Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Justice League of America #163 - Feb. 1979

sgOne of my favorite JLA covers, by Rich Buckler and Dick Giordano--the angle, the movement, a bad guy, fire demons--total pandemonium!

The Story: "Concert of the Damned!" by Gerry Conway, Dick Dillin, and Frank McLaughlin. Green Arrow comes home to find someone waiting for him--well, Oliver Queen--a super villian-esque guy named Anton Allegro.

Allegro plays a few notes on this machine he's carrying, which produces three bizarre demon-like creatures, who make quick work of Green Arrow.

Meanwhile, the JLA is talking to Zatara and Zatanna, and they want to know why her own father cast a spell of forgetfulness on her!

But before he can answer, Black Canary issues a distress call, telling them what happened to Green Arrow. When they arrive, Arrow tells them of his history with Allegro. Apparently he showed up at Oliver Queen's foundation (back when he was rich), looking for financial backing for his odd music, which he says the music establishment won't consider because of a conspiracy.

Queen gives the guy the bum's rush, which infuriates Allegro. Seconds later, Green Arrow is stopping a bank robbery and fires off a tuning-fork arrow in an attempt to shatter the tank(!) the robbers are using.

It works, but the arrow then went haywire:
...it left Allegro deaf for life. Oliver Queen picked up his medical expenses, but obviously something else has happened over the years.

The JLA tracks Allegro's music to a mansion, where he is using his powers to murder his ex-manager! They try and stop him, but Allegro's demons are too powerful, and he leaves, out to find his ex-wife.

Meanwhile, Zatara reveals to his daughter, under a spell of Zee's, that his wife--her mother--who he always thought was dead, is in fact alive! Zatara has tried to find her spirit, but has been unable to. Zatanna tries to do the same thing, and they see a glimpse of her, before it disappears!

Back with the JLA, we find Superman and Batman as they stop Allegro from murdering his ex-wife...sort of. Allegro thinks he's killed her, but after he manages to escape they explain it was a robot duplicate from Superman's Fortress! But...Allegro is still out there! To be continued!

Roll Call: Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Flash, Green Lantern, Green Arrow, Black Canary, Elongated Man, Red Tornado, Hawkgirl, Zatanna

Notable Moments: This is Hawkgirl's first JLA story without Hawkman. Cool. As we always knew, Shayera is fully-formed character in her own right.

While Allegro is quite mad, he's got a murderous glee a lot of comic book super-villains don't have, which was a tad unusual for the time.


Adama said...

Tuning Fork Arrow? Guess what's getting featured as the trick arrow of the week on Friday!

Mind if I use the image?

rob! said...

sure, go ahead!

BentonGrey said...

Another archive post, but it just occured to me that this Allegro guy is actually a fairly awesome character idea. I mean, deafened by GA, how did he not get picked up as a recurring foe? It's not like 'ol Ollie has a glut of enemies!

Adama said...

Benton, you're alive!

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