I spent way more money on this comic than I should have, but I simply had to have it. After reviewing/mocking Wonder Woman #276 as part of Kobra Week here at Dave's Long Box, I was dying to see how the whole storyline played out. Here, then, is the senses-shattering climax of The Kobra Saga!
An aside: I don't know who came up with the phrase "senses-shattering" that propped up on so many comic book covers and in promotional copy back in the day - probably Stan Lee. During the Silver Age it seems like every frickin' issue would shatter one's senses. "It begins here! The senses-shattering introduction of Captain Carrot and his Fucking Amazing Zoo Crew!" Even as a kid I became a little jaded towards this particular bit of hyperbole. I'd put down a comic book and think, you know, big deal. The Thing fought The Hulk again. "Yawn-inducing" would be a more accurate bit of copy for many supposedly "senses-shattering" issues.
And really, what does that mean? Has anybody ever picked up, say, Wonder Woman #276, which is described as "senses-shattering" on the cover, and had their senses literally shattered?
"AAAGH!!! I can't see!!! This comic was so awesome it fucking blinded me! My God, I can't feel my feet either! Or my bathing-suit area!!! Fuck! I have totally had my senses shattered by this comic!!! Gaaahhh!!!"
Right, enough of that. Let's talk Kobra.
"...be on the lookout for a tall dude with a wig dressed in a bathing suit..."
Writer Gerry Conway and artists Jose Delbo and Mike Hunt - sorry, Dave Hunt - must hate Kobra, because they make him look like an utter idiot in Wonder Woman #278.
As you may recall from previous issues, Kobra has managed to steal a powerful "dirty" nuclear warhead from the U.S. government's top secret Cobalt 93 project. Undetected by the Egyptian government and the thousands of tourists who visit daily, Kobra has built a "secret" missile silo inside of one of the great pyramids of Cheops. Kobra has a thing for setting up bases in really obvious places - in previous issues he had an entire secret base hidden inside Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico that miraculously went undetected as well.
Anyway, Wonder Woman figures out that Kobra and his minions have this vast complex inside the great pyramids - I don't know, maybe they lifted the top off one of the pyramids and lowered all their gear and ICBMS into it one dark night when nobody was looking. She travels to Egypt, enters the pyramids, and is promptly captured.
Actually, she lets herself get captured because Kobra's goons don't recognize her. She thinks, "By their accents, they're not Americans - they don't know who I am! ...I think I'll play along with these cultists for now."
WTF? Do Kobra cultists never read a paper, or watch the news? I could see how they wouldn't, but at the very least you think Kobra would mention Wonder Woman - the thorn in his side - to the guys guarding his secret base! You know, tell them to be on the look out for a tall dude with a wig dressed in a bathing suit? But no.
The cultists bring Wonder Woman before Kobra himself, who is wearing a really goofy looking version of the Kobra Outfit. Kobra assumes that she has been drugged. Bad call.
The countdown has begun. Kobra will fire the Cobalt Bomb over the Middle East, and, as Wonder Woman helpfully explains, "...if that missile hits, it will poison the Mid-East oilfields for the next 93 years! Civilization will be thrown back to the Middle Ages!" I don't know if Kobra's really thought this plan through - he's firing a super-nuke at the Mid-East from a secret launching spot in... Egypt? Maybe he checked to make sure the prevailing winds were blowing east or something, but that seems sort of like throwing a grenade straight up in the air and hoping it doesn't land on you.
But what do I know? I'm not the King of Evil.
Kobra has a bright idea - throw Wonder Woman in the blast pit! He tells his lackeys to do this, despite the fact that there are only fifteen seconds until ignition. They'd better hustle!
However, Kobra has underestimated the Amazing Amazon and she bust loose!
Things go terribly wrong for Kobra. Steve Trevor, the love of Wonder Woman's life, has climbed into the Cobalt 93 missile and has pulled out some important wiring - now the missile's turn signals and windshield wipers don't work for shit. Wonder Woman smashes a lot of expensive equipment and pummels a bunch of goons, then grapples with Kobra, who strangles her.
How do we know Kobra is strangling her? Well, you could look at the art, or you could read the helpful internal dialogue by Wonder Woman, Mistress of the Obvious: "Strangling me!"
She kicks Kobra into some vital machinery, giving everybody a good look at her sexy Grandma Panties. Look, I'm not saying she has to go all Brazilian on us and wear a thong or anything, but couldn't she have picked a more flattering cut for her trunks? Maybe Wonder Woman is one of the 2.5 million women in America who suffer from adult incontinence and her Grandma Panties actually function as adult diapers. I don't want to start a rumour or anything, I'm just thinking out loud here.
In the end the Cobalt Missile goes off course and lands harmlessly in the ocean, one of the great pyramids totally collapses, and Kobra is presumed dead, crushed under tons of ancient bricks.
Or was he...?
Happily, both Kobra and Wonder Woman eventually get cooler clothes, so everything works out.