Issue(s): Namor #46, Namor #47
and their slave race, the Haab.
They are working with the Starblaster squid-creature named Xlyym, who has an assignment to use thrusters similar to what were used on the moon in the first chapter of this crossover. The goal is to move the Earth out of alignment and cause the polar caps to melt, flooding the world. This of course has nothing to do with the core Starblast issues. The idea is that the Starblasters do a lot of random stuff to keep Earth's heroes distracted, but the weird thing is that it all happens after the core Starblasters have achieved their goal on Earth and are long gone.
Triton has noticed Xlyym's ship, and he's attacked by Banari and Haab when he goes to investigate. The fight crosses the path of another character, Remora.
Remora works for Tiger Shark, who has been paired with Tamara Rahn since Bob Harras' run. I'm not sure if there's some miscoloring going on or if Remora is meant to be some kind of amphibian or chameleon. I do see that he's from the People of the Mist, whoever they are (the Appendix theorizes that they are the Mist-Men of Sargasso, from Sub-Mariner #16, since we are also in the Sargasso here and there is a Tiger Shark connection).
Tamara hears about people like her and takes Tiger Shark to investigate.
Meanwhile, Namor is helping Stingray and Diane Arliss bring back Hydrobase, as we saw him resolve to do at the end of last issue.
I don't really know what i'm looking at. I've confused because we had the actual Hydrobase, which was a Dr. Dorcas creation that was later appropriated by the Avengers and then destroyed. And, separately, we had the base that the fake Dr. Dorcas used a few issues ago. Last issue it was said that that base could be turned into a new Hydrobase. Fine so far. But the narration here says whatever weird boat Stingray and Arliss are piloting was "formerly christened Hydro-base". So is this the new base or the old one? Or was it actually all the same base? In any event, instead of repurposing Hydrobase, it seems that a new base called Aquaria is being built in a joint human/Atlantean effort.
A Lt. Langstrom is introduced. Warning: misattributed word balloon below (or Namor's bipolar disorder is back).
Also part of the operation is Carrie Alexander. It's said that her father, Caleb, has died.
Meanwhile, Triton is getting into trouble...
...and it just gets worse when Tamara shows up and takes the side of the Banari named Trieste.
Trieste is either literally Tamara's sister or Banari females all call each other sister. Note that Trieste is wearing a mind-controlling skull-hugger like we saw at the beginning of this crossover.
Triton is defeated and taken prisoner. Tamara gets an explanation about the new influx of female Banari. The males of the species all disappeared while searching for a new world so that their race could escape a deadly virus. Tamara fills in a missing detail, which is that the males were all slaughtered by the Atlanteans when they arrived on Earth. The Banari planet was subsequently conquered by Xlyym's people, the Fomalhauti, and the female Banari made an alliance with them.
And flooding the Earth will give them a new home. It's true that they're all wearing the skull-huggers, but Trieste claims that she maintains a good deal of free will.
At this point Namor, in a small submarine piloted by Stingray, discovers Xlyym's ship. Triton is fitted with a skull-hugger and sent out to stop them.
Tamara recognizes that she's on the wrong side if they're fighting Namor, but since Namor is the leader of the Atlanteans, who slaughtered the Banari, Trieste orders a full blown attack. Stingray joins in to help Namor.
Namor removes Triton's skull-hugger. Xlyym says that doing so kills the host, but Triton doesn't die.
Tamara takes this to mean that Xlyym has lied, so she turns on him with the hope of freeing her sisters. Tiger Shark bites a piece off of Xlyym.
And Tamara spears Trieste's skull-hugger.
But this does kill her. It seems that Triton's skull-hugger just hadn't been in place long enough to bond with him. Xlyym escapes, intent on continuing his plan to tilt the Earth. Namor, Stingray, Tiger Shark, Tamara, and a Haab named Zun (who was appeased with the tentacle that Tiger Shark tore off of Xlyym) go back to Aquaria to try to locate the thrusters. Carrie Alexander says that normally it would be possible to pinpoint the location of the thrusters by way of electromagnetic disruption, but it's not possible now due to Magneto's recent EMP attack. So Namor tries to contact Mr. Fantastic. But he's dead.
While the group is figuring out what to do next, there's a nice scene where Lt. Langstrom turns out to be not quite the hardass he originally seemed to be.
Also, Tamara sees Tiger Shark looking at Diane Arliss and gets jealous until he tells her that she's his sister.
The group eventually decides to split up and head in the general direction of where the thrusters must be. Tiger Shark, Tamara, and Triton go to the mouth of the Amazon River and are attacked by tentacles. Namor and Stingray go to the Marianas Trench, and Stingray's sub breaks under the deep sea pressure and starts to sink.
This is actually a pretty good story. It could have been done entirely without the Starblast elements, and if you take that out of the equation it's a good follow-up to the old story about the Banari. Some nice use of continuity, a fun team-up between some unlikely characters, and some decent scripting. Little touches like the reference to Magneto's EMP attack and the scene with the Human Torch which will be repeated in the FF portion of this crossover makes it feel like an old school 1980 era book (with slightly substandard art).
Statement of Ownership Total Paid Circulation: Average of Past 12 months = 113,538. Single issue closest to filing date = 91,985.
Quality Rating: B-
Chronological Placement Considerations: See the Considerations for Secret Defenders #11 regarding the spacing of issues in this crossover. Basically, these events are happening at the same time as Siege of Darkness. Issue #46 is the unnumbered tie-in issue. Issue #47 is part 5 of the crossover, although it's mislabeled as part 7. Issue #46 continues directly in issue #47, so i'm keeping these two issues in a single entry. Going forward, the Namor issues of Starblast continue directly in the Fantastic Four issues and vice versa. And they have no connection points at all with the events in the issues of Quasar and the Starblast miniseries. So, in what may be a somewhat controversial move, i am going to stop following the numbering of the crossover. I'll cover all the Namor/FF issues first, and then the Quasar/Starblast issues. The stories will read much better that way. The assumption is that the two streams of the "crossover" are happening at the same time, but it makes more sense to read them as individual threads. So Fantastic Four #385 is next (the issue actually occurs partially concurrently with Namor #47 - the scene with Namor talking to the Human Torch is repeated).
There's a brief appearance of Skeletron talking to Xlyym at the start of this issue. Xlyym tells Skeletron that the plan is proceeding according to schedule, and Skeletron says "Schedules mean nothing to me", which should have been the tagline for this crossover. Skeletron only appears on a view screen, so we can assume it's happening at any time from wherever Skeletron needs to be at the moment.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (1): showCarrie Alexander, Diane Arliss, Human Torch, Jack Langstrom, Remora, Skeletron, Stingray, Sub-Mariner, Tamara Rahn, Tiger Shark, Triton, Xlyym, Zun
I get the feeling that the Starblasters left on Earth were meant to keep causing incidents to prevent the remaining Earth heroes from following Quasar's team and ruining the plans of the head Starblasters.
Posted by: D09 | March 27, 2017 6:13 PM
Namor's conversation with Johnny is a decent character moment. The terse "Please express my sentiments" in this issue works better than the wordier response DeFalco uses in FF 385's version of the call.
Posted by: Mortificator | March 28, 2017 2:39 AM
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