ravagers start attacking the kids, Lisa sees that Caitlin is the key to whether they’re going to live or die. When Cait is thrown near her, Lisa takes the chance and touches her head; this allows Cait to see the visions. Cait witnesses what could happen: She sees the kids getting captured, brainwashed into working for N.O.W.H.E.R.E. She sees Harvest fulfilling his plans of amassing an army of teenage superheroes, thanks to having Lisa in his power and allowing him to see the future. Cait sees the army taking over the world… All of that is what’s at stake that night.

Caitlin doesn’t need any more convincing that she needs to help the kids. Once the vision is over, Cait rushes to the action. She notices Terra isn’t helping, paralyzed by the sight of the Ravagers who tortured her so much. Caitlin motivates her to join the fight, to prove the Ravagers aren’t in control anymore – but Terra takes it as a chance to get revenge. She lets herself go for the first time, unleashing her powers and lifting the whole ground at once. She manages to knock out the Ravagers, but she wants more. Terra wants to kill them. Even though Beast Boy tries to change her mind, nobody manages to get through to her, who impales Warblade through the chest.

But Warblade simply starts laughing. He can morph his body in the strangest ways, a chunk of rock through the chest is nothing to him. He congratulates Terra on having attempted to kill, the first step in becoming a true Ravager. Lisa freaks out: Caitlin was supposed to help the kids, not unleash their cruelty. She runs away, asking not to be followed. And while the kids were distracted the Ravagers escaped too. All in all, an awful night for our heroes.

Caitlin returns to the base shaken to the core, feeling that Niles had been right all along: The kids are potential weapons. The vision showed Cait just how much destruction they can make, and Terra showed her that they can’t be controlled. She’s having a crisis of faith.

Meanwhile, someone is watching the recordings of what happened in Brooklyn: Deathstroke! The last time he saw Caitlin was when he was a member of Team 7, and Caitlin died. So how can she be back? He’s officially interested in the case.

Next: Legion Lost Vol.2 issues 14 – 16, written by Tom DeFalco.

Deathstroke Vol.2 issue 13

Plot by Rob Liefeld; dialogue by Joshua Williamson

Wildstorm Concepts: WildCATS - Zealot

All-star Western.pngThe writer from “Voodoo” joins the book to make things even more Wildstorm-centric! This little story shows Deathstroke haunted by the mercenary Deadborn, who had been hinted at in the first page of issue #9.

Deathstroke is sometimes called a workaholic, and you can’t argue with that when he thinks a night without a job is a boring night. His night gets a lot better when he’s surprised by Zealot, who got the hint from the last issue and is down for some sleeping around. Sadly, after the fun is over Deathstroke is bored again, because he’s not the type to cuddle. He’s never been happier to see a missile coming his way; and his room gets blown to pieces by Deadborn. Of course, Deathstroke is so cool that a little missile is nothing to him. They start fighting, and Slade is pissed that his reputation keeps bringing people to try to kill him.

Deadborn is actually Deathstroke’s biggest fan, even having modelled his costume after him. When he gets into a tight spot, Deathstroke gets saved by Zealot, so he ditches her because it’s important for his reputation that he wins this fight alone. Seriously? Anyway, Deadborn reveals he’s the government’s latest attempt at creating a super soldier after they were done with Deathstroke; in a way, they’re the same. In fact, he’s not looking to kill Deathstroke at all. He had been hired to do a trial run, to test if Deathstroke was at the top of his game. He gets defeated and loses an arm, but Deadborn leaves feeling like he’s won. It had all been a plot by Deathstroke’s wife and son, who are working together against their relative! We saw details of this during issue #0, from the “Team 7” era. That’s the cliffhanger we leave off in for now.

 

Deathstroke Vol.2 issues 9 – 12

Written by Rob Liefeld

Wildstorm Concepts: WildCATS - Zealot

All-star Western.pngWhen Rob Liefeld took over several DC titles, like “Grifter”, he waited no time to introduce several Wildstorm concepts in them, and this book was no exception. This arc sees Deathstroke pitted again Lobo, an alien mercenary. He gained the reputation of being the galaxy’s greatest predator, and it is well deserved, considering he committed genocide against his own species, making him the last Czarnian.

Lobo fell to Earth many years ago, when his ship was attacked by pirates. The Starpoint was a slave ship carrying many prisoners, piloted by Lobo, his lover Sheba and the Khund slave master Karlak. Sheba is also a Czarnian, but Lobo is still the last Czarnian, somehow. Lobo plundered worlds for pure sport, making sure they were all vegan for extra cruelty, and then selling the prisoners somewhere called “The Citadel”. However, when Starpoint was attacked the cargo was compromised and all the prisoners fell around Earth. The ship was next to crash, ending up in New Mexico. The crew fell unconscious during the landing, but they had time to cloak the ship, making it invisible. As thirty years passed, the prisoners who escaped bred with humans and spread for several generations. An organization was founded to provide refugee to all these fugitives, giving them protection over the years: It was cleverly called The Company. They found Lobo, Sheba and Karlak and put them under restraints.

Sadly, the Company’s containment wasn’t tight enough. Mysteriously, Lobo’s restraints opened, and his massive strength helped him escape. As he made his way to the surface he swore to the security cameras that he would find Sheba and use the World-breaker; a weapon within his ship that could lay waste to Earth.

The story begins after these events with Deathstroke, Slade Wilson, visiting his wife’s grave. We know she’s still alive, though, from “Deathstroke” issue #0. Suddenly, he’s ambushed by a group of assassins which includes a few superhumans. But Deathstroke is so badass that he came prepared and suited up, so he handles them with no problem. He even had the graveyard rigged with bombs among the tombs! This book will go really far to convince us that Deathstroke is the coolest guy there is.

After the battle cools off, a guy with glasses among the visitors explains the soldiers were simply a way to get Deathstroke’s attention. Actually, he’s Director Maxim from The Company and they want to hire him for triple his best rate. It’s an outrageous way to make an offer, but it’s an outrageous offer, after all: to hunt down Lobo. Deathstroke accepts, happy to meet his match. He’ll be accompanied by several agents from The Company: the Omegas, a group of young superhumans (they are revamped versions from old DCU characters called Omega Men): Tigorr, Primus and Kalista. Finally, he’ll be accompanied by Zealot! Reintroduced into continuity, she’s still a Kherubim, but she was one of the slaves who escaped from Lobo 30 years ago. She now works as the organization’s security guard. It’s not that she does a bad job, Lobo escaped because he was in a different facility in Colorado. The book keenly describes Zealot as a “space amazon,” showing Liefeld’s wit once again.

The group head to that crashed facility, hoping to get insights into Lobo’s mind. It’s been 36 hours since he escaped. Deathstroke and Zealot step inside, leaving the Omega Youth because they’re too inexperienced. They don’t listen to orders though, and follow after anyway. Deathstroke and Zealot are attacked by Karlak, the Khundian who escaped his cell when Lobo destroyed the place. Deathstroke’s streak of facing aliens begins now, and will become a common motif during Liefeld’s stay in the book. When they see Karlak, the Omegas are filled with rage as they remember their slaved ancestors. Karlak attacks the kids, so Zealot fulfills her duty as bodyguard and stabs him through the chest. Right before dying, Karlak explains Lobo wants to commit genocide on the human species like he did with his own.

That night, Deathstroke’s group reaches the Starpoint right after Lobo does. He activates the ship’s reactor, which starts drawing energy from the Earth’s core to power the World-breaker. Not wanting to stick around to feel the explosion, Lobo hops on his flying motorbike, the “Spazfrag666.” It is worth nothing Lobo was originally created as a parody of the edginess of the 90’s, but under Liefeld’s pen the adoration seems played straight.

As soon as Deathstroke and Zealot trespass inside the ship, Lobo meets them and starts beating the crap out of them. Deathstroke isn’t happy to discover Lobo can regenerate from anything. They’re suddenly rescued by the Omegas, who paralyze Lobo psychically and shut down the ship’s bomb. Primus reveals he was the one who freed Lobo from his prison in Colorado; he wanted him to lead them to his ship so that they would have a way to get off planet. Getting revenge for what Lobo did to their parents was just the icing of the cake.

Zealot feels aiding a criminal to escape is reprehensible, even if it was to get vengeance. This distraction is enough for Lobo to break free of Primus’ psychic grip, but Deathstroke has had enough time to execute a plan. He boards Lobo’s Spazfrag666, stabs Lobo with it and sends it flying towards space. To finish off he throws his last detonator into the fuselage, making the whole thing explode and scattering Lobo’s remains across the four winds. Deathstroke has completed his mission… Wait, wasn’t his mission to return Lobo to captivity? Oh, well. As Deathstroke falls from the atmosphere, he saves his life by activating a convenient jetpack he was carrying on his back. Never underestimate the value of a well-placed jetpack.

After all’s said and done, there’s still justice to deliver. Primus needs to be held accountable for setting Lobo free; but he explains he only wanted to find a ship to escape the Company! It seems Director Maxim was actually a monster who experimented on The Omegas and looked for ways to turn them into living weapons. While Primus is still going to face justice, Deathstroke punches Director Maxim in the face to feel better. He decides Zealot is going to act as his eyes and ears within The Company, and if Director Maxim acts shady ever again he’s going to get himself executed. Afterwards Deathstroke kisses Zealot for being such an impressive warrior and asks her to meet again sooner rather than later. Finally, he leaves, not letting Zealot get a word in through all of this. He’s macho enough to make the decisions here; women are to be kissed, not heard, am I right? The story ends with The Company erasing all their records of Sheba, Lobo’s girlfriend, so that Deathstroke never finds out that they’re actually holding her too.

I gotta say, this story is one of those so-bad-it’s-good ones. Deathstroke says this mission defined him, let him see his weakness and arrogance by showing him there are threats out there he hadn’t conceived of. Despite all this, in the following issue he’s back to his old arrogant self who can’t wait for someone skilled enough to be his equal match. Good ol’ Liefeld.

Next: Deathstroke Vol.2 issue 13, by Rob Liefeld and Joshua Williamson.

Ravagers issues 1 – 4 and Superboy Vol.6 issue 13

“Ravagers” written by Howard Mackie; “Superboy” written by Tom DeFalco.

Wildstorm Concepts:   WildCATS - Warblade Gen13 - Caitlin Fairchild

 

All-star WesternWoo! Caitlin gets a front cover!

Ravager starts right after the ending of The Culling, with Caitlin helping several kids escape from The Colony. These kids were trained to kill and fight for survival across several years, so she’s worried whether she can help them rediscover their humanity. They need to complete their escape first, though. They’re in the middle of Antarctica, chased by the Ravagers and exhausted. The groups is composed by Caitlin, Beast Boy (morphs into animals), Terra (controls earth), Ridge (was mutated into a super strong monster), Thunder and Lightning (twins with electric powers). Windshear and Brighteyes also escape with them, but they don’t stay with the group for long. By the way, Terra’s hair is a curious thing. It looks blond during the first issues of The Culling, but it turns purple in the final chapter. Then it looks brown during this set of issues, but afterwards it turns to blond again. It’s just curious.

The conflicts start immediately: Windshear and Brighteyes don’t trust Caitlin after she infiltrated N.O.W.H.E.R.E., because that means she worked for the organization. Windshear can fly — and apparently that’s his only power — so he takes Brighteyes and they take off. Terra and Beast Boy feel they don’t own anyone nothing, so they also go away. The rest decide to trust Caitlin for now; she promises she can fix them. They’ve been so messed up they don’t even remember their lives before The Colony, but Caitlin has seen their files before they were taken, so perhaps she has a shot at making things right.

Anyway, the Ravagers Rose Wilson and Warblade hunt down Windshear and Brighteyes. Windshear’s power is flying and Brighteye’s power is blinding people with a flash of light from her eyes, so yeah, they’re captured.

Meanwhile, Caitlin’s group runs into a security detail from N.O.W.H.E.R.E., but they aren’t there to hunt the kids down. They never wanted to work for the organization; they were just following orders. They try to surrender, but Thunder won’t have any of it. She’s too mad at anyone from N.O.W.H.E.R.E., and also she’s a psychopath after all her time in The Colony, so she convinces her brother Lightning to help her attack the unarmed men. Soon all the other kids join in the punching action. Caitlin is about to power up to stop her kids- but she defuses the situation using her words, and convinces the kids to not become the killers their captors wanted them to be. After that, Caitlin manages to hack a ship, but it gets taken down by the Ravagers. Warblade and Rose start slaughtering the children around them – Warblade is savage like that! Some of the children were surrendering — and then they start going towards Caitlin’s group. Caitlin is forced to think fast. She uses Thunder’s power of shooting a ray beam from his chest to break the ground around them and separate them from the Ravagers, but this causes the good guys to drop down towards Antarctica’s frozen waters!

Luckily, they all land safely. Ridge’s monster body can breathe underwater, so he uses his tail as a rudder to propel the chunk of ice the group is on, and they head towards a ship. Meanwhile, Harvest wastes no time and sets up a new base in the Hhentii mountains, Mongolia. While Warblade and Rose bring in their captures Windshear and Brighteyes, they discuss how Harvest has plans within plans. It seems he planned everything, from his Culling failing to the kids escaping to ordering the Ravagers to capture them back. He wants to test his kids in the real world, kind of like that time Ivana took the DV8 to New York. The Ravagers take the kids to “Keeper” — a guy who look like a robot with a baby protruding from his chest who seems to control the adult body. He tells them the capture of Caitlin has been assigned to Shadow Walker, Harvest’s first recruit. We keep seeing new people in Harvest’s team. Harvest explains he wants Caitlin to spread his children across the globe, but he doesn’t want her to guide them to the path of goodness and ruin his plans.

Back with the heroes – when the ship’s crew notices they have intruders they point guns at Lightning, and this drives Thunder crazy so all the kids start attacking back. They end up almost sinking the ship they were depending on. After all that’s over, they travel for seven hours to Seattle. Caitlin scolds the kids for going crazy, so Thunder and Lightning get mad and run away. They only know things as they were on the Colony – you either killed or got killed.

Being on their own, the brothers become easy pickings for Shadow Walker. He reveals he hid a piece of his shadow body within all the kids from The Colony, so he can track any of them. Caitlin doesn’t have a piece, though, so Shadow Walker tells Lightning she must lead him to Cait if she wants to see her brother again. She agrees, walks up to Caitlin and Ridge and backstabs them. When she’s taken to Thunder, though, he doesn’t want to escape.

He says they aren’t going anywhere without their teammates. Lightning “sees the light” and apologizes for betraying them, just in time for Shadow Walker to explain he can influence and manipulate anyone with a piece of his shadow in them. This convenient explanation frees Lightning of any guilt: she was controlled! Filled with a desire for vengeance, Lightning supercharges Shadow Walker and makes him explode. Damn, that’s brutal. Caitlin starts fearing perhaps the release of the kids was part of a plan to unleash them upon an unsuspecting world. Continue reading Ravagers issues 1 – 4 and Superboy Vol.6 issue 13

The Culling

This entry covers the entire “The Culling” crossover, in this order:

  • Superboy Vol.6 issue 7
  • Teen Titans Vol.4 issues 7 – 8
  • Superboy Vol.6 issue 8
  • Legion Lost Vol.2 issue 8
  • Teen Titans Vol.4 Annual 1
  • Superboy Vol.6 issue 9
  • Legion Lost Vol.2 issue 9 and
  • Teen Titans Vol.4 issue 9

written by Scott Lobdell and Tom Defalco.

Wildstorm concepts: WildCATS - Warblade StormWatch - Fuji Gen13 - Grunge Gen13 - Caitlin Fairchild

All-star WesternThe Culling is a long crossover between the series of Superboy, Teen Titans and Legion Lost, bringing together the storylines these books had been developing since the beginning.

Picking up where we left off, Superboy gets tired of all the mysteries and secrecy around him and starts trashing N.O.W.H.E.R.E. again. He’s stopped by Rose Wilson, a mercenary tasked with taking Superboy down if he ever lost control. What these two don’t know is they’re are also prime Ravagers candidates. Rose is also the daughter of Deathstroke, the Team 7 member, and although it isn’t revealed yet, she’s a metahuman. She has the ability to dampen other people’s powers, making her the perfect candidate for stopping Superboy, should the need ever come.

After Superboy’s outburst the organization deems him a failed project and decides to dispose of him, but the Teen Titans break into the place to rescue him. This was exactly what Harvest needed; to have all these youngling together for their capture. The big boss appears and stops the Titans, dealing with all of them at once. He sends the Titans to The Colony to be tested against all the other captured teenagers, but he leaves Superboy in the laboratories. He decides to give him another chance at becoming an effective weapon under the tutelage of one of his Ravagers: Grunge!

The Grunge of this timeline is like a dark, twisted version of our old Percival. This Grunge hates to be treated like a joke, reacting violently to it, as if he hated to be reminded of what he used to be in the old universe. Like the original, he used to need to touch things to gain their properties, but after he won a Culling and became a Ravager, N.O.W.H.E.R.E. filled his body with technological implants to amplify his abilities. By the time he meets Superboy he’s a full-fledged metamorph, capable of turning into anything just by thinking about it.

Superboy isn’t too thrilled about learning how to be a stone cold killer, so he fights against Grudge and the brawl turns so violent that he’s forced to kill Grunge to survive. Harvest is impressed; it seems Superboy wasn’t such a failed project after all. He decides to send Superboy to The Colony with the Titans, and to let Rose occupy the new vacancy in the Ravagers. At the same time, Caitlin wakes up in the hospital after N.O.W.H.E.R.E. captured her and fired her. Still worried about all the kids in danger, he rushes to The Colony, hoping to make it in time.

The Legion of Superheroes is captured shortly after, when Harvest sends seven members of the Ravagers to retrieve them. Now that all the teenagers are in The Colony, this year’s Culling is ready to begin. It is a very convoluted story with a ridiculous amount of characters, so here’s the breakdown:

Teen Titans

The Legion

Kids from the Colony

The Ravagers
(also called The Thirteen)

Red Robin (leader)
Skitter
Wonder Girl
Kid Flash
Solstice
Superboy
Bunker
Tyroc (leader)
Gates
Dawnstar
Timber Wolf
Tellus
Wildfire
Chameleon Girl
First Point
Thunder
Lightning
Beast Boy
Terra
Artemis
Warblade (leader)
Fuji
Crush
Misbelief
Hammersmith
Rose Wilson
Windstrom
Psykill
Omen
Leash
Templar
Ridge
Centerhall

 

Map of the ColonyYeah, it’s a cast of 33 characters, and that’s not even counting Harvest and Caitlin. It seems very random that they would include two Wildstorm characters among the Ravagers, especially considering they don’t retain anything about their old personalities or backgrounds. Fuji doesn’t even get any dialogue and Warblade doesn’t look at all like his WSU version, and that’s strange when you consider he was specially designed by Jim Lee.

Despite the amount of characters and dialogue throughout the story, things develop in a fairly traditional way. Harvest sends the Teen Titans against the Legion of Superheroes, but after an initial conflict both teams decide to work together against their shared enemy. The Ravagers are sent after them, but the heroes manage to triumph. As it turns out, Harvest didn’t send all of his men – we’ll see in following books that he kept several powerful agents under his sleeve. He actually planned for The Culling to fail! Indeed, the Legion sabotages the facility’s power core, so the place starts crumbling down. While Caitlin helps all the kidnapped kids escape, the main cast faces Harvest, but he’s so powerful that they end up having to flee away.

Caitlin knows all of the freed metahumans won’t have an easy time learning how to survive in the real world after so many years in the Colony, so she decides to help them. This leads to a new series, “Ravagers”.

Next: Ravagers issues 1 – 4 and Superboy Vol.6 issue 13, written by Howard Mackie and Tom DeFalco.

 

Grifter Vol.3 issues 9 – 12

Plot by Rob Liefeld, dialogue by Frank Tieri

Wildstorm Concepts:       Deathblow WildCATS - Grifter WildCATS - Helspont WildCATS - Daemonites

All-star Western.png         Liefeld takes over the writing duties, and the book becomes much more insane. We start off in the middle of an intense chase as Cole escapes from huge red daemonites. He’s showing superhuman shooting abilities, as his Chosen One powers keep on developing. He gets in a rough spot against an alien when he’s saved by Niko (Chesire), who is included into the cast for no clear reason. She explains to him that the daemonites aren’t just against him; they are doing a full-fledged alien invasion, and there exists a resistance who works against them. This is actually a branch of Warick’s resistance, but this won’t be revealed until later.

After Cole agrees to join their efforts he’s told that the daemonites are unleashing their “warrior class daemonites,” the red guys, because they’re preparing a big final invasion… and because they want to eliminate the Chosen One. This is the first Grifter hears about the Chosen One, and he thinks it’s the stupidest thing he’s ever heard. He’s even more amused to hear that the Chosen One is supposed to be him, a guy who’s spent his whole life cheating, lying and stealing from people. How does Niko know that Cole is the Chosen One, or that he’s a grifter? Something is up. Still, Grifter and Niko go to a rendezvous point, where they meet some allies, including Deathblow! In this timeline he doesn’t have any of his old background, yet he keeps his old look for some reason, like his Team 7 red marks.

As Cole and his new team of ragtag soldiers attempts to move to a new safe house, they’re intercepted by daemonites and their transport is destroyed. They get surrounded, so Cole is forced to awaken his Chosen One abilities: He can now read anyone’s mind and control objects through telekinesis. He’s even able to lift a dozen warrior daemonites and his truck into the air at the same time, throwing them off a cliff and saving the day.

The group reaches their safehouse, even though only Grifter, Niko, Deathblow and a guy named Buck survived. Cole is starting to suspect there’s a traitor among them: how could the daemonites know how to find them? Before they can discuss it, though, the safehouse is destroyed by a huge daemonite with human shape who calls himself Synge.

Although Synge never explains his origins; we learn later that daemonites originally looked human, so we can guess he’s ancient and a tough sucker. The good guys can barely scratch him, and Buck gets killed. In the end Cole manages to lead him to a nearby forest, where he puts the limit of his telekinesis to test and throws the entire forest on top of Synge. There’s no time to celebrate, though, as Niko reveals she was the traitor and shoots Cole and Deathblow down. She’s not being controlled by a daemonite; she simply sold herself out because she wants to be in the winning side. She takes them to her master, Helspont, and even Synge turns out to have survived.

Helspont is cheerful that the one threat he was constantly warned about, the Chosen One, is now captured by him. We find out that he started a secret faction, secretly helping the other daemonites with their invasion so that he’ll take the planet from them once they invade it. He’s also gotten a new stylish armour, apparently. Wishing to test Cole, he sets up a fake ship through psychic illusions and deals with him in this fake environment. He asks Cole to join him in taking the other daemonites down, but Cole just laughs. He had figured out Niko early on, so he let himself be captured to get close enough to the big bad to kick his ass. He claims he had even held back against Synge (even though his thoughts clearly showed he hadn’t). Anyhow, Deathblow fights against Niko while Cole goes against Helspont. He’s able to get Synge out of the way with a mere movement of his hand, and he overpowers Helspont psychically without much of an effort.

In the end, Cole kicks Helspont’s butt. At one point Helspont is so hurt that he starts looking like a regular daemonite, without his flame; but we’ll learn later that Helspont’s true face looks human, so this must have been a show put on by Helspont, considering this is all an illusion, to give Grifter hopes. Deathblow sets the ship to self-destruct and the good guys get on an escape pod. Of course, the entire time they had been inside a fake ship constructed by Helspont, so I guess only the escape pod was real? Helspont is satisfied; now he knows what he’s dealing with. The way he tested Cole is very similar to the way he tested Superman in “Superman”. He lets Grifter go; he’s not scared of his “Chosen One” abilities anymore, so he’s better off on Earth exterminating the daemonites who don’t work for Helspont. His true plan begins now.

Next: “I, Vampire” issues 12 – 13, written by Joshua Hale Fialkov.