I read comics in the trade collections. Sure, that puts me months behind the main stories, but the truth is I don’t have the money to spend on them, and I’m only casually interested in the storylines. There are very few comics I genuinely care about, far fewer than I read.
Anyway, one of the comics I’ve been half-following is SECRET WARRIORS, which is a sort of spy/superhero mashup, with a pack of unknown superpowered non-heroes as the operatives and Nick Fury running it all.
It’s fun, it’s shaggy in a pleasing way, and unlike some comics the story isn’t an incomprehensible mess. It also has a hero named Druid, who I liked because he has pseudo-magical powers and because he’s a fat guy.
It’s pretty rare to see a fat hero in comics. I’m not going into the history of it, but when Blue Beetle fell into a depression and put on a bunch of weight, all he needed to do was beat up an obnoxious guy and snap out of it. Easy, right?
Well, Druid was a powerful character who didn’t have full control of his powers (magic!) and who was a little insecure because he made mistakes. See, I like him even more. Then, at the end of the previous trade, Nick Fury kicked him off the team.
In the trade I read over the weekend, we pick up his story: he’s gotten the boot, goes home, sits in a chair and is all “Now what?” Then he goes home and finds one of Fury’s agents waiting for him (a guy who’s a human head on a robot body, but never mind). Fury’s buddy is one of those grizzled old commanders who doesn’t take any nonsense, and he quickly informs Druid that with spies and Nick Fury, there is no “out.” The agent sits Druid down with a stack of papers and tells him to fill out the test, it’s the same one he’s been giving to his raw recruits for decades. Then this happens: (I’ll put in a cut for the scan)
Yeah, that’s right. Fury’s buddy informs Druid that the reason he can’t control his powers is because he can’t control his life. He needs to change himself and become the man he’s supposed to be. So, with his cyborg fitness coach, his complete lack of personal/social obligations, and his apparent ability to pay his rent on Fury’s credit card, he spends months getting himself back into shape. And wouldn’t you fucking know it, but having conquered his belly, Druid rejoins the team as a total badass. What a giant fucking shock.
And god help me, I cheered him on.