THE DOOM PATROL #97|
Summary written by Lou Mougin (email@example.com)
"The War Against the Mind Slaves" (24 pages)
Guest star: Mento
General Immortus reveals in this story that he has lived "several thousand years". There's no way of determining whether he's telling the truth or exaggerating, however.
On the Moon, the Brotherhood of Evil, Immortus, and Garguax argue over what their objectives should be on Earth. The Brotherhood members are in favor of extorting a billion dollars. But Immortus and Garguax opt for world conquest. When Garguax unveils and demonstrates his latest weapon, a ray that turns people into crystal beings and makes them his slaves, the others throw in with him. Garguax plans to convert only a handful of people in different parts of the globe to his dominance, then have them use the weapons he will give them to conquer Earth for the five villains.
Rouge, Mallah, and Immortus strike at Tibet, Canada, and Africa, turning humans into powerful crystal-people with the ability to convert others to their form. Negative Man and Robotman manage to stop trouble in two of the hot spots, but in the third Elasti-Girl herself is converted to a giant crystalline slave of Garguax. The Chief summons Mento to help Larry and Cliff save her. In a terrific battle on the Moon base, the three heroes free Rita and defeat their foes. But Garguax bargains for their freedom, informing them that he will detonate a bomb and destroy Earth with it if they are not let go. The Patrollers comply after Garguax gives them the location of the bomb. They learn that Garguax was not bluffing, and disarm the explosive.
Finally, Mento petitions the group to admit him to the Doom Patrol. Rita blackballs him, admitting she likes him, but fearing he would cause dissention in the DP's ranks.
Another fun issue, fast-moving and crowded. The villains' argument scene is funny, as is Robotman's razzing the crystalline crowd with "Your father's mustache! Your mother eats yogurt!" Interesting revelations: Mento's helmet won't work for anyone other than him--and Beast Boy, as we learn in a later issue, and Mento really wants to join the group he had earlier disdained. Being close to Rita is the real motivator, but he now has a growing respect--perhaps a grudging one--for Cliff and Larry.
Also funny: Mallah putting on a rubber face-mask, with the straps clearly visible, and getting a job as a Canadian lumberjack. (And he's okay...)
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