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Avengers #212: Review

Oct 1981
Jim Shooter, Alan Kupperberg

Story Name:

Men of deadly pride

Review & Comments

3.5 stars

Avengers #212 Review by (September 25, 2015)
This is the 1st issue of the Trial of Yellowjacket arc which continues on-and-off to #230, through Jim Shooter's run as writer and beyond. Gene Colan has gone as penciller, and Alan Kupperberg's single issue here starts a sporadic artistic era. But Dan Green will continue to hold it all together as inker. Tigra's origin story omits to mention that she was previously superheroine the Cat with her own short-lived series. In Giant-Size Creatures #1 she was fatally injured saving the Cat People from Hydra. Here it says the Cat People genetically mutated her into Tigra, but in GSC#1 they used a mixture of sorcery and ancient science. This issue mentions various aspects of the Avenger' private lives. Steve Rogers has been a freelance artist living in Brooklyn Heights since his #237, and Tony Stark has been off the booze since the Demon In A Bottle story in IM#128. Don Blake's job at the Westside Clinic is a more recent development in Thor #304. Janet Pym's chauffeur is named Ernest Carrothers. He'll keep cropping up during the Trial of Yellowjacket story, and 1 issue beyond it. The leadership election was promised back in #197 and brought up again in #210. But now it's just brushed under the carpet.

Gorn and Linnea, having planted the seed for the Trial of Yellowjacket, will not trouble us again (although Linnea will appear in several flashbacks). Gorn claims to be from Valusia, which was part of the pre-Cataclysmic era of Atlantis and Kull. But he swears by Mitra, which is a god from the later Hyborian Age of Conan (although Robert E Howard borrowed the name of a 'real' god). Linnea says she's hid them in North America for 10,000 years, which accords approximately well with the proposed date of Hyboria. Valusia is much longer ago, so presumably the Elf-Queen kept them alive between those ages too. This wasn't the 1st time the Conan/Kull universe was linked in as the past of the main Marvel universe. In Marvel Team-Up #79 Red Sonja and Kulan Gath visited the present day. And in Marvel Two-In-One #66 the Serpent Crown was revealed as previously Thoth-Amon's Cobra Crown.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers #212 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
New member Tigra is the only Avenger living in the Mansion. She enjoys toying with butler Jarvis, especially since he's allergic to cat fur. And it provides the opportunity for Greer Nelson to give a brief origin recap - how she was saved fron death by Cat People, but only by transforming her into 1 of them.

Teetotal Tony Stark still enjoys a party and female company - but he leaves his latest conquest before she wakes to attend an Avengers meeting as Iron Man. But at least he arranges with his secretary for flowers, a note, and help cleaning up after the party. (And the comic says he slept on the couch.)

Freelance artist Steve Rogers leaves his Brooklyn Heights apartment as Captain America for the same meeting, the 1st since the roster change last issue where Tigra joined (and Thor and Yellowjacket rejoined) and Beast, Scarlet Witch, Vision and Wonder Man left.

Dr Don Blake ends a night shift at Westside Clinic, but then transforms to Thor and heads to the meeting.

Henry and Janet Pym also get ready for the meeting, but Hank is on edge. Impatient not to be late he shreds 1 of his wife's costumes to force her to make up her mind which to wear, and abandons their chauffeur-driven car stuck in traffic to fly there as Yellowjacket, followed by Wasp. He also doesn't react well to Cap's joshing when they do arrive late.

Cap brings up the election for a new chairman. but Iron Man and Thor have discussed it earlier and think he should stay in the job, at least until the new lineup shakes down. YJ resents not having been consulted, as a fellow founding member.

We now turn our attention to a lonely cabin in a forest in Virginia, occupied by Gorn and Linnea. Linnea's magic has kept them hidden (and alive) for 10,000 years, but now Gorn grows restless. She dresses in her Elf-Queen finery, Gorn dons his sword, and they and their horse re-enter civilisation in Washington DC.

They are of course amazed by cars, etc. And there's a complete language barrier. But when they enter a fancy restaurant the maitre d' assumes they have come from a costume party in an embassy whose language he is unfamiliar with. He just seats them out of the way.

A guy from a model agency approaches Linnea to offer her a job. Gorn takes offence, especially when the guy uses a bit of Jiu-Jitsu on him. Linnea stops Gorn from taking revenge. The maitre d' tries to eject them, until the Elf-Queen gives him a very valuable necklace to pay for damage. After that he can't do enough for them.

Later when they leave the place they find their horse has gone. A cop accosts Gorn for carrying a sword. The barbarian resists, and the cop maces and cuffs him. Linnea blasts the cop and Gorn breaks his handcuffs.

The Queen wants them to go home. But Gorn's pride is hurt again, and he's even more determined to teach this new world to honour him. When Linnea tries to calm him he gives her a black eye. She angrily flies away.

The Avengers have been alerted of these events, and are readying a quinjet to investigate. But Yellowjacket has discovered that his disruptor isn't working reliably. Wasp offers to ring home and get a spare brought over. But Hank blows up about the way she's always flaunting her money and servants - he can solve his own problems. Jan runs off in tears, and the rest of the team leave in the jet.

Meanwhile Gorn has wandered into a seedy area of town, and taken his frustration out on a local gang of thugs. But the police intervene, and shoot him dead when he attacks them with his sword. Linnea returns for her lover at this point, and swears vengeance on the city.

The Avengers arrive in time to see her lashing out left, right and centre. Iron Man tries flirting as a tactic, but the Elf-Queen wraps him up in iron railings. Her magic powers even send Thor flying. She can't lift Mjolnir, but she causes the ground to form a fist around it, and hits the Thunder God with his own hammer.

She sends Tigra flying through the air, and the now-free Golden Avenger flies after her. That leaves Captain America to dodge falling debris, fire and blasts to get close to Linnea. But he doesn't attack, and this calms the distraught Queen.

All this time YJ has been trying to get his disruptor to work. At last he succeeds, and blasts the Elf-Queen in the back. But she shrugs it off and launches a truck at him. And his disruptor stops working again. But then Wasp appears and blasts the truck out of the way, collapsing from  the strain. (YJ figures that millionairess Jan took a private plane here. But he's mainly angry to have been saved by her.)

Linnea intends another attempt on Henry Pym's life. But Cap stands up to her, and tells the other Avengers to stay back. The Elf-Queen's rage dissipates, and she turns away in tears. The team follow her to Gorn's body, and she flies off with it.

Alan Kupperberg
Dan Green
Ben Sean
Alan Kupperberg (Cover Penciler)
Dan Green (Cover Inker)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)


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