TG Comics' Jet Dream: The Remix Comic
The original Gold Key Comics Jet Dream comic book stories provide the primary source material for the Jet Dream Remix Comic, also known as Jet Dream and Her T-Girl Counterspies. According to the fictional publishing history of the series, the characters were previously the stars of the long-running series Thunderbird Squadron. But in the (nonexistent) final issues of that series, the T-Birds were transformed into ''T-Girls'' by the biological super-weapon Virus-X.
The first issue of the Remix Comic depicts the T-Girls' efforts to find an antidote in time to save the population of Miami Beach and to reverse their own feminization. They succeed in the former but, of course, fail at the latter, and remain T-Girls for the entire series.
The T-Girls engage in a variety of espionage and paramilitary activities, operating under NATO supervision. Their organization, formally, is J.E.T. D.R.E.A.M. - The Joint Elite Team, Division of Raiding-Expert Aeronautical Maidens. Typically, however, the organization is referred to as simply "Jet Dream."
The members of Jet Dream, the Remix Comic, are:
- Harmony Thunder (United States of America) — Former Korean War ace and Thunderbird Squadron leader Jack Thunder, now the "Jet Dream Queen."
- Petite (France) — Formerly the top "Ladies' Man" of the T-Birds, as a woman, the Tiny Tirailleuse is now just as enthusiastically interested in men (and alone among the T-Girls, has no interest whatsoever in women.)
- Marlene (West Germany) — One of the West's top scientific minds, she's also one of the strongest women in the world. Apparently unconcerned with and unaffected by her transformation, and for the most part uninterested in sex of any kind. Apparently.
- Ting-a-Ling (UK colony of Fiji) — Princess of a mysterious matriarchal Fiji tribe, Christina Ling was the sole female member of the old Thunderbird Squadron. But all is not what it seems regarding her past....
- Cookie Jarr (Norway) — Formerly Rölf Jarl Cøok, the short and awkward "teen mascot" of the Thunderbird Squadron, she enthusiastically embraced her new gender after becoming a tall, stunning beauty as a T-Girl.
To date, the above five are the only T-Girls, though indications are given that limited doses of a safe, modified version of Virus-X will be given to some of the most qualified members of the Jet Dream Auxiliary Services (all of whom work and live as women.)
According to the fictional publishing history of TG Comics, Cookie Jarr became the Breakout Character of the All-New, All-Female Jet Dream series. As a result, she gained her own solo title, It's Cookie!. Unlike the straight action-adventure of the main title, It's Cookie! was a "teen humor" title, focusing on Cookie's role as head of Jet Dream's "kid sister" organization, J.E.T. T.E.E.N. - Junior Echelon, Teen T-Girls, Elle-Boys, and Esprit-Girls (Natural!) While humorous in nature, these stories also had Cold War themes, focusing on the mostly-peaceful "Cool War" propaganda campaign between NATO and the Warsaw Pact to win over the world's teens with competing sex-change programs.
An additional title in TG Comics' fictional publishing history was My Jet Dream Romance, a romance comic centered around the romantic lives of both the T-Girls and Elle-Boys of the Jet Dream Auxiliary.
The Jet Dream Remix Comic provides examples of:
- 1st Law of Gender Bending: The biological weapon Virus-X feminizes the T-Girls. While they succeed in de-feminizing the male population of Miami Beach after a terrorist attack, feminization is irrevocable after 24 hours, so the antidote cannot help them personally.
Only one person in the book believes Virus-X to be potentially reversible, and she's an insane Psycho Ex-Girlfriend. In addition, a voluntary treatment based in some unspecified way on Virus-X is also portrayed as irreversible.
- 2nd Law of Gender Bending: The older T-Girls all come to the first form of acceptance at varying rates. However, teen T-Girl Cookie Jarr is quickly excited by the possibilities of being an extremely attractive and enthusiastically bisexual girl, even voicing a desire to remain female instead of taking a hypothetical antidote to Virus-X:
- 3rd Law of Gender Bending: Being Action Girls, the T-Girls retain many traditionally "masculine" traits, but as covert operatives, they have been extensively trained in all aspects of female appearance and behavior. However, they also seem to thoroughly enjoy both their new female bodies and roles to varying degrees.
- Ace Pilot: All of the T-Girls, but Jack Thunder was also a literal "five kill" ace in the Korean War before being transformed into Harmony.
- Anchored Ship: None of the T-Girls show overt evidence of attraction to each other, but Jet Dream fans appear to have their favorite ships. Editorial responses to letters seem to indicate that these ships will remain anchored, perhaps due to the T-Girls observing military-style fraternization rules.
- Anything That Moves: While every T-Girl (except for man-crazy Petite) shows some interest in both men and women, teen T-Girl Cookie Jarr is an especially enthusiastic bisexual. She loves to dance, and will Twist with boys, and Frug with girls!
- Applied Phlebotinum: "Virus-X" is both (used as a weapon) the cause of the Thunderbird Squadron's sex changes, and (used as a voluntary treatment) envisioned as a source of new T-Girls.
- Attractive Bent-Gender: The T-Birds were all transformed into attractive women, but they were also attractive men beforehand. The exception is Cookie Jarr, a short, skinny boy with glasses who became an extremely attractive girl, to the point that Even the Girls Want Her.
- Beard of Evil: Features heavily in Cookie Jarr's ''My Jet Dream Romance'' story, as a philosophical debate between J.E.T. T.E.E.N. Boy Booster Phil Philpott and "El Teen Gringo del Sur" over the good or evil of facial hair becomes violent!
- The Big Girl: Marlene is a Class 5 Big Girl, both a genius scientist and T-Girl strongwoman after her sex change.
- Bio-Augmentation: Virus-X gives T-Girls enhanced strength, agility, and endurance in addition to its most obvious effect.
- Brainy Brunette: Marlene, whose skills at Doing Science are unsurpassed.
- Celibate Hero: Marlene, apparently indifferent to sex of any sort, thinks of her sex change as a minor inconvenience that occasionally gets in the way of Doing Science. The occasional urge can be dealt with easily enough by using her Jet Dream Vibrostick. This attitude doesn't last forever◊, though.
- Character Focus: Marlene and Cookie each get one in My Jet Dream Romance◊.
- Cold War: Mostly averted in the original comic (which largely dealt with generic "enemy agents"), but played straight (Communist adversaries) in the main Jet Dream title, and parodied (the "Cool War" propaganda campaigns to win over the world's teens) in It's Cookie!
- The Comics Code: Despite the heavy emphasis on sex changes and "Fem Is In!" activities, the fictional publisher of the Jet Dream titles sought the approval of the Comics Code Authority. Aside from the occasional double-entendre and hints of lesbian relationships, the books generally do stay within the limits of the Comics Code circa 1970.
- A Date with Rosie Palms: While Marlene claims a lack of interest in romance of any sort after her sex change, she also makes several veiled references to using "the science of vibration" to deal with her new feminine urges.
- Dating Catwoman: Jack/Harmony Thunder and Raven Red.
- Defrosting Ice Queen: Marlene, who haff no time for and no interest in der kissing or der romance... or so she says.
- Different for Girls: Lampshaded but mostly averted. The T-Girls are quite comfortable in their new feminine roles, but mostly because they Took A Level In Girl after comically extensive training in the recent past.
- Double Entendre: The comic is presented in such a way that it might theoretically have been approved by the The Comics Code Authority circa 1970, if they could buy the basic Gender Bender premise. Thus, almost all references to sex are veiled ones.
- Dumb Blonde: Cookie Jarr isn't dumb, but might give that impression to people who aren't fluent in Totally Radical.
- Easy Sex Change: The Soviet Union, lacking access to Jet Dream's true Gender Bender processes, uses a surgical sex change procedure that seems to be an improved version of Real Life techniques, but with added Brainwashing.
- Fantastically Indifferent: The T-Birds barely lose a step after being involuntarily turned into girls. There are complications and differences, but they're seldom treated as all that big a deal.
- Fourth-Wall Mail Slot: In Jet Dream letter columns, letters are frequently addressed to, and answered by, the characters themselves.
- Fun with Acronyms: Used often.
- The T-Girls represent NATO's Joint Elite Team, Division of Raiding-Expert Aeronautical Maidens (J.E.T. D.R.E.A.M., or usually just "Jet Dream.")
- Their "little sister" team is Junior Echelon, Teen T-Girls, Elle-Boys, and Esprit-Girls (Natural!), or J.E.T. T.E.E.N.
- Both organizations must deal with the sinister schemes of Zoned Extortion and Removal, Occidental (Z.E.R.O.)
- Gender Bender: Main premise of the series.
- Genius Bruiser: Marlene is both the team's strongwoman and a brilliant scientist capable of achieving actual advances in the field of science!
- Girl-on-Girl Is Hot: One possible explanation for the (fictional) publisher's openness to implied lesbianism while eschewing depictions of male homosexuality (even if the males look just like cute girls.)
- Good Bad Girl: A dedicated and stereotypically French womanizer as a man, Petite is now exclusively and enthusiastically a connoisseur of fine males.
- Good Hair, Evil Hair: J.E.T. T.E.E.N. Boy Booster Phil Philpott is obsessed with this trope in "Kiss or Be Killed"◊:Phil: "But he had facial hair! That says 'Evil' in my book!"Cookie: "Phil, in J.E.T. T.E.E.N. you have to learn about other cultures! Facial hair does mean evil - but only in Asia, India, and parts of Europe!"note
- Haunted Technology: Jet Dream's newest helicopter, the X-34 Athena Stratolifter, is revealed to be The Haunted Copter◊. Parodying DC Comics' The Haunted Tank feature, the X-34 is haunted by the ghost of Athena.note
- Have I Mentioned I Am Heterosexual Today?: The (fictional) publisher of Jet Dream comics limited Elle-Boy contact with other boys to "D-F-K" (Dance-Flirt-Kiss), and then only for "training purposes." This was apparently in a misguided attempt to pass The Comics Code muster and due to his own idiosyncratic belief that men needed to adopt a "Fem Is In!" lifestyle to survive in the brave new mostly-female world that will ultimately arise from Womens' Lib, sperm banks, test-tube babies, and cloning.
- Holding Back the Phlebotinum: Jet Dream has developed its own beneficial and voluntary feminization treatment, but it's apparently only available in limited amounts for the very best J.E.T. T.E.E.N. recruits. Also, a recruit is not eligible for the treatment until after his 18th birthday. This explains why J.E.T. T.E.E.N.'s Elle-Boys don't all just become girls, and why there are still many Elle-Boys in the Jet Dream Auxiliary Corps.
- Hot Librarian: Marlene, particularly in her Character Focus story from My Jet Dream Romance.
- If I Can't Have You...: Raven Red, toward Harmony Thunder. She specifically wants Harmony back as a man - something everyone else knows to be impossible. If she can't have Jack Thunder, well....
- Interservice Rivalry: The two teenage Soviet bad guys from It's Cookie!, KGB agent "He-She Svetlana", and GRU "Saboteen" Captain Boris Volkov, can't stand each other. In "The He-She Ski Affair", their respective organizations are also working at cross-purposes — the GRU wants to capture and interrogate Cookie Jarr, while the KGB wants to assassinate her.
- Jumping the Gender Barrier: Inverted. Before her T-Girl transformation, T-Bird Squadron leader Jack Thunder had a relationship with Raven Red, leader of the Dynamic Dare-Dolls. Raven Red didn't react well to Harmony's change, due to Incompatible Orientation. As a result, Raven Red became a Psycho Ex-Girlfriend, obsessed with either changing Harmony back into Jack, or killing her as a last resort.
- The Millstone: Appears to be Phil Philpott's main function on J.E.T. T.E.E.N. missions.
- Multinational Team: In addition to the T-Girls themselves, Raven Red and her Dynamic Dare-Dolls, as seen in "The Poweder-Puff Derby Caper"◊. Raven's team includes comically stereotypical representatives of various ethnicities and nationalities not "taken" by T-Girls (including an Australian, a Texan, a Jewish-American, and an Italian.)note
- Nebulous Evil Organization: Z.E.R.O., replacing the original comic's CIPHER.
- Non-Indicative Name: The full title of the feature is Jet Dream and her T-Girl Counterspies, inherited from the original comic book feature, Jet Dream and her Stunt-Girl Counterspies. However, in the Remix Comic, "Jet Dream" is the name of the organization, not the lead character, whose name is Harmony Thunder. She's occasionally referred to as "the Jet Dream Queen" as partial justification, but in truth, the title was chosen because photoshopping out the letters "STUN" made for a quick and dirty title change that also fit the main theme of the series.
- Parody Product Placement: A recaptioned Hostess ad◊ appears in the Jet Dream 1970 Annual.
- Phlebotinum Bomb: A weaponized Virus-X bomb temporarily transforms the male population of Miami Beach, Florida in "Forever Female?"◊.note
- The Problem with Pen Island: Deliberately invoked at the end of Jet Dream #2◊. Harmony (frustrated as the only T-Girl yet to pass her "Feminine Biology" training course) goes to the movies on a date. Afterwards, she says seeing the movie helped resolve her problem. Her date remarks "I knew you only needed one good flick!"
- Psycho Ex-Girlfriend: Raven Red◊, former lover of Jack (now Harmony) Thunder.
- Psycho Rangers: Raven Red and her Dynamic Dare-Dolls, another all-girl squadron, made up of the national stereotypes not used for Jet Dream's own characters.
- Purple Prose: In both stories and letter columns, Suzanne de Nîmes writes with the bombast and alliteration of a transgender Stan Lee.
- Remix Comic: Primarily using the original Jet Dream comic as source material. Other comics used for material include the "Diana Prince, Wonder Woman" stories, Millie the Model, and various other "Teen Humor" and romance titles.
- Retraux: Both Golden Age and Silver Age styles are parodied:
- Jet Dream and sister titles It's Cookie! and My Jet Dream Romance are presented as if they were actual comic books published in the late '60s and early '70s by an obscure publisher obsessed with male-to-female sex changes.
- Jill Trent, She-Sir Science Sleuth is presented as a "Golden Age Reprint" in the Jet Dream 1970 Annual, and parodies the style of comics from the '40s.
- Sadly Mythtaken: In "The Haunted Copter" and other stories, Athena, goddess of civilization, wisdom, strength, strategy, craft, justice and skill in Greek mythology, is referred to as a "girl warrior of olden times." Who is now a ghost. Haunting an experimental helicopter.
- Shipping: Letters to the editor show quite a bit of this, whether with relatively simple Les Yay pairings of the T-Girls, or various convoluted scenarios involving time travel or sperm banks that would allow a T-Girl to marry and/or have children with the male version of a teammate.
- Side-Story Bonus Art: "Fashion Pages" and reader-designed costume contests are often parodied.
- Skunk Stripe: Harmony has a streak of bright red in her otherwise black hair.
- Spin-Off: The action-oriented Jet Dream title spawned two spin-offs: It's Cookie, a teen humor comic starring Cookie Jarr, and My Jet Dream Romance, a romance comic.
- Teen Superspy: Cookie Jarr and the other agents of J.E.T. T.E.E.N. Also CIA "Teenagent" Brian Bell, KGB agent "He-She Svetlana", and GRU "Saboteen" Captain Boris Volkov.
- Took a Level in Badass: Took a Level in Girl: While already badass before their transformations, the T-Girls also had extensive training in Combat Femininity, which made them an Amazon Brigade and quite effective in their new feminized bodies and roles.
- Totally Radical: Cookie Jarr, the nerdy teen boy turned Action Girl, frequently speaks in an indecipherable Bob Haney-esque mish-mash of "teen slang" as imagined by a middle-aged comic book writer circa 1970. She uses/misuses bits of slang from anywhere between 1950 and 1970, as well as some slang never uttered by a single teenaged human being before or since.
- Training from Hell: The T-Girls avert Different for Girls problems by virtue of extremely thorough training in Combat Femininity. Official Jet Dream training courses include:
- Bikini Training
- Combat Perfume
- Gyno-Grenade Gymnastics
- Feminine Biology
- Dance Riflery
- Danger Hair
- 20 Minutes into the Future: Jet Dream's (fictional) publisher was an amateur futurist who believed the "traditional" male was doomed by scientific advances that would enable women to live and reproduce without men. He saw adopting the ways of females while retaining one's inherent male physiology as a way to prepare the young men of America for the brave new female-dominated world of the near future.
- Unsettling Gender Reveal: In "South Pacific Powder-Puff Power!", there's a startling revelation about a longstanding character. The T-Girls learned that Ting, the Polynesian princess and only "female" member of the Thunderbirds, had actually been a male. In Ting's matriarchal tribe, male royals are expected to live as women. When the rest of the team changed sex, so did Ting.
- Wholesome Crossdresser: Most of J.E.T. T.E.E.N.'s "Elle-Boys" are in training in hopes of eventually joining a Jet Dream squadron and being transformed into T-Girls. But not all Elle-Boys can make the grade, and some don't actually want to be transformed. Nevertheless, all Elle-Boys dress as females, while remaining strictly heterosexual.
- World of Action Girls: Not only are the T-Girls and many of their adversaries female, but the various processes used to turn men into women also provide Bio-Augmentation, enhancing the new woman's strength, agility, and endurance. It's implied that after a generation or two, many of the world's men will voluntarily become women (and most of the remainder will become Wholesome Crossdressers).