Werewolf By Night #42-43
Issue(s): Werewolf By Night #42, Werewolf By Night #43
Now that we're finally here, Doug Moench really goes all out on the super-hero route, starting the issue off with the Werewolf deciding to foil a bank robbery!
And the robbers turn out to be led by a bona fide super-villain, the Masked Marauder. Granted he's from Daredevil's rogues gallery, but still.
We even start off with a classically stupid Misunderstanding Fight with Iron Man.
The fight goes on for so long, the Masked Marauder has time to laugh at them....
...and then go rob his bank. He doesn't leave well enough alone, though, and comes back and shoots at Iron Man, which convinces Shellhead that the Werewolf is a good guy. They still come across like a couple of klutzes, though.
Werewolf By Night is injured, so Iron Man takes him back to Avengers Mansion, provoking the first of several hilarious reactions from Jarvis.
I'm not quite sure why the Werewolf is so injured. As far as i know, werewolves can really only be hurt by silver or magic. But his injury does give Jarvis the opportunity to compose himself and move on to the next hilarious scene.
Meanwhile, Iron Man knows that just because he fought the Masked Marauder once before doesn't mean that he's responsible for that joker and he's not letting him join his rogues gallery, so he risks breaking the unspoken secret identity rule that super-heroes have and calls Matt Murdock to tell him that his "friend" Daredevil better offer some help.
Of course Daredevil doesn't really want the Marauder either, so all he offers is the location of a warehouse that the Marauder used to use.
Also meanwhile, the Masked Marauder gets a brilliant idea. Remember that time i made a Tri-Man? Well what if i did that again, except instead of using three men, i use a gorilla, a cheetah, and an alligator. Brilliant!
It's thinking like that that keeps your henchmen hanging around even after you call them turkeys.
Back to Jarvis and the Werewolf.
And now we can move from the Misunderstanding Fight to the Team-Up.
One of the advantages of a Tri-Animan over a Tri-man is that you can also let the source animals out of their tubes so they can fight Werewolf By Night individually. So if you ever wanted to see a werewolf fight a gorilla or a cheetah, i've got the comic for you.
This is actually fairly well written, or at least it's not weighed down by the usual mystical mumbo jumbo, but unfortunately it's the last issue of the series. I especially liked a running bit with some jaded police officers who find all of the monsters running around to be completely credible, having lived in the Marvel Universe's New York for so long.
"Oh... I get it now... There's two monsters -- one good an' one bad... I guess.".
In these issues there's a subplot scene with Lissa Russell, Buck Cowan, and the Martsons.
A helpful note in my Essentials reprint says, "For the resolution of this subplot, see Spider-Woman #19 in Essential Spider-Woman vol. 1". But as Mark says in the comments, that doesn't really happen, exactly.
Quality Rating: C
Chronological Placement Considerations: For the Werewolf, it's not a full moon and it's no longer necessary to track the moon cycles, since he can now control his transformations. Iron Man begins this arc feeling "beat" after having been "put through the wringer sideways" with a footnote to Iron Man #93-94. However, this issue is referenced in Avengers #152, and that reference is more specific (Iron Man says that he fought beside a werewolf). And Avengers #153 is referenced in Iron Man #92; another specific reference, to Wonder Man's return and a battle with the Living Laser. And none of these issues are standalone fill-ins that can take place out of sequence. So since Iron Man #92 has to take place after Avengers #153, Iron Man #93-94 can't take place before Werewolf By Night #42-43 and Avengers #152. So we have to ignore the footnote and assume that Iron Man is feeling beat for a different reason. I've placed this directly after Iron Man #91 instead. That pushes these Werewolf issues back in publication time quite a bit, but that was going to happen no matter what since Avengers #152, which references these issues, has an Oct 76 cover date, compared to Jan-Mar 77 for these issues. Daredevil's off-panel appearance is context free.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: Essential Werewolf By Night vol. 2 (#43 is an original)
Inbound References (5): show
A dangling plotline from this issue gets picked up(sorta) in an issue of Spider-Woman.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | July 16, 2011 5:35 PM
You must be so glad to be done with this crappy series. Reviewing stuff like this, especially so many consecutively, has got to make this project feel like a chore sometimes.
Posted by: Robert | January 14, 2015 5:05 PM
I started off with modestly high hopes. The Darkhold and the origin of Topaz, first appearances of Hangman and Tatterdemalion... The earliest issues weren't that terrible, and Mike Ploog's art was fun. And i was looking forward to Doug Moench taking over, but that turned out to be a turn for the worse, with less and less to say about the Werewolf as a character and more and more weird mystic mumbo jumbo.
Don't worry, though, plenty more Marvel horror Essentials to come in this Back Issue Add! ;-)
Posted by: fnord12 | January 14, 2015 6:43 PM
Fnord, this story is referenced in Avengers 152, so this story and Iron Man 93-94 (which you linked to correctly but described as Daredevil 93-94 in the references) have to be pushed back before Avengers 150-152.
Posted by: Michael | January 14, 2015 8:06 PM
I think that while not Tomb of Dracula, the Werewolf series did ultimately introduce a few things that do seem key to the Marvel universe in many respects, from the major (Darkhold, Moon Knight, Tigra...and of course Jack Russel) to the minor (Topaz, Tatterdemalion, Hangman). But I think you are right in your assessment: while with problems before, Moench dropped the ball completely.
Posted by: Ataru320 | January 14, 2015 9:00 PM
@Michael - thanks. Note that this puts me out of sync with the MCP, which has IM #92-94 after Avengers #156. I'll be adding #92 as part of this Back Issue Add; hopefully nothing there causes a conflict.
Posted by: fnord12 | January 14, 2015 9:22 PM
You've also got to move Werewolf By Night 38-41 before these issues.
Posted by: Michael | January 14, 2015 11:16 PM
Posted by: fnord12 | January 15, 2015 7:28 AM
And it turns out there was a conflict in Iron Man #92, so i've had to go back to my original placement for Iron Man #93-94 and ignore the reference here to those issues. See the Considerations.
Posted by: fnord12 | February 18, 2015 9:52 AM
Let's see: Take the billionaire industrialist/inventor in the the flying metal suit, and put him against the lycanthropic drifter/trust fund baby in the classic misunderstanding fight. Next, have them call a truce and then team up to take on a second-division Daredevil foe (the equivalent of a fourth or fifth-division Spider-Man foe) and a gorilla/cheetah/alligator hybrid creature. It's like Moench knew the series was on the chopping block, so he cooked up a gumbo of mismatched ingredients, then grabbed the pot and tossed the contents against the wall to see if anything stuck. Not that it mattered at the time, since between Shang-Chi, Ka-Zar, upcoming stints with Captain Marvel and the Inhumans, plus his various and sundry film and literary adaptations, there was plenty of work to go 'round for ol' Dougie-Boy.
Posted by: Brian Coffey | June 10, 2017 12:44 AM
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