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Avengers #155: Review

Jan 1977
Gerry Conway, George Perez

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Story Name:

To stand alone

Review & Comments

4 stars

Avengers #155 Review by (June 10, 2014)
For the reasons why Dr Doom is on Hydrobase and Sub-Mariner was in Latveria see Super-Villain Team-Up #9. My comments there or last issue also explain the inhabitants of Hydrobase, all hangovers from the terminated 1st Sub-Mariner series. A quick summary:- Namorita is the daughter of Namor's cousin Namora introduced in SM#50. Tamara Rahn is an alien ally of Namor from SM#56. Hydrobase was the lair of a villain in SM#61, who turned humans into amphibians. Atlanteans went into suspended animation in SM#67. Subby doesn't recognise the trio of heroes because he's been too busy to keep up with events in the Avengers comic. He's never met Wonder Man, or Beast in his furry state. He probably doesn't even know that Quicksilver left the Avengers and now lives with the Inhumans (Tyrak didn't know that last issue). He does eventually recognise Whizzer from the 40's. He mentions Bob Frank being a member of Liberty Legion in Marvel Premiere #27-28, but not that they were both in the All-Winners Squad in a couple of 40's comics. He of course *can't* remember that Whizzer joined him for a time in the Invaders because those issues hadn't been written yet. Lord Arno will make 1 more appearance, in Annual #18 during the Atlantis Attacks crossover.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers #155 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
This story continues from SUPER-VILLAIN TEAM-UP #9.

Dr Doom stands over the defeated Avengers (Captain America, Iron Man, Scarlet Witch, Vision, Wasp and Yellowjacket) on Hydrobase, and a flashback tells us how this happened. The team were captured by Tyrak last issue and taken to Attuma in SVTU#9. There they were fitted with slave collars and sent to Hydrobase to fight Sub-Mariner. But Namor wasn't there and they ended up fighting Dr Doom instead, their skills dulled by the collars.

The inhabitants of Hydrobase (Namorita, Tamara Rahn and some humans turned into amphibians) sided with Doom because they heard the Avengers say they were after Namor, and because Doom had promised to restore the amphibians to human form and revive Atlanteans from their suspended animation.

Doom asks the stunned and paralysed Cap why they attacked, and Cap mentions Attuma. Namorita asks Doom to help them against Atlantis' perennial foe.

Last issue Beast avoided capture by Tyrak, and in SVTU#9 he went to the hospital to recruit the recently-resurrected Wonder Man from the bedside of the Golden Age Whizzer. But the old, ill hero insisted on joining them in their quinjet.

Now Simon Williams gives Bob Frank a potted history of his super-career:- In #9 of this series the Masters of Evil gave him his super-power in order to infiltrate the Avengers. But he turned against them and died a hero. But he reappeared in a zombie-like state in #151, and Living Laser brought him back to normal life in #153.

Meanwhile they're following a homing device Beast planted on Tyrak's flying sub. But of course this isn't going to lead them to the Avengers.

On Hydrobase the Avengers are held in restraints, watched over by Tamara Rahn the last of her red-skinned alien race. But she wonders if Vision could possibly be another of her people. She leaves deep in thought.

The Avengers find that Attuma's collars don't have so much effect deep inside Hydrobase. They no longer fire them with uncontrollable rage, and leave them room for cool thought. Wanda's injured arm (since being shot in #153) is the only Avenger limb not shackled. She uses it to cast a hex which lifts Cap's shield and floats it towards him. With a last gasp of effort she drops it into his hand. And with years of experience he ricochets it to break open Vision's collar. This allows the android to turn intangible and drift out of his restraints. But instead of freeing the others he floats out of the room!

Meanwhile what of Sub-Mariner. We left him in SVTU#9 flying away from Latveria, after learning that Attuma planned to steal a new device from a research lab off the coast of Maryland and use it as a weapon to conquer the surface world. Namor's flying there now.

But Attuma is already there and leads Lord Arno and his footsoldiers in attack. Human divers are testing the Chloro-Beam which stimulates the growth of plankton - with the intention of providing the world with a new food source. The divers manage to swim into an undersea lift before the Atlantean barbarians can reach them, for which Attuma blames Arno. But when the Atlanteans break into the surface base they are confronted by Beast and gang.

Beast and Whizzer handle the minions while Wonder Man tackles Attuma. The main thing on their mind is where are the Avengers? And why is Attuma wearing Vision's cloak? (He took it last issue.) The battle is still ongoing when Sub-Mariner arrives.

Attuma thinks quickly (not something he's known for) and pretends to direct the 3 heroes to attack Namor. Subbie doesn't know them and believes this misdirection. (He should recognise Whizzer, but then he hasn't seen him since the 40's.) So he launches into them while Attuma sneaks off.

Namor's 1st blows stun Beast and Whizzer, and Wonder Man fights back to keep Namor from harming them more. They both get in mighty blows, until Whizzer rejoins the fray. Sub-Mariner thinks he's Quicksilver (Whizzer's son), and assumes he's left the Avengers and returned to the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. But when Namor knocks the speedster down he realises he's mistaken. And unmasks him to reveal Bob Frank, a member of the WWII Liberty Legion. Subbie begins to realise that his opponents may not be villains. But WM catches him by surprise and KO's him.

Meanwhile Beast noticed Attuma leaving the base with the machine he came for. Hank followed him to his sub and sneaked aboard. Now he hears that Attuma plans to use the Chloro-Beam on Tyrak, expecting the result to be a weapon to challenge the world.

And Vision approaches Dr Doom offering an alliance that he claims will save Doom's life.

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Barberoids 1 cover original artwork on ebay

George Perez
Pablo Marcos
Glynis Wein
Jack Kirby (Cover Penciler)
Al Milgrom (Cover Inker)
Letterer: John Costanza.
Editor: Gerry Conway.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.


(Hank McCoy)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Doctor Doom
Doctor Doom

(Victor Von Doom)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

(Pietro Maximoff)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)

(Janet Van Dyne)

Plus: Atlanteans, Lord Arno, Namorita, Tamara Rahn, Whizzer (Golden Age).

> Avengers: Book info and issue index

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