Tuesday, March 12, 2013

365 Comics...71: Adam Strange #3 (1990)

I thought I should follow-up my look at the first 2/3 of this mini-series (365 Comics #61&62) with a look at the closing chapter where all things come to a head.

Rannagar is in chaos as Sardoth is comatose after Adam's psychedelic Zeta Beam trip went psychotic, the council is literally stabbing each other in the back, Alanna goes into stress-induced labor, the Earthwoman Eve arrives to reveal Adam's infidelity all while an alien armada attacks.

Writer Richard Bruning pulls no punches in this intense and frantic third act.  It's serious about its subject matter and it's characters.  Relationships here are even more complex than Bruning shows, all dealt with surprising maturity and striving to avoid cliches.  The frailty of the Utopian ideal is highlighted as well as the fact that no man is hero to all people, and to some a hero may seem quite the opposite.

This series doesn't distill down to one simple idea, it is a rich exploration of one man searching for identity and trying to understand his life while it all falls apart around him.  Despite the fact that Adam is the center of the book he's not the sole focus as it dives deep into the societal issues that are beyond his control that are the reason everything falls apart.

In not certain that the rather surprising and drastic changes Bruning made in this series sustained in the DCU (Alanna's death during his daughter's birth, Sardath's drastic personality shift, the floating city of Rann lost in space, Eve becoming a resident.  The permanence of the Zeta beam) but I doubt it.  Unfortunate though because it's quite obvious how much Bruning loves the character and he seemed to really be looking to contribute something grand and new to it.

I'm going to hare to pull out the '04 miniseries and the Rann/Thanagar War that followed to see what's up.  In pretty sure Strange turned up in JLA at some point before that too.

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