May present a choking hazard

May present a choking hazard

Friday, January 11, 2008

Sword of the Atom - Book Two: A Choice of Dooms

Script: Jan Strnad - Art: Gil Kane

When we left off, our hero and his rebellious new friend, Taren, were dumped in a chamber quickly filling with rats. It was there that I cleverly unleashed the phrase, "aww rats." But before I can make anymore rat jokes, the chamber begins to fill with gas, and someone ushers The Atom and friend out.
But who?
Why it's the King's little monkish advisor/right hand man, Deraegis!
But why?
Ah yes, of course. So that the two of them can get dumped into an arena and fight to the death.
Taren and The Atom square off in what the crowd hopes will be a gladiatorial battle for the ages. Except someone has made sure it couldn't possibly be...

Having been blinded, then blindfolded (way to pour it on) it's obvious Taren needs some new friends.
Not surprisingly, The Atom absolutely refuses to fight a blind man, reserving all beatings for those who can see... or at least have some device that sees for them.
Surprisingly, the crowd wants no part of this, and shouts things like "boo," and "unfair!"
See, part of the charm of SOTA is the caring gladiator/death match audience.

The crowd calls for the Kings head, not knowing he had nothing to do with it. But who...

Deraegis! He is the one responsible for he is eeeviiil!

Princess Laethwen and her band of merry men show up to take the hero's (now that he's been blinded he's a hero, k) away from the rioting crowds and the mad monkish advisors. Besides, Laethwen and Taren... they're an item.

Ray drubs some guards, grabs Taren, and hops on a battle frog (which incidentally I could never understand why I wasn't getting a playset of. Still don't...)
Whilst riding frog, Ray gets lost in thought, and begins to have war flashbacks of himself and Jean. He begins to question life, such as which one is safer? The Amazon jungle with tyrants, mad monks, giant snakes, lizards, rats, and where every step you take could be your last?

Or with Jean?

Upon stopping, Laethwen tells him their story. How they were sent to Earth decades ago to set up a penal colony. But without continued support from their home, each generation fell apart more and more. And here they are.

Meanwhile, the mad monk advisor continues to tell the King one thing, do another, and tell the people of the city that it was the King's idea. What a little bitch.
Our 3 meet up with Taren's gang, complete with very suspicious idiot Voss, who is awfully concerned about this costumed fellow.
The Atom and Voss throw down, and while it's short lived, it ends in a great little action sequence where The Atom leaps, is in mid-air when both combatants notice that Voss landed next to a poison arrow. One that can be simply held up in the air for anyone gliding through the air to easily impale themselves on.

The book ends with a seriously worried Jean, laying in bed... phoning the guy she was making out with in the car. See, she needs someone to talk to. Not to worry, he's coming over!

Gotta love that girl.


Anonymous said...

The culmination (for the moment) of many, many bad writing decisions with, I just want poor Ray to be happily married, not being turned into cuckold.

rob! said...

SOTA woulda made a great action figure line! guys with swords, comely lasses, frog steeds, the whole bit!

Damian said...

Well said Rob.

Seriously, what's the hold up? I can understand why there were none when this came out (maybe understand isn't the right word) but it's definitely time to make one of those collector's lines.

Get er done!

Anonymous said...

Heck, I'd have thought those were awesome when I was a kid!