Amazing Spider-Man annual #27
Issue(s): Amazing Spider-Man annual #27
The idea behind the character is that he's a Desert Storm veteran that was injured in combat, including the loss of a leg, and so he's given an exoskeleton. He starts off as a kind of 3rd-rate Robocop, of which Marvel already had several. But he's initially out of sorts, unaware of what happened to him.
It turns out that the head of the company that developed the exoskeleton, Abner Dunson, lost a son in the war, and the exoskeleton is really a bizarre scheme to transfer his son's brain into the body of Alex Ellis, aka Annex. But with the help of Spider-Man and scientist Hillman Barto, he fights that off and retains his own identity while dealing with the insane father.
This story repeatedly makes use of the word "download" in a way that i am not familiar with.
One weird thing is that the Annex suit isn't just a fully formed suit that Alex gets into. It's missing a leg, just like he is. But the suit "grows" a leg once he gets in it.
He can similarly generate a whole array of weapons, and it's when he first realized this that he went a little crazy.
I laughed when i saw this, but it turns out Spider-Man is totally right; we haven't seen the last of Annex.
In the first back-up, Black Cat has been hired by the curator of the Met to steal back a stolen painting. But Solo is also going after the thieves, who are actually part of a terrorist group called Ares.
And, speaking of characters you'd never think you'll see again, the thieves/terrorists are lead by a guy named Deathstorm, who will appear again in Solo's mini-series..
Like Solo, Ares has teleporting technology, and he's able to get away.
It's really kind of weird how many characters are kind of "launched" from the Spider-Man franchise. Annex, Solo, and Nightwatch all get series in 1994. And of course Venom gets a series in 1993. I guess they are following in the footsteps of the Punisher and Silver Sable. I'm kind of surprised that Cardiac didn't get one, also.
The next story is a trial of the Lizard. It ends with Doc Connors voluntarily agreeing to be taken to the Vault for an indeterminate period of time while it's confirmed that he's not the Lizard any more. He asks for access to lab equipment while he's at the Vault.
The final back-up shows John Jameson having daddy dreams, where they each turn into werewolves and fight each other. John is then contacted by a scientist friend, who gives him a big gun?!
John later refuses to accept his father's offer to work with him at the Bugle. John feels that JJ would just use the job as a way to control him.
John then gets a job trying to locate a genetic researcher named Samson Rourke. He was hired by the researcher's wealthy father, Manuel. But Samson has turned himself into a monster. Here's John in his new costume.
It turns out Samson has daddy issues too. Jameson defeats Samson and brings him back to the father for treatment, although he has his doubts.
This feels like a set-up for a series, too. But it's hard to imagine caring more about John Jameson when he's wearing some dorky body armor then anyone did when he was a frigging space werewolf.
Quality Rating: C
Chronological Placement Considerations: N/A
Crossover: 1993 Annuals
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (4): showAnnex, Billy Connors, Black Cat, Deathstorm, Hillman Barto, J. Jonah Jameson, Lizard, Man-Wolf (John Jameson), Martha Connors, Mary Jane Watson, Solo, Spider-Man
FNORD - Download might be this definition -
"especially ( Canadian) to delegate or assign (work, responsibilities, costs, etc) to a someone at a lower level of an organization; off-load"
A Cardiac mini-series would have been cool.
The only set-up for John I can see is him getting a job at Ravencroft as head of Security.
Posted by: clyde | September 20, 2016 2:27 PM
I think this, New Warriors, and maybe an X-men annual were the only annuals I got that year. In hindsight, Annex seems a lot like that old TV show Mantis, except I don't remember which one came first.
Posted by: Red Comet | September 20, 2016 3:38 PM
"M.A.N.T.I.S. is an American science fiction television series that aired for one season on the Fox Network between August 26, 1994 and March 3, 1995."
This beat M.A.N.T.I.S. by one year.
Posted by: clyde | September 20, 2016 3:57 PM
Annex: to add to something earlier, larger, or more important.
I guess the writer of the first story was thinking, "Loading a file is what you do when you use it, so downloading must mean when you stop loading!"
Posted by: Mortificator | September 20, 2016 3:58 PM
Genis-Vell was really the only character introduced in the Annuals that made the big time. Some of the others had a few more appearances but none of the rest really became a recurring character like Tombstone or even a C-list villain like Bushwacker for example.
Posted by: Michael | September 20, 2016 7:58 PM
"I guess the writer of the first story was thinking,>"
Exactly. Overall, the writer just wasn't getting the IT lingo right...
BTW. I think that this annual also had Annex say "Download more personality!", which is... an awesome turn of phrase :)
Posted by: Piotr W | September 20, 2016 10:28 PM
Two more things:
What *is* going on with Deathstorm's anatomy? Just look at him. He's... mangled.
Also, Annex is a gun-toting tech-hero. This new take on Jameson is... gun-toting tech-hero. I'm pretty sure that at least one of the other characters introduced in these annuals was a gun-toting character. My... what creativity did the Marvel staff had at this time!
Posted by: Piotr W | September 20, 2016 10:33 PM
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