Home > DC Comics > Plastic Man (2003 Series) #4

Plastic Man (2003 Series) #4

February 28, 2004

Quick Rating: Great
Title: It Was the Best of Times, It Was the Worst of Times

Plastic Man is out to discover who framed Eel O’Brian, but Woody Winks has lost faith in his hero.

Writer/Artist: Kyle Baker
Editor: Joey Cavalieri
Cover Art: Kyle Baker
Publisher: DC Comics

Kyle Baker is absolutely amazing. I think of anybody else in the comic book industry who could take equal parts Chuck Jones and Charles Dickens, mix them into a comic book together and make them work so well. For those who came in late, Plastic Man used to be the crook named Eel O’Brian before he got his powers. Since then he has maintained his criminal identity to infiltrate the underworld, making his career as a superhero much more effective. At least, until the first issue of this series, when someone framed the Eel for murder. Plas is on the run now, his secret blown, and he’s got to prove the innocence of both his identities.

Plas’s efforts at detective work are shone off this issue, but what really got to me was the pain we see in Plas’s goofy sidekick, Woozy Winks. Woozy has always been a silly, often superfluous character. In this book you really start to feel for this broken man who thinks his hero has turned out to be a crook. Baker makes Woozy really tug at your heartstrings, and I was genuinely upset at the last page of this issue, because it was done that well.

We also get a glimpse of the big villain of this story arc. I have my suspicions as to who it may turn out to be, but I’m hesitant to mention the name of this longstanding DCU villain because, first of all, I can’t think of any reason he’d have a grudge against Plastic Man, and second, I can’t quite remember if he’s alive or not at the moment.

Baker’s artwork continues to shine in this book. He has a very lively, animated style, and he makes use of Plastic Man’s incredibly versatile powers better than anyone since Jack Cole himself. This is easily the funniest superhero comic currently published by either of the Big Two publishers, and one of the funniest superhero comics of all time. If you’re not reading and loving this comic book, you mustn’t have a funny bone in your entire body.

Rating: 9/10

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