Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Justice League Dream Team #5

Firestorm (Ronnie Raymond and Dr. Martin Stein)

As adaptable as Green Lantern but in a completely different way, we have the original Firestorm, the Nuclear Man! Limited enhanced strength and invulnerability wrapped up with high speed flight and the ability to transmute anything to any other thing at the atomic level. Who else can deal with a barrage of missiles by turning them into petunias in pretty vases? Zatanna maybe, but she’d do it with MAGIC, Firestorm does it with SCIENCE! This brings me to the next part of what makes Firestorm unique and solidifies his place on the League. He’s a combination of Ronnie Raymond, confident college student, and Dr. Martin Stein, seasoned professor of physics. He’s got youthful exuberance combined with the advice of a learned man of science and of the world. A fine addition to the Big Show.

Oh, look, we agreed again. Yippee.

To be honest, when I first proposed the whole "dream team" idea to Tate, Firestorm was the first person to pop into my head as a must-have member. My first introduction to Ronnie and the Professor was The Fury of Firestorm #4; there was no way I could turn down a cover like this:

Inside that issue I got to see young Ronnie struggling with some tough decisions, weighing what he knows was right with what he thought was best, a struggle that brought him into conflict with the JLA; a conflict that was almost over before it began when he encase Superman in a globe of Kryptonite and Zatanna in a globe of lead.

Did I mention this was a couple of hundred feet over the ocean when he did this?

The other League members rushed to free the others, and then swarmed back to confront the rash young hero (was *this* close to calling him a hot-head), only to find him floating there, face in hands, crying his eyes out.

Now, I can't tell you exactly what was going through my 7 year old mind when I read that story and saw a hero who was pushed to do the wrong thing and instantly regretted it and strove to make up for it, but I can tell you one thing: I was a Firestorm fan from then on.

Again, what can I say when there's no controversy? I may not have the emotional connection to Firestorm that Todd does due to comics, but I have it from television. I read mostly Marvel when I was a kid, but I watched Superfriends religiously. That's where I met Firestorm. He just seemed like a heckuva good idea. He got the advice from his "parent" but he was in the driver's seat and didn't have to listen if he didn't want to. However, he was a good kid and usually listened even if he did talk back a bit. There's a good lesson there. Since then, I've enjoyed Firestorm in the comics (except for this latest series...it’s not the Firestorm I know AND I'm already buying way too much of DC's line), especially that bit in Crisis where Killer Frost ends up loving him. Absolutely classic.

1 comment:

Jeff_W said...

Tate, there's no such thing as buying too much of DC's line, unless you're buying that new Nightwing, which I know you're not.