Thursday, November 05, 2009

Doom Patrol #98

As the story begins, the Chief summons the Doom Patrol to his office to announce that he is disbanding the team. His hope was that he could remold the three of them into a team of heroes that the world would admire and respect. But instead they are still looked upon as freaks and outcasts. When Cliff mentions the lives they've saved and the criminals they've locked up:

But the trio has no intention of disbanding no matter what the Chief decides, so they create their own hideaway, shown here:

But they don't realize that the Chief fired them because he had only ten days left to live, reasoning that their anger at him would inspire them to show him wrong. We get our first look at the villain of the piece here:

That's a pretty ugly costume. The 103 apparently refers to the number of elements in the periodic table (at the time, although apparently we're now up to 118). Mr 103 turns out to have the ability to change parts of his body into any element. As you can probably guess, this gives the opportunity for lots of chemistry information to be shoehorned into the story:

The DP goes back to the Chief to see if he can give them a lead on the identity of Mr 103, and discovers him near death. But he is able to give them a ray that will freeze the criminal no matter what element he changes into. And they force the Element Man to rescue the Chief from his fatal disease.

Comments: Entertaining story, and good artwork; the main negative is that the villain is a bit on the trite side. It also makes me wonder if we'll ever see that backup headquarters again.

The second story is about Negative Man's attempt to prevent a nuclear war. Some terrorists have hidden four nukes in the US and Russia.

But the last bomb explodes and the only hope is for the President to get on the "hot line" to the USSR. But there is a break in the cable, and only Negative Man can repair it:

Comments: Kind of a filler story, with most of the Doom Patrol sitting around doing nothing but watching. We are never told who the mysterious terrorists are or for whom they are working. It's notable mostly for featuring Bob Brown artwork, rather than the usual Bruno Premiani.