Marvel Heroes (UK Magazine) #34 (Story 2)

 Posted: Dec 2012
 Staff: The Editor (E-Mail)


This is the backup story from this issue. It features the same writer, but a different artistic team.

Story 'Disaster at Darkmoor'

  Marvel Heroes (UK Magazine) #34 (Story 2)
Summary: Captain America & Captain Britain
Arc: Part 2 of 'Disaster at Darkmoor' (2)
Publisher: Panini Magazines
Writer: Ferg Handley
Pencils: Mike Collins
Inker: Lee Townsend
Colorist: John Charles

Steve Rogers (aka "Captain America") is working under cover as a Janitor at Darkmoor, the top-secret energy research base in Britain that was also the working home of Brian Braddock back when he first became Captain Britain. Steve's presence is due to having previously identified the possibility of an imminent attack on the facility by the forces of "The Secret Empire", an offshoot of Hydra.

Meanwhile, that very self-same Brian Braddock (aka Captain Britain) is also on the premises for a completely unrelated reason. Brian is present to help the scientific staff of Darkmoor deal with an instability problem arising from their latest energy research experiment. They require Braddock's technical assistance in his capacity as a scientist who also has a personal force field to protect him in the case that things should blow up in his face.

Braddock finishes the experiment, and Captain America departs shortly afterwards since it is clear that there will be no attack.

HAH! Just kidding. This is a comic book story. We have seven pages to cause massive mayhem, and we've already spent two of them on exposition. Now it's time for ACTION, which duly arrives in the form of an attack by the robot killer "Assassin-8".

The well-armed combat android Assassin-8 sneaks in and helps himself to both the secret research files, and the energy source which is fuelling the latest experiment. He then makes a dash for the exit, but is quite understandably resisted in this goal by the prompt arrival of Captains America and Britain. Sadly for the Captains, they are both caught off guard by Assassin-8 who does indeed make his escape.

The good guys are forced to split up. Captain America hops on his motorbike to follow Assassin-8 before he can pass on the information and material to the Secret Empire which will allow them to create a Doomsday Device more dangerous than anything seen since... well, since the last issue of this or any other comic book.

Meanwhile, Captain Britain is left behind at Dartmoor to try and stabilize the experiment which has gone into critical meltdown mode, which may result in the destruction of the entire planet! Nice to know that Dartmoor doesn't have any qualms about meddling with experiments which could destroy the earth. Good going there, guys.

Needless to say... to be concluded next issue!

General Comments

From all indications, this two-parter is shaping up to be yet another team-up slug-fest where the 100% good guys have to save the world from mindless destruction at the hands of the 100% bad guys. In that context, it's just another story to throw on the pile of "proof of why comic books just don't deserve any respect as an art form".

However, there is one redeeming feature, which is the utterly over-the-top super-British dialog of the robot "Assassin-8" who comes out with such lines as "Tsk, Tsk. Well that's going to come out of your pocket money, young man." and "Captain Britain and Captain America? Just, please don't tell me there's a Captain Belgium in the building!"

Overall Rating

Ferg Handley's dialog for Assassin-8, manages to allow this story to just keep its head above water as it waits for the second half conclusion to come to the rescue.

Let's give it three webs, as we wait to see what next issue brings for the grand finale.

 Posted: Dec 2012
 Staff: The Editor (E-Mail)