Issue(s): Sleepwalker #18
Last issue we saw Rick Sheridan on a date with a young woman named Janine Epstein, and the date took a turn for the worse when she led him into an alley to seemingly be attacked by a gang. But it turns out that Janine and the gang are being mind controlled by the psychic heroes that are a part of Infinity War - Professor X, Jean Grey, Psylocke, and Moondragon.
Janine, the gang, and even Rick are all being affected by the entrancement that comes with the Magus' efforts to duplicate the entire universe. Rick has remained conscious only thanks to the psychics. But now that they've got him where they want him, they stop propping him up, and Rick falls into the trance like everyone else, and that allows Sleepwalker to come out.
They say that Sleepwalker is "uniquely qualified" to be used as a channel for the psychics to focus and project their thoughts to wake up the people of Earth. But Sleepwalker has grown distrustful of humanity, and he rejects their request.
So he goes out and explores the world on his own. The humans are all entranced, but the Infinity War doppelgangers are out, and they seem to have developed stronger personalities than we've seen so far (for the most part).
Sleepwalker finds those three doppelgangers getting ready to kill and eat some entranced humans. He tries to stop them, but after the fight goes on for a while, he feigns getting defeated, and then disguises himself as a doppelganger using spare ribs!
He eventually fights the doppels again, and then allows the telepaths to do their work.
Kind of like with Guardians of the Galaxy, it's probably a shame that this issue got the tie-in promotion just as the star artist of the book was leaving. Kelly Krantz's art is pretty dull compared to Bret Blevins', especially with just the regular humans (a comparison of Janine Epstein between last issue and this one will show that, for example). But Krantz does quite well with the doppelgangers, capturing the goofy weirdness that was a big part of this book under Blevins. And any story that involves someone sticking spare rib bones into his body as a disguise gets a thumbs up from me.
Quality Rating: C
Chronological Placement Considerations: This continues directly from the end scene in Sleepwalker #17, and see that issue's Considerations for how the crossover with Darkhawk from that issue fits into Infinity War. This occurs during Infinity War #5. Sleepwalker appears in Doctor Strange #46 after this. I've been tagging all appearances of the Daredevil doppelganger in Infinity War as Hellspawn, but i am not doing so for this one. The doppelganger was defeated by Calypso in Daredevil #310, which takes place prior to this (since the world wasn't yet entranced in that story), and she still has it in Daredevil annual #9. So this must be a different doppelganger.
Crossover: Infinity War
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
I like the use of Sleepwalker in Infinity War. It's much more interesting to see a character with unique powers in such a way than to do a random "they fight the baddies minions" plot.
Posted by: Berend | April 8, 2016 4:21 PM
Yep, this was definitely one of the better Infinity War crossovers. Instead of just containing another fight with an evil duplicate, this one did kinda sorta help advance a plotline that was running in the main miniseries.
Agreed with fnord on the art. Kelly Krantz is a decent penciler, but I prefer Bret Blevins, and it would have been cool to see him draw all the weird doppelgangers.
Posted by: Ben Herman | April 8, 2016 10:23 PM
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