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Avengers #42: Review

Jul 1967
Roy Thomas, John Buscema

Story Name:

The Plan ... and the Power

Review & Comments

3 stars

Avengers #42 Review by (August 10, 2011)
Presumably Diablo used very-fast alchemy to multiply-clone the original Dragon Man, otherwise why did he need the android? His dialogue last issue indicates that he only went after Dragon Man, and getting Hank Pym was an unexpected bonus. In #44 we will learn that the Psychotron didn't work on Natasha because she was conditioned by SHIELD to resist it. Of course Dragon Man isn't dead. He will continue to be the pawn of villains, the next being Dr Dorcas in Sub-Mariner #15. Diablo will remain an occasional 2nd-string villain, pestering other heroes in between harassing the Fantastic Four. This has been a rather ordinary story, filling in until more meaningful events next issue.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers #42 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
Last issue Goliath was studying the android Dragon Man when Diablo came to claim him (Diablo didn't create the android, but did bring it to life in Fantastic Four #35). At the end of the issue Diablo and the revived Dragon Man flew off with the unconscious Goliath and Wasp, leaving Hawkeye, Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch in the rubble of Hank Pym's lab.

The 3 Avengers have now returned to Avengers Mansion and their guest Hercules. Pietro contacts the Fantastic Four who have just returned from a vacation (fighting the Kree Sentry #459 in FF#64), and Mr Fantastic tells him where to find Diablo's Transylvanian castle. Meanwhile Hawkeye and Hercules continue to get on each other's nerves.

Diablo has recreated his castle and also created an army of Dragon Men. But he can't give them life because his supply of the necessary potion was destroyed with the castle in FF#35. He expected to spend months creating enough new potion, but now with Hank Pym's help he can do it much faster. Goliath has to agree to help because sedated Jan is menaced by Dragon Man in an underground cave, who will kill her if Diablo doesn't regularly tell him not to.

The Avengers arrive by aero-car, and an opti-scanner manages to penetrate rock and show them Dragon Man and the Wasp. Hercules heads into the cave system to find and fight the android, while the other Avengers knock on the front door with one of Hawkeye's blast arrows. But they have to face Goliath, who fights them for Jan's sake.

Meanwhile in China Black Widow is recovering from being thrown into the Psychotron last issue, which exposed her to her fears. Colonel Ling and Dr Yen knew she was really working for SHIELD, via a double-agent. They now believe she is broken and will tell them US secrets. But Natasha is faking and takes the first opportunity to escape and try to destroy the Psychotron, which was her SHIELD mission all along. (It seems that the eventual aim of the Chinese is to beam the Psychotron's rays at large populations over long distances.) However Ling and Yen were merely waiting to see if their first test of the Psychotron had been successful. Now that the Widow has proved immune to it, they gas her and recapture her to find out why.

Back in Transylvania Scarlet Witch persuades Goliath that Hercules will protect Wasp from Dragon Man. So Hank joins them in attacking Diablo. But Diablo traps them behind an invisible barrier, and threatens to blow up the cave where Jan is imprisoned. However, just as he is about to pull the lever a red-gloved hand stops him. Captain America has followed the team here after ending (in Tales of Suspense #91) the battle with Red Skull that has kept him away from the Avengers since #38.

Cap KO's Diablo. Down in the cave Hercules throws Dragon Man into lava, and Jan wakes from her sedative. Cap blows up the castle with the Dragon Man clones inside, and the Avengers head home with their prisoner Diablo.

But back at the mansion they hear that Black Widow is being held by the Chinese as an agent of SHIELD. And Hawkeye swears to rescue her.

John Buscema
George Roussos
John Buscema (Cover Penciler)
George Roussos (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Widow
Black Widow

(Natasha Romanoff)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)

(Clint Barton)
Mr. Fantastic
Mr. Fantastic

(Reed Richards)

(Pietro Maximoff)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)

(Janet Van Dyne)

Plus: Goliath (Hank Pym).

> Avengers: Book info and issue index

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