Anyone who has been with us for a while probably knows that despite being a huge X-Men fan, my all-time favorite superhero is the second incarnation of the Blue Beetle, Ted Kord. I’ve loved the guy for years and have endured having to explain who the hell he is pretty much any time someone new finds out that I’m a huge comic nerd and asks “Who’s your favorite?”
You probably are also well aware that it absolutely broke my heart when DC finally gave him a spotlight issue that made people see him as the awesome hero I always knew he was, only to put a bullet in his head at the end and replace him with a new, hip youngster with the way too overboard power set of “CAN DO EVERYTHING.”
But with the most recent run of Blue Beetle, starring both Jaime Reyes AND Ted Kord, I’ve finally begun to move towards the possibility of accepting Jaime and even liking him. And then, in issue #8, he does this:
Okay, kid. You got me. I like you.
It’s not that I disliked the new Blue Beetle simply because he wasn’t Ted Kord. Okay, it’s not COMPLETELY that I disliked the new Blue Beetle simply because he wasn’t Ted Kord. But Ted was an everyman that made himself a super-hero through hard work and intelligence. He had an awesome sense of humor, a kind heart, and an inferiority complex being a man amongst gods. Pretty much everything about him was something I identified with, which is why I took to him so strongly.
But then came along Jaime Reyes who got the old Blue Beetle scarab, but unlike its first bearer, Dan Garrett, he got more than just strength and endurance. He got lasers and flight and armor and pretty much any possible thing that the story needed. Did he need supersonics? He could do that. How about limb extension to reach really far away? Can do! Scan for weaknesses? YUP. He was Iron Man without having to bother explaining what was in the suit and how he got it there.
The problem was that I really never hated Jaime Reyes. In fact, in my last days of reading Teen Titans, I really enjoyed him being a part of the team. Likewise, in Justice League: Generation Lost, I thought he made a fitting addition to the new era of the JLI, even though the New 52 reboot ruined that before it could even begin. I like the kid a lot. I just wish he wasn’t the Blue Beetle because I like my Blue Beetle and he’s a completely different character.
But now that Ted’s alive and well and now the Blue Beetle is kind of the two of them, I suppose I’m now on board. Welcome aboard the Bug, kid.