Fritz Babbles About Ghostbusters #5:
(I'll post basically the same comments on the IDW board, thus the frequent invocations of "you" when referring to them...)
The first thing we discover is that, after "Ragnarok and Roll", Jeremy and Cindy did, indeed, get back together and had a son. The happy family is visiting Fantastic Land in Schenectady (Schenectady...so much fun to say. Not so much fun to write--thank goodness for copy/paste); we even see Uncle DiTillio on page 5. Maybe Jeremy'd sent him for hotdogs just before the story started. Or some brats on the midway thought he was one of the attractions. Ungrateful yuppie larvae.
And then Pennywise the clown throws up glowing green bats and little Scotty Whittington gets possessed.
Jeremy: You think this has anything to do with the time I made a pact with Loki and tried to destroy the world?
Cindy: If it does, you're sleeping on the couch for the next year.
So...what's going on back in New York?
Venkman and Egon are at the gym, trying to lose weight as Wally Wick has ordered them to do--until the Ghostbusters are in his definition of Fighting Shape, he's pulled all their permits. For a guy with no dick, he sure acts like a big one, huh? Anyway, after their workout Egon gets beset by groupies, much to Venkman's annoyance. This is a fun little callback to the cartoon, where in episodes like "Noone Comes to Lupusville", "Chicken, He Clucked", and "Til Death Do Us Part" they portray Egon as a sort of Babe Magnet for somewhat eccentric women. (It's not just the fussy and eccentric Brooklyn redheads, folks). Actually, this seems to work for him in Real Life, too, based on eight years of internet battles with Egon fangirls. ("Janine is a bitch only out for One Thing and Egon would be better off with my wonderful new character with multiple PhDs and double E-cups and black belts in multiple martial arts and just happens to be based on me!!!")
Anyway, after not explaining that to Venkman, Egon gets spooked outside a CaseyJ's coffee shop (you don't want to mess with their bouncer, the dude in the hockey mask), and it's not by Mrs. Rogers, Alice Derleth, Big Ed Zeddemore, Professor Dweeb, or even that ghost pirate from Captain Jack Higgin's crew: it's some dude in a jacket possibly sporting the same "Senn University" name as Egon's workout clothes. Then the guy disappears--has Egon been seeing things?
This couldn't possibly be set up for an upcoming story, could it? No...no way...
And a little nod to a previous IDW one-shot in these scenes: the Delgado's Gym and the CaseyJ's are in the same building as the law offices of Ballard Wright from "Tainted Love".
Back to (copy/paste) Schenectady the cops show up and the Rollerghoster is haunted. Actually, the whole park is pretty much throwing a fit. Who do you think the cops are gonna have to call?
We go back to New York, where we discover that Ray still has his little occult book shop from GB2, and Cubby is the current customer--Dear gods, Ray, stop that sale, I enjoy fried chicken!--and perhaps unsurprisingly, since he's been back at his Day Job for a couple years now, he's hired some help. The surprise is (ROSEY!!! PAY ATTENTION!!!! YOU'LL LIKE THIS!!!) that the help is a face familiar to many Ghostbusters fans: acerbic Goth paranormal enthusiast Kylie Griffin, who was one of the featured characters in the 1997 animated series Extreme Ghostbusters.
I think this is a neat development, even if EGB is somewhat...controversial in Ghosthead circles still. I personally enjoyed the show a great deal, in part because it actually let time pass instead of trying to pretend it's some time between 1984 and 1992ish forever. Of course, I'm also an Egon and Janine fan, and they were the only (human) regulars from the older crew of Ghostbusters, so maybe that biased me some.
And perhaps more importantly, there's no suggestion as yet Kylie's gonna join the Ghostbusters or anything like that. Like I said, I enjoyed EGB, but also like I said last month when the Rookies were alluded to: this comic is supposed to be about Venkman, Ray, Winston, Egon and Janine, and even Peck. You've found a good spot to have Kylie around and acknowledged, but don't overuse her. Now if you did an EGB spinoff book, that'd be a different story...
We get back to Ghostbusters Central to discover that Peck has been getting flack from the Governor (Lenny Clotch, maybe?) and is going to temporarily let the Ghostbusters back into business to deal with the problem in (copy/paste) Schenectady.
Janine growls at Venkman and Peck while they're having their pissing match, and Winston quietly notes to Ray that she's been really "aggressive" lately. Ray pulls a Sgt. Shultz and "Knows nothing". Interesting that this comes the issue after Venkman notices Egon getting "snippy". The Rogerpocalypse is brewing.
Anyway, the Ghostbusters fly to (copy/paste) Schenectady in an airplane marked "GB 4"--a reference to the ECTO-4 from the Now Comics run, maybe?--and arrive at the possessed park. Egon gets them into it with a ghost bomb, and Venkman tries to out-attitude the entity...unfortunately, it appears he both failed his Cool roll and rolled a ghost, as the park decides to keep them there "Forever!!!" For some reason Ghost World The Sequel doesn't laugh maniacally as it says this, but we'll forgive the oversight. It can always do it next issue.
After our cliffhanger comes the PCOC files, and we get another nod to pre-Burnham IDW stuff, namely a nice file on Samuel Hain from "What The Sam Hain Just Happened?" which nicely serves to clarify his back story and the source of his unusual name; it's a stage name intentionally derived from the spirit of Halloween, which us Ghostheads are well familiar with thanks to "When Halloween Was Forever", "Halloween 2 1/2", and "Chanted Evening". Best of all, it leaves open the idea that there's a "real" Samhain out there, rarin' to go some Halloween!
See you next month.