Marvel Two-In-One #47-48
Issue(s): Marvel Two-In-One #47, Marvel Two-In-One #48
Machinesmith is a relatively minor villain, but i've always liked him thanks to his appearance in Stern/Byrne's Captain America. In this story he's working for the Corporation with orders to kill the Fantastic Four, which he intends to do by cybernetically controlling the Thing (and then he plans to use Mr. Fantastic's technology to take over the Corporation himself).
We learn at the end of this arc that the Machinesmith was actually a robot.
The Corporation was fairly ubiquitous at this time, which is pretty cool. It's amazing that they more or less disappeared completely in a fairly short time period and no one's brought them back in a big way, although Roxxon tended to play a similar role.
This is a straightforward fight issue. There's a clever bit where Jack of Hearts sees the cybernetic gadget on the Thing's head and assumes the Thing is a robot.
Jack of Hearts, a Mantlo creation, is simply an uninteresting character.
Issue #47's guests are the Yancy Street gang, and they help save the day in issue #48 as well.
It's unusual to see veteran inker Chic Stone on pencils. The art is fairly typical house style, nothing special but not bad.
Quality Rating: C
Chronological Placement Considerations: The guest stars in these issues aren't characters that appear regularly in other books so this works well in any gap in the Thing's FF appearances.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (3): showAgatha Harkness, Alicia Masters, Franklin Richards, Human Torch, Invisible Woman, Jack of Hearts, Machinesmith, Mr. Fantastic, Thing
Chic Stone was a regular penciler for ACG in the 1960s, and after they ceased publishing, he drew some Batman issues during the Adam West TV show phase.
According to Fantaco's Hembeck #6 by Fred Hembeck, the Jack of Hearts flopped as a character because the artists refused to draw his massively detailed costume.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | July 17, 2011 9:41 PM
Tex Blaisdell is another artist that had been around since the Golden Age, and before this he was primarily known for inking Superman and the Flash for DC.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | September 3, 2011 5:39 PM
Interesting how little we actually learn about Machinesmith in these issues.
Yeah, Mantlo pushed Jack o hearts too much as he wasnt very interesting. He gets a surprising win against the Thing here. I actually think he could have worked in a team dynamic like the Avengers or Defenders, but solo, nah.
Posted by: kveto | October 22, 2017 6:35 AM
The Yancy Streeters sure don't look like a street gang here. They look like construction workers.
Posted by: Luke Blanchard | January 5, 2018 9:38 PM
Jack of Hearts did always have a great look, though. He became a much more interesting character in later years.
Posted by: Ian | July 10, 2018 9:34 AM
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