Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Kwazy Side Jobs! (Issues #36)

To say "Mekano Lives!" implies that Mekano was around at some earlier time, thought to be dead, but OH-HO-NO, he's BA-ACK, BABY, right? Cuz that's not what this issue is about. At all. Nope. This is this Mekano fellow's first (and last) appearance. Though, maybe now, in 2012, it's time for Mekano to "Lives!"? X-Men writers, if you are hearing me, bring back Mekano. Or, on second thought, don't, actually, as he's pretty boring.

Having found that Professor X is in the Alps, the X-Men SPRING into action ... as if their mutant powers were the ability to spring into action. Like a spring. Only - wah wah - they realize that that don't have any money, nor has Xavier had the forethought to open a joint checking account with any of them. Not even boring, by-the-books Scott who is more trustworthy than ... so things that are trustworthy... (I could say "than BANKS" here, but being hot button is not what I'm about, people ... HOT BUTTON!) In fact, maybe Scott is TOO trustworthy to trust! What's your game, Summers?! I'll bet he's embezzling. Or at least bedazzling. [That stream-of-consciousness flowed better / meant more in my head.]

Now we are treated to a couple of pages of the X-Men looking for money. Jean and Warren drive their ROLLS ROYCE to the welfare office [NOT KIDDING!] to ask for a hand-up (not a hand-out [Boom! Twice-times used that joke in two posts! [and it's not getting better with age!]]) When the city worker is all, "Is this a joke?", Jean, Warren, and Scott then hit up a construction site to see if super-mutanting applies to blue-collar work, too. Meanwhile, Bobby and Beast head to Washington Square Park to put on a show and pass around the hat.

In MY day, Washington Square Park was less "enjoyable" and more "full of drug dealers".

It is in these ways that they hope to earn enough money for airfare to The Alps.

Wearing their uniforms, Marvel Girl, Angel, and Cyclops show the construction-site foreman what kind of work three mutants can do with little effort. The fact that they're much better at this than human construction workers means that all the regular workers could possibly be fired and replaced with mutants does not occur to them. Luckily for the normies, this class-war issue is a non-starter because none of the mutants have union cards! 

Effing Scabs!

The fact that mutants can't work to earn money to save their unconscious and captive professor from an enemy hideout in the Alps is the best argument against unions I've ever heard! 

Even worse, not even one of the construction workers cat-called or whistled at Marvel Girl. Nor was she forced to doll out a sassy, psy-power-based comeuppance! Who is writing this issue? Honestly. You have the team begging for money in the streets and the old "whistling at a girl with superpowers turns hilarious for the whistler" trope is too lame for you to use? 

Anyway. To add insult to injury, while they were off wowing the construction guy, their Rolls Royce has been towed. Luckily, some student in a VW bug sees the injustice (?!) and offers them a ride. Immediately NOT sending up any red flags to the super team: The fact that this mysterious bug-driving stranger has a) a queerly heavy box in the back seat that he screams at them to KEEP THEIR HANDS OFF! and b) a serious chip on his shoulder against the world.

Mad On, apply it directly to your rage.
Mad On, apply it directly to your rage.
Mad On, apply it directly to your rage.

Bobby and Beast's busking goes bust when the boy who drove the VW Bug puts on a costume - A MEKANO COSTUME (HE LIVES!) - and promptly says that he is going to destroy some new Memorial Library (Thank for the spoilers! God!). He also shows his improv classes are paying off, because he - in the moment - works the X-Men into his act, implicating them as cohorts in his about-to-be crime. 

Also, I want to thank my mom, my agent, and Jesus.

So now this issue gets a mistaken identity AND a two-bit hack of a crook added into its cavalcade of laughs. Hilarity is about to ensue! (Meanwhile, somewhere abroad, Professor X is being tortured by Factor Three. Lol.)

Fists can hurt like words, Mekano!

After a battle that ends with Mekano (not "melanoma " as my auto correct thought it should be) trying to escape, only to fall short of a rooftop and plummet to his certain death -except that Marvel Girl steps in to save him - a well-heeled swell shows up and reveals that he is the benefactor of the library that Melanoma had sworn to destroy. Unmasking the villain ... Melanoma is the rich dude's son! Whoops. Looked like its another "daddy never loved me, boo hoo" stories with the son crying out for attention ... as a super powered villain. THAT old chestnut!

"Wait! Wait... no. No YOU'RE still the guilty one. Lock my son up, officer."

On the upside, for not killing his boy and for turning a blind eye to his terrible parenting, the Richey Richerson wants to reward them. But Cyclops, ever the goody goody, says they don't want a reward, just a LOAN so they can buy their plane tickets. He's totally the ass-kid who raises his hand to let Professor X know that he forgot to assign them homework. Mutant homework! [2 + 2 = SNIKT!]

SO, all's well that ends well. We swell the laugh track. Freeze the frame. Fade to black. Roll the credits. Everything's back to normal. Except for Xavier who is a prisoner of a deadly band of mutants, of course.

It is just kind of weird to put a mostly goofy episode here, amid the panic over the Professor's capture. It's like Schindler doing the old "ladder bit" mid-movie.

Wanna read the source materials? Have fun with THAT! It's here in:
Marvel Masterworks: The X-Men - Volume 4