Daredevil annual #4
Issue(s): Daredevil annual #4
Meanwhile, the Black Panther is meeting with superstar inventor Robert Mallory. The meeting seems to have been arranged by Reed Richards. Mallory has invented a way to draw energy from the currents of the ocean, but he needs vibranium "as a focusing agent" for it to work properly.
While the Panther is with Mallory, his son Keith is kidnapped for a ransom.
The above panel is a good example where Claremont's script and Tuska's art don't really work that well together. Tuska's panel calls for a single word exclamation, but Claremont delivers some calm expository dialogue. It's necessary - there's no follow-up panel for more info, but it's a little jarring. There's a few panels like that throughout the issue.
Meanwhile, Daredevil has shaken off Heather and gone out for a swing around town, but he discovers that the Sub-Mariner has been on a rampage. He confronts Namor, and gets appropriately stomped...
...but learns that Namor is upset over Mallory's invention. Namor is currently on leave from his servitude to Dr. Doom. Doom has granted him 24 hours to act in this issue.
The Black Panther tracks down the kidnappers, who are lead by a Ruffio Costa...
...but he is sadly captured rather easily.
Costa decides that he's going to ask the Avengers for an additional ransom for the Panther (the guy has some real balls), and the Panther tells Costa to contact the lawyer Matt Murdock to make the exchange, knowing that Murdock is Daredevil. I have to think if Costa had contacted the Avengers directly the outcome wouldn't have been any different, and i think the reason the Panther has Costa contact Murdock instead of them is because he was embarrassed about getting caught.
On his way to the exchange, Daredevil has another run-in with Namor...
...and then makes it to the drop-off location and finds that the Panther actually has managed to free himself after all.
A final encounter with Namor, and this time Daredevil convinces him that he'll take care of the Mallory situation without violence, so Namor returns to Doom. The Black Panther decides that he'll withhold his vibranium, preventing Mallory from going forward with the invention.
Mallory isn't a bad guy in this story. He's not depicted as lacking in safety or environmental concerns. And obviously his goal is a worthy one. So it's kind of an odd resolution, with the heroes sneakily conspiring to thwart his invention instead of, say, using their scientific genius to help the man develop the thing safely.
In any event, Daredevil and the Panther confront Costa, who gets knocked into some scientific equipment and becomes the Mind-Master...
...but he's defeated and reverts back to Costa after a short fight, the idea being that whatever powers he has as Mind-Master are self-contained in his brain and eventually burn up.
I didn't know what i'd think about a story that Claremont scripted but didn't plot. Would it just be really wordy in addition to just being an average super-hero story? But despite the wordiness and the occasional lack of harmony with the art, it's actually pretty enjoyable, with the dialogue at least feeling natural if verbose. There are some truncated ideas here - the Mind-Master thing comes out of nowhere and goes nowhere, and Mallory's invention needed a better resolution - but it's a decent guest star-loaded story.
Quality Rating: C+
Chronological Placement Considerations: Daredevil arrives back from California after his visit with Karen Page (and Ghost Rider), so it's between Daredevil #138-139. Since Namor says he has been given 24 hours of leave from his service to Dr. Doom, this has to take place after Super-Villain Team-Up #5 (when the Sub-Mariner stops wearing his black costume) and Super-Villain Team-Up #7, which begins a period where the Sub-Mariner thinks Dr. Doom is dead. The idea is that Namor has been brought to Latveria after Super-Villain Team-Up #5 and given his first does of the antidote, and he now has 24 hours before needing his next dose in Super-Villain Team-Up #6. For the Black Panther, Daredevil thinks to himself that the last he heard, the Panther was investigating a murder "down South", with a footnote to "current issues of Jungle Action" and at the end the Panther says "my presence is required in Georgia". The MCP place this after Jungle Action #24, the last in that unfinished series, but considering the pace of that murder investigation and the amount of time between issues, there's no reason it couldn't take place earlier in the arc. This story also has to take place before Iron Fist #8-10, since the defeat of Ruffio Costa here creates a power vacuum that Chaka Kahn exploits in those issues.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
The funny thing is that Marvel forgot about this Annual because in 1989, they finally released another Daredevil Annual and they numbered it Daredevil Annual 4 by mistake.
Posted by: Michael | May 23, 2013 8:38 PM
Mind Master's costume also magically appears and disappears.
Isn't Wakanda's Vibranium mound supposed to be a secret? If so, why is Reed Richards blabbing it to casual acquaintances without T'Challa's knowledge?
Posted by: Mark Drummond | December 15, 2013 6:17 PM
There are many inconsistencies regarding what's secret about Wakanda. Some stories treat the Vibranium mound as a secret, in other stories everyone knows Wakanda produces Vibranium merely the *location* of the Vibranium mound is a secret. Panther's Quest has a character state that the location of Wakanda is a secret but other stories make it clear that everyone knows where Wakanda is located. And it's a plot point in Panther's Quest that nobody outside Wakanda knows the name of T'Challa's father, even though T'Challa has told his father's name to other superheroes on several occasions.
Posted by: Michael | December 15, 2013 6:44 PM
Man, Daredevil must have gotten sick of being Namor's personal punching bag!
Posted by: Brian Coffey | June 3, 2017 7:47 PM
Comments are now closed.
|SuperMegaMonkey home | Comics Chronology home|