February 24, 2007

Time Warp #2 [1979]

TIME WARP was a short-lived science fiction anthology series that DC had back in 1979, with one or two Ditko stories in the first four issues. "The Last Journey" is an 8-page story written by Paul Levitz, with space explorer Henry Prince planning further explorations into the unknown from the planet he discovered, but being protested by android pilots who don't figure into his plans. Just as he convinces his wife to go along with him, their home is bombed. He recovers, but she's severely injured, with only her brain still active. He does the only logical thing and steals her body, hooks it up to a computer and goes off in his explorations with her. On the ship he plays a message from the androids that explains they weren't protesting his plans because they feared being made obsolete, but because their own explorations show that there's no return from the edge of the universe where he plans to go. No explanation of why it was better to blow up his house and almost kill him and his wife rather than just tell him what they know. Henry doesn't believe it, but he and his wife have never returned.

Yeah, there are a couple of plot holes in this pretty standard 1950s sci-fi short. But Ditko does manage at least one noteworthy visual on almost every page. Robot security guards, the futuristic cityscape, the explosion on this page, the alien doctor and medical equipment and the final sequence of the ship trailing off the edge of the universe into nothingness.

"The Last Journey" J-6183

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