The Transparent Fox:
Issue(s): Namor #48
The Invisible Woman manages to sneak up on the Thing and remove the skull-hugger. They then quickly get the Thing back inside because it turns out that the still-healing injuries to his face mean that he's not protected from the deep ocean pressure, and he's in a lot of pain.
As they're working together, Sue notes that she and Namor make a good team. Back on the FF's bathosphere, there's what seems like a little flirting...
...but then Sue gives Namor a little platonic kiss and talks about acting like a doting mother, so i guess she doesn't have romance on the mind.
The little thing that Namor has is a bomb intended to blow up the thruster that they are here for. Meanwhile, Ant-Man drops Tiger Shark and Tamara Rahn off with this group and then rushes home because Triton has already brought the Human Torch and Lyja to the hospital where Lyja is giving birth. Tamara actually does not want the FF to blow up the thruster, because it is powering the skull-huggers, and her Banari sisters will die if they are destroyed. On the other hand, she also doesn't want the world to be flooded. So she's torn.
This is the first time that the Thing is meeting Tiger Shark.
I suspect that Tiger Shark really does think the Thing's name is Rock Man. As we go on in years, it's inevitable that we'll see fewer and fewer of these first encounters, which i always enjoy. A little more on that in a bit.
Namor, meanwhile, has brought the bomb deep into the Marinas Trench. He has to fight his way through a number of Banari, but then he reaches the limits of the depths that even he is able to survive at. The good news is that it's a little beyond the Banari's limits.
But he passes out and drops the bomb.
The Thing can't go help Namor because of his injury. It's not said why Tiger Shark or Tamara don't go, but one's a villain and the other is conflicted. So the Invisible Woman gets in a pressure suit and heads down the trench. She has to fight her way through a number of Haab.
She makes it as far as the Banari, but then she can't handle the pressure. Namor wakes up and has to choose between getting the bomb back on target and saving Sue. He chooses the latter. But he passes out on his way back up. Tiger Shark then goes out to retrieve him and Sue.
I like the little interaction between the Thing and Tiger Shark. I really like the Thing calling Tiger Shark "Todd". Tiger Shark is in my mind a "working class" villain (in demeanor if not necessarily background), kind of like the Sandman. I think the Thing is an interesting character for these sorts of villains to run into. He is not like the usual haughty monarchs and elite eggheads that usually oppose them. He's a guy like them, and he's even monstrous and could have easily become a villain. The Thing has kind of lost his edginess over the years, but i'd really love to see a series looking at him from the perspective of villains.
Anyway, of more immediate fun is Namor freaking out when Stingray tries to give the Invisible Woman mouth-to-mouth.
The Haab named Zun arrives and swims down to the bomb and makes sure it gets where it needs to go (don't worry about "Jason"; it's just the name of Stingray's remote camera unit).
The heroes are still deep in the trench, so they get trapped in a cave-in when the bomb goes off.
Also in this issue, we check in with Phoebe Marrs, who is still at Oracle. She's here to address a loose end. Back in Namor #26-33, there was a rogue operator at Oracle who was working against the local loggers. He turns out to have the last name of McKenzie (which was Namor's father's last name).
Quality Rating: C
Chronological Placement Considerations: This is technically part nine of Starblast. But i'm covering all the Namor and Fantastic Four issues separately from the Quasar/Starblast issues. So i'll cover Fantastic Four #386 next.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (2): showAnt-Man (Scott Lang), Black Moray, Invisible Woman, Llyra, Stingray, Sub-Mariner, Tamara Rahn, Thing, Tiger Shark, Zun
Fnord, that isn't Phoebe. As we'll later find out that's Llyra impersonating Phoebe and the Oracle guy's the father of Llyra's child, not Namor.
Posted by: Michael | March 28, 2017 12:04 AM
Jason here is probably an homage to the real-world remote camera unit of the same name that was used to explore the Titanic.
Posted by: Mortificator | March 28, 2017 2:32 AM
@Michael, thanks. FYI, the MCP lists Phoebe in this issue and only lists Llyra as BTS.
Posted by: fnord12 | March 28, 2017 8:13 AM
Isherwood mistakenly drew a whole Thing in a couple of panels...that, or the colorist pooched it.
Posted by: Vin the Comics Guy | March 31, 2017 1:22 AM
Wow, Who'd have thought a 90s' issue of Namor would have a handful of good little character moments? fnord, I really dig what you pointed out about The Thing being able to relate better with "working class" villains due to his own blue collar upbringing. It's true, for the longest time many heroes were crusading attorneys and newspaper publishers and scientists, this is an area of Ben's personality and appeal sadly unexplored for the most part.
Posted by: Wis | April 10, 2017 3:05 AM
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