I remember being so disappointed when I picked up Detective 480 (Nov./Dec. 78), and discovered it was not by the previous creative team. Denny O’Neil and Don Newton craft a serviceable story, but it’s just not on par with what had come before.
The story deals with an overweight boy, hated and teased, unloved by his parents, who becomes a tool of a wealthy man who wants to create a living weapon.
Dr. Moon makes an appearance, the scientist behind the transformation. Dr. Moon was always Denny O’Neil’s evil scientist of choice. He had last appeared a few months earlier in Richard Dragon, Kung-Fu Fighter, and would return in a couple of years in the pages of Wonder Woman.
The boy does well against Batman for a while, but as soon as he starts to lose the man behind it all gets abusive and, realizing that he has been used, he kills the man instead of Batman.
Len Wein and Murphy Anderson are behind the Hawkman story in this issue, which pits him against the Pied Piper, who is selling his skills and weapons.
The Piper is working on sonic weaponry, and though he is selling his equipment, he is using the man who bought it to see how well it works against a superhero.
So even though Hawkman defeats the middle man, when he goes after the Pied Piper he has more advanced sonics to face. Which he does, and wins.
Hawkman’s series is cancelled as part of the DC Implosion, but begins again in short order, in the pages of World’s Finest Comics.