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Avengers Forever #4: Review

Mar 1999
Kurt Busiek, Carlos Pacheco

Story Name:

Running Out of Time

Review & Comments

3 stars

Avengers Forever #4 Review by (May 5, 2010)
Killraven's adventures were first chronicled Amazing Adventures vol 2 #18 onwards. Several alternative versions of the character have popped up since then. The 'Martians' were aliens from further away using Mars as a base. Killraven's holographic version of Captain America's shield is possibly the one Cap was using at the time of Avengers Forever. Killraven's version of the Avengers hasn't been seen outside of this series. They are led by Black Panther, first seen in Fantastic Four #52, and often an Avenger. Jocasta was built by Ultron in Avengers #162, but rebelled against him. She has been affiliated with the Avengers rather than been a member. Living Lightning debuted in Avengers West Coast #63, and has been an on/off Avenger. Thundra is a Femizon from an alternate future who first came to our century in Fantastic Four #129, but has never been an Avenger. Many people have worn the armour of the Russian Crimson Dynamo, from the first one in the Iron Man story in Tales of Suspense #46, and this is probably yet another one. None of them have been Avengers, and in fact they have often been on the other side. The Skorpsmen never appeared in Killraven's original adventures, but they are based on the cyborg Skar who debuted in Amazing Adventures #25. The Avengers' Wild West encounter with Kang was in Avengers #141-143.

Kid Colt, Rawhide Kid and Two-Gun Kid are long-running Western characters. Although Kid Colt goes back to Kid Colt #1 in 1948, the other two had revamps and so these versions only date from Rawhide Kid #17 in 1961 and Two-Gun Kid #60 in 1962. The earlier version of Two-Gun Kid was then defined as the hero of dime novels, but the histories of the two Rawhide Kids were gradually merged. A Skrull impersonated Vice-President Nixon in Marvel Premiere #37, the last of 3 issues starring the 3-D Man, but the Skrull wasn't caught or exposed at the end of the issue. 3-D Man then joined Jimmy Woo's Avengers of the '50's in What If #9. This appearance is thus a continuation of both plot threads.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers Forever #4 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
Seven Avengers (Captain America, Captain Marvel (Genis-Vell), Giant-Man, Hawkeye, Songbird, Wasp and Yellowjacket) from various times, along with Rick Jones and Libra, have fled from the destruction of Chronopolis in Kang's Sphinx time machine. They are trying to keep Rick safe from Immortus.

Hawkeye gets angry about Libra's deliberate refusal to tell them what is going on, for fear of upsetting the balance. So Libra pulls one of his vanishing tricks.

Giant-Man and Yellowjacket figure out the Sphinx's controls. They work well together because they are two versions of the same person. Despite Yellowjacket's dislike of Giant-Man.

The destruction of Chronopolis by Immortus caused a chronal anomaly. The Sphinx's sensors detect 3 more chronal anomalies. The Avengers suspect these are more signs of Immortus at work. So Wasp splits them into 3 teams to investigate in chronospheres. They leave Rick in the Sphinx where Immortus can't find him.

Captain America and Giant-Man find themselves in Killraven's War of the Worlds. The original series was an alternate future, and this is another alternate set in the first half of the 21st century. Earth has still been invaded by 'Martians', but in this version Killraven is one of the last of the Avengers, alongside Black Panther, Jocasta, Living Lightning, Thundra and a Crimson Dynamo. They are fighting the cybernetic Skorpsmen.

Hawkeye leads the team of Songbird and Yellowjacket to Tombstone in 1873. They see Kid Colt, Rawhide Kid and Two-Gun Kid fighting a dinosaur conjured up by Kang. Songbird realises they are seeing part of an old Avengers adventure, and that Hawkeye, Moondragon and Thor will soon turn up to sort it out. They plan to leave before they affect history, but find their chronosphere gone.

Captain Marvel and Wasp see Vice-President Nixon in 1959, and Captain Marvel senses he is a Skrull. But they arouse suspicion, and have to face the 1950's Avengers (Gorilla-Man, Human Robot, Marvel Boy, 3-D Man and Venus).

Carlos Pacheco
Jesus Merino
Steve Oliff
Carlos Pacheco (Cover Penciler)
Jesus Merino (Cover Penciler)
Tony Kelly (Cover Inker)
Steve Oliff (Cover Colorist)
Tony Kelly (Cover Colorist)
Plot: .


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

3-D Man
3-D Man

(Chuck Chandler / Hal Chandler)
Black Panther
Black Panther

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Captain Marvel
Captain Marvel


(Clint Barton)

(Kang the Conqueror)
Marvel Boy
Marvel Boy



(Janet Van Dyne)

Plus: Avengers (1950s), Crimson Dynamo (Anton Vanko), Giant-Man (Scott Lang), Gorilla-Man (Arthur Nagan), Human Robot, Jocasta (Jocasta Pym), Libra, Rawhide Kid, Skorpsmen, Songbird, Two-Gun Kid, Venus.

> Avengers Forever: Book info and issue index

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