All-Winners Comics #21
Issue(s): All-Winners #21 (first half only)
What i have here is actually only the first part of the issue. It was reprinted across two issues of Marvel Super-Heroes, and unfortunately the second issue is currently out of my price range due to the fact that it was also the first appearance of the Guardians of the Galaxy and is therefore currently marked up in anticipation of a GotG movie.
The credits i've listed are for the full issue. It seems that, like on the first All-Winners Squad story, the art team just split up the work randomly with an artist penciling one part and then inking another. For the half i've currently got, it's Avison/Nicholas on Chapter 1, Alascia/Shores on Chapter 2, and Alascia again on 3 with the inker not known.
The story, which is the second and last appearance of the All Winners Squad written during the Golden Age, takes on the format of the first issue (and most team books of this time period), where the team has to split up and go on separate solo missions, each covered in a separate chapter, effectively making the team concept all but moot except for the opening and closing chapters.
The villain this time is much cooler than ISBISA, however. He's the proto-Kang Future Man, a time traveler with advanced technology and mental abilities. He's come to conquer the 20th Century for his people in the year One Million A.D., where all the oceans have dried up.
Future Man enlists the aid of Madame Death, leader of a crime gang...
...to destroy all the living people on the five big continents of Earth (Australia has apparently escaped Future Man's wrath).
The gang isn't too bright; they're happy to hear that they'll inherit the world's wealth and jewels after they kill everyone on Earth, not realizing that those things won't have much value if there's no one to buy things from.
Notice that Future Man is a little shorter than Madame Death. I didn't think much of that until i saw the cover to the original issue, which billed the story as "The Riddle of the Demented Dwarf".
Captain America was trailing down Madame Death and he overheard Future Man's scheme, so he broke up the meeting but failed to capture anyone thanks to Future Man's "Dark Bomb".
Cap then sends the All Winners to cover the various continents that Future Man's gang plans to attack.
Little do they know that the gang would actually be operating as a single unit, moving from continent to continent, so it would have been better if the Squad had all stuck together instead of spreading themselves so thin that every time they faced off against Future Man and his gang the bad guys would keep getting away.
Cap and Bucky head to Europe, where they are happily greeted by the Occupation Forces. The Future Man has a Germ Bomb...
...and he unleashes it in a town in the Swiss Alps (pretty gruesome).
Cap and Bucky arrive in time to investigate, but are protected by handkerchiefs.
They then face off against the gang...
...but it turns out that Future Man is really just an astral image...
...and Madame Death just runs away.
Chapter three, in South America, is the Whizzer portion, and luckily he's just the guy to face off against Future Man's Slow-Down Ray.
Still, the Future Man's astral image foils the Whizzer too, and Madame Death is lifted away by a mysterious force.
And that's all i've got, folks. I'll see you again in 2014 when the Guardians of the Galaxy hype dies down.
Quality Rating: D+
Chronological Placement Considerations: What If? #4, which shows the succession of Captain America replacements, recounts the All-Winners Squad's fight with ISBISA in All-Winners #19 but makes no mention of Future Man. Based on my placement, i'm assuming the Captain America here is the second Cap replacements, aka Jeff Mace, formerly the Patriot. It's probably equally possible that this takes place around the same time as issue #19 and just wasn't mentioned in What If. Either way, we're looking at post-WWII and before the third Cap replacement in Young Men Comics #24.
Continuity Insert? N
Reprinted In: Marvel Super-Heroes #17
Inbound References (1): showBucky (Fred Davis), Future Man, Human Torch (Golden Age), Madame Death, Miss America, Patriot, Sub-Mariner, Toro, Whizzer Box 1 / Golden Age / Post-WWII
Box 1 / Golden Age / Post-WWII
"Saga of The Human Torch" in either 1989 or 1990 confirmed that this was indeed the Patriot-Cap.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | November 9, 2012 5:01 PM
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