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Abandoned Love: What Do You Do When a Team Member Is Suddenly Not Available?

by  in Comic News Comment

Every week, we will be examining comic book stories, plots and ideas that were abandoned by a later writer while still acknowledging that the abandoned story DID still happen. Click here for an archive of all the previous editions of Abandoned Love. Feel free to e-mail me at bcronin@comicbookresources.com if you have any suggestions for future editions of this feature.

This time around, we look at the sad fate of the Justice League Task Force member Mystek…

I dealt with this one in VERY basic terms in one of my very first Comic Book Legends Revealed, but now we’ll look at it in greater depth.

Mystek appeared in an issue of The Ray (which was written by Christopher Priest, who also wrote Justice League Task Force and who would keep VERY tight continuity between the two titles, with the books practically being completely interconnected) and then appeared in Justice League Task Force #25…



We then see the “twist” for Mystek, it is a woman dressed as a man…


She soon discovers Ray’s teleportation mat (that allows him access to Justice League Task Force headquarters)…


She fights the JLTF and escapes. The next issue, though, the Martian Manhunter tracks her down…






And later in the issue, she officially joins the team…


A few issues later, in Justice League Task Force #31, she is traveling with her teammates in a space ship on the way to rescue one of their teammates (L-Ron, who was at the time residing in Despero’s body. Despero was wanted for being a downright nasty fellow and despite L-Ron controlling the body, a bunch of aliens hired a bounty hunter to capture Despero). She was dealing with some major claustrophobia issues…



Here’s the problem, though. You see, Mystek was an original creation of Priest’s and he was in the midst of trying to work out a profit sharing deal with DC for the character. Everything seemed to be going to plan. So much so that he added her to the books before the deal was done. Then, well, DC decided NOT to complete the deal. So Priest certainly didn’t want to keep using a character that he was not going to own, so the next issue, her claustrophobia issues went to a new level…





Eventually, Gyspy was saved…


but what about Mystek?


HARSH!

And then Mystek was never mentioned again. Talk about abandonment! This is a bit of a twist since it was her own writer doing the abandoning, but I think it counts because it was not his idea. It is still a case of an outside force causing an abrupt change in a character’s story, which is really what Abandoned Love is all about.

If YOU have a suggestion for a future installment of Abandoned Love, drop me a line at bcronin@comicbookresources.com!