Savage Dragon #132
Erik Larsen: Story & Art
John Workman: Letters
Tom & Mary Bierbaum, Adam Hughes, Rick Mays, and Mark Lipka: A special tip of the hat to from whom I totally swiped the opening sequence.
Josh Eichorn: Specializing in custom roadtrips
Frank Fosco: Rock House Diner Back Cover
Erik Larsen: Unused Cover (Savage Dragon #129)
Battle Girl (Angel Murphy)
Mighty Man II
Chicago Police Department
– Captain Frank Darling
– Sgt. Alex Wilde
Dr. Larry Bradford
Helen Black (First Appearance)
Kevin Murphy (Corpse Only)
The Vicious Circle
– Animal II
– Chrome Dome (First Appearance)
– Gem-Head (First Appearance)
– Horn-Head (First Appearance)
– Mane Man (First Appearance)
– Megamaniac (First Appearance)
– Myotis (First Appearance)
– Roy Robot (First Appearance)
Twelve years ago. Dragon walks into the kitchen of Jennifer Murphy to find her holding her infant daughter as her husband lies dead on the ground. He tries to calm down the hysterical woman who is panicking about her baby being taken from her. Dragon approaches Jennifer but she backhands him away, scaring herself with her newfound power. She quickly apologizes to the police officer and again pleads with him not to take Angel away.
Dragon asks to know what had happened here and is informed of how Kevin Murphy used to beat his wife whenever he felt frustrated with his life or he was drunk or for just about any reason. One day the punches stopped hurting, making Kevin even angrier. When Kevin tried to vent this rage at Angel instead, Jennifer hit him but her mutant abilities had fully manifested by now. Kevin’s head was shattered by the force of the blow. Dragon promises Jennifer that he will do everything he can to help her and to allow her to keep custody of Angel.
The present. Larry Bradford and Ann Stevens carry out a full physical of Angel Murphy at Hillman Hospital to check that she is in perfect health. Her recent manifestation of powers had worried Dragon as well as the four years that she spent trapped in Dimension-X. Angel is given a clean bill of health and goes to get dressed. Dragon considers how Angel got her powers during puberty whereas her mother did not manifest until adulthood. He hopes that they are just different and that Jennifer did not really have her powers the entire time and intentionally killed her first husband.
Angel returns to the room and shocks everyone present by wearing a costume that She-Dragon helped her design and make. She calls herself Battle Girl and intends to become a superhero so that she can help out her father with fighting crime. Dragon does not approve of the idea at all as she is still far too young. Angel counters by pointing out that Ricochet was not much older than she is when Freak Force started but Dragon believes that she should be concentrating on catching up with her schoolwork rather than entertaining ideas of becoming a hero.
Meanwhile in Dimension-X, Malcolm Dragon protects his young companions as they use an alien aircraft to escape from a group of large monsters.
The incarcerated Dark Dragon tries to protest his innocence, claiming to be the Dragon of this reality and that his doppelganger has framed him for crimes in order to keep him out of the way. Dragon has freely admitted in his autobiography that he does not truly hail from this Earth, thinking that this should be proof enough to back up his claims. Frank Darling admits that his story comes across as convincing but Alex Wilde and She-Dragon are keen to point out that he had attacked them. Frank is confident that the upcoming trial should resolve the issue.
Dragon raids the Freak Outpost and gets into a fight with a group of super-freaks and is soon joined by his daughter. He reluctantly allows Battle Girl to help him but it is soon clear that the youngster has mistaken the motives of her father. She thought that Dragon was interrogating these villains for information about her mother but they are actually merely bank robbers that Dragon wants to apprehend. Battle Girl and Dragon are soon victorious but Dragon realizes the time and leaves Angel with Alex while he goes to meet someone who may be able to help him find Jennifer.
A young woman named Helen Black had agreed to meet with Dragon and takes him into the building where she is the landlady. Jennifer’s best friend Gertie Funt lives in an apartment there and as Dragon has been unable to contact her, he hopes to look around her apartment. Helen agrees to open up the apartment as she appreciates all of the work that Dragon has done to keep the planet safe. As they open the door to the apartment, they are shocked by its contents…
ROCK HOUSE DINER
Erik Larsen: Story/Plot
Frank Fosco: Plot/Art
Chris Eliopoulos: Letters
Erik Larsen: Colors
The Rock House Diner
– Beast Boy
The Liberty League
– Mighty Man II
Gina Manning (First Appearance)
Marika Washington (Image Only) (First Appearance) (Death Issue)
The Vicious Circle
– Buster Justice (First Appearance)
– Joey Finkleberry
– Nick Justice (Corpse Only)
– Rat Bastard
Niles (First Appearance) (Death Issue)
Unofficial Guest Stars
Gina Manning arrives in Chicago after the sudden death of her mother and she enters the Rock House Diner in search of her father. The initial sight of seeing all of the super-freaks eating inside the diner scares the youngster but Widow comes along to take her order and put her mind at ease. Gina enjoys the burger and shouts to the chef to compliment him, hoping to gain her father’s attention. Rock turns round and barely recognizes his daughter after so many years apart.
The excited Rock introduces his daughter to everyone in his diner before later walking her back to his apartment. On the way home, a giant slug creature attacks them but Rock fends it off and tries to assure his daughter that this is not a regular occurrence and that this area of town is usually quite safe. Gina is introduced to the rest of the family before settling down for the night. The day’s events have unsettled Gina and she is welcomed into the bed of Janey. Her new little sister offers to keep her safe and Gina falls asleep in the arms of the young super-freak.
Gina slowly grows to accept her new life but her existence has been discovered by the Vicious Circle and they hope to exploit this fact. A group of thugs confront Rock and threaten the life of his daughter which leads to a fight breaking out. Rock is overwhelmed but the arrival of Zeek evens the odds as the behemoth rams the villains into a dumpster before throwing it out to Lake Michigan.
This setback leads to an all-out assault upon the Rock House Diner where Beast Boy, Feezle and Widow are all quickly taken prisoner. Rock returns to his restaurant where he is confronted by Buster Justice, the new leader of the Vicious Circle and brother to a man that was killed in the diner. Nick Justice’s corpse is removed from the freezer where his body had been kept preserved ever since the Shrew killed him to save Rock’s life.
A group from the Vicious Circle raid the apartment of Rock’s family but Lethal holds them off long enough for Janey and Gina to flee across the rooftops. Zeek had been dispatched to protect the children but as he moves to pursue them, Joey Finkleberry grabs a hold of him. These two incredibly strong men fight one another but Lethal soon joins the fray. She surrounds Joey with shadows so that he cannot see, allowing Zeek to punch him clear across to Kansas where he is found by a loving elderly couple.
Buster Justice believes that Rock owes him for the death of his brother, not out of revenge as he feels that the Shrew’s death balanced out Nick’s, but because his sibling had demanded money from the diner for the Vicious Circle. Their conversation is interrupted when a man named Niles attacks with an army of giant worms, eager to punish Buster for having ejected him from the Vicious Circle. His monstrous minions feast on most of the villains present and Rock offers to help keep Buster alive to settle any imagined debt that he owes.
The super-freaks all battle against the worms as Gina and Janey reach the scene. Gina notices that the diner’s sign is hanging over Niles’s head and has Janey carry her there so that it can be knocked off. Niles is crushed underneath the sign and the flute that he used to control the worms is recovered by Gina. Buster Justice leads his surviving colleagues away, agreeing that the slate has been wiped clean as far as any business involving Rock. Zeek then catches up with the Vicious Circle members who had been chasing the children and he sends them off in a dumpster too.
The damage done to the Rock House Diner is surveyed and Widow likes the idea of using this as an excuse to renovate the premises, much to Rock’s protest. Gina looks around at her new family and finally feels as though she is amongst a true family. She has a photograph taken with her new parents and sister and accepts the fact that she is now home.
NOTE: This story takes place prior to SAVAGE DRAGON #99
Erik Larsen: Story
Scott James: Art
Chris Eliopoulos: Letters
Sgt. Alex Wilde
Alex Wilde welcomes her boyfriend into bed with her where they spend a good deal of time having sex. She then asks Dragon about why he has seemed so depressed recently, unaware that her lover was actually the hero’s counterpart from Darkworld. He has been preoccupied with preparations for the coming of Universo and Mother Mayhem, having been sent by DarkLord to protect this Earth from destruction at the hands of the Devourer of Worlds.
All of the death that Dragon has had to deal with over the past few years is thought to be the cause of this depression and Alex does her best to comfort him. She knows that Dragon had considered Jennifer Murphy to be the love of his life but Alex hopes that he can accept her and move on with his life. Dragon admits that this is all very difficult but claims that the reason he is acting odd around Alex is that he is scared of hurting her as she is very fragile compared to his own durability.
As Alex gets dressed for work, a knock is heard at the front door and she asks Dragon to answer it for her. Dark Dragon has a bad feeling about this and as he opens up the door he is confronted by the sight of the real Dragon. This would then lead to an explosive confrontation between the pair where Alex discovered that she had been lied to and that Dark Dragon was a fake and never really cared for her.
NOTE: This issue features COMIC BITS by Chris Giarrusso