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Defenders, The #48: Review

Jun 1977
David Kraft, Keith Giffen

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Story Name:

Who Remembers Scorpio? Part 1: Sinister Savior!

Review & Comments

2 stars

Defenders, The #48 Review by (February 15, 2010)
A good beginning to this series. Defenders really wants to ask questions and make you think. Big questions about our society and what is "normal". The Hulk has but a small part in this book, but it is preparing us for the next issue...

Added Review and Comments by Peter Silvestro October 25, 2021.
Review: Scorpio proves he has what it takes to be a supervillain: he never stops talking in this issue. Never. But he’s a megalomaniac in training so it’s excusable. In fact, it would disqualify him if he lacked the chatterbox gene. So he brags about his scheme to create an all-new Zodiac showing off some Kirbyesque hardware while handing everyone a canned beer. Meanwhile, Moon Knight gets acclimated, Wonder Man makes himself scarce for when the Avengers see all the damage, and Jack Norriss gets tossed around by various Furies. The most creative bit? The choice of High Point, New Jersey, an unexpected place for a superhuman battle for the climax.  

Comments: Part three of five parts/part one of three parts. First page says, “Who Remembers Scorpio? Part One” though that was the title of issue #46. Hellcat compares Aragorn to the Pegasus symbol of the Mobil gas company (now part of ExxonMobil). Jack Norriss refers to “Congressman Hayes” as a crooked leader who was caught; he is likely referring to Wayne Hays [sic], Democratic Representative from Ohio who was toppled by a sex scandal in 1976, shortly before this issue appeared. Moon Knight refers to Vic Tanny’s gym, a popular chain of fitness centers in the post-war years before facing bankruptcy in the 1960s. Scorpio is a fan of Billie Holiday and Judy Garland, though he spells the former’s name “Billy.” Comic strip character Mandrake the Magician is invoked. And the High Point Monument (dedicated to the state’s veterans) is a real structure on NJ’s highest point. On the final page, there’s a shout-out to Don McGregor for a last-minute script assist. 


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Defenders, The #48 Synopsis by Jon Ryser
The embittered Scorpio, feeling his 52 years, has spent the last 7 years building the "Zodiac Chamber" with his brother Nick Fury. This chamber will be the "Salvation of the World". But to keep this project going, he needs more money. With the aid of Fury, he kidnaps Jack Norriss from beneath the noses of Valkyrie, Hellcat, Wonder Man, and Moon knight. Meanwhile, Hulk is feeling tired. Tired of smashing and hitting. He just wants to sleep.

The lonely Kyle Richmond (Nighthawk) gets the ransom call from Scorpio asking $500,000 for Norriss' release. Of course Valkyrie is upset at Jack being stolen under her watch. She is also emotionally weary in her dealings with him from before he was taken by Scorpio. Moon Knight has followed Nick Fury (with Jack Norriss) to Scorpio's lair. There he is trapped in a pressure-covered container. Scorpio throws him a beer asking that he die with "class" as he prepares to drown MoonKnight in the container.

Night comes and the world sleeps (even superheroes and villains!) When dawn breaks, Richmond heads to the bank and withdraws $500,000. Scorpio awakes to find that Moon Knight has magically escaped and blames Nick Fury.

Richmond changes into Nighthawk and confronts Scorpio at the designated rendezvous. They begin to fight. Scorpio reveals that he knows Nighthawk's true identity. His plan was to draw Kyle Richmond to him so that he could acquire not just $500,000; but the "entire Richmond Fortune!" After this pronouncement, he teleports them both away.

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Barberoids 1 cover original artwork on ebay

Keith Giffen
Dan Green
Ed Hannigan (Cover Penciler)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.


(Patsy Walker)

(Bruce Banner)

(Kyle Richmond)


Plus: Jack Norriss (Jackson Norriss), Max Fury, Scorpio (Jake Fury LMD).

> Defenders, The: Book info and issue index

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