Characters Appearing: Doc Samson, Wolverine
Marvel Comics Presents #137-142 (Wolverine)
Issue(s): Marvel Comics Presents #137, Marvel Comics Presents #138, Marvel Comics Presents #139, Marvel Comics Presents #140, Marvel Comics Presents #141, Marvel Comics Presents #142 (Wolverine story only)
It's also possible that Marrinan was always going to draw this, maybe with Larsen as the intended scripter, and it's only just now ready for publication.
Anyway, Wolverine is vacationing on a tropical island, and yes this is the second story in a row where that's the case. I guess after his vacation was interrupted last time he's trying again on a different island. But he's having no better luck this time. Indeed, the set-up is virtually identical.
Wolverine jumps in to save the young woman from the
A vast improvement this time is the inclusion of a giant costumed ape with a machine-gun.
Wolverine wakes up with a head full of disorienting pain. He's now in an arena with the ape, who has swapped his gun for an axe and shield.
The ape is fully fluent in Liefeld Pose #1.
And it's even able to withstand a shluking from Wolvie's claws.
But Wolverine eventually has the ape down and is ready to administer the killing blow. He's stopped by the guy in white who knocked him out with a tree, and is surprised by who he sees when he unmasks him.
It's Doc Samson.
Samson is clearly under some kind of mind control.
They fight. Samson punches Wolverine straight out of the arena, which Wolvie thinks gives him an opportunity to escape. But he's immediately discovered by the leader of the group.
Wolverine is brought back and put in a device operated by Doc Samson.
The mind-controlled Samson is silent, and the other villains don't speak English, so we have no idea what's going on. But, somehow, possibly thanks to feedback from the device, Samson becomes free of the mind-control.
The device opened up a portal. Something starts to come through but Wolverine slashes it.
He then decides to jump into the portal to see what's on the other side. The answer is a whole army of "slimy", copyright-infringing aliens.
Samson fights the super-strong leader of the group on one side of the portal while Wolvie fights the aliens on the other.
On Wolverine's side, the fight winds up destroying the portal mechanism. Wolverine jumps back through before it's destroyed. The explosion seemingly fries the leader. After that, we finally get some exposition. And also the promise of more ape.
The ape is finally killed when the fight winds up in a temple that a random guy was going to blow up to illegally clear the way to build some hotels for tourists. But that's not important. I take it all back. This plot was worth paying for and continuing to produce, even if it was just Erik Larsen writing "Ape with a gun!" on the back of a napkin.
Chris Marrinan has improved quite a bit from his early amateurish work at Marvel. It's still kind of wonky in some places, maybe in part due to who is inking. The middle chapters where he's inking himself may be the worst. But he's got a clear, moderately cartoony style. He's actually a good replacement for Erik Larsen (coincidentally, he's going to pencil and eventually write the Nova series; Larsen was also supposed to do a Nova series).
This was a fun story. I admit that i have become so sick of Wolverine stories in this book that i was just biding my time until they finished (this ends a streak of continual Wolverine stories that began in issue #38). So my enjoyment of this may be in part due to my low expectations. But my enjoyment of this was also due to an ape with a gun.
Quality Rating: C+
Chronological Placement Considerations: N/A
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
"It's Doc Samson." Based on that scan, I'll have to take your word for it. ;)
Posted by: chaiml | April 7, 2017 3:53 PM
I honestly thought that was Fnord joking before I read the textbubbles!
Posted by: Berend | April 7, 2017 4:37 PM
Believe it or not, those issues were my first exposure to Marvel Comics Presents when I bought them last year. Being unfamiliar with the title I was amazed to get Wolverine, Ghost Rider and Iron Fist all in the same book. Since then I bought many earlier issues. I still like the concept of character focus but wish it was three stories instead of four so there's be more room for each story. (Civil War II: Choosing Sides did something like that and it was pretty cool) I also wish three quarters of the stories weren't filler that never gets referenced in the future.
Posted by: Nate Wolf | April 8, 2017 3:58 AM
I hope after this serial and the last one Wolverine figured out that vacationing on tropical islands was a bad idea.
Erik Larsen only plotted the first five chapters. The sixth chapter was written solely by Chris Marrinan. It was an extra chapter that got added on because there was still one issue left before MCP crossed over into "Siege of Darkness" and presumably there weren't any one-off Wolverine stories lying around to fill the space. Still, if you're going to eat up eight pages, having Logan and Doc Samson fighting an alien-possessed gorilla armed with enormous guns is not a bad way to go.
Posted by: Ben Herman | April 8, 2017 6:07 PM
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