WSU VS. THE WILD STORM 21

The Wild Storm 021-000I know, the main point of this blog is to talk about the continuity of WildStorm Universe as it was from ’92 – ’11… but I really like doing this compare and contrast thing! Admittedly, I have no idea where Ellis and Davis-Hunt are going with this new series, and honestly, I couldn’t be more on board with what they and their team are bringing. I just thought I’d have some fun, point out some of the references/differences from the old WSU to the latest issues of “the Wild Storm” that came out a few weeks ago.

 

New vs. Old

Angie’s Communication Nodes
AuthorityComms_tWSIn the old WSU Angie created communication nodes for each member of the Authority so they could easily connect to each other telepathically. We see her doing this again, but only with Shen. We already know that she can communicate by thought with Jenny too. I wonder if Shen and Jenny can share thoughts now too. Also, these new communication nodes look a lot less sinister than the old ones!
AuthorityComms_WSU

New and What We Don’t Know

What did Jackie Find that was “Scary A.F.”?
ScaryAFIn Jackie’s search for how Angie confiscated classified objects from I.O., she comes across a small round swirly disc that Angie had labeled as “Scary A.F.” Jackie seems to get a reading on the scanner for this and looks alarmed. Unfortunately, we the reader are not let in on exactly what it was.

Who Exactly is Ivana Talking To?
IvanaTurncoatSeveral issues ago I wasn’t sure if the person on the phone with Ivana would play into anything, or they were just there for some expository dialogue. Now we know for sure, she’s talking to another major player… but we still don’t know who it is! My bets are on Ragnar Helspont at Skywatch… maybe Sideways Bob.

Answers

How Angie Snuck Her Research Out of I.O.
In rummaging around in one of I.O.’s many storage rooms, we see Jackie King holding something that looks like a bone. Then it goes all, I don’t know, pedal-y or something, and her scanner can’t recognize what it is. I’m also not sure exactly what it is… at first I thought it might be the bone of a dead Khera, but it could be something disguised as a bone… not sure. The later may explain more how Angie used that kind of tech to get stuff out of I.O. though.

Jenny Putting it All Together
JennyGetsItRight

If you haven’t been paying any attention to the series as a whole, Jenny just lays out exactly what is going on:

One Last Thing

Ben Santini’s Big Day Out
SantinisBigDayOut

He really does seem like such a lovable guy, right up until he is sharpening his blades and looking a picture of Jackie King.

Where to find this issue:

More issue comparisons of the old WildStorm Universe to “The Wild Storm.”

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WSU vs. the Wild Storm 19 & 20

I know, the main point of this blog is to talk about the continuity of WildStorm Universe as it was from ’92 – ’11… but I really like doing this compare and contrast thing! Admittedly, I have no idea where Ellis and Davis-Hunt are going with this new series, and honestly, I couldn’t be more on board with what they and their team are bringing. I just thought I’d have some fun, point out some of the references/differences from the old WSU to the latest issues of “the Wild Storm” that came out a few weeks ago.

New vs Old

Apollo

Apollo-tWSApollo-WSUAs we all assumed, the mystery duo was indeed Midnighter and Apollo, but yeah there are some twists on these old favorites. With Apollo, he’s still a sun-god type, he’s still in a relationship with Midnighter, and he’s still the more positive one of the two. The biggest change is his hair color. Gone are the platinum blond locks, but hey, he still has that solar halo!

Midnighter
Midnighter-tWSMidnighter-WSUThe new Midnighter may or may not have the same power as the WSU version. Yeah, we see him say “I won this fight the second I looked at you” which is reminiscent of how Midnighter would quickly size up an opponent and fight them a million times in his state of the art computer brain to know exactly how to beat them.

AbsolutlyNotChrisTrent-tWSChrisTrent-WSUWe don’t know if this Midnighter has those computer upgrades, but I think it is safe to assume he does. In and out of the mask is also a big change for various reasons. Either way, he still feels like the Midnighter that Ellis used to write way back in The Authority and StormWatch.

Ben Santini
Santini-tWS
Santini-WSUAfter being name-checked in issue 4, Santini makes his way to The Wild Storm. Much like the former version he’s working for I.O. Also, he’s visibly injured. The old WSU version had a bum leg thanks to Emp, so it’ll be interesting if we find that this version of Santini gained his scars due to a run in (unknowingly or not) with Jacob. This new version of Santini seems to be a lot more of a bastard than the former one though.

Shaper Engine / Planet Shapers
In The Wild Storm, the Shaper Engine is what the Daemon uses to create beings, like Jenny Mei Sparks, that will help guide humanity past the Gaian Bottleneck but also keep the Khera in line. In the old WSU, we also had Shaper machines, they were Kheran and much different, more a terra-forming thing than a life creating machine that was left on Earth by the Kheran Shapers Guild. I only mention it because I don’t think the name “Shaper Engine” was used coincidentally.

Earth Post Khera Occupation / Alternate Earth the Four Visited
postEarth-tWS
One of the former doctors shows Shen what Earth would look like once the Khera are done with it. It looks a lot like what that alternate Earth looked like that the Four visited in “Planetary” where they got their powers.
PlanetaryAltEarth-WSU

New and What We Don’t Know

All of Jenny’s History
We’re starting to get some glimpses into Jenny’s history, but there is still so much we don’t know. We have a good idea on what happened in 1952 (the Radar Men) and then she spent time with Orson Wells, Rita Hayworth, and Albert Hoffman before going to Mars in 1955. We know there’s so much more there and I can’t wait to read more of it!

Skywatch Abduction?
Apollo is watching a video with a man talking of an entire town being abducted. While Midnighter thinks this might be a bit brazen for Skywatch, he doesn’t rule out that Skywatch would kidnap an entire small town.

Answers

Mission on Mars in 1955
Skywatch’s mission was to start making Mars habitable. They did have to build underground facilities as to not freak out the common man though. It was step one of a multi-step plan that Bendix hasn’t been able to fully enact due to the treaties Skywatch has with I.O.

The True Mission of the Khera
The mission was to find a planet full of people, which is hard in this universe, and get them to be a slave species to help get the Khera to a better, more hospitable universe.

Jacob’s Goals
We know that Jacob was trying to lift humanity up, but now we know why, he eventually did not believe that humans should be slaves to the Khera. He wanted them to be more of a companion species to share the galaxy with! Now he’s using Khera tech to aid humanity and move them both, further along, to get past the Gaian Bottleneck. He either wants us all to go back into space and share our galaxy or just wants continue the great work on Earth to the better universe with him and the Khera.

Seemingly Unaffiliated Khera
The don’t agree with Jacob’s scrubbing of the mission to enslave Earth. Many of them seem to feel stranded on the Earth with nothing better to do. Without enough Khera working to get humanity enslaved to get to the next universe, they might as well make the best of a bad situation and get drunk at LA bars. These Khera has often dropped their disguise and are the inspiration of many religions.

The Daemon’s Goals
The goal of the Daemon is just to stop the Khera. The Daemon preceded the Khera to Earth and set up the shaper engine to create versions of humans to thwart a Khera take over. The Daemon does not want to see humanity used as slaves by the Khera and it also tries to influence humanity in other ways, as we can see with Pris.

The Daemon and the Khera
The Khera used to call the Daemon “the Other” which makes me think that the Daemon is the only other possible alien race that the Khera have tried to use in the way they were originally sent to Earth to use. The Daemon will do anything to help Earth and piss off the Khera, but it’s more out of bringing a universal balance. The Khera using other species is a big no-go for the Daemon.

Lucy and the word “Code”
AnotherCode-tWS

Picture of Lucy, the word “code” and a mention of religions. This is the third time. I think this is leading to a “Coda” revelation. Or it’ll be called “Code A” or something in this new universe.

DCU Connections

Infinite Crisis, Central City & Darkseid
media-tWS

In the world of The Wild Storm, we once again find DCU lore used as entertainment. This time it is a movie named “Infinite Crisis” named after the big DCU crossover event from ’05-’06, a mention of Central City from that film, which in the DCU is where the Silver Age Flash lived, and finally Darkseid, the antagonist of the “Infinite Crisis” film named after one of the DCU’s greatest evildoers.

Earth Post Khera Occupation / Apokolips
You know how earlier I said that Earth Post-Khera would look like that alternate Earth in Planetary… well both are actually a reference to the planet Apokolips created by Jack Kirby. Thank you to the handful of readers that pointed this out!
Apokolips

Previously mentioned but featured again: News organizations GBS and the Daily Planet, Wonder Woman bedsheets, Dr. Midnite cigarettes, and the “Paul Kirk: Manhunter” movie series.

One Last Thing

The more we go on in this book, the more and more we are breaking out of the 9 panel/3rd page layouts and even seeing the white border/gutter color change or being dropped altogether.

Jon Goes Crazy
Just try to tell me this doesn’t remind you of old skool Image!

Where to find these stories:

More issue comparisons of the old WildStorm Universe to “The Wild Storm.”

“WildC.A.T.s” Vol. 1 issues 31 – 34

This entry covers “WildC.A.T.s : Covert Action Teams” volume one issues 31 through 34 by Alan Moore, Jim Lee, Travis Charest, Josh Wiesenfeld, Mat Broome, Pat Lee, Rob Stotz, Richard Bennett, Trevor Scott, Jason Gorder, Troy Hubbs, Scott Taylor, JD, and Sandra Hope.

wildcats_v1_031Back to the blog! Back to old school WildStorm Universe continuity! Back to the WildC.A.T.s! Back to the Crime War! That’s right, even during the “Fire from Heaven” crossover, the new team of WildC.A.T.s were involved in a war against various mob bosses in New York City. The war was getting bigger and the rookies from StormWatch, along with Fuji, were being enlisted to help TAO and company fight those mobsters.

Leading us through what is going on is our old buddy Cole Cash, who’s just woken up from a crazy psychedelic dream he had about his old friend Michael Cray. We see the now awake Cole checking in with TAO and Savant as they direct the teams, we see Maxine and Zannah fighting about, well fighting, we even see Spartan become more and more like John Colt and how he would like to rekindle the romance that he once had with Zannah. This last one is a gut punch to Cole.

wildcats_v1_032Meanwhile, we see that the Mercs have been hired by the mob. They’ve taken a handful of hostages, one who swears he shouldn’t be there. Yep, it’s the surprising return of Vic Lazarr! Remember him from all the way back at the President’s Restaurant job and the bombing of Clark’s Bar? Sure you did! You know who else remembers? That’s right, Maxine! And she’s pretty confused as to why he’s a hostage, shouldn’t he be working again the WildC.A.T.s instead of being detained by the Mercs? Not that she gets too much time to think it through quickly, as it is time for her to meet the ace up the Mercs’ sleeve, Overtkill! A giant cyborg, that as much as Maxine wants to kill, she also wants to date. She kind of fangirls out on him, and he takes it in stride. Rather a nice guy for a homicidal mercenary robot son-of-a-bitch.

MaxineSpotsHerMark

While trading shots, Cole and Deathtrap get to talking. There’s no real reason why they’re fighting as the Mercs didn’t even bomb Clark’s Bar. The boys call a truce to talk it out. At this same time, Maxine manages to rip out Overtkill’s gyroscope, therefore putting him out of the picture, and then zeroing in on Lazarr. She gets him to spill the dirt on TAO, and Cole is there to hear it. The Mercs back off, as this is now a family problem for the WildC.A.T.s and the Crime War is pretty much done.

wildcats_v1_033As the remaining team (plus Fuji) talk it over, they decide that TAO is too dangerous to let live, and he needs to be taken out quickly. In the ambush on TAO, Savant ends up getting shot as she used her Seven League boots to enter the room too quickly for Cole to see her coming. While Zannah is attending to Savant’s injuries, the rest split up to better take out TAO. This proves to be a bit dangerous to those who didn’t follow the buddy system.

Fuji is the first to find TAO, but TAO evades capture from Fuji by tricking him mentally, putting his mind into a loop. When Maxine finds TAO he manages to get close enough to her to unhook the cooling system of the nuclear reactor that powers her body. So yeah, she’s going into meltdown. The only one that can save her is Majestic.

wildcats_v1_034After Mr. Majestic saves Maxine, by disconnecting her body and flying it out into space before the explosion, he vaporizes TAO. Why did it have to be Majestic? Well, no one else could pull the trigger on TAO. Seriously, the guy has the cure to all the problems in the world in his head. Even if he’s a world class dick if he’s the man that has the answers no right-thinking person would kill him. Despite Majestic being a “right-thinking person” like the rest of the WildC.A.T.s, he’s also the only one for whom TAO actions are personal, who in any state to do a thing about it. Majestic feels responsible for the new team, with Max missing and Maxine and Savant incapacitated, it is up to him to clean up the team’s final mess, TAO. Majestic fires up his laser eyes, baby, and blows TAO to atoms.

Later, for whatever reason, the team holds a funeral for TAO. It is a ceremonial funeral and burial due to TAO having been blowed-up real good. He’s technically the first team member to die, so there’s a bit of a somber “I guess we should do this” feel about it. Savant and Majestic hobble out to the service and quite fittingly dance on the grave of TAO as well as their version of the WildC.A.T.s.

DanceTime

Continuity Corner

  • By this count, the WildStorm Universe has lost 4 of the major villains that would define the entire line. First Helspont bites it at the end of “WildC.A.T.s” volume one issue #4, then the man we all knew as Kaizen Gamorra and Miles Craven end up dead by the end of “Fire from Heaven” and now TAO is gone. Of course, Helspont comes back in fits and spurts, and the real Kaizen Gamorra reveals himself, but TAO stays “dead” or at least underground for a long long time. Only Craven gets the short end of the stick on this front.
  • So yeah, TAO isn’t dead, as we’ll come to find out in “WildC.A.T.s” volume one issue 50. Turns out that it was actually Mr. White posing as TAO by the time that Mr. Majestic encountered him.
  • We’ll also see in “Sleeper : Season Two” issue 5 that Lynch tried to warn them about TAO and his cleverness, to the point where he called Cole to tell him it was very possible that TAO survived them eye-beams.
  • We see TAO at Clark’s in issue #38 of “StormWatch” volume one, which I assume was probably being published during this arc without knowing of the final outcome and TAO’s villainy. I guess it could be a bit of a continuity error that we see him alive and out and about because he is supposedly dead, even if we will know he’s been alive the whole time. We can’t really push this “WildC.A.T.s” arc after this issue of “StormWatch” because most of the StormWatch members fighting in the Crime War are fired in “StormWatch” volume one issue #37. So yeah… tiny looking error, that’s not really an error, but takes years to reveal in-universe why it’s not an error.
  • Speaking of StormWatch, we never really see Fuji out of commision for too terribly long as it was speculated he would be. I guess his non-traditional physiology worked in his favor and he was a quicker mental healer than expected.
  • Mr. Majestic saving Maxine, and her calling him “a dad” sets up one of my favorite relationships in the WildStorm Universe. The only real follow up was in “Mr. Majestic” issue #3, but it was awesome enough.
  • Not to mention that Majestic is literally the dad of someone on the new WildC.A.T.s team as well.
  • I figure the only reason why Cole, who quit the team in “WildC.A.T.s” volume one issue #20, is back with the team, is that he has decided to repay the favor to the ‘C.A.T.s helping out him and his Team 7 buddies on Gamorra by helping them end this war on crime.
  • MysteryMercHey, who was this new woman with the Mercs? The one in the mech suit. Did they say her name? I seriously couldn’t find it. I double checked and everything. She seems badass and we never see her again! Half the time it seemed like she was a Razor redesign based on the accent and relationship to Deathtrap, that is until we see the actual Razor a page later. So who in the hell was she? A character from before that I’ve forgotten all about? She doesn’t seem to appear again after this. Even Hellslayer manages to keep making cameos for years after the Mercs’ heyday, so why not this woman? Seriously… who the heck is she?

NEXT: “Gen12” issues 1 and 2 by Brandon Choi, Michael Ryan, Sal Regla, Luke Rizzo, Armando Durruthy, John Tighe and Peter Guzman

WSU vs. the Wild Storm 18

The Wild Storm 18I know, the main point of this blog is to talk about the continuity of WildStorm Universe as it was from ’92 – ’11… but I really like doing this compare and contrast thing! Admittedly, I have no idea where Ellis and Davis-Hunt are going with this new series, and honestly, I couldn’t be more on board with what they and their team are bringing. I just thought I’d have some fun, point out some of the references/differences from the old WSU to the new book “the Wild Storm” that came out a week ago. 

 

New vs. Old

Seemingly Unaffiliated Khera
DrunkKhera
So we see two Khera at an outdoor bar in Los Angeles. They look to be in their native forms, and can also, either naturally or via some unseen tech, fly under the radar of everyone around them. I mean they are able to be seen and heard enough to order drinks it seems, but other than that they are hidden. These two remind me a lot of the Wild Storm version of John Cole in that they’re trying to enjoy the finer things Earth has to offer, but unlike him, they don’t work for or with Jacob anymore. Interesting. In the old WSU we didn’t meet many Kherubims who hid from Emp and the other WildC.A.T.s. Some of them didn’t join up right away (Majestros, Mythos & Eve,) others antagonized them (Promethos), but mostly there wasn’t any Kherubim hiding in the fringes avoiding Emp and Co while trying to save the Earth in their own way.

New and What We Don’t Know

Slayton’s New Mission
Lynch has pointed Slayton at I.O. in New York. Not sure how this is going to play out. Back in the old WSU Lynch never seemed to have this much authority over Slayton. How will Slayton pull off his new mission to kill Miles, I’ve very curious to see this one!

Ella on the Train
EllaBlackBetty.jpgWho is this woman on the train that Michael is speaking to? Is she going to be a major or minor player? Or just a single serving friend for Michael as he passes the time on the train. I really don’t think it’s a new version of the old WSU character Elizabeth Rowan AKA Black Betty from “StormWatch PHD” but I could be wrong. She’s the only old WSU character that I could think of that could go by “Ella” for short.

Drunk Kheras Motivation
Back to those two vodka swilling Khera in LA. The motivations of these two remain a mystery. They want the Earth to survive to have a chance at life. They are also trying to balance the Khera influence between Jacob’s “The Earth will not be a slave camp” and Lucy’s “Die in a fire, buddy!” sides as well as from I.O. and Skywatch. Is the only reason they want life on Earth to be safe is for the possibility of a slave planet? Other than anti-Jacob, what are Lucy’s true plans and motivation? Do those Khera just hate her because she’s working with the humans, even if towards the same goal?

Answers

King Giving Shit to Craven
BasicAssMiles
I don’t know about the rest of you, but man, didn’t Jackie King just sound so much like Jackson King in these first two pages? When Jackie is being light-hearted she’s a lot different than the former WSU version of Jackson King, but when they get mad when they want results, and when they get angry, oh yeah, that’s the J. King I remember! Wasn’t sure where we were going with this character, but oh man, is she ever a new version of Jackson King!

Dr. Ragnar Helspont
This dude looks pretty human to me! It remains to be seen if he’s Daemon, Khera or possibly Acurian posing as a human as we’ve seen the Khera being able to do. Although we do know that Dr. Helspont has helped in the creation of some of Skywatch’s superpowered “agents.” And we’ve seen the Mayor/Hawksmoor lament that he may just be an upgraded human, made to be able to live on a slave camp of a planet… hmmm… slave camp planet, eh? Where have we heard that before? Signs are pointing to Ragnar being Khera, wanting to fulfill the original Khera plan on Earth, and using Bendix and Skywatch to achieve those ends.

DrRHelspont
At least his hair is pretty wild.

“Heaven’s Box” is Skywatch
I mean, I should’ve guessed this, but hey, I’m only willing to make so many crazy leaps in logic per write up!

Superpowered Skywatch Agents on Earth
So we now kind of know the answer to several characters we’ve found in the past several issues. The diner kid, Slayton’s Skywatch victim, the (ahem) mystery duo and the Mayor are all people that Skywatch has given powers to in one way or another of the course of several years. Bendix has them run around on Earth so that they can’t get at him easily. Maybe that’s another reason that he doesn’t like being stuck on Earth for too long.

Michael Cray’s Khera Implant Activation
Well, I wasn’t expecting an answer on Michael’s Khera Implant so soon, but yeah, it seems like he was implanted by I.O. way back under Dr. Helspont. The crazy doc seems to think that it was Jacob’s spur that finally jumpstarted the Khera awake inside Michael. Looking at the “Michael Cray” comic I guess we can put together that when he was at injured “in the desert” and being patched up by I.O. is when he got the Khera DNA implant.

Something is Indeed Different about Lynch
Andrew Kwok said it first, that Lynch’s brain was weird. Now Slayton is saying that something smells wrong about Lynch. We’ve yet to see Lynch exhibit any superpowers, just a lot of cowboy/action hero badassery!

The Halo C.A.T. is Headed Out on a Mission
CATsAssemble

While we don’t see where they’re going, we get a pretty great page of the team heading out to keep more crazy technology out of I.O.’s hands. The last panel just feels like vintage WildC.A.T.s to me. I’m not sure who all will agree with me on that, but damn, that panel is the type of stuff that would get me excited about a comic in only the way WildC.A.T.s could.

The Authority is Here!
AllNewAllDifferentAuthority

Angie has left the Halo team and joined up with Jenny, Shen and the Mayor. I also like how Angie calls Hawksmoor on looking way too much like the Mayor… A cleaned up Hawksmoor can’t change his look too terribly much. Also, nice to know that Angie knew the Mayor!

Lucy’s Rejection of Jacob
We learn from the Khera at the bar that Jacob didn’t want to go through with the original plan of turning Earth into a slave camp. We don’t know exactly why Jacob made that choice. We also don’t really know why this choice pissed off Lucy so damn much. So yeah, we kind of get closer on figuring out what Jacob didn’t tell Angie several issues ago, but there’s still so much more to learn.

One Last Thing

A bit ago I said that the new version of John Lynch reminded me a lot of Sam Elliot. After a few issues of thinking this, I went straight to the source. Here’s what artist Jon Davis-Hunt had to say:
SamElliotJackLynch

And that’s a wrap on the third story arc! We pretty much have the Authority together, Michael Cray re-entered the narrative, we have the WildC.A.T.s going on missions and getting the Gen13 kids together seems to be on John Lynch’s mind. “The Wild Storm” is such a good set-up book! I hope the final arc ties it all together. I hope we get those spin-offs for Lucy, the WildC.A.T.s and the Authority. Hell, it’s been plenty set up, get me a Gen13 book! Once again, I enjoyed the hell out of it, hope you did too!

More issue comparisons of the old WildStorm Universe to “The Wild Storm.”

WSU vs. Michael Cray 10, 11 & 12

I know, the main point of this blog is to talk about the continuity of WildStorm Universe as it was from ’92 – ’11… but I really like doing this compare and contrast thing, and frankly, looking at the view numbers, you readers do too! Admittedly, I have no idea where Hill, Harris, and Ellis are going with this new series, and honestly, I couldn’t be more on board with what this team is bringing. I just thought I’d go over the final few issues of “Michael Cray.”

New vs. Old

The Khera inside Michael
MikesKheraThis was covered a bit my coverage of the main “the Wild Storm” book, but what has been talking to Michael, and what is indeed in his head is Khera. They are totally different than the Kherubim from the old WSU, these are shapeshifters that can take on a human look, but here we see one that is “naked.” Also, as laid out in “the Wild Storm” is the fact that there are I.O. soldiers that were part of Project Thunderbook that have been given grafts of Khera DNA, resulting in powers and seeing or hearing the Khera talk to them. That’s what we’re seeing represented.

New and What We Don’t Know

How exactly the Khera got inside Michael
MikeMakesAFriend
The Khera claims that he got inside Michael because Michael was “close” when he needed someone, and Michael was a severely injured “disposable” soldier. While this doesn’t exactly track with the other folks we’ve met over in “the Wild Storm” that have some Khera DNA in them, we can make a few inferences. We do see Michael entering some kind of surgery at the hands of the military. I suspect Michael was working for I.O. in some kind of capacity. While we have no idea how long ago this was, it would seem to me that it is post-Lynch running I.O. and Project Thunderbook would be officially closed. This doesn’t mean that there isn’t a way that there wasn’t some Khera DNA still about and somehow got used on Michael. Maybe it was the nefarious Dr. Helspont, or doctor that knew little of what he had on hand and wanted to save Michael at all costs. The reason why I don’t think Lynch and Thunderbook are involved is that he wasn’t on Lynch’s list of people to hunt down that had been I.O. test subjects under him or Thunderbook. Or then again… hear me out… in the old WSU Cray’s powers didn’t activate until much later in his life. This version could’ve been part of Project Thunderbook, was implanted with Khera DNA at some point, but nothing noticeably activated, so Lynch wrote him off, hence why he wasn’t part of Lynch’s personal mission to check up on. Later in life, his power activated, which is when we meet him. It could be that Michael’s near-death experience in the desert is what finally triggered his powers/awakened the Khera inside him. I consider the Khera inside Michael to be a bit of an unreliable narrator, so I’ll only trust what it says to a certain degree. Will any of this be officially resolved in “the Wild Storm?” Maybe. Does it really need to be? Nah, not really.

Answers

Diana was motivated by her father (and his death)
We get a very interesting flashback on Diana Prince and find that most of her motivation in life came from her dying father. He implored her to seek out their Greek gods, and man, she went for it!

Diana is indeed stronger than an average human
While not a demigod like the DC version of the character is, this version of Diana Prince is human. She, however, has become super strong due to using several experimental techniques that she acquired from Alexander Luthor.

Christine gets what she wants
For the only the second time, Michael actually gives Christine what she wants. The only other time Michael got her what she wanted was when she was able to get her hands on Oliver Queen’s company. Barry Allen destroyed all his research, and Michael destroyed everything related to Arthur Curry. So, yeah Christine gets Constantine with a head full of magick and technological know-how, the only thing she has to sacrifice is having Michael on the payroll.
QuittingEPS

Deaths
Ok, I’ll admit to being wrong in the past, and here I was. When this book was starting to come out some folks said “Hey, why are all the villains just twists on DCU characters? Why not have him fight updates on old WSU characters?” and my smart ass response was something like “All the DCU characters are disposable, WSU characters may have plans for future use, thus are not used or are only in minor roles.” For me, this extended to the thought that only old WildStorm characters would be left alive at the end of the series, all DC and new characters were on the potential chopping block. Imagine my extreme surprise when Diana took out Leon, Victoria, and Hector. I also didn’t expect Constantine to survive either. Let’s hear it for shocking developments in comics!

DCU Connections

Alexander Luthor / Lex Luthor
We still have a very bald, very ruthlessly evil businessman version of Lex. Now, to be fair, I’m not as up on the big DC players as I should be. For real, I know a lot more about Zatanna and various Doom Patrol members than I do any of Superman’s supporting cast, but I still think that this version of Lex is pretty much like the one we usually see over in the mainstream DC. The only difference is that this is the result of a Luthor running free without a Superman to distract/stop him.

Bruce Wayne
This is the second reference to Bruce Wayne in this series! The first time was just a passing reference to a boy out East whose parents were shot in an alley being compared to Oliver Queen. This time it was in a conversation with Diana and Alexander and he was explicitly named. It seems this version of Bruce is a corporate genius on the level of Diana and Alexander, and he is a major business rival to Alexander and perhaps more.

Dr. Nelson / Doctor Fate
DrNelsonFateWe meet, for a very short time, Dr. Nelson who is “the Wild Storm” universe version of Dr. Kent Nelson, better known as Doctor Fate, over in the DCU. I kinda thought it was him, but once we were shown Diana crushing the Helmut of Nobu I was sure. Looking at my research it shows that while the current New52 rebooted Dr. Nelson is single, he was indeed married in the post-Crisis iteration of the DCU much like we see here.

One More Thing
MirrorStart
Starting off and ending the series with Michael looking in a mirror is a great call back. It is so organic to both moments that at first, I didn’t catch it. The ending is just so powerful that I was so wrapped up and satisfied emotionally with the story that I didn’t make the connection until I reread the entire series as a whole. Michael also looks in the mirror near the beginning of issue 6, having him spending time in the mirror at the midway point of the series as well. I am a nut for a structure like that.
MirrorEnd

Final Thought
I enjoyed the heck out of this series. I wasn’t sure what to expect going into it. Hell, all I knew was from something that Jim Lee said at the “WildStorm 25th Anniversary” panel at SDCC in 2017. All Lee would tell of the “Michael Cray” book was that Ellis had told Hill that the book needs to be three things: Michael Cray must be killing someone, planning to kill someone, or narrowly avoid being killed by someone, in some combination in every issue. (This is from memory and I could have gotten something mixed up there.) I have to say, yeah, on that front this book delivered! But also Bryan Hill and N. Steven Harris created a character that I truly ended up caring about in very few issues. I get stuck on good characters written and presented well, and that’s what I kept coming back to this book for, and it kept meeting and topping my expectations. Sure, look, I’m a WildStorm fan, but I’m also hard to please. I don’t say something is a “good comic” very often, and I’ll say that “Michael Cray” is a great comic. I can admit, yes, I would’ve bought this book each month and reviewed/compare and contrasted it on this site no matter what. I hoped that it would be good, and I was absolutely delighted that it was better than that. I am sad that I will not be picking up issue 13 next month if I’m being honest. Come on, don’t tell me you wouldn’t want to see that! Michael on the run with an alien in his head and control powers, who is beholden to no higher authority and trying to remain the man he wants to be? I want to read that book, too!

MichaelTheBadAss
A book starring this guy? Oh hell yeah, I’m game!

Other comparisons of the old WildStorm Universe to the new one found in “The Wild Storm” & “Michael Cray.”

WSU vs. The Wild Storm 17

TheWildStorm17I know, the main point of this blog is to talk about the continuity of WildStorm Universe as it was from ’92 – ’11… but I really like doing this compare and contrast thing! Admittedly, I have no idea where Ellis and Davis-Hunt are going with this new series, and honestly, I couldn’t be more on board with what they and their team are bringing. I just thought I’d have some fun, point out some of the references/differences from the old WSU to the new book “the Wild Storm” that came out a week ago. 

 

New vs. Old

Stephen Rainmaker / Stephen Callahan (and kind of John Two-Raven)
StephenRainmakerStephenCallahanSo this is a sticky one, we meet Stephen Rainmaker, a Project Thunderbook experimentee who is pretty much the new version of Stephen Callahan from the old WSU continuity. Right off, you may notice that Stephen Callahan is not a Native American like Stephen Rainmaker. Both men used to work with Lynch, each of them is the father of a daughter with storm-related powers and they share a first name. In fact, this version of Stephen seems to pull a lot more from John Two-Raven, the uncle who raised Sarah Rainmaker in the old WSU, than from Callahan. Also, this version of Stephen only seems to have one kid rather than the three that Stephen Callahan had in the old WSU continuity.

Sarah Rainmaker
WSU-SarahStephen mentions having a daughter, with her mother being the hottest woman he’s ever seen. That woman seems to have had the baby in secret from Stephen and then eventually sends the young girl to Stephen in a limo with a check. Stephen claims that his daughter has similar powers to him, and based on her name we can assume this is for sure The Wild Storm version of Sarah Rainmaker. The biggest difference being that the original Sarah’s mom was Native American instead of her father. Also note that The Wild Storm version of Sarah would be from the Akokisa indigenous tribe living in eastern Texas, rather than being Apache living in south-eastern Arizona like she was in the old continuity.

Ragnar Helspont / Helspont
RHelspontWSU-HelspontWhen John and Stephan are talking, Stephan brings up the lead scientist working for Project Thunderbook named Ragnar Helspont. This is an obvious reference to Helspont, one of the villains of the original WSU WildCATs. Little more is known about this man, including the fact that he may or may not be a Daemon like he was the last time around. We haven’t seen Daemon’s pose as humans in any way in The Wild Storm like we did in the old WSU, so there is a lot more to be seen here! According to Stephen, Ragnar did seem to know a lot about the Khera implants though… hmmmmm…

Mystery Duo / Apollo & Midnighter
WhoAreThisFineMenIn Slayton’s trek across America to murder any other superpowered beings he comes across, he finds an abandoned house in the middle of nowhere. Unfortunately for Slayton, the dwellers of the house are not pushovers and they send him running. I have a pretty good idea of who they are. I mean come on, this is Apollo and Midnighter, yeah? There’s no doubt… except for the shading… but I mean look at them… I want to say definitively that it is Apollo and Midnighter, but it’d just be like Ellis toss a curve ball to screw with all of us! I mean I guess it could be Majestic and Loner… Nah, that’s Apollo and Midnighter!

New and What We Don’t Know

Jodi Morinaka and/or Aries?
Lynch mentions that he does not know if Slayton has a kid or not. I guess there’s still a chance for us to see a version Jodi in The Wild Storm… or even Aries, I guess.

What Lucy did to Piss Off Jacob
DiscussingLucyWell, it looks like we have proof that Lucy doesn’t work with the Halo WildCAT team in The Wild Storm over a disagreement she had with Jacob. Based on Kanesha’s response of “She didn’t betray you, she just disagreed with your goals” we can see it was a matter of opinion and not some major thing, or else why would Lucy be defended at all.

What are the Daemon’s True Goals?
We get a little more insight into what the Daemon wants. The Daemon wants to have humanity find it’s own way, and not have Jacob and the Khera interfere with Earth’s progress. To what end we are not sure. Even if the Daemons were known as the good guys, maybe what they are truly after is an easier world to control and the Khera showing up ruined that.

Answers

Making Peace With the Khera Implant
It seems like Stephen has made peace with his implant by not pushing it. He’s not getting the feedback loop that Alex was talking about anymore. He’s living in harmony with the Khera in his head and it works. I think, in a way, Gloria has done the same thing. It is possible not to be a murderous fruitcake like Slayton it seems.

Cole is in Hiding
Last issue I wasn’t sure if Cole would leave the team and go back underground, but for now, it seems like he is going to lay low and confine himself to the house and Jacob’s work lab.

DCU Connections

Martian Manhunter
A reference to the TV show Martian Manhunter, this time with Stephen quoting it rather than us seeing Jenny walk through the background of the show.

the Daily Planet
Once again we see an issue of “the Daily Planet.”

One Last Thing
The Daemon is laying it on a little thick with the return of the Authority when it comes to visit Angie, isn’t it?
TheDaemonTheAuthority

More issue comparisons of the old WildStorm Universe to “The Wild Storm.”

WSU vs. The Wild Storm 16

The Wild Storm 016 CoverI know, the main point of this blog is to talk about the continuity of WildStorm Universe as it was from ’92 – ’11… but I really like doing this compare and contrast thing! Admittedly, I have no idea where Ellis and Davis-Hunt are going with this new series, and honestly, I couldn’t be more on board with what they and their team are bringing. I just thought I’d have some fun, point out some of the references/differences from the old WSU to the new book “the Wild Storm” that came out last week.

 

New vs. Old

Gloria Spaulding
tWS-GloriaSpauldingWSU-GloriaSpauldingYes, there was an actual Gloria Spaulding in the WSU. No, she didn’t have any powers. Yes, she was the mother of a Gen13 character (but there was some screwy story where she told her daughter she was her step-mother… yeah… comics.) Other than that, this character is pretty much all new in the pages of “The Wild Storm.” She seems pretty light-hearted and at the risk of a horrible pun, kinda flighty. She can control gravity, of herself and other objects, she apparently used this power to steal things for I.O. back when she worked there. Now she’s living in the middle of nowhere, having fun in her four-story high tower.

Gloria’s Child / Roxanne Spaulding?
WSU-RoxyLooks like Gloria had a kid too. She even admitted that she was compelled to, this is something John and Kwok eluded to in the last issue. She sent this kid off to live with her mother. In the old WSU Gloria had a daughter, who was Roxanne “Roxy” Spaulding AKA Freefall from Gen13. Sure, the WSU version of the character technically got her powers from her dad’s side, but hey, them’s the breaks in reboots. That’s 3 confirmed Gen13 team kids (and 4 kids over all) out there somewhere in the world of “The Wild Storm.” Ok, sure, we don’t know much about this kid, if it is a girl or even named Roxanne, but I think it’s a safe bet.

Gloria’s Singing Khera Implant / Kheribum Singing
ItSangToMeGloria mentioned that her Khera implant sang to her. This is an interesting revelation because it only seemed to talk (to some louder than others) with the other Thunderbook subjects. In the old WSU we find that there is an entire art and very serious side of Kherubim singing. In fact, they use singing as a kind of a password to gain access to Khera. Not sure if Ellis was particularly referencing the Kherubim singing ritual here, but I couldn’t help but think of it.
KheranSinging

Thunderbook 12th Genetic Stage / Gen12
Thunderbook12thGeneticGloria also drops this on us, calling her Thunderbook group the “12th Genetic Stage.” She basically just called herself and most of the Thunderbook test subjects Gen12! In the old WSU Gen12 were I/O’s 12 test/try to create their own superpowered agents. All the members of Team 7 were Gen12. Other Gen12 members were in The Brethren and some… well, there had to be more out there because there were a bunch of their kids running around in the old WSU. (The kids were Gen13 and stared in the books “Gen13” and “DV8.”)
WSU-Gen12

New and What We Don’t Know

Gloria Knows About Slayton
How does Gloria know about Slayton and how his implant is talking to him? Specifically how it remembers where it came from? Interesting twist!

Will Cole Leave Halo?
HomeboundColeWe find Angie and Cole talking, and he mentions that his cover has been blown. Since I.O. has found out that he’s not dead, he’s not exactly safe and needs to get back to being deep underground. Will we see Cole quit Halo’s WildCAT? Will he refrain from going on missions with the team and hide in Jacob’s bunker? I guess we have 8 more issues to find out!

Does Cole have a Khera Implant?
We know that Cole worked under John Lynch at I.O. and was part of Project Thunderbook. So far we have not seen Cole exhibit any powers like other Thunderbook participants do. At Halo we currently have Jacob, Kenesha, and John, three Khera, Adriana, a former Skywatch member who has become something else and Angie, a former I.O. member who has also become something else. Then there’s Cole. Could he just be a normal human? Could he be the only one from I.O.’s Project Thunderbook that didn’t get an implant? Is that possible? If he is, it doesn’t seem to be affecting him like it has the others that we’ve seen. I’m putting this out as a strong “maybe.”

Answers

Jenny Mei Sparks is One with Electronic Communication
At one point I wanted to call Jenny Mei Sparks, Jenny Social Media, using the “Jenny” nomenclature from the old WSU. Seemed like I wasn’t too far off the mark her. Jenny is so at one with the global communication systems that she can feel when something odd like Angie logs onto the internet.

Another Step Closer to the Authority
Looks like Angie and Jenny hit it off! Also, looks like Angie trusts her. Before Jenny left she let Angie know she’d help her get out of Jacob’s crash pad without anyone knowing. That’s one step closer to Angie getting together with Jenny, Shen, and Hawksmoor.

Look at Angie Becoming Even More Like the WSU Engineer!
AngiesHandWhen Angie manifested that gun with her hand I got a great big smile on my face. This, this is the Engineer that we used to know! It’s been a slow ramp-up, and I honestly didn’t think she’d ever look too much like the old school version, but damn, it’s so close now!

One Last Thing

We have two interesting page layouts here. The first one being the image of “the Internet.” It is the second two-page slash we’ve had in the series, and it is the first page that we get that has no borders! It seriously fills the pages all the way the edge. In a comic that has been defined by its page layouts, this is something to note.

TheInternet
image uncropped or edited in any way

The second is when John is talking to Gloria, and we get a two-page spread with oddly shaped panels. This just looks cool and is referencing Gloria’s hexagonal tower in her house. It is not the kind of page layouts that we’ve seen in the previous 15 issues. Not sure if it means something extra, or if Jon Davis-Hunt was just showing off his chops and clever layout skills. (Go buy the book, I’m not putting every page of it up here on this blog!)

More issue comparisons of the old WildStorm Universe to “The Wild Storm.”

One fanboy's chronological journey through the Wildstorm Universe