When it comes right down to it, the title of a story doesn’t really have to tell you anything.
Take Watchmen, for instance: It’s a great title for a great story, but by itself, without the quote from Juvenal or the actual themes to contextualize it, it doesn’t tell you anything about what’s actually going to happen.
With a title like this, though…
…you pretty much know you’re in for something awesome.
And awesome it is! Originally published in Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen #69, my copy of this Leo Dorfman/John Forte masterpiece comes from the giant-sized #122, which also features a story where Jimmy Olsen makes out with virtually every girl in Superman’s supporting cast, up to and including Superman’s cousin, his childhood sweetheart, and his psychic mermaid ex-girlfriend.
You know, when dealing with any other genre, that would probably be the strangest sentence I’d type all night. And that, my friends, is why I’m thankful for Silver Age Jimmy Olsen comics.
Anyway, it all gets started, as you might expect if you’re familiar with the many tribulations of Jimmy Olsen’s love life, with Jimmy’s on-again / off-again
total bitch girlfriend Lucy Lane giving him the cold shoulder on a ski slope:
Okay, seriously: I don’t want to harp on Lucy here or anything, but let’s take a look at the facts here. On the one hand, you’ve got Ron Baxter, who’s handsome, tall, well-built, and has the glamorous career of an Olympic skier. I won’t lie, folks, the guy’s a catch.
But Jimmy? Jimmy’s been to outer space.
He’s best friends with Superman.
He’s a member of a super-hero team in the motherfucking future.
That guy should wake up every morning on a pile of intergalactic supermodels. And yet, there goes the object of his affection, off to the Bunny Slope with Rex Squarejaw. What a world, folks. What a world.
But Jimmy, of course, is not deterred, and resolves to impress Lucy by leaping across “Daredevil Chasm.” As should come as no surprise, this doesn’t really go to well.
To be fair, Jimmy does make the jump, but thanks to a sudden avalanche, it’s the landing that presents him with a bit of a problem. Thus, Jimmy takes a rock to the noggin and wakes up a few minutes later, digging himself out of the snow to find that he’s inadvertently unearthed some red-haired Nordic hotness from the days of Leif Ericsson!
At this point, those of us who’ve been down this lonely road with Jimmy before might think that we’ve got it all figured out. After all, the last time Jimmy Olsen started ranting about vikings, it all turned out to be a hallucination, and what with the fact that he’s conked on the head right when all this starts to go down, it’s pretty easy to assume that this is all going to turn out to be a dream.
The truth, however… is far more radical:
Take a good hard look at the lousy buncha ingrates that comprise the Jimmy Olsen Fan Club. In a plot twist that cannot be explained without at least four notebooks full of complex math, Jimmy’s alleged “fans” decide to get back at him for ditching them to chase girls by unpacking their brand new automated RealDoll™ and using it to “make Lucy jealous.” And seeing as the control panel is emblazoned with functions like “Treat Jimmy Affectionately” and “Treat Jimmy Coldly,” it seems to have been made exactly for that purpose.
Something to consider here: Jimmy brought the kids along on the trip, which ostensibly means that he paid their airfare. And yet, they managed to sneak not only a life-sized, fully functional replica of a teenage Vikingess, but the control panel for same, which clocks in at about the size of a modest china hutch, apparently just in case they needed to pull a fast one.
And here’s the weird part: This goes on for days. Presumably, the kids can just set Holga to act idependently and get back to their lives, but leaving an experimental robot to its own devices might not be the most responsible thing to do. Especially if it were to, oh, I don’t know, gain access to the White House or something.
Fortunately, disaster was averted when Holga became preoccupied with shoving a plate of sandwiches directly into Jimmy’s face in a panel that’s equal parts hilarious and terrifying:
As you can see, Lucy has decided by this point that she can only be happy when Jimmy’s pining away for her, and when she finds out that Holga’s a robot–thanks to an amazing set of coincidences involving Jackie Kennedy’s model longship and a spare key to the Fan Club offices–she resolves to make him as miserable as possible by making Holga into her fickle, shrewish proxy.
I may have mentioned this before, but Lucy Lane is a terrible, terrible person.
Of course, Jimmy’s views on the situation are slightly different, as revealed when Lucy comes to the park to gloat and finds that what she thought was a present for Holga was, in actuality, Jimmy returning her gift with a note explaining that his heart belongs to another.
Thus, Lucy repents (for the two panels it takes to finish the story, anyway) and they get to making out. As for Holga–who, if you’ll remember, is a national celebrity at this point–she ends up getting disassembled and stuffed back in a box by Jimmy’s Amazingly Creepy Fan Club, who at this point have crossed the line from “youthful shenanigans” to “alarming sociopathic behavior” at least six times over:
Still, all’s well that ends we–hey, wait a second! You know, I’d been under the impression that they were monitoring Holga the Robot on that screen, but with her in the box, that must mean that they’ve actually got Jimmy under constant surveillance! They’re an even creepier fan club than I thought!
Man. That guy just can’t catch a break.