Characters Appearing: Beetle, Blake Tower, Blizzard II, Blonde Phantom, Boomerang, Garth (Zombie), Jack O'Lantern (Steven Levins), Mad Thinker, Millie The Model, Morris Walters, Paste Pot Pete, Porcupine, Ringer II, Scarlet Beetle, She-Hulk, Stilt-Man, Taskmaster, Tinkerer, Vanisher, Whiplash (Blacklash), Whirlwind, Wyatt Wingfoot
Issue(s): She-Hulk #59, She-Hulk #60
The plot for issue #59 is a court case against the Tinkerer. A number of villains, led by the Trapster, have accused him of providing weapons that don't meet their spec, and another group of other villains show up as character witnesses in support of the Tinkerer.
She-Hulk is not actually involved in the case - she had been sent to court by DA Tower to prosecute Telford Porter, not knowing that he was the Vanisher.
But the Tinkerer case in the courtroom next door devolves into a fight and spills over into She-Hulk's courtroom. Note the continuity jokes.
I think those are funny, and Vanisher's aliases (making fun of his supposed real name) made me chuckle. But some of the ribbing of the villains may go a bit too far.
I mean go ahead and make fun of the Ringer (especially since he's the second Ringer), but Whirlwind has always been a credible villain. And Boomerang and Blacklash sure seem like they are goofy and gimmicky, but there's no doubt they've done well enough for themselves over the years.
The Trapster's case is eventually dismissed by the judge as "the stupidest pack of nonsense I've ever heard". Some of the villains are arrested, but She-Hulk leaves the Tinkerer and the Mad Thinker arguing on the courthouse steps.
A subplot for #59...
...leads in to the main story in #60.
She-Hulk's father shows up for a visit unannounced.
And Wyatt Wingfoot decides that he has to return to his responsibilities to the Kewazi tribe. Before he can leave, though, She-Hulk's apartment is attacked by some giant insectoid robots (She-Hulk rightly worried about "Jim Cameron's attorneys"). She pulls some heavy weaponry out of her closest to deal with them.
The bugs turn out to have been sent by the Scarlet Beetle.
I wonder if Pat Olliffe is a Scarlet Beetle fan; between this and Untold Tales of Spider-Man #12 he's drawn 66% of the character's appearances in the 90s and 33% of the character's appearances over all.
Then editor Renee Witterstaetter and some Marvel Movers show up to tell She-Hulk that she's been cancelled.
The mysterious women that have been stalking She-Hulk turn out to be working for Millie the Model.
The book ends with a thanks to the readers and then to the creators involved in the series, including an (i assume deliberately) unfortunately phrased invitation to John Byrne. And then a note of (some of) the other books included in the publication purge that was happening at this time.
Issue #60 has a cover that calls back to issue #1. It also seemingly had a very limited print run, or for whatever other reason it's just very hard to find (i was lucky to get a very poor quality copy). I can tell you that it's really not worth the effort (or $45+) to get it. Issue #59 had a few funny lines, but issue #60 feels like a poor imitation of Byrne's run, relying entirely on the goofiness of the surprise villain and a few meta jokes. Pat Olliffe's art is decent but will be put to better use elsewhere.
Quality Rating: D+
Chronological Placement Considerations: Since the villains acknowledge the continuity problems related to their appearances, i'm listing all the characters appearing and not worrying about any related gaps in logic. Vanisher never appears on panel, but he's said to have escaped "this morning", so i'm treating him as behind-the-scenes enough to list him.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
It seems like the common thread of the cancellations of '94 is that they all started as books with a writer who had a real sense of purpose and an understanding of the core concept, but one who left at a certain point. Marvel's response was to thrash around between filling the void with 90s cliches or trying to get someone to imitate the missing creator's overall style or tone without any of the meaning.
The company as a whole is rudderless at this point, and the days when Marvel is run more by marketing than by creative personnel are in full swing here.
Posted by: Omar Karindu | September 18, 2017 6:38 PM
I haven't paid attention to the back issue market in 15 years but wow, the final She-Hulk is a bit of a surprise.
Posted by: Bigvis497 | September 19, 2017 1:05 AM
I don't know why the Scarlet Beetle can't be a credible threat. I mean, Mr. Mind has done pretty well for himself over the years ... why shouldn't SB do as well?
Posted by: Gary Himes | September 19, 2017 12:22 PM
In the late 90's, Wizard noted a trend of last issues spiking up, including Star Wars 107 and Vampirella 113. That makes sense if the property dies down in popularity for awhile but makes a resurgence.
Posted by: iLegion | September 19, 2017 4:09 PM
Agreed that the Scarlet Beetle is a pretty cool, bizarre villain. According to the Appendix of the Marvel Universe, the Scarlet Beetle made a cameo about a year ago in Astonishing Ant-Man #12, his first appearance since She-Hulk #60. So I guess he really *was* waiting for Ant-Man to get his own book again.
Posted by: Ben Herman | September 20, 2017 9:20 PM
Posted by: kveto | April 26, 2018 5:24 PM
Let me elaborate. Here we have villains like Boomerang, Spymaster and Blacklash, who have no superpowers, therefore have become extremely skilled with a weapon, enough so that they can fight super-powered foes. And they are being made fun of by the she-hulk, who has powers only because she got a transfusion from her cousin, demonstrating no skill in any martial area whatsoever.
Posted by: kveto | April 26, 2018 5:31 PM
I’d like to see her try that attitude on Batman. ;)
Posted by: Chris Z | April 26, 2018 10:42 PM
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