Saturday, March 21, 2020

Starbolts #472: Let Freedom Ring

Trigger warning: This week's comic contains references to sexual assault and violence. Viewer discretion is advised.


Hails and horns!

                Well, we’re finally here. This was the time period that Crystal freaked out about the most back in Starbolts #464. As you can see, her fears were well warranted. Now we know the reason why she was crying in the flashback in Starbolts #304. Her boyfriend of three years, Cody Dillinger, attempted to rape her. It’s an act I do not condone and again I have to say that I do not like writing this character. This man is beyond redemption. He didn’t just force himself on her that one time. Over the course of three years he was very, very rough with her. Cody damaged her emotionally as well as physically. In fact, this is probably the last time we will EVER see this man.

 As writers, sometimes we have to write characters who for better or for worse are the scum of the earth. Sadly, the Starbolts don’t live in a fantasy world where people don’t get assaulted. It happens to people in the real world and I try to put some of that realism into the world of the comic. It is a sad situation to be in and I do not wish it on anyone. So, what do we do about Cody Dillinger? We will reference him in a future comic. He just won’t be appearing any time soon. Instead, I will share what happened to him after the incident that cost him his eye and gave him five scars across his face.
                Following Crystal’s rescue from Terra Nova, she went to Agents Embassy with Dennis, Marcus and Mateo. The teenager spent the night tossing and turning because of nightmares she was having thanks to her ex-boyfriend’s actions. Scared, she contacted Andrea and had her meet her in the mess hall. She told her about everything he did and Andrea had her get an emergency check-up with Dr. Harris right there. The check-up revealed that Cody had been very brutal with the sixteen year old for the better part of three years.

                Naturally, Andrea was furious and had asked Stan to press charges on Cody and to immediately adopt Crystal since her parents signed off all rights to her. Of course, this was way before it was revealed that she was really their birth daughter all along. Stan wholeheartedly agreed to take the girl in. Dennis was also placed under the Whitefoxes’ protective custody at that point because there was no evidence of a birth certificate. This was due to his own extra-terrestrial origin.

                The Whitefoxes soon sent Agent Phillip Smith of the Department of Metahuman Affairs and FBI agent Maria Cooper to arrest the twenty-seven year old for the statutory rape of a minor, sexual assault and child pornography. He was summarily sent to prison and won’t be released any time soon assuming he is even still alive in the Starbolts’ present time. Chances are he isn’t. Men like him don’t last long in prison. Sam, Mark and I agreed that he probably should be dead. So his final fate is that he was killed in a prison riot.

                Cody was the primary reason why Marcus and Crystal didn’t get together until recently. If there was no Cody, she would have gotten with him shortly after her rescue. There is a connection between him and Terra Nova and that’s a story for another time. It’s also very important to remember that he was wrong. She did find love again after three years of dealing with him and ten years of therapy. Now she’s with a man who loves her for who she is: A compassionate and caring woman. Marcus gets her and she gets him. That’s why they are together. They connect on an emotional level and that is way more than the purely physical relationship she had before. That was lust. What Marcus and Crystal have is love and that’s the most important thing. It’s just a shame that it took so long. But, she had scars that needed time to heal and he was with her every step of the way. They were best friends first and later became something more when they realized that their friendship was actually them falling in love with each other.

                You can bet that once the others found out about this event, they were not happy. Marcus definitely wasn’t. Jack even went to so far as to check Cody out at the prison where he was being held. The Starbolts rallied in support of their friend because that’s what friends do.  Sure she was a difficult teenager. But, they knew her story and truth be told Jenna almost had the same thing happen to her.
                At least with Jenna things turned out to be moderately better. Rick Baxter was a jerk to be sure. But, he wasn’t a rapist.  We’ll be seeing more of him when we cover the death of Sirak J’arrsti. He is another person I really don’t enjoy writing. I’m not going to say who was worse. BOTH men are slime and at least Rick is definitely dead. Let’s just say he got the point and took it right to heart. Mwahahaha!

                With Jenna’s story, we got the origin of the Starbolts. Immediately following that day, Jenna, Mateo, Marcus and Kevin were brought together to form the Starbolts. Less than a week later Aquita, M’anta and Shrall arrived on Earth. The rest as they say is history. And that’s really what this comic has been about the last few weeks. Basically, we’re getting a crash course in Starbolts history by dealing with the bumps along the way and of course dealing with the threat of the Professor. He certainly seems hell bent on trying to undo the past. What is his deal? We’ll have to wait and see!
More time travel adventures are coming! Stay tuned!

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