Marvel Two-In-One #69
Issue(s): Marvel Two-In-One #69
We start with Starhawk contacting the Thing to tell him that Major Victory has gone missing, and let's just pause here to enjoy these downtime scenes and the nonchalant way the Thing reacts to Starhawk materializing on his breakfast table.
The Avengers are also put on alert. And both groups detect an unnatural fog emanating out of upstate New York. The Avengers agree to let the FF take the lead in scouting it out...
...and the Thing is the first to catch up with Major Victory, who has sought out his younger self to warn him not to make the mistake that he did.
Major Victory's story is pretty tragic; he volunteered for a long journey in space but when his journey was over he found that it was unnecessary because in his absence, humanity had discovered faster-than-light travel. And as a bonus, his body had crumbled with age and is only held together by his suit. But it's shown here that he's willing to risk all reality blinking out to change his circumstances.
The Thing explains to Major Victory that his actions won't do any good, but he doesn't understand why the Guardians would say it would cause a time paradox, since nothing like that happened to him. And even though the world is getting covered with this dense fog, he helps fight off the other Guardians.
I like Charlie-27's reaction to the Thing's strength.
It turns out that the fog is emanating from young Vance, but it's not due to any time paradox; it's because his encounter with his older self has triggered his latent psychic abilities.
With that knowledge, the Thing is able to get him to reign it in.
Vance's father has a fit over Major Victory harassing his kid and giving him psychic powers, and so Victory takes a chance and removes his mask, revealing that he's an older version of Vance.
His face doesn't disintegrate and he later says it's because he figured out that his suit has regenerative powers. Presumably he still has to wear the costume regularly; he's shown wearing it again at the end.
Even though Major Victory failed to change his own fate, he's happy to have given his alternate younger self a different life.
There's almost a George Perez-like denseness to the layouts in this issue. A nice job by Ron Wilson.
In addition to the appearance by Vision and Captain America, a number of other heroes are shown dealing with the fog situation. Note that Iron Man mentions that Thor is also helping although he doesn't appear on panel.
In addition to being a Mark Gruenwald problem-solving special, this is a nice story in its own right. Fun downtime scenes, and some nice gruff guidance from the Thing for young Vance, who will be come a sort-of ward for Ben during the Thing series in a few years.
Quality Rating: C+
Chronological Placement Considerations: See the note in Marvel Two-In-One #68's entry. I've placed this between FF #218-219. The appearances for the other heroes are context free. The MCP places the Avengers here between Avengers #200-201; that's especially useful for Thor, ensuring that he's on Earth. For Storm, i have this in the same gap as Uncanny X-Men annual #4. Spider-Man and Daredevil are here circa their similar context-free appearances in Captain America #250.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (5): showArnold Astrovik, Captain America, Captain Mar-vell, Charlie-27, Daredevil, Franklin Richards, Human Torch, Invisible Woman, Iron Man, Justice, Major Victory, Martinex, Mr. Fantastic, Nikki, Norma Astrovik, Spider-Man, Starhawk, Storm, Thing, Thor, Vision, Wundarr (Aquarian), Yondu
I absolutely adore this issue, which is surprising because I've never liked the guardians of the galaxy before or since. It is basically a perfect story compressed into a single issue. A hero vs hero fight which is completely logical and it was even difficult to know which side to root for. I love all of the logic in the story (of course with Ben being a pilot he is the only one to navigate the cloud).
All this from characters I had no interest in.
Posted by: Kveto from Prague | July 3, 2013 2:06 PM
In mid-1983 a new Guardians of the Galaxy book was announced to be written by Tom DeFalco, but I don't think it ever happened.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | July 5, 2013 4:45 PM
No. They next had a series in the early-1990s, written by Jim Valentino.
Posted by: ChrisKafka | July 5, 2013 4:54 PM
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