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|Mega Man #22|
Standard cover by Jamal Peppers, Gary Martin and Matt Herms
‘Cold Crush.’ Is love in the air – or is that just frost? Mega Man, Roll, and Quake Woman go to the far north to assist Ice Man in a perilous research mission. Will Roll’s attempt at match-making be more hazardous than the ice?
Ice Man asks Quake Woman, Mega Man, and Roll to help him with his deep ice research in the Arctic. Before Mega Man and Roll arrive, he asks Quake Woman to make an ice heart for him to show for Roll, to Quake Woman's annoyance, as Ice Man had her redo the entire thing twice already. Ice Man happily welcomes Roll, and when Mega Man talks with Quake Woman, Roll has the idea to hook them up. Meanwhile, at the Titanium Park Police Precinct, Roslyn Krantz is preparing to go out on a date, but the man she invited called her and said he would not go. Roslyn gets sad, as the reservations to the restaurant were not easy to get. To cheer her up, her partner Gilbert D. Stern says he is going to the restaurant with her, and the two meet doctors Light and Lalinde, who invites the agents to join them (with Stern privately remarking, in reference to a prior conversation with Krantz, that he'd "rather take the bullet."). They start talking, and when Dr. Light mentions that Ice Man called Roll because he believes he has a crush on her, Stern is surprised and asks why Dr. Light made robots able to love, starting a long debate between them about humans, machines and emotions.
In the Arctic, Roll convinces Mega Man to get on a date with Quake Woman by saying that it may help in her emotional development, and later she tells Quake Woman to try new emotions. The two ask Ice Man for advice, but as he is frustrated for not getting Roll's attention, he coldly says he apparently knows nothing about romance. Mega Man and Quake Woman try to talk with each other while using Quake Drill, but suddenly the ice cracks and the four robots fall deep in the glacier.
In the restaurant, Dr. Light is having fun with Dr. Lalinde and Roslyn Krantz, talking about a funny event that happened with him and Dr. Wily. After finishing, he says he misses the old Albert, and Lalinde says to not do it with himself, Roslyn agreeing saying that Wily is now a threat and she can't believe the Emerald Spears considers Light as dangerous as Wily. Gilbert says he can believe, and the doctors are surprised, Roslyn looking to him with an angry face. Gilbert explains by saying that the Emerald Spears are criminals and he doesn't agree with their methods, being glad that they are behind bars, but they aren't wrong about the dangers of science advancing too fast, and asks what would happen if the robots malfunction or get a virus. Lalinde says they do need to take these advances cautiously and responsibly, but they still need to move forward. There are dangers, but it's necessary. Roslyn apologizes for Gil, but Dr. Light interrupts and says he is entitled to his opinion. Gilbert agrees and continues, saying that he thinks robots advancing faster than humans can keep up will make it their world instead of humans. Dr. Light understands his concerns, but he believes humans and robots can live together and make a world for everyone, and Gilbert asks how he can be sure if they will share the world.
In the Arctic, Mega Man, Roll and Ice Man contact each other, but Quake Woman doesn't answer. Ice Man sees their heat signatures and directs Mega Man to Quake Woman while he looks for Roll. Mega Man finds Quake Woman sitting in a corner, shaking in fear for being buried again. She asks what would happen if she is damaged and loses her personality again, but Mega Man comforts her and they go in Ice Man's direction, and they agree to be only friends. Ice Man is still searching a path to Roll, but he has no luck. When thinking positively that he can find her and save the day, Roll finds him and he is frustrated. Everyone reunites and they think of a way to return to the surface. Quake Woman asks if they can drill their way out, but Ice Man warns that they are under a high-pressure pocket, and drilling could release it and crush everyone against the ceiling. Ice Man thinks it would be better for him to find a way to the surface and call for help, but Mega Man has an idea. Mega Man uses Quake Drill to release the high-pressure point, then Ice Man immediately makes an ice platform, everyone gets over and ride it straight to the surface, Mega Man using Quake Drill to open a path in the ceiling. Ice Man angrily screams with Mega Man, but the plan worked. After what they passed, they decided to get inside where it's warm.
In front of the restaurant, Drs. Light and Lalinde bid farewell to the agents. While walking the street, Roslyn says it was a lovely night, aside of Stern calling the visionary scientists terrorists. Stern says he didn't do it, he was just voicing his concern about the future, and Roslyn asks the "sagely Stern" if he has any concerns for her future. Stern says Roslyn is a classy dame and a good cop and she shouldn't settle for less, forget the "schmuck" who dumped her tonight and find somebody of her caliber. Roslyn thanks Gil, and tells him to be careful or people might learn he has a heart, but he says nobody would believe it.
Cold as Ice
While Ice Man is making a heart with ice, Quake Woman asks him what is love. After hearing Ice Man's explanation, Quake Woman asks Dr. Lalinde to take back her emotions again.
- Ice Man
- Quake Woman
- Mega Man
- Gilbert D. Stern
- Roslyn Krantz
- Dr. Light
- Dr. Lalinde
- Dr. Wily (Mentioned)
- Emerald Spears (Mentioned)
- Light Labs' Arctic Research Center (First appearance)
- Fahran restaurant (First appearance)
- Roll: *Gasp!* Ice Man!
- Ice Man: Y-yes?
- Roll: I just had a great idea!
- Ice Man: Yes? Yes?!
- Roll: We should totally hook up--
- Ice Man: YES!
- Roll: --Rock and Tempo!
- Ice Man: I knew it! You've made me the happiest...! (realizes) Oh.
- Roll: They'd be so cute together! And it's valentine's Day! It's perfect! --eee! So romantic!
- Dr. Light: The same reason they feel hot and cold. The same reason they feel pain, loyalty, or apprehension. It's to bring them closer to being us.
- Stern: No. Just... No. people aren't machines.
- Roslyn: (whispering to Lalinde) I'm sorry. He's always like this.
- Dr. Light: But aren't we, though? Automotive creatures built on a rigid frame? Limbs and digits controlled by tension and powered by fuel? Our brains are the finest computers in the world... ...processing innumerable chemical and electrical inputs, the only real difference is that we're made of organic molecules.
- Dr. Lalinde: (whispering to Roslyn) And he's always like this. So much for a romantic evening.
- Stern: So you're sayin' we're exactly the same. Us and the robots.
- Dr. Light: Fundamentally, yes. Not literally, of course. Even with our current progress, full human-robotic integration is still thousands of years away...
- Dr. Light: "A loving heart is the beginning of all knowledge." Thomas Carlyle.
- Stern: Yeah, well, "love is too young to know what conscience is." William Shakespeare.
- Stern: What happens when the line between robots and humans gets fuzzy? Like that "love" thing we were talkin' about earlier. What if some virus turns 'em crazy and makes them run wild?
- Mega Man: Hey, I've faced destruction dozens of times. It's scary, but you've got to overcome it and move on.
- Quake Woman: You've faced. I've experienced. I was buried. Crushed. Destroyed. Mom took it all away. Then I was still dead, only inside. Now I function, but I remember. What if I lose myself again? What if I'm damaged, and mom changes her mind? Roll wants me to experience "romance," but all I know is... ...fear.
- Mega Man: Fear makes us second-guess that big jump, or drilling in an unstable place. It protects us as much as it slows us down. It's courage that speeds us up again. Roll told me all about what you did for the people on that cruise ship. I saw you in action at the convention. You have the courage you need.
- Ice Man: (thinking) Crud. Another dead end. At this rate, everyone is going to freeze, and I'll be trapped forever! No. What kind of talk is that, soldier? They need you! Roll needs you! None of them are built for this terrain, and you are! You are the Ice Man! You fought Mega Man to a stand-still! (Actually, he kinda wrecked me...) That's enough, soldier! Man-up! Rescue your lady! Save the day! This is your time to shine! You can do it!
- Roll: Hooray! Roll to Mega Man! I found Ice Man! We'll wait for rescue here!
- Ice Man: Maybe... Maybe I can find my way to the surface. Call in some help. Fire Man, Elec Man... NOT Guts Man.
- Ice Man: THAT WAS CRAZY AND STUPID AND WE NEARLY DIED!
- Mega Man: But it worked!
- Roll: Well... Tempo... What are you feeling now?
- Quake Woman: Terror? Excitement? I don't know! ...But part of me wants to do it again!
- The cover features the countdown timer: Worlds Collide crossover in 2 issues. The same happens with Sonic the Hedgehog Issue 246 and Sonic Universe Issue 49.
- Gilbert D. Stern says he likes to read and mentions Shakespeare's "Hamlet". Gil's name is based on one of Hamlet's characters, Guildenstern.
- On the fourth page, there is a wanted poster for Mr. X.
- One of computer screens shows the image of Archie Comics' Mega Man Store website.
- A tablet computer shows Mega Man comic book releases.
- The title Cold Crush may be a reference to the Japanese opening song to Mega Man X7, Code Crush.
- The restaurant's name, Fahran, seems to be a reference to the Mega Man Battle Network series character Pat Fahran.
- This issue makes references to several events from previous issues (Let the Games Begin! - Part Three: Power Get!, Spiritus Ex Machina, Cold Feat, Roll With It, and Countdown), and indirectly refers events that happen in the future of the Mega Man series (specifically, Mr. X in Mega Man 6 via a wanted poster on the wall, the Sigma Virus in Mega Man X, Mother Elf in Mega Man Zero or Model W from Mega Man ZX via Gilbert Stern's point about a virus infecting robots and causing them to go out of control, and the Carbons from the Mega Man: Legends via Dr. Light's commentary about full integration of organic and machinery being thousands of years away).
- Ice Man's commentary about his wanting to call in any of the Robot Masters except Guts Man was a reference to the side story Cold Feat.
- Roll's out fit in this comic is based on the Valentine Roll out fit in Powered Up.
- Roll's attempted match-making would later be referenced an issue later, when one of the reporters, while swarming Mega Man and his family, asked him for any validity in the rumors of his "love life".
- Ice Man, while trying to encourage himself, briefly refers to himself as "soldier," a nod to his bipolar personality traits in Mega Man: Powered Up.
|Mega Man series|