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Starman #17

Starman #17 Writer: James Robinson
Pencils: Tony Harris
Inks: Wade Von Grawbadger
Colors: Gregory Wright
Letters: Bill Oakley
Assistant Editor: Chuck Kim
Editor: Archie Goodwin

#17, March 1996

We start with a flashback to Nash’s crime spree, and see two thugs kill a shopkeeper and kidnap his granddaughter. A ghostly pirate appears and kills the two thugs, introducing himself to the girl as the ghost of a British Nobleman named Jon Valor: once called the Black Pirate. This is the same pirate from Jack’s vision in Starman #7.

Mikkal is better.

We cut to Jack’s apartment, where he has just spent a night with an old flame he thought was rekindled until she tells him that she has a job offer in another city and doubts they could ever have anything truly serious.

At the hospital, Ted watches over a sleeping Grundy: his feelings conflicted, for while Grundy is now a simple, gentle man-child it was Solomon Grundy was once responsible for killing Sylvester Pemberton after he became Skyman. Ted mourns the loss of his young protégé, but cannot feel anything but pity for this new Grundy. He then receives a shock as he learns that Mikkal has regained the ability to speak in English.

Back at Charity’s shop, Jack gets his fortune told again, having a bad feeling about that day. Jack notices a painting in Charity’s back room of Zatara; a magician hero of the Golden Age. Charity says he was an old friend. She then gives Jack another series of prophecies. (For more on these, see Charity’s Prophecies). Jack then asks Charity out on a date, but she turns him down, saying that she is saving herself for the true love she has forseen she will find in Opal and that she knows it is not Jack. Jack then asks her to go out as just friends. This time she agrees.

We cut to a house, where Barry, Matt, Mason and Hope are preparing to help The Shade capture Merrit and the poster. In exchange for their aid, The Shade promises to help their family anytime in the future they need him; an oath that echos that the O’Dares made to the Knights.

We must keep from running into each other like this.

We cut to Zeke’s Barber Shop, where Jack gets a haircut and tells his ex-neighbor about the new store he wants to buy, but can’t afford because nobody will insure him or his store now that he is a superhero. Exiting the store, Jack bumps into Sadie Falk again. This time, she seems much more friendly.

At Opal City Hall, Clarence is called forward to meet with a Mr. Woo, who has just been appointed the new Police commissioner. He asks Clarence his opinion on the police commissioner working openly with the local Superhero. Clarence says that he thinks they’ll need his help, if the events of the past year are any indication. Woo agrees and offers Clarence a new job as the official liaison between the police and Starman.

We are then treated with a preview of the battle to come between Shade and the O’Dares and the forces of Merrit and the Poster Demon. In the battle, Matt is sucked into the poster, but before he is totally pulled in, he tells Shade that he was a dirty cop and asks Shade to make sure his family name stays clean because of it. The Shade asks why he had the change of heart and Matt tells him of the visions he had of Scalphunter. Finding the reincarnation of the lost hero he had been seeking, Shade uses his powers to push himself into the poster so that he can follow Matt. The portal closes, becoming a poster again.