All Winners Comics 70th Anniversary Special #1: Review

Aug 2009
Karl Kesel, Steve Uy

Story Name:

Old soldiers never die...

Review & Comments

3 stars

All Winners Comics 70th Anniversary Special #1 Review by (February 9, 2010)
It is unclear to me whether the zombies are illusions, or actual dead soldiers brought through time and to life by Madame Death. Madame Death says she learnt from Future Man of Cap and Bucky's 'deaths' at the hands of Baron Zemo. She hints at their future revival. Cap and Bucky can't be decayed zombies, because they aren't dead. Madame Death knows this, but the Squad don't. She could have used other dead bodies in their place. Or maybe none of the zombies are real.

This issue includes a reprinted text piece 'Winners All' from All Winners Comics #2, and reprinted story 'Captain America: The Four Trials of Justice' from All Winners Comics #12. The initial fight with Future Man and Madame Death was dramatised in All Winners Comics #21. The Squad comment here how Otto Binder added his own fantastic embellishments. This story is a continuation of something Roy Thomas began in What If #4. After Stan Lee established in Avengers #4 that Cap had been in suspended animation, and Bucky supposedly dead, since a fight with Baron Zemo just before Germany surrendered in WWII, there arose the question, for those who cared, of the status of Cap and Bucky's adventures later in the 40's and 50's. Steve Englehart invented a totally new Cap and Bucky to retrospectively inhabit the 50's comics, and to reappear within Cap's modern series. Roy Thomas wrote What If #4 to explain who were Cap and Bucky in the late 40's. Believing Cap and Bucky dead, President Truman ordered Spirit of '76 and Fred Davis (both characters invented in the Invaders series) to replace them in the Invaders, to keep troop morale up until the Japanese surrendered.

After VJ Day the Invaders stayed together as the All-Winners Squad. What If #4 mentions their battle with Isibisa in All Winners Comics #19. It then moves on to detail a totally new story where they fight Adam-II, an android built by the Human Torch's creator Prof Horton. They are aided by the Patriot. Spirit of '76 is killed , but Patriot takes his place. This issue takes place after that, where Jeff Mace is still feeling his way into the role. (What If #4 and this issue include short accounts of the only 2 exploits of the Squad published at the time, in All Winners Comics #19 and #21.) The Patriot is a hero from Timely comics, appearing in many issues of Marvel Mystery Comics and a few other places. The Baxter Building is of course the future home of the Fantastic Four.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

All Winners Comics 70th Anniversary Special #1 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
A year after the end of WWII, the All-Winners Squad foil Madame Death and Future Man's plan to bring an invading army from the future when Captain America accidentally sends the duo into the distant past.

All-Winners Squad are Human Torch (the android) and Toro, Miss America, Sub-Mariner, Whizzer plus Captain America and Bucky. But the original Cap and Bucky went missing at the end of the war. To keep up morale, they have been secretly replaced. The new Captain America is Jeff Mace who used to be the Patriot. Bucky is Fred Davis. Jeff is finding it hard to live up to the reputation of Cap, and also hard to be in the spotlight.

The press keeps suggesting a romance between Miss America and Captain America. But actually Miss America and Whizzer are dating.

The Squad are attacked in Times Square by zombie American soldiers who want to regain their lives in exchange for the lives of others. Zombie Cap and Bucky turn up. Jeff Mace offers to give up his life for both of theirs.

But Toro uncovers an invisible Madame Death. It is all a plot for revenge.

Madame Death and Future Man spent years in the past. Future Man repaired his time-machine, but died before they could return. Madame Death came back without him.

A bomb detonates in the time-machine. The Squad save each other, but Madame Death is fatally wounded, and goes to join Future Man in death.

Miss America reveals her romance with Whizzer to the press.

The Squad's HQ has been destroyed. But Jeff Mace knows a man who will let them use his new building, the Baxter Building.

Steve Uy
Steve Uy
Steve Uy
Daniel Acuna (Cover Penciler)
Daniel Acuna (Cover Inker)
Letterer: Jared K. Fletcher.
Editor: Jeanine Schaefer.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Human Torch
Human Torch

(Jim Hammond)

Plus: Bucky (Fred Davis), Captain America (Jeff Mace), Future Man, Madame Death, Whizzer.

> All Winners Comics 70th Anniversary Special: Book info and issue index

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