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Avengers / Invaders #8: Review

Jan 2009
Jim Krueger, Steve Sadowski

Story Name:

Book Eight: Cry, D'Spayre

Review & Comments

Rating:
2.5 stars

Avengers / Invaders #8 Review by (November 7, 2013)
The green mist that enveloped the Invaders in the past must have been part of the Cube's action. Maybe Aarkus' smoke connection 'inspired' the use of mist. (And in the Invaders Now series he travels by green smoke.) But it does mean that the Nazi Operation Zeitgeist/Time Ghost in #1 had nothing to do with it, despite the name (which has nothing to do with time-travel).

That's the end of D'Spayre and Ultron for this story.
D'Spayre will join the other Fear Lords in the Fear Itself event, and again in some more issues of Journey Into Mystery.
This Ultron infesting Earthly computers/AIs will re-emerge in Mighty Avengers #32-36 to take over Jocasta and the Avengers Infinite Mansion. Then the Ultron consciousness from Annihilation: Conquest will return from space in Avengers (2010) #12.1 to initiate the alternate timeline that results in Age of Ultron.

This is the end of Act 2. Since #2 Dr Strange has been holding back a changed past in which the Axis won WWII and took over the world. Now this past overwhelms him. It should be that the absence of the Invaders was enough to cause this outcome. Indeed DrS was intending to fix things by sending them back. But we'll see in the last act that this dire present was due to the WWII Red Skull getting hold of the Cosmic Cube. However this only happens because Paul Anselm takes the Cube back with him. So it hasn't happened yet!

This time Dr Strange says that it wasn't D'Spayre that brought the Invaders from the past. From last issue we can retain the idea that he just fed off the feelings that the Cosmic Cube amplified - the angst over the Civil War and the death of Captain America. And this issue also makes it clearer that it was old Paul Anselm's nostalgia for the 'cleaner' heroes he met in WWII that 'inspired' the Cube to fetch the Invaders, including Cap.

The idea of the Golden Age Vision's people being caretakers of Cosmic Cubes and guiding them in their evolution to sentient beings is totally new. I take it from this that the Vision hasn't been brought from past - he was here in the present with the Cube. And this issue suggests that the despair that the Cube was picking up enabled D'Spayre to take him over. However it does look like Dr Strange is preparing to send Aarkus to the past alongside the Invaders and young Paul Anselm. But he isn't in the protective bubble Strange casts on the last page. On the other hand Vision *does* appear in the past in #11.

As I mentioned in #4 Aarkus only appeared in Marvel Mystery Comics #13-48 and Kid Komics #3 during the Timely era. Roy Thomas included him in Invaders (1993) #3-4 and he joined a horde of heroes in Marvels #1, both set in 1942 during the later part of his MMC run. Strangely he was the focus of the Mystic Comics 75th Anniversary issue although he never featured in that mag. And stranger still that Timely-era story destroys the portal between his dimension and ours so he can't get home, but he still seems to travel by smoke at the end. But the Invaders story and some of his Marvel Age apps specifically refer to him travelling from his home dimension. So whenever the Mystic story happens he must regain access later. (Many Timely stories just show him arriving in smoke but don't actually mention where he came from, so they could fit in the period when he's trapped on Earth.)


Avengers / Invaders #8 Review by (November 7, 2013)
Review: This is a SUICIDE MISSION—oh wait, here’s Tony, never mind…“Knock it off, Cap; save Namor” “Oh right, I’m sorry, I guess I was wrong about you even though nothing has happened to change my irrational opinion.”… D’Spayre is defeated by a deaf woman who just snatches the Cosmic Cube out of his hand; that solves everything. Then the Golden Age Vision shows up and reveals he’s the Cube’s nanny…Wow, Ultron is in the story, now it’s really going to take off! No wait, Torch burns off a robot’s face and that ends the threat of Ultron!...All the Avengers get together for a group hug even though none of the issues of the Civil War and the Registration Act have been resolved…Aaaaw! It was Paul Anselm’s desire to see the heroes of his youth that led the Cosmic Cube to bring the Invaders to the present—wait, where was the Cube when this happened? It first appeared in the story in D’Spayre’s hands—where did he get it? Was it just hanging around Manhattan, waiting for someone to tell it what to do? And does this mean that the mysterious green mist from issue #1 did nothing at all? ... The Blue Screen of Death!! The Cosmic Cube runs on Windows!!!

Comments: No inkers are credited for the series.

Librarian added:- Plot by Alex Ross and Jim Krueger. Also penciller in this issue: Patrick Berkenkotter.


Avengers / Invaders #8 Review by (November 7, 2013)
Only Iron Man, Ms Marvel, Spider-Woman and Wasp of the Mighty Avengers and Luke Cage, Spider-Man and Wolverine of the New Avengers are saved by Dr Strange alongside the Invaders. It doesn't actually show Wasp and Wolverine here, and in fact next issue's recap doesn't mention them. But they show up anyway. Paul Anselm used the Cube to send himself alone to the past. Next issue's recap doesn't say DrS has sent them to the past, but their initial scene says it's 1943.

Bucky-Cap will rejoin them along with MAvers Ares, Sentry and Wonder Man and NAvers Dr Strange and Iron Fist for the epilogue at the end of #12. Black Widow, Echo and Ronin won't be shown.



 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers / Invaders #8 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

The Mighty Avengers are battling the rebellious LMDs when Wasp arrives with the freed Tony Stark while old Captain America, believing young Captain America is a robot villain, starts throwing punches. Instead, Ms Marvel, Wonder Man, Ares, and Sentry arrive and Bucky Cap tells Steve to rescue the Sub-Mariner who is still trapped in the virtual reality prison. Cap brings him out and apologizes for being such a jerk….

Human Torch, dupe and prisoner of the Ultron-led LMDs hears their plans to conquer Earth and starts roasting robots, burning his stolen blood out of them, ending the threat of Ultron….

In the New York sewers, D’Spayre is filling the captive New Avengers with bitterness and regret, but Echo, who can’t hear the demon’s patter because she is deaf, snatches the Cosmic Cube out of his hands. Dr Strange uses the Cube to banish D’Spayre and this brings out the original Vision, guardian of the Cube. Vision wants the Cube back to continue its development but Strange needs it to put the Invaders back where they came from. This gives Paul Anselm the inkling of an idea….

The two Avengers groups meet aboard the Helicarrier and apologize to one another, then they all visit old Paul Anselm to explain that his desire to see his boyhood heroes once more (issue #1) is what the Cosmic Cube seized upon to cause all the trouble. Young Paul assures old Paul he will fix everything while Bucky Cap reminds Bucky Bucky of his warning. Strange intends to use the Cube to erase the memories of those from the past before sending them back—but suddenly Paul reaches out and touches it and time ruptures. A blue curtain moves across Manhattan, sucking everyone in to their deaths. Before he is lost, Strange casts a spell which shields several of the heroes from doom, ordering them to go back and save the world….


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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

(James "Bucky" Barnes)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
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)
Spider-Woman
Spider-Woman

(Jessica Drew)
Vision
Vision

(Aarkus)
Wasp
Wasp

(Janet Van Dyne)
Wolverine
Wolverine

(James Howlett)

Plus: D’Spayre, Echo, Invaders.