Lobo asks Black Canary for help on a trip through Space to save Space Dolphins! I can’t make this up.
Justice League of America Annual #1
Writer: Steve Orlando
Artists: Kelley Jones
Cover Artist: Kelley Jones & Michelle Madsen
Colorist: Michelle Madsen
Publisher: DC Comics
What You Need to Know:
It has long been established that Lobo, the Main man is the last of his Race of Czarnians. Specifically, there was a Great episode years ago of Superman the Animated Series, where Lobo is contracted to Capture the Last Son of Krypton for a collector. But Lobo says that he “Fragged them all, for my Science Project. Gave myself an A too.”
It is also a well-known fact that the one thing in all of the Multiverse that Lobo actually cares about are Dolphins. Space Dolphins are his favorite, and he will protect them at any cost.
What You’ll Find Out:
I have certainly wondered just what has kept Lobo on Earth. Lobo tells Canary that what brought him to Earth was a call for help from Space Dolphins. That’s when he was taken over by Maxwell Lord and manipulated to work for Amanda Waller. It took Batman blowing his head off to get his senses straight. As a Thank you, Lobo, agrees to help Batman with the upcoming battle for the “Might Beyond the Mirror”, but Lobo has a condition. “Something, I never been able ta find by myself, Tha Space Dolphin Homeworld.”
Black Canary is just not buying this. Not until Lobo surprises her with a Transmission from Batman describing his efforts to keep his word and locate the Space Dolphin Homeworld. He and Aquaman have triangulated the possible location, and it was hidden by the Space Dolphins that were Honor Bound to keep it secret from the Uncivil. Batman says “It’s obvious why you haven’t found it.”
It takes a bit of Convincing, but she agrees to join Lobo on his trip. Mostly after he points out she missed out on the trip to the Microverse and spouts something about the Community of the Team. Lobo has a respect for Canary, and she sees an opportunity to help do some good. How can she resist?
What Just Happened?
A dark figure has been waiting for his misdeeds to attract Lobo’s attention, and he is alerted by his spy that Lobo and a Human are headed his way. “Let him come. I’m more than ready.”
Lobo and canary take off on the Space Frag, Lobo’s Bike, and we learn a bit about him. Lobo has actually invented the technology of the bike that keeps the riders safe through Space. Looks like Lobo has some Untapped potential.
His favorite Insult “Tribb” was based on his Teacher that hated his guts. As a Juvenile Delinquent, Lobo was met by a Space Dolphin, which had a lasting effect on his soul.
The find the Planet Del-Marzopa, the Space Dolphin Homeworld, and Lobo is instantly enthralled. So much so that he is unable to avoid the Energy Blast that targets the Space Frag, and he and Canary Plummet to the Ocean Surface. They are sucked through some tubes and into a Floating Space Abattoir.
The Shadowy Figure that was Expecting them reveals himself. “I know that Billowy Dewlap anywhere. Yer a Tribb.” Lobo says to his captor, who has him and Canary trapped in an Energy Chain.
He explains his methods for revenge against Lobo, and the reasons he has taken his time to extract his revenge. While Lobo eliminated his entire Species, Gusano Tribb was off the Homeworld of Czarnia at a boarding school. H cited an old Czarnian Proverb: “A Genocide can only be answered with a Genocide.” He set himself up for revenge by collecting the Life insurance policy money for the entire Czarnian Race.
Tribb has a Problem that Lobo, made a Bomb to destroy the CZarnians, and didn’t have the guts to do it in person, the traditional Czarnian way. In his time waiting for Lobo Gusano Tribb has been hunting innocent Space Dolphins to the brink of extinction!
Lobo, still trapped in the energy Chains, call upon the traditional Czarnian rite of Bukk Tazchit. A trial by Combat for the Honor of one’s family name for Centuries. Lobo names Canary as his Champion. Needless to say, she is none too happy, but faced with their deaths regardless, at least she will be saving some dolphins along the way. She accepts.
Although Gusano is a very powerful Czarnian and can regenerate. Canary takes him apart piece by piece. Starting with his hand, and then followed by his head and face. As he comes back and starts to attack again, Canary Shatters the Space Dolphin Containment tanks and the Dolphins Swarm Gusano. Lobo takes this opportunity to end this battle with a punch through his guts.
The Peaceful Space Dolphins make amends with the violence, but they are happy they are now safe, and as a result of the regenerating cells of Gusano, will provide their people with a never-ending food source. Canary is surprised by the very pragmatic approach that Lobo has taken, and they take off to repair the Space Frag and head home.
The beauty of the Planet Del-Marzopa is something that has an effect on Canary. She thanks Lobo for bringing her here, and says to Lobo ” I can see why, if you’re going to care about something, you’d choose this.”
Final Thought: A buddy Cop, Space Biker Road story. This is one of the more enjoyable stories from this Book. It is not Lobo in the Keith Giffen sense, but we do have the zany and cartoonish elements of the plot.Kelley Jones art is always great! I love him best when he uses his heavy Inked style to make monsters, and the cover and some Splash pages are worth the price of Admission. I know that Annual titles are generally Continuity free, so this is a fun sandbox to play with a character like Tribb. This was a fun story, but not a great representation of both Lobo or canary. I like that Batman and Aquaman made the effort to assist Lobo, and I did have a few laugh out loud moments. If you are a true fan of Lobo and his antics, this may be a good pick up, but if you are looking for the guy who murdered Santa Clause, pass this one by.
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