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Avengers / Invaders #4: Review

Aug 2008
Jim Krueger, Steve Sadowski

Story Name:

Book Four: Hell on the Hellicarrier

Review & Comments

Rating:
2.5 stars

Avengers / Invaders #4 Review by (October 10, 2013)
Review: Aaaand the story begins with Bucky tossing Cap’s shield overboard from the Helicarrier—and then he beats himself up (figuratively, darn it!)…and then a lot of people yell at one another and two teams of Avengers punch each other and two Buckys meet—and we’ve run out of pages. So what is Bucky Cap thinking by warning Bucky Bucky about his impending death? If Bucky doesn’t die in 1945, then Ed Brubaker will remain unknown forever!

Comments: No inkers are credited for the series. The Golden Age Vision, the creation of Joe Simon and Jack Kirby, was Aarkus, Destroyer of Evil, accidentally brought by a scientific device to our dimension, where he fought crime.


Avengers / Invaders #4 Review by (October 10, 2013)
The Atlanteans wonder if young Namor is another of older Namor's children come to cause trouble. Atlantis is in ruins because of Sub-Mariner's hitherto unknown son in the SM: Revolution mini-series.

Subby will next appear surprisingly helpful as he joins Iron Man and some other heroes to stop San Francisco falling into the ocean in Hulk (2008) #5-6. Then it will be Illuminati #5 and the start of Secret Invasion.

New Avenger Echo stays behind with Dr Strange.

The Golden Age Vision had a reasonably long career in Marvel Mystery Comics #13-48 with a capper in Kid Komics #3. He was given 3 different origins but the generally accepted 1 is that he is a cop from the Smoke Dimension, and appears in ours via smoke. The look of the modern Vision was modelled on Aarkus, and the cover of his 1st appearance in Avengers #57 has him wreathed in smoke.

This is supposedly the end of Act 1, though it ends mid-battle.

Last issue I described how the Marvel Chronology Project positions this series within the Invaders other WWII adventures.

As an aside I have argued that there are a couple of things wrong with this dating system. I did this on 2 forums:- The MCP Marvel Universe forum and the Who Watches The Watchers forum (which deals with the Marvel Handbooks). I presented the detailed evidence to the WWTW forum, and my MCP posts discussed the effects on their Chronologies. I wrote these in 2011. Unfortunately WWTW changed website in 2013 and their old posts haven't been carried across.

My 1st point was that sometimes Timely comics portray their version of actual events, and they usually do so 2 months later. The most obvious example is Pearl Harbour and its immediate effects in December 1941. Timely got a 'Remember Pearl Harbour' sign on its January 1942 covers (cover-dated April), and got relevant stories into its February (c-d May) issues. This caused the Captain America and Sub-Mariner dated chronologies to slide the relevant issues back by 2 months, bunching up some earlier issues and spreading out some later ones.

I found other examples of Timely mentioning actual events in their stories, and pointed out that they couldn't beat the 2-month lag. So it was sensible to backdate *all* issues by an extra 2 months. Ie in this case cover date May -> published date Feb -> 'real' date Dec. This would affect where MCP/OI insert modern-day flashback stories with quoted dates like this 1. Ie this series would jump forward over 2 months-worth of comics, and eg would appear between Captain America Comics #38 and #39 instead of #36 and #37. (Also it would mean Cap would get in 2 more months of issues before being frozen at the accepted date in 1945.)

The 2nd point was more complicated. Monthly Timely comics had month dates on the cover. But quarterly comics just had eg Spring. The accepted wisdom at the time was that eg Spring issues were published with monthly March issues in December. But I found by consulting ads for comics that quoted on-sale dates that eg Spring issues were published with June issues in March. This was supported by some story elements that continued between a monthly issue to a quarterly issue, and also solved some existing mysteries. All Winners Comics, All-Select Comics and USA Comics were all quarterlies, and so they would be represented between CAC#36 and #37 by their *preceding* issues. (And none of them would occur with this series between CAC#38 and #39.)



 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers / Invaders #4 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

As Captain America battles the army of Life Model Decoy SHIELD agents, Bucky Barnes arrives with his shield, recovered from Tony Stark. Buck tosses the shield—and sends it over the side of the Helicarrier to plummet to Earth and embed itself in the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. The new Captain America, Bucky Barnes, claims it and walks away….

In the Helicarrier labs, Toro is being studied by scientists—until he manages to burn the anesthesia out of his system and regains his powers. He bursts into flame, knocking the scientists out, just as Bucky arrives. Together they locate Human Torch and finds him mourning the LMD he inadvertently killed. When he learns that Cap is fighting an army of LMDs above, Torch races to stop him. Elsewhere, Tony Stark dons his Iron Man armor and summons his Avengers….

Young Namor summons the warriors of Atlantis to conquer the surface world and rescue his allies. Instead they attempt to capture this young impostor. Older Namor punches him in the face and sends him away, explaining that he allowed the kid to think he defeated him as a lesson in humility….

Cap and Iron Man confront one another with Cap still thinking the Armored Avenger is a Nazi. Cap refuses to surrender as the Mighty Avengers arrive. But Doctor Strange also teleports the New Avengers aboard and a massive (double-page) brawl breaks out. Meanwhile, Strange gazes into the past and discovers that something happened in 1943 which caused the Nazis to win the war—and it involves the Cosmic Cube. He then sees the image of a green-faced being that resembles the Vision (actually it’s the Golden Age Vision). Bucky and his two fiery partners join in the Avengers donnybrook and then Subby arrives—along with Cap’s shield. Bucky has no idea where it could have come from…and then he’s grabbed from behind by the new Captain America who demands he listen closely as his future depends on it….


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> Avengers / Invaders: Book info and issue index

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Steve Sadowski
inLight Studios
Alex Ross (Cover Penciler)
Alex Ross (Cover Inker)
Alex Ross (Cover Colorist)


Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Widow
Black Widow

(Natasha Romanoff)
Bucky Barnes
Bucky Barnes

(James Barnes)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Captain America
Captain America

(James "Bucky" Barnes)
Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange

(Stephen Strange)
Human Torch
Human Torch

(Jim Hammond)
Iron Fist
Iron Fist

(Danny Rand)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Luke Cage
Luke Cage

(Power Man)
Ms. Marvel
Ms. Marvel

(Carol Danvers)
Ronin
Ronin

(Clint Barton)
Spider-Man
Spider-Man

(Peter Parker)
Vision
Vision

(Aarkus)
Wasp
Wasp

(Janet Van Dyne)
Wolverine
Wolverine

(James Howlett)

Plus: Echo, Invaders.