Thursday, April 14, 2005
THE AVENGERS #186 Marvel Comics, 1979
Hey, look what I found.
Here’s a 70’s issue of The Avengers written by David Micheline (who would go on to become the Iron Man writer) and with art by John Byrne and Dan Green. The Avengers aren’t really in this issue a lot – mostly they argue with their government liaison Henry Gyrich, a McCarthyite wet blanket who they were stuck with for a while. Hey, Gyrich, Scott Summers called - he wants his old sunglasses back.* This issue focuses on the Scarlet Witch and her brother Quicksilver, who as we all know are the mutant offspring of Magneto, the X-Men’s arch-enemy. Scarlet Witch has mutant “probability altering” powers which simulate magic, and Quicksilver runs really fast and has a chip on his shoulder.
The villain in this issue is Who Cares. This issue features Bova, the half-cow, half-woman nanny who raised our mutant siblings. That’s right, Bova. I don’t know who at the House of Ideas thought that a cow/woman was cool (Roy Thomas?), but there she is. Even as a kid, I thought that was dumb as hell. This issue also features a time-honored tradition in Avengers comics: The Scarlet Witch in bondage. Next issue we get another time-honored tradition: Evil Scarlet Witch. I think we all know how this particular meta-story turns out: BENDIS KILLS HAWKEYE! Damn you, Bendisss!!!
The roster of this particular Avengers team is Captain America, The Vision, The Wasp, The Falcon, Iron Man, Ms Marvel (who would adopt the stoopid name Warbird later), and The Beast, one of the original X-Men.
I really dig the art by penciller John Byrne and inker Dan Green – I think this era is some of Byrne's best work, primarily because he worked with good inkers like Terry Austin and Dan Green. Say what you want about Byrne, but... ah, just say what you want about him. Also, there are cool ads for Battlestar Galactica merchandise, and on the back cover – a Star Trek: The Motion Picture full color ad! God, I was so psyched to see that when I was a kid. Then I saw it, and I fell asleep. They lost me after the Klingon ships get destroyed.