Review: BLUE & GOLD #8
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Dan Jurgens
Artists: Ryan Sook, Wade Von Grawbadger
Colors: Ryan Sook
Letters: Rob Leigh
Reviewed By: Derek McNeil
Blue & Gold #8: Keep your friends close and your enemies closer! Things have never been easy for Booster and Beetle as they set out on their new business venture where no job is too small, but now a threat from within threatens to bring everything crashing down. A virus has hit the servers at Blue & Gold Restoration, and it could delete our heroes for good!
Blue & Gold #8 opens with a rather ironic situation. Ted and Booster reveal that Blue & Gold Restoration’s latest case ended with the successful recovery of a vault full of priceless works of art. However, despite this high-profile success, their enterprise is on the edge of bankruptcy. Their crowdsourced funding is proving incapable of covering their expenses.
However, before they can dwell on this problem too much, they are attacked by Black Beetle. I felt that Black Beetle was a fitting villain for the duo to face due to his using a beetle motif like Blue Beetle as well as being a time-traveler like Booster Gold. But we learn something new about this villain that makes him an even more fitting match for them. Black Beetle is actually the Earth-3 version of Booster.
This evil Booster intends to take Booster’s place in the main DCU, using Skeets’ database of future knowledge to enrich himself. But to do so, he has to eliminate Booster and Ted. While the villain combines the power of both heroes, Ted and Booster have teamwork going for them. Teamwork is really one of their best strengths and it’s great to see it coming into play here.
Another facet of the duo is the friendship between the two friends. I really love the scene immediately following the battle. Instead of immediately heading home, they kick back, open a couple of cold ones, and enjoy the beauty of a prehistoric sunset together. It’s great to see them taking a moment to just enjoy their victory before returning to deal with their financial woes in the present.
When they do return, they come to the painful decision that it’s time to pull the plug on Blue & Gold Restorations. However, their enterprise is saved at the last minute by a surprise guest star. Batman arrives to tell them, “Don’t give up. People need this. They need you”. Bruce admits to admiring the work they’re doing and presents them with $20 million, courtesy of Bruce Wayne.
Batman is often shown to be disapproving of other heroes that aren’t at the top of their game. And given that Ted and Booster aren’t generally considered top-tier heroes, one might expect Batman to be disdainful of Blue & Gold. But Batman has been shown to be one of the few who recognizes that Booster is a lot more competent than he seems. And the Dark Knight also knows about Booster’s true mission as guardian of the timestream.
So, it’s not really that surprising for Batman to express his confidence in their endeavor. And I love that he comments that they deserve it because it “makes up for the Justice League voting you out”. Clearly, Batman feels they were deserving of the membership they were denied in the first issue. Perhaps someday Ted and Booster will one day be welcomed into the League once more.
I love Ryan Sook’s work in this book. He beautifully captures the classic look of Blue Beetle and Booster Gold’s costumes as well as Batman’s. And I just love the panel where Ted comes riding to Booster’s rescue on the back of a triceratops.
The only complaint that I have about this series is that it’s not an ongoing series. Hopefully, we will see more of Blue & Gold in the future, either in their own series or as part of a larger group. After all, the last page promises us that this is “definitely not…the end!”.
Blue & Gold #8 gives a great cap to Dan Jurgens’ miniseries. It serves as a nostalgic reminder of an earlier era but also demonstrates that this kind of book can still work today. While this is the last issue of Blue & Gold, I expect and hope that we’ll be seeing more of this dynamic duo again before long.