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Avengers #297: Review

Nov 1988
Walt Simonson, Tom Palmer

Story Name:

Futures Imperfect

Review & Comments

4.5 stars

Avengers #297 Review by (June 7, 2024)
Comments: Part four of four parts. Black Knight joins Thor against Seth in THOR #396-400 which results in him becoming a statue again; the resolution of the curse of the Ebony Sword takes place in BLACK KNIGHT (1990) #1-4, wherein Dane Whitman’s body is occupied by his ancestor Sir Percy of Scandia. Dr. Druid is next seen in AVENGERS SPOTLIGHT #37. Kang-Nebula a/k/a Ravonna is next seen in FANTASTIC FOUR #337-341. Kang-Fred is back in issue #300. By a colorist’s error inside the comic, the normally blue Kang-Nebula is colored like a blonde Caucasian woman; she has the correct look on the cover. The Time Bubble is next seen in issue #300. AVENGERS ANNUAL #17 takes place immediately after this issue.

Review: Fast-paced epic full of sci-fi madness is a real thrill ride, despite the soppy coda which has She-Hulk, of all people, getting weepy. But never mind, we can go back to jumping through Time Bubbles but not leaving the surface while people fall into the timestream before we have to go back to real life where things like work and family and the like confront us with actual if boring things to deal with. Which is what places comic books into the category of escapism.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers #297 Synopsis by T Vernon
Kang-Nebula and the mind-controlled Avengers (Thor, She-Hulk, Black Knight, Doctor Druid) have reached the Time Bubble in space. K-Nebula tries flying into it in the modified Quinjet but suddenly they are surrounded by thousands of similar crafts full of Avengers from thousands of alternate timelines, all racing to be first into the Bubble. K-Nebs orders Black Knight out atop the ship to cut down any competitors while having Thor behind to add thrust with Mjolnir. They break through the outer shell of the bubble and see a city though their existence here still hasn’t stabilized….

Back at Hydrobase, the three Kangs have arrived just as the Avengers were leaving so they return a few seconds earlier and lock onto the ship’s underside, joining the expedition unknown to the villain and the Avengers….

As they fly through the Bubble, K-Nebula is confused as to why the ship hasn’t become a part of the Bubble’s timestream, leaving them still phantoms. Turbulence knocks Kang-Mesozoic loose and he is lost in the timestreams, ceasing to exist. K-Nebs speculates that they haven’t really penetrated the Bubble, only skating on the Probability Flux, and decides that, as only the Avengers will make it inside, it’s because she is not an Avenger so she has Dr. Druid nominate her for membership in the Avengers and the others vote to admit her. That doesn’t help. Druid foresees a void in Black Knight’s future so she orders him to jump overboard; his stiffening limbs make that hard so K-Nebs has She-Hulk throw him out. Chairman Kang nabs him with a tractor beam and BK is towed along; the Kangs know that it’s their own weight making the ship awkward in flight and another attempt to pierce the Bubble could kill them all. Kang-Fred hacks the Mindbenders to make Thor go into a violent rage, distracting the others. K-Nebs decides to murder Thor and throw him overboard which would damage the timestream so K-Fred boards the ship and destroys She-Hulk’s Mindbender, setting her against the villainess. A sudden swerve dislodges both Kangs and they are lost in the timestream. Shulkie battles Thor until her barrage of punches dislodges the Mindbender, snapping him out of his trance. BK makes it back into the cockpit and takes the controls so as to miss the Time Bubble. Jen tears apart K-Nebs’ armor so when she tries to teleport away, it burns out. Another dimension’s Quinjet makes it through into the Bubble which causes a huge suction that pulls K-Nebs into the vortex; Dr. Druid leaps to save her—and they are both lost in the timestream. Black Knight manages to guide the Quinjet back to their own dimension….

At Hydrobase, the three Avengers are greeted by Jarvis; they remove the last of the Mindbenders from him. She-Hulk is so ashamed of what she did under Kang-Nebula’s control that she needs to take a leave from the Avengers. Thor must journey back to Asgard to battle Seth and Black Knight chooses to join him. With no Avengers left, Jarvis shuts down the center and departs. Behind him a signal light begins flashing….

Tom Palmer
Tom Palmer
Paul Becton
John Buscema (Cover Penciler)
Tom Palmer (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)
Layouts: John Buscema. Letterer: Bill Oakley.
Editor: Mark Gruenwald. Editor-in-chief: Tom DeFalco.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Knight
Black Knight

(Dane Whitman)
Doctor Druid
Doctor Druid

(Doctor Droom)

(Edwin Jarvis)

(Kang the Conqueror)

(Jennifer Walters)


Plus: Kang-Nebula (Ravonna).

> Avengers: Book info and issue index

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