Issue(s): Avengers #264
And Sub-Mariner bumping into the Invisible Woman since they're both staying at Avengers Mansion and realizing that she's a grown woman and a mother now (a really nice scene).
And Hercules playing the role of the Thing for Mr. Fantastic.
And even Captain America jumping off to do something in his own book.
Just a lot of space devoted to various characters doing their own things. John Buscema's traditional six panels to a page helps provide the space for all that to happen, and Stern uses it nicely to just make us feel like we're reading about real people. To me, we're at a perfect balance between the super-compressed Silver Age stories and the overly decompressed comics of later years. There's a nice balance here, where characters have room to breath but things are still happening and there's still room for a complete story.
This issue is mainly about the Wasp and a new Yellowjacket villain. We start with Stern reminding us that, thank to Chris Claremont, the Wasp already has super-strength when she's at wasp size.
And on top of that, Stern (through the scientific aptitude of the Black Knight)...
...adds the ability for her to grow to nearly her full height while retaining her wings.
So, after emphasizing again the Black Knight's crush on Jan, Stern gives the Wasp some space to enjoy her newfound power.
Meanwhile, we see someone stealing Henry Pym's old Yellowjacket costume from Avengers Mansion.
And when Jan returns to her home, she finds the new Yellowjacket raiding her Hank's old lab. This results in a nice fight scene...
...which ends when Yellowjacket shrinks down for the first time and freaks out.
When the police show up, Jan tells the police that she never freaked out because, at five foot four, she's always been short.
I showed that to my partner min, who is five foot two, but she still maintains that she isn't short.
As you can probably tell, this is everything i love about comics.
Quality Rating: A
Chronological Placement Considerations: This issue shows Cap heading off to respond to the Porcupine's call to turn in his costume, so this issue takes place during Captain America #315.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (4): showBlack Knight (Dane Whitman), Captain America, Captain Marvel (Monica Rambeau), Frank Rambeau, Franklin Richards, Hercules, Invisible Woman, Jarvis, Maria Rambeau, Mr. Fantastic, Sub-Mariner, Wasp, Yellowjacket (Rita Demara)
Great issue. I really enjoyed the female, villainous Yellowjacket. I think Stern really intended to do a lot with her. Too bad she was never utilized as well as she could have been.
I was hoping she would team up with the villainous Goliath in an anti-team analogue to the old Tales to Astonish days.
Posted by: Chris | November 10, 2013 4:47 PM
The female Yellowjacket was killed off in The Crossing, and then forgotten. I think she had potential.
Posted by: Steven Printz | February 15, 2014 8:49 AM
She did appear as a regular for a time in the 1990s Guardians of the Galaxy book, before she was killed.
Posted by: ChrisKafka | February 15, 2014 4:16 PM
I did like what they did with the villainous (and later, more ambiguous) Yellowjacket in the late 80's.
"I showed that to my partner min, who is five foot two, but she still maintains that she isn't short."
My wife is also five foot two but she knows she's short.
Posted by: Erik Beck | June 8, 2015 7:17 PM
Rita DeMara was a very sexy character that had legs (no Pun intended)Marvel could have extended due to her passionate personality (ok she has a Hot Libido).
Posted by: RocknRollguitarplayer | July 13, 2016 2:56 PM
Yellowjacket's real name of Rita Demara would not be revealed until seven issues later in #271. After this issue, somebody in the letter cols guessed Yellowjacket was Pym's lab assistant Alice Nugent (introduced in Iron Man #194).
Posted by: Rick | July 31, 2016 9:09 AM
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