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Tales of Suspense #97: Review

Jan 1968
Stan Lee, Gene Colan

Story Name:

The Coming of…Whiplash!

Review & Comments

4 stars

Tales of Suspense #97 Review by (February 15, 2010)
First of a four-part story. We're never told what makes the Black Panther think the invasion is connected to Captain America (though it is).

Tales of Suspense #97 Review by (August 7, 2012)
Review (Iron Man): A five-part story spanning three titles? Lead me to it. Starting with that splash panel which looks as though Jasper Sitwell is karate-chopping Iron Man in the neck, to the final almost-reveal of the villain, this is a tightly plotted epic with a lot of promise for action in upcoming installments. For now, just marvel over the concept of a super-whip!

Comments (Iron Man): First appearance of the original Whiplash (Mark Scarlotti, who would later be known as Blacklash). First appearance (disguised as Big M) of Whitney Frost who would soon become Madame Masque (IRON MAN #17); her dual identity and her name would not be revealed until IRON MAN #1).


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Tales of Suspense #97 Synopsis by T Vernon

Iron Man lies unconscious outside the Stark factory, his power drained by his fight with the Grey Gargoyle (last issue). SHIELD Agent Jasper Sitwell, seeking to aid him, can’t remove the helmet because of defensive safeguards built in. The young agent then decides to use a uni-directional explosive (invented by Tony Stark) to blow the helmet off without harming the man inside. The device works as planned—but it fails the remove the helmet….

Off the coast of Long Island, a luxurious gambling ship rides at anchor. Inside, one of the high-rollers, Morgan Stark is accosted by Maggia goons and taken into a secret craft below the main ship for a meeting with the Big M, head of the crime syndicate. Morgan is in a lot of trouble for not paying his gambling debts and he can’t expect his cousin Tony to bail him out any longer, so Big M is going to turn him over to their new enforcer Whiplash for punishment. When the news reports that Iron Man is injured, Morgan suggests that he can deliver the helpless hero to the Maggia. Big M agrees to cancel his debt if he can deliver. As an incentive, the big boss shows him Whiplash in action in the next room, wielding a high-tech whip that can split steel. Morgan is taken to the Stark plant where he is recognized as Tony’s cousin and he has the guards deliver Iron Man to his car, so he can take him to Tony who couldn’t get there himself. In the back seat of the car, Iron Man manages to give himself a temporary charge from the cigarette lighter so that, when he is in the office of the Big M, he suddenly bursts into action, taking down the thugs in the room. But the boss hits a secret switch and the hero is trapped behind a sliding wall. He hears a sneering voice behind him and turns to face--Whiplash….

Story #2

And So It Begins..!

Writer: Stan Lee. Penciler: Jack Kirby. Inker: Joe Sinnott. Colorist: ?.

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

An explosive trap sends Captain America hurling over the edge of a roof but he manages to save himself by hooking his foot on the molding. Two thugs, the brutish Mauler and his unnamed sidekick, appear and Mauler seizes the helpless Cap…but Cap was only faking and he suddenly bursts into action, stuffing the sidekick down a chimney and punching out the huge Mauler. Far away in Wakanda, the Black Panther discovers one of his sentry outposts destroyed, all the soldiers slain, and he confronts the armor-clad assassins nearby…. Back in New York, Cap resists advice to take it easy until the mob calls off its contract on him, and goes home to pine over Agent 13. Elsewhere the lovely agent in question is disguising herself as Irma Kruhl, foreign spy, to carry out the real Irma’s sinister mission. Captain America hears a noise on his roof and goes to investigate and discovers a strange sky craft. The Black Panther contacts Cap by the craft’s radio and asks his help in repelling a hostile invasion to Wakanda, an invasion that is in some way connected to Cap himself. Cap enters the ship and its auto-pilot whisks Cap off to Wakanda…and an unknown danger.

Gene Colan
Frank Giacoia
Gene Colan (Cover Penciler)
Frank Giacoia (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Panther
Black Panther

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

Plus: Jasper Sitwell, Maggia, Morgan Stark, Whitney Frost.

> Tales of Suspense: Book info and issue index

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