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Classic Fury of Firestorm #2 Review & Aquaman #22 – FIRE & WATER #60

Continuing THE FIRE AND WATER PODCAST coverage of the classic Fury of Firestorm series from 1982! We’ve received an incredibly positive response so far and we’re loving these comics! 

Firestorm and Aquaman: The Fire and Water Podcast

The 60th episode of THE FIRE AND WATER PODCAST is now available for your listening pleasure! THE FIRE AND WATER PODCAST is the official podcast of FIRESTORM FAN and THE AQUAMAN SHRINE.

This episode Shag and Rob discuss Aquaman #22 by Geoff Johns, Paul Pelletier, Sean Parsons, and Rod Reis. Things are heating up (or freezing up, depending how you look at it) in the “Death of a King” story line! Next we review The Fury of Firestorm #2 (July 1982) by Gerry Conway, Pat Broderick, Rodin Rodriguez, and Gene D’Angelo. The Fury of Firestorm Classics portion of the show is a real blast so far! It’s a great month to be a Nuclear Sub!

You can find the 60th episode of THE FIRE AND WATER PODCAST on iTunes. While you’re there, please drop us a review on the iTunes page. Every comment helps! Alternatively, you may download the podcast by right-clicking here, choosing “Save Target/Link As”, and selecting a location on your computer to save the file (28 MB).

As always, thanks to my co-host Rob Kelly, Sea King of THE AQUAMAN SHRINE, for doing all the post-production on these episodes! Opening theme, “That Time is Now,” by Michael Kohler. Special thanks to Daniel Adams and Ashton Burge with their band The Bad Mamma Jammas for our fantastic original closing theme!

Have a question or comment? Send us an e-mail at firewaterpodcast@comcast.net. Visit our Tumblr site at fireandwaterpodcast.tumblr.com.

Check out the covers to Fury of Firestorm #2 and Aquaman #22 below!

The Fury of Firestorm: The Nuclear Man vol II #2 cover by Pat Broderick and Dick Giordano! Interiors by Pat Broderick and Rodin Rodriguez!

Fury of Firestorm #2 cover by Pat Broderick and Dick Giordano

Aquaman #22 by Paul Pelletier, Sean Parsons, and Rod Reis

Aquaman #21 cover by Paul Pelletier, Sean Parsons, and Rod Reis

Support Firestorm and Aquaman! Fan the Flame and Ride the Wave!

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10 Comments

  1. Siskoid says:

    Oh Rob… Jor-El was the best thing about Man of Steel. A Jor-El movie would be awesome.

    Sounds like Shag’s right about where Aquaman and Mera are going.

    But about the title I actually follow(ed)…

    Best bits: Squirrels and pigeons, Broderick is great for little details like this (p.1). Ronnie’s face palm (p.7). Professor Stein’s psychic projection has a bandage on his forehead, because he’s a stickler for details (p.14). When Firestorm’s head is spinning, it looks like an electrons going around his head in an “atom” shape (p.18). Panel 4 on page 21 has an illustrative quality that reminds me of the original Alice in Wonderland illustrations, except with a cool exploding Firestorm. The seal (p.25). The bison and horses in the clouds (p.25).

  2. Kyle Benning says:

    HOOOOWDY HOOOO!!!!

    I really like Shag’s theory on Mera’s being of royal bloodline, that’d be a nice twist.

    Haha I’m glad Rob & Shag agree that the Caterpillar looks like Mr. Hanky! That’s what I said in my facebook comment prior to listening!

    Recapping Fury of Firestorm the Nuclear Man #2 and mentioning “Storm Fire” made something occur to me for the first time. Has Gerry Conway ever stated how he came up with or decided on the name of Firestorm? I know Firestorm is set to tackle what would happen if Flash Thompson got powers, but is Firestorm’s name inspired by Johnny Storm, the Human Torch? Firestorm? I mean The Human Torch is a fire based hero, with the last name Storm. Johnny always struck me as kind of the all-star athlete, and similar to Flash Thompson anyway (I think that’s why Human Torch & Spidey have such a great dynamic), so I could see Firestorm actually kind of being a DC analog for the Human Torch himself, just removed from the Family dynamic of FF, and set out to stumble and learn as a hero, relatively on his own, with Stein’s guidance to counter Ronnie’s rash hot headed youthful nature.

    Doreen Day deserves much more flak than what Shag gives her, she might possibly be the all-time worst and most hateable character in comics. I would love to see a bunch of Multiplex dupes rip her apart limb by limb. That would be the best issue ever. She is a terrible, terrible girlfriend and an even worse person.

    I love the recaps of Firestorm vol. 2, I can’t wait to get further into this series. I know the Elemental Firestorm holds a special place in Shag’s heart, so I look forward to eventually getting to those a ways down the road, however, I’m hoping by that time (which is probably about 7 years off?) we’ll have a new Firestorm ongoing series at least. That timeline would also be putting the current run of Aquaman above the 100 issue mark for the first time. That’s crazy to think about!

    Another great episode, fan the flame and ride the wave!

  3. Martin Stein RIP says:

    You guys don’t get the joke? Rodin’s Thinker? Rodin Rodriguez?

  4. Frank says:

    I have to echo Earth 2 Chris. The Fire & Water Podcast was the first I ever listened to regularly, and set the standard for what I expect to follow such a venture. I decided that I ought to broaden my perspective late last year and began sampling other podcasters’ wares. At first, I was like a teenage girl after her first break-up, whining about how no one else was like MY Twilight/Justin Bieber/Joey Buttafuoco eternal flame always and forever podcast of choice. I did finally settle down and give other flavors of podcasting more of a chance, but I still haven’t found one comparable to the dynamic of F&W.

    Usually, duo podcasts have one dominant voice, whether by virtue of knowledge or charisma or simple jockeying for position. Often, a point man is overly prepared, coming off as stiff, smug, nasally, affected or just plain gratingly nerdy.* Single host podcasts tend to drone, with lengthy tangents and belaboring/repetition. Podcasts with three or more participants often descend into a mob scene, lacking individual voices in favor of a constancy of samey-samey opinions or pat talking points. I used to smirk at Rob’s emphasis on keeping the podcast positive, but now that I’ve experienced the monotonous, dispiriting negativity elsewhere, I agree with this imperative.

    Rob and Shag are professional enough to stay on point and keep things moving, but loose enough to feel like a natural give and take between friends. Rob plays the sometimes curmudgeonly, sometimes incredulous straight man (the mixer,) while Shag is the brash smartass horndog (the spirits,) providing yin and yang as two distinct but complimentary voices who can discuss their thoughts without trying to win one another over. Rather than a sycophantic consensus, each host has their own preferences that create a synergy rather than a mélange. Rob and Shag have different textual blogs showcasing separate underrepresented characters with their own audiences, which fosters written responses from diverse perspectives in unique venues. Also, both Rob and Shag have a strong multimedia presence that routinely and enthusiastically acknowledges their listeners, whereas respondents to other shows are often stuffing messages into bottles cast out to sea with little or no hope for an actual communication. Finally, Shag and Rob seem to be conscientious of their audience’s interests, rather than the onanistic leanings of other podcasters. They’ve built something singular here, which is why their favorable response is so overwhelming.

    *For the record, I fall into this category, which is one of the many reasons I have no plans to start any podcasts of my own. Walk the talk, and all that.

    And now, with those unpleasant niceties out of the way, I can now go back to being the reigning bloviated prick of the comments section.

    1. Like Rob, I grew up on Super Friends and other Aquaman cartoons. I don’t recall the “King of the Seven Seas” part so much as the western style adventuring on seahorseback. At his best, Aquaman looks and acts like a super-hero, not a scion, which is more the role of his longtime rival Prince Namor. As I’ve spoken of at length elsewhere, royalty is typically boring to and shunned by Americans, so restoring Aquaman’s regency only hurts the character in my eyes. If Mera turns out to be queen-in-exile and Aquaman sometimes serves as her knight, well, that’s both more progressive and a hell of a lot more sexy than sad old King Arthur.

    2. As an extension of that point, I’m opposed to Aquaman demonstrating Sub-Mariner class strength. Namor should be the imperious brawler, while Aquaman should be the more graceful and clever presence. I’ve always tended to liken Aquaman’s power class to Spider-Man, a formidable combatant who performs well against overwhelming odds, but still the perpetual underdog in high stakes heroics. Between Superman, Wonder Woman, Flash, Green Lantern, Martian Manhunter and even Cyborg of late, the JLA is chock full of demi-gods. Aquaman isn’t quite an everyman, but he should fall more on the side of a Captain America than a Silver Surfer.

    3. I was listening to a podcast the other day where they affirmed that Krypton’s job is to blow up. You can add or subtract details, but at the end of the day, that’s all Krypton’s is supposed to do. Atlantis should be a place that generates stories for Aquaman, but it shouldn’t be an anchor that limits the character. Sometimes he protects it, sometimes he defends others against it, but he shouldn’t have to slog through their politics month in and month out. I also think that a turn toward tropes is a sign of a writer with a superficial understanding of the character. At least with Superman and Batman, those types of retreads tend to be obligatory, and dispatched with all due haste. On the other hand, Wonder Woman’s entire Post-Crisis/Pre-Flashpoint catalog was one ignorant writer after another making the same mistakes telling the same stories without any regard for history. Only Perez and Messner-Loebs blazed any sort of trail, yet they still stumbled by never allowing the character to expand beyond the myopic decision to reintroduce her from ground zero as a neophyte relative barbarian among veteran sci-fi heroes.

    4. I liked the Krypton sequence at the front of Man of Steel much better than the Metropolis disaster porn at the end, but I don’t see how a prequel would turn out any better for Jor-El than it did for George Lucas. Actually, it would make more sense to me to convert a script along those lines into a Martian Manhunter origin story, since he was pretty much already the action hero version of Jor-El who failed to save his world from a genocidal military dictator in the Bronze Age account.

    5. I think one of the reasons the ‘90s are so reviled is because of their tendency to tear down without putting anything worthwhile back in place. For instance, Silver Age villains were seen as hoary and without value, so they were maligned, radically altered, and disposed of thoughtlessly. Aquaman’s pool of villains has always been shallow, so how dare they take one of the very few semi-recognizable names in his rogues gallery, render him completely unusable, and then kill him off inside a single Hawkman comic. “But hey, here’s Charybdis.” The Scavenger is a distinctive dirty tech foe that still works today, so I’m glad he’s returned.

    6. Another reason why Aquaman as king of “Atlantis” was so lame is because it was an obvious, prejudiced, nationalistic falsehood. Aquaman only ruled the city-state of Posedonis, not the whole continent of Atlantis or its individual nations, and he seemed to be inept at even that. He’s Robert Baratheon to a people that want/need/deserve a Targaryen on the Iron Throne.

    7. I don’t remember any dogs on Paradise Island. Kangas and horses sure, but no dogs. The clip reminds me that Superman and Wonder Woman are the surrogate mommy and daddy of super-heroic comics. I don’t want my super-mommy to chop people to pieces or spout rage-filled rhetoric or dry-hump Superman in midair. I want her to be good and nice and helpful and caring.

    8. I’m amused that this podcast highlighted two villains who combined make one of my favorite Martian Manhunter foes. The Creature King was a giant furry monster who could bring statutes of mythological creatures to life with his touch. Also, his real name was Iwangis, which can’t be beat.

    9. I didn’t have the highest hopes that Martian Manhunter could fulfill his designated role as the anti-Superman in the JLofA, but maybe in a team-up with Firestorm?

    10. I’m going to say this one last time: it’s “Firestorm Flashback,” as “Firestorm Classic” is misnomer, since there’s no such thing as a classic Firestorm story, just adequate ones. There’s no spurious qualitative claim in the term “flashback.” Plus, furious Firestorm Ronnie Raymond adores alliteration.

    11. I like Fictionopolises. They allow creators to build a city’s identity from whole cloth, and there’s a greater unpredictability inherent in an imaginary place. When Marvel Comics blows up Pittsburgh, rather than being impressed, I simply find their universe as a whole less believable for the lack of a city I can visit in the real world. Also, I can personally inhabit a city that exists only in people’s minds in a way that I can’t an alternate universe version of New York where 75% of all Marvel heroes are supposed to work. The soundstage art deco Gotham City of Burton and Timm will always be more enthralling than shooting scouted locations seen in hundreds of other films.

    12. Firestorm having a built-in exposition assistant is admittedly ingenious.

    13. I’ve found in my coverage of old comics that another one of those unwritten rules was that no sentences could end with a period prior to the Bronze Age, and often well into it. Every single sentence in Silver Age comics seems to end in an exclamation or question mark, often both.

    14. Once Marvel dominated the comics scene, DC seemed to see their concepts as fair game and vice versa, to the point where there’s countless parallels across universes. S.T.A.R. Labs strikes me as an exception, created by DC and never replicated at Marvel, who have dozens of companies do the same type of work. Stark branding would probably be the closest approximation, but that’s more like LexCorp.

  5. rob! says:

    I think one of the reasons the ‘90s are so reviled is because of their tendency to tear down without putting anything worthwhile back in place.

    No other comment on 90s superhero comics need to be made, ever.

  6. Keith Samra says:

    I liked some of the 90′s DC stuff! It was really world building!

  7. Luke says:

    “I think one of the reasons the ‘90s are so reviled is because of their tendency to tear down without putting anything worthwhile back in place.”

    Just because you don’t like it doesn’t mean it’s not “worthwhile.” Considering the piles of crap the Silver and Bronze Ages produced, I find the very notion of something being “worthwhile” to be suspect.

    (Don’t believe me? Listen to any episode of the Who’s Who Podcast and keep a tally of how many characters are brushed over for being essentially worthless.)

    Scavenger had one good story before this current storyline. Not just one story, but one ISSUE in a series which not a lot of folks even remember. And the vast (vast) majority of folks reading the current Aquaman book probably think that Geoff Johns created the Scavenger anyway. Calling him “recognizable” is a bit of a stretch as well. Does it really matter that Bill Loebs chose to make him grist for his Hawk Avatar mill? Was the old school Scavenger, a minor, unimportant character in the mythos of a B-list hero, all that “worthwhile” in the first place? Was the Hawk Avatar not “worthwhile” because it was unsuccessful?

    I think the 90s are reviled because of a lot of terrible ideas and terrible art. But there was quite a bit of good stuff in the 90s too, because the publishers and creators were not locked into this “Hollywood” mentality we have now. In the 90s things actually could change because the creators wanted to do something new and explore some new avenue, and it could be done in the character’s own freaking book, not part of a multi-title crossover with tie-in miniseries, all of which will be undone in 9 months with the next multi-title crossover. Because the idea was to sell serialized comics, not hardcovers of miniseries which would then be adapted into DTV cartoons.

    Also, one of my podcasts is a solo show, and the other has 4 hosts. So while I disagree with your assessment on those formats, I am pretty sure you’ve never listened to either. Just saying is all.

  8. Luke says:

    Also, on covers — the Firestorm cover is all sorts of batspit loco, and the Aquaman cover is making me air guitar to the Metallica classic “Trapped Under Ice.”

  9. Frank says:

    Just because you don’t like it doesn’t mean it’s not “worthwhile.” Considering the piles of crap the Silver and Bronze Ages produced, I find the very notion of something being “worthwhile” to be suspect.

    Luke, you dookiehead, I never said that. Rob said. Rob said that every single thing from the nineties was conceived by Lucifer and appreciation of it will condemn you to the inferno, forever outside the grace of your Lord and Savior Jesus H. Osaphats. What I said was that the ’90s relished breaking every toy in sight until there was nothing in one piece to play with. Previously, strips and books might get canceled and fall into disuse, but they were still sitting in a box, dinged up but intact, ready and waiting to be brought out for funtime again someday. One of the few consequential acts of destruction in the Golden Age was the murder of the Comet, who was immediately replaced by his brother the Hangman, and they both were alive to fight crime for the Silver Age. Those ages added; they built– where the ’90s slashed and burned and salted the Infinite Earths. For comparison, the ’90s wiped away Katar Hol’s entire history, made him a drug addled murderer, shoved the essence of Carter and Shiera Hall up Katar’s butthole to form a Hawk Avatar, dumped Shayera Thal in Detroit for a done-in-one then forgot about her, labeled the entire Hawkman concept toxic, shoved the character into a literal limbo, and forbade anyone to use any variation of the hero for half a decade.

    And in his place? Zauriel. Cue Triple H crotch chop.

    And besides, you of all people should know I loved a lot about DC in the ’90s. Hello, New Bloods! I was going to end up in Hell anyway…

  10. Luke says:

    Yeah, you do love the 90s DC. Not sure where I was going with that rant yesterday.

    I think the 90s added, but I don’t think a lot of folks remember that because nearly none of it stuck — the aforementioned New Bloods is a good example. Moreso than we have now, where “growth” exits only to be harvested and be ground on the editorial mill.

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