Friday, May 15, 2009

Random Comics Reviews: Solo Avengers Starring Hawkeye #17

OK, in order to jump-start this den of nothingness that I call a blog, I'm going to dive into my unorganized mess of back issues and randomly select and issue every week to read, review and quite possible ridicule (or praise).
Tonight's offering is Solo Avengers Starring Hawkeye #17 from 1989. It's hard to believe that back in the day that West Coast Avengers was such a hit that it spawned its own spin-off starring it most popular character. Each issue would feature a lead 11 page story starring Hawkeye, and other half would be given over to a tale starring another past or current Avenger.

The lead story, titled, I shit you not, "Even an Octopus Needs Arms!" written by Tom DeFalco with art by Al Milgrom & Don Heck features everyone's favorite purple-attired hero checking in on an anonymous tip called into Avengers mansion about an arms deal. Upon arrival, he's greeted by the recently reformed Sandman, who is casing the joint for his job with Silver Sable and decided he needed some back-up, thus Hawkeye.

Anyway, needless to say, things go sideways when Doctor Octopus shows up and the boys decide to bust some heads. From there, it's a few pages of the heroes bantering while trying to catch the bad guys and eventually losing them all because they're too busy trying not to get killed (well, at least on Hawkeye's part, that is).
The only truly interesting part of it is this panel:

Where Hawkeye references the hearing aids he got after suffering some damage, as he said, "months ago", despite the series being referenced having been published a full six years before. Damn, time moves slowly in the Marvel Universe.

Next up, we have a quick tale starring the Sub-Mariner by Danny Fingeroth and Dave Cockrum. Apparently Namor's looking for the children of his recently deceased wife, Marina. Whilst swimming about the ocean, he happens along a family who were thrown from their boat and he saves them and brings them back to land. Moved by the poverty that they live in, he gives them the gold that he just happens to be carrying with him*.

Anyway, continuing his search, he comes upon Power Man & Iron Fist's old office building which the Beyonder turned to gold and then was promptly sunk in the ocean by the government so it wouldn't tank the entire world's gold market. How's that for a bit of heavy continuity injection for ya? Namor, grudgingly agreeing with the Henry Peter Gyrich-wannabe** he's got to deal with heads out and agrees not to tell anyone about his lucrative find.

As he swims away, he passes a stealth submarine, manned by Goldbug, a super-villain I had only previously thought had existed in a Spider-Man Hostess pie ad***, stealing the gold building. Anyway, after we get treated to Dave Cockrum's Many Emotions of Namor:

He decides to do the right thing and mess up a C-list villain and get yelled at by the same government jackass, thus souring him once again on the human race.

Overall, it's pretty much the definition of adequate superhero comics in the late 1990's. Well worth my $.75, but not much more. Thanks for reading my rants concerning this weeks random folly of my youth, tune in ext week to see what I found lurking in the comics boxes in my basement.

*To apparently pay off a class action suit he had recently lost. This is a book I want: The Biggest Legal Battles of the Marvel Universe. I want action....LEGAL ACTION.

**This Guy:

***Which apparently I had imagined, I just spent nearly an hour looking for the damned thing on Seanbaby, and couldn't find it. If you happen upon an old school Hostess ad featuring Goldbug, drop me a note, just to show I'm not least about this.

1 comment:

x-man75 said...

Just yesterday I was sifting through my old Solo Avengers titles, including #17. As far as I'm concerned, you can never go wrong by reading that series, it was so bad that it was often times hilarious! Where else could you read about Hawkeye trying to lead the WCA while fighting such "deadly" threats as the Orb, the Bullet Biker, Crossfire and a mess of humanoid plants dressed as bikers? All while being abused by his wife! Solo Avengers will always hold a special place in my heart.