Issue(s): Sub-Mariner #61, Sub-Mariner #62
Steve Gerber had been co-writing during Everett's run, and now he fully takes over the writing duties. This arc has an evil scientist named Dr. Hydro...
...who has a floating island construct called Hydrobase, hijacking planes and subjecting the passengers to a mist that turns them into Amphibian men with green scales.
Namorita and Betty Dean are on one of the planes that gets hijacked by a guy called Gremlin.
Prior to the hijacking, Namorita objects to the security searches at the airport. I wonder how she'd react to today's full body scanners.
Namorita also isn't very effective against the kidnappers. It's said that she is a true sub-mariner, but she's still too young to be super-strong.
While Namor is rescuing Namorita, the Amphibians attack Atlantis. The Atlanteans are in disarray without Namor there to lead them. This has been a consistent problem with the Atlanteans. They basically sit around and wait for Namor to do everything. Tamara, the red-skinned alien that's been living with them, comments on this...
...and takes up an ancient sword to lead them into battle.
Namor and Namorita soon show up to help out...
...and Dr. Hydro is killed, after confirming that there is no cure for the Amphibians (Betty Dean among them). The question of what to do with the Amphibians remains on Namor's head.
It's a problem that actually won't be solved until 1981! At that point, in Marvel Two-In-One #71-72, it'll be revealed that the gas Dr. Hydro used was a variation of the Inhuman's Terrigen Mist (playing on the idea that the Amphibians look like Triton) by Maelstrom's father Phaeder. In the meantime, the problem of the Amphibians will be a loose plot that is toyed with but never addressed in the Sub-Mariner series and Super-Villain Team-Up. So this is the beginning of a long-running story.
Dr. Hydro's Hydro-base is significant as well.
Stingray will eventually make it his base of operations, and later, when the Avengers Mansion is destroyed, they will re-locate to the base as well.
Issue #62 starts a Tales of Atlantis back-up feature that will run for 5 issues. In this issue, with art by Howard Chaykin and Joe Sinnott, we see the Atlanteans, already blue-skinned but living above water in a city that is protected by a transparent dome, attacked by the Lemurians. To defeat the Lemurians, Emperor Kammu and his warrior queen Zartra have to unleash a volcanic power that also destroys their dome.
The fact that the Pre-Cataclysm Atlanteans were colored blue is later decided to be a mistake.
Quality Rating: C+
Chronological Placement Considerations: N/A
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (11): show
The Gremlin and his "Hiya kids!" dialogue is a reference to the 1950s kid show character Froggy The Gremlin.
Namorita does display super-strength(sorta) in the Avengers/Super-Villain Team-Up crossover.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | August 14, 2011 11:16 PM
The king and queen of Atlantis' names were a play on the major Existentialist philosophers/writers Albert Camus and Jean-Paul Sartre. Steve Gerber's work was heavily influenced by Existential thought.
Posted by: ChrisKafka | February 1, 2014 11:35 PM
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