Plastic Man No More 1 cover by Alex Lins
(Image Source: DC / Alex Lins)

Plastic Man No More! Is DC’s Take on Body Horror

Despite his criminal past, Patrick “Eel” O’Brian is seen as one of DC Comics most light-hearted heroes. As Plastic Man, Eel has delivered laughs along with justice, even as he occasionally annoyed his fellow heroes. However, a new DC Black Label series will offer a new take on the Pliable Private Eye as Eel faces his dark past and the true horror of his powers in Plastic Man No More!

Described as a “hard-boiled Plastic Man noir,” the four issue miniseries is the brainchild of Eisner-nominated author Christopher Cantwell (Batman: The Brave and The Bold, Briar). The artwork will be split between two artists, with Alex Lins (Briar, Immortal Hulk) handling most of the book. Jacob Edgar will illustrate the flashbacks depicting Eel O’Brian and his Justice League allies in happier times.

Six unlettered pages from Plastic Man No More #1 may be viewed below:

Plastic Man No More 1 Page 1
Plastic Man No More 1 Page 2
Plastic Man No More 1 Page 3
Plastic Man No More 1 Page 4
Plastic Man No More 1 Page 5
Plastic Man No More 1 Page 6

Plastic Man No More! Explained

“I don’t know about you, but when I think about Plastic Man, I immediately think of David Cronenberg,” said Cantwell. “There is an element of body horror to his story that I have always found fascinating. And I also found myself wondering recently—How would Plastic Man actually die?”

This led to what Cantwell describes as “a particularly morose afternoon on the ol’ Internet,” researching depolymerization and how petroleum products break down. The end result is a story in which Eel O’Brian’s entire cellular structure starts to give away after one rough day with the Justice League. This leaves Eel trying to save his soul and the estranged son who may have inherited more than his powers.

“There are many superhero stories that play with the metaphor of our own inability to control our physical bodies,” continued Cantwell. “Plastic Man provided a way to take that allegory even deeper. The character also has a history of neglect and failure when it comes to personal relationships. So quite catastrophically, Patrick O’Brien suddenly finds himself desperate, asking ‘WHAT NOW? HOW DO I FIX THIS?’ ‘THIS’ being his very body, his very cells, as well his connections to the people he loves.”

Plastic Man No More! #1 arrives in comic shops everywhere on September 4, 2024.