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Solo Avengers #17: Review

Apr 1989
Tom DeFalco, Al Milgrom

Story Name:

Even an Octopus Needs Arms!

Review & Comments

3 stars

Solo Avengers #17 Review by (June 1, 2022)

Review: The first story is a stunningly mediocre tale features a woefully generic story, no clever details, not told in a very interesting way, with okay-but-not-great art. All of which is the definition of “mediocre.”

The Namor story is of more interest as it focuses on the hero’s shifting attitudes about the surface world and his obligations to his associations with terrestrial superheroes and his newfound respect and compassion for the common man. The action scenes, with Namor versus Goldbug’s sub, are pretty cool. And Agent Anderson, that Henry Peter Gyrich clone, is lucky to be alive, having threatened Namor twice.

Comments: First story: Hawkeye and Sandman met and joined forces in issues #6-7 of this series. Madame Menace a/k/a Sunset Bain previously appeared in MACHINE MAN #17-18 and GHOST RIDER #63 and would go on to a bigger role in Iron Man titles in the 21st century. Second story: Namor’s bride Marrina was killed in AVENGERS #291-293, though she was later resurrected during the Dark Reign event. Goldbug was introduced in POWER MAN #41-42 followed by INCREDIBLE HULK #238-243. Agent Charles Anderson previously appeared in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #268 and WEB OF SPIDER-MAN #6 which featured the story of the gold building; this is his third and final appearance. Letters column includes one by future comics writer Joe Hilliard.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Solo Avengers #17 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

Following an anonymous tip, Hawkeye shows up at a waterfront warehouse to investigate an illegal arms deal. On the roof he is accosted by Sandman, who phoned in the tip and had been sent by Silver Sable to stop the deal; Sandman also believes Hawkeye is one of Sable’s agents, despite his denials. The disguised buyer arrives and is met by the seller, Madame Menace, to talk business. Sandman’s orders are to capture Madame Menace and so wants to wait until the buyer leaves; Hawkeye doesn’t want someone walking away with a superweapon.  Hawkeye attacks, Sandman joins in, battling MM and her minions who are armed with some pretty impressive armaments. The buyer reveals himself to be Doctor Octopus and fights Hawkeye because he doesn’t want to lose his new acquisitions. There is a lot of chaos in which both Doc Ock and Madame Menace escape, promising to meet again later. Hawkeye grabs onto the bottom of Doc Ock’s helicopter and is knocked off, only to be caught by his sandy ally. The two size up a failed mission and return to bickering about whether Hawkeye works for Silver Sable….

“Greed” 4/5

Writer: Danny Fingeroth. Pencils: Dave Cockrum. Inks: Kim DeMulder. Colors: Andy Yanchus. Letters: Janice Chiang.
Synopsis: Prince Namor the Sub-Mariner is searching the world’s oceans for the missing brood of his late wife Marrina. Near Puerto Rico he comes upon a family whose small boat has capsized; Namor swoops down and rescues them and returns them to shore. Discovering the family is poor, Namor gives them some gold he had been saving for another purpose, to their surprise and gratitude. The boy gives Namor a small wooden fish on a cord to wear about his neck. Namor takes his leave, feeling satisfaction in the transaction….

In his search, Namor dives into the Great Puerto Rican Trench and discovers what appears to be a building made of gold. He is challenged by a submarine and asked to board peacefully. He meets US Government Agent Charles Anderson, who tells him of the Manhattan building suddenly transformed into gold; it was hidden at the bottom of the ocean so as to not to destroy the world economy. He threatens Namor, telling him to forget the gold and never come back. Irritated, Namor continues his search in the Trench only to discover another sub stealing the gold. He decides it is none of his business and swims off, surprising the sub’s owner, Goldbug. But Namor has second thoughts, realizing that, as an Avenger, he should be protecting the common man from the economic upheaval that would follow the recovery of the gold. So he returns and tears the net carrying the gold from Goldbug’s ship; Goldbug fights back with his shipboard weapons but Namor withstands them all so the villain gives up and sails off, planning to come back another day. Namor is then caught by Anderson again and his story of a villain in another ship is not believed. Namor is disgusted and departs. Anderson thinks it may be a good idea to move the gold to another site….

Al Milgrom
Don Heck
Marc Siry
June Brigman (Cover Penciler)
Roy Richardson (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Jack Morelli.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Doctor Octopus
Doctor Octopus

(Otto Octavius)

(Clint Barton)

Plus: Goldbug, Sunset Bain (Madame Menace).

> Solo Avengers: Book info and issue index

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