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Great Lakes Avengers #3: Review

Dec 2016
Zac Gorman, Will Robson

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

4 stars

Great Lakes Avengers #3 Review by (January 20, 2024)
This issue contains the not-so-eagerly anticipated origin of Flatman.

I don't know whether the skiing squirrel on TV is Tippy-Toe, or possibly another of Squirrel Girl's helpers. Or even the former ski-riding Deathurge stuck in squirrel form (see the GLX-Mas Special).

This issue's brief app is all Oblivion gets in this series. Just for info it lies between the 2012 Mighty Thor Annual (where he's involved in a battle between cosmic beings Scrier and the Other) and a cameo in Ultimates² #100.

Doorman will also be away doing Oblivion's work until he returns in #6.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Great Lakes Avengers #3 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
This issue starts with a flashback in Milwaukee several years ago where a man named Matt is serving takeaway coffee to a long queue. He slips on some spilled coffee and in an effort to save the situation turns 2D and stretchy. A customer comments that he's some sort of flat man. Matt says he's alright, he was born this way. A friendly customer leaves him a newspaper with an ad for supers circled and says "Consider it a tip".

In the current day Flatman and Big Bertha are in their new Detroit HQ in an abandoned Stark factory. They are discussing their newest member Good(ness) Silva, ignoring the fact that she's sitting nearby listening. Bertha is worried that the latest member will die like Dinah Soar, Grasshopper and Monkey Joe (all in the 1st mini-series). FM (Dr Val Ventura) shushes her because he doesn't want to freak the newbie out. And anyway Squirrel Girl went on to great things. (Coincidentally we see a cute report on TV News about a squirrel being towed over snow on skis.) It seems that female Good wants to be known as Good Boy when she transforms to a 'werewolf' because her fursona is male.

The TV then informs them that Councilman Dick Snerd (from last issue) has banned the GLA from active superheroing in the city despite the current supervillain crisis. He complains that the Avengers or the Federal Government imposed the team on Detroit, and the council want time to make their own evaluation of the situation. Val tries to ring their Avengers lawyer Connie Ferrari. Pansy, the girl who they inadvertently asked to join them in #1, enters the kitchen area. They ascertain that she believes this is like a commune and she can stay for free if she contributes to the workload. She guesses she's like an intern, which reminds her to mention that there's someone wandering around the place looking for them. Enter the long-missing Mr Immortal, followed by not-so-missing Doorman.

Next we're back in the Milwaukee flashback. It turns out that the ad in the paper wasn't the 1 that 1st gathered the Great Lakes Avengers together. Instead elastic Matt is working for the man named Andrew who left him the newspaper. He's preparing to 'entertain' a birthday gathering of supervillains dressed as Mr Fantastic.

In present day Detroit Bertha doesn't want to share the same building as Mr I so she takes Doorman and Good Boy to check out Nain Rouge's nearby bar where they saw some of the supervillains last issue. Used-to-be leader of the group Craig Hollis accepts it as a plan and says he and Flatman will take the Flatmobile (a camper van) to check other sites of supervillain activity. Val protests that they're not supposed to go into action but Mr Immortal takes the wheel and says he *needs* to do something. He explains that he's been in a buried coffin for the last 6 weeks to get sober (until DM 'rescued' him last issue). On the way out he asks if he missed anything while he was 'away'. Val mentions the Civil War and he thinks Bruce Banner died, but he can't keep track of all the events.

Meanwhile DeMarr Davies uses his doorway power to get Bertha and Good Boy into Nain Rouge's place. But suddenly a giant blue hand grabs him and makes him dematerialise. BB's used to DM vanishing (to his other role as Deathurge) so she thinks nothing of it. She also doesn't want to talk with Good about her and Craig. So instead Good Boy picks up a pair of sunglasses and asks if it's OK for a hero to take a bad guy's stuff. Bertha wants to know how she became a werewolf, but Good denies that's what she is. She says it's an inherited trait, but her family aren't all wolves. Her brother Lucky is a fox with 2 tails. They have different fursonas. Then they hear a noise and and Good Boy smells someone familiar from their time under arrest (last issue). They enter Nain Rouge's office and find Councilman Snerd drunk with the villain's 'demonic' mask and gloves.

Back in old Milwaukee Matt is fed up with impersonating Mr Fantastic for the birthday parties of rich kids. He wants to be a real superhero like MrF. But his 'agent' Andrew reminds him that Reed Richards is a rich scientific genius who *is* a superhero, while Matt is a broke college dropout who just *happens* to have a superpower. But Matt says he'll *pretend* to be like Richards, he'll claim to be a scientist Dr Val Ventura. He'll call himself Flatman and Andrew can be his sidekick Paperboy. Andrew points out that he's older than Matt, and dissolves their working relationship.

In the present the Flatmobile is parked outside what looks like Good Silva's wrecked house (from #1). Val/Matt continues to complain that they shouldn't be here. If they get prosecuted for breaking the Council's injunction then the Avengers might fire them. Craig's not bothered. They can just go back to being unofficial Avengers in Milwaukee like the good old days. FM points out that in those 'good old days' they got several teammates killed. And Craig's messy breakup with Bertha tore the team apart. Craig's excuse is that he was a drunk then (after the death of his previous love Dinah Soar). He accuses FM of wanting to continue being the leader (in Mr I's absence). Val admits that he does want to be the leader and he *really* wants to be an Avenger. And now they *are* they'll get respect. And he wins Craig over.

For our 1st epilogue we'll see what's happened to Doorman. He's in the Darkforce Dimension with his boss (as Deathurge) Oblivion who wants to know why his minion hasn't been concentrating on his job (collecting souls of the dead).

In the 2nd epilogue in Milwaukee Andrew gets a parcel addressed to Paperboy. Inside he finds a Michigan newspaper featuring the the Detroit Avengers. Their picture is circled and a message reads "Sidekick still wanted. Consider this a tip. Val.".

Will Robson
Will Robson
Tamra Bonvillain
Will Robson (Cover Penciler)
Will Robson (Cover Inker)
Tamra Bonvillain (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Joe Caramagna.
Editor: Tom Brevoort. Editor-in-chief: Axel Alonso.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Big Bertha, Doorman, Flatman, Good Boy (Good(ness) Silva), Great Lakes Avengers, Mr Immortal, Nain Rouge (Dick Snerd), Oblivion.

> Great Lakes Avengers: Book info and issue index

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