Characters Appearing: Batroc, Captain America, Jarvis, Sharon Carter
Tales Of Suspense #85-87 (Captain America)
Issue(s): Tales Of Suspense #85, Tales Of Suspense #86, Tales Of Suspense #87 (Captain America stories only)
Stan Lee makes a point of assuring the readers that they are reading the right book, since Hydra is typically a Nick Fury adversary.
Batroc is a loon. It's kind of cool that he's got some sense of honor, but he has such an outrageous accent. Lee leaves a page to Kirby to draw out the Cap/Batroc fight with no dialogue, which is nice.
Then the Hydra agents break their word and attack Cap even though they swore not to interfere until the fight was over. Batroc teams up with Cap to rescue Sharon.
Next issue, Cap heads to the Yashonka Arms Research Center (located somewhere in the Orient), following up on a mission that Sharon was about to begin when Batroc kidnapped her. He fights a bunch of troops using advanced weaponry...
...and contacts an undercover SHIELD agent. The agent is suffering from combat fatigue and freaks out, but Cap is able to find the dangerous Z-Ray and destroy it .
On his way home, Cap tries to send a message to Sharon asking for a date but she's already been reassigned to a top secret mission.
Issue #87 has a change in the creative team. The inker credit is missing (blank) in my Double Feature reprint but as you can see from the scan below it's Joe Sinnott. I assume it getting erased in the reprint was some weird mistake and not meant to be a correction; i have no way of telling, especially over the unfamiliar pencils of Jack Sparling, but the UHBMCC also lists Sinnott.
Cap fights a Master Planner (not Dr. Octopus this time) who wears a terrible wig and dresses up like Cap and commits crimes in order to get Cap's attention so the Planner can get his shield.
He thinks Cap is still using the tricked up shield created by Tony Stark, and he thinks having access to that technology will make him the "Kingpin of Crime". Both of these thoughts are wrong.
Meanwhile, Cap nearly puts Daredevil to shame the way he plays so loosely with his secret identity. As Steve Rogers, he goes to the police and tells them he's a friend of Cap's and asks them to give Cap a chance to prove himself.
Mark Drummond left a comment regarding issue #87 saying that it might have been Roy Thomas' Marvel tryout issue that was kept in inventory for a while and only published now (i lost the comment when i had to split this entry from the Iron Man stories in the reprint. #@#$!!! Marvel Double Feature reprints!).
Quality Rating: C-
Chronological Placement Considerations: These Cap stories are not direct continuations. I've just kept them together for convenience. The MCP places all three stories between Avengers #33-34.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: Marvel Double Feature #9, Marvel Double Feature #10, Marvel Double Feature #11
#87 is an odd issue. The previous few saw Kirby providing layouts for Romita and Tuska. The next few had Gil Kane providing art, before Kirby definitively returned to the character he co-created. Sparling was a journeyman for most of his 50-year comics career (according to wiki).
I doubt that this story was a tryout for Roy Thomas. A better candidate is the Iron Man story, "My Life for Yours", from Tales of Suspense #73 (Jan. 1966), lettering half Simek, half (uncredited) Ben Oda, perhaps? As per wikipedia, Thomas estimates that Lee rewrote approximately half of that script, suggesting that the published version of this issue originated from an emergency jam session (maybe a Friday three-martini lunch with all hands on deck, including secretary Flo Steinberg, to get something ready for the printer before the weekend.)
Posted by: Anonymous | February 15, 2013 1:31 AM
On the one hand, the page with Cap and Batroc fightinf is nuce. Kn the other hand, out of 7 panels, only one has Batroc kicking Cap, he doesn't get a proper hit in otherwise. Which feels a bit lame considering his power is his fighting skill. Besides, it feels more powerful if the hero is beaten down and then wins in the end, this felt more like Cap bullying Batroc.
I cannot believe I live in a world where Batroc has been in a movie and depicted fairly well. Small wonders ☺
Posted by: PeterA | July 14, 2015 3:33 AM
I liked the Batroc story but the other two were weak. The Yashonka Arms Works seems to be a left over A.I.M. plot and the Planner looks like actor William Campbell who played both Trelane and Kor on Star Trek.
Posted by: Bobby Sisemore | November 8, 2016 10:13 PM
In the original of ToS #87, the villain calls himself the Peerless Planner. The reprint changes it to the Master Planner for some reason.
Posted by: Omar Karindu | July 2, 2017 12:59 PM
Comments are now closed.
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