Alpha Flight #63
Issue(s): Alpha Flight #63
The story is about a computer hacker, Ted Larkin, that has invented something called a "virus" that can "infect" computers and "spread" that infection to other "connected" computers. I'm not mocking the story, just trying to wrap my head around a time when this would have to be explained.
And his plot is to use the virus to infect a bank and skim negligible amounts off the top of everyone's bank accounts.
To paraphrase Office Space, wait, didn't Richard Pryor do that in 1983's Superman III?
This is supposed to have taken place "two years" ago, so don't worry about that Electro/Spider-Man fight mentioned on the television panel in the first scan. But now in the present, it occurs to the now very rich Larkin to worry what might happen if the virus ever infected a computer that wasn't part of a banking system.
And right on target, we find a connection between the Colorado bank Larkin hacked and a local Air Force base, and then we find out that the military is allowing Madison Jeffries to tap into their system to build up his super-villain database. If a very randy Heather Hudson can keep her hands off of him long enough.
And so Jeffries' Box armor is infected.
The Box armor starts flying to the Air Force base, and Heather follows as Vindicator. Meanwhile, inside the suit, Jeffries learns that the virus is trying to "transfer" the base's nuclear missiles, and it needs Box to do it.
Jeffries manages to phase out of the armor before the virus destroys him, and he's happy to find that the air force apparently has some cool Mecha suits that he's able to take control of.
While the Virus-Box is fighting them, Jeffries builds a new Box suit for himself and is able to slag the old suit.
Three endings. The first, as a joke, has Vindicator about to attack Jeffries because she's mad at him for what the suit did.
The second, a more grisly joke, has the hacker Larkin about to have some conventional missiles "transferred" to him.
And the third: the Soviets are initially blamed for the Virus-Box attack, but they later assure the US that they weren't responsible. However, they do manage to steal a virus-laden program.
Cute for a fill-in. At this point i'm so whatever-the-opposite-of-invested-is in these characters that i don't really have a reaction to Madison as the big super-hero or to Heather's characterization. Can't say i love Haynes' art but it's fine (the splash with the reveal of the infected Box armor is pretty cool). If this is a try out to replace Bill Mantlo, i say go for it.
Quality Rating: C
Chronological Placement Considerations: N/A
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (2): showMadison Jeffries, Vindicator (Heather Hudson)
Hudnall would go on to become a far stronger writer in Malibu's Hardcase.
Posted by: Luis Dantas | July 17, 2014 12:18 AM
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