Issue(s): Avengers #255
As the cover (painted by Palmer) suggests, this issue focuses on Captain Marvel. She arrives at Sanctuary II on the fake mission given to her by the Vision while he was trying to take over the world...
...and, unsurprisingly, initially finds nothing. However, while exploring Thanos' giant space ship...
...she encounters a group of aliens. Their story is that they're travelers who ran into trouble and were forced to dock here for repairs, but they are in fact spaaaaaaaaaaace pirates.
All of the pirates are alien species that have appeared in Marvel comics before. Gunthar is of course a Rigellian.
Skunge is a Laxidazian troll, like Adam Warlock's friend Pip.
Kehl is a Taurian, a race that was a victim of Galactus, as seen in Thor #160.
Levan is of the same species, and even has the same haircut, as Captain Autolycus, who fought Adam Warlock in Strange Tales #179.
The Official Handbook to the Marvel Universe #9 (vol. 1) names them Sarks. Since Sarks are basically just blue-skinned humans, i'd have assumed that this crew's boss, Nebula (who we haven't met just yet) is probably also a Sark (we can write off the haircut as male pattern baldness and therefore not affecting her), but her species has never been confirmed as far as i know. Nebula will claim to be Thanos' granddaughter and, later (as Andrew notes in the comments), the son of Zorr (from Nova #1). But Nebula's claims aren't necessarily trustworthy.
Anyway, it's a great little group.
After an initial scuffle, Captain Marvel warily buys into their story and allows them to travel with the ship, but they trick her and throw Sanctuary II into hyper-space which, as Gunthar anticipated, temporarily neutralizes her powers and makes her their prisoner.
Meanwhile, the Pentagon is pushing for action against the Avengers after the Vision's take-over of their computer systems. Luckily Raymond Sikorski is much less out for blood than Henry Gyrich would have been...
...but when the Vision admits culpability, he is "invited" to Washington for a debriefing. The Scarlet Witch goes with him.
It's a great human scene. Add that to the intriguing space story and you've got a very nice issue.
It's cool how Thanos' legacy looms so large here that he's got a presence despite being dead and not having appeared for almost eight years.
Quality Rating: B+
Chronological Placement Considerations: Captain Marvel says it's taken "seven hours" to fly from Earth to Sanctuary II. In Avengers #252, she had made it as far as Jupiter in a half-hour, but i'm contending that at some point after that she saw the appearance of the Dire Wraith's homeworld and turned around to appear in ROM #65-66 before zipping back off into space again. It's also worth noting that while the other West Coast Avengers have returned home, Wonder Man is still with the East Coast team. This probably explains his lack of appearance in Iron Man #193-194, suggesting that those issues are occurring around the same time. The Wasp returns from her vacation, which began in issue #251.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (1): showBlack Knight (Dane Whitman), Captain America, Captain Marvel (Monica Rambeau), Gunthar, Hercules, Kehl, Levan, Raymond Sikorski, Scarlet Witch, Skunge, Starfox, Vision, Wasp, Wonder Man
What wizard did Tom Palmer make a bargain with? I've never seen another inker do what he does. Inking John Buscema means you're always going to look good but Damn, Palmer takes it to another level. I can't be the only one who thinks this.
Posted by: Jay Patrick | April 27, 2013 6:21 PM
Palmer used a lot of Zip-A-Tone, which gave his work interesting textures and a lushly illustrative quality. (Today there are plenty of graphics programs that achieve the same thing.) IMO I don't think Buscema needed all that embellishment--I preferred an inker like George Klein on Buscema--but there's no denying Palmer's work was masterful (and still is).
Posted by: Shar | June 2, 2013 3:36 PM
Jay Patrick, you're definitely not alone!
Posted by: Buffy | March 20, 2015 6:48 PM
The cover without any copy and stuff on: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-3JvOs7aqlVk/VkZWV8In_KI/AAAAAAABuyw/xo0wUsc6vAs/s1600/Avengers%2B%2523255A%2B1985%2Bby%2BTom%2BPalmer.jpg
Posted by: AF | January 15, 2016 1:23 PM
If Nebula is the daughter of Zorr, from Nova 1, wouldn't she be a Luphomoid?
Posted by: Andrew | February 5, 2017 9:57 PM
Not that it necessarily settles it, but it seems Luphomoid is what movie Nebula is.
Posted by: rabartlett | May 9, 2018 1:01 AM
Comments are now closed.
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