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Avengers #233: Review

Jul 1983
Roger Stern, Joe Sinnott

Story Name:

The Annihilation Gambit

Review & Comments

4 stars

Avengers #233 Review by (November 26, 2022)
Correction: Comments and Review are really by T. Vernon, author of the synopsis.
Comments: John Byrne & Jim Shooter co-plotted. Crossover with FANTASTIC FOUR #256. Cap met with Tony Stark in issue #232. Hawkeye broke his leg in issue #231. First appearance of Jorge Latham, who designs Hawkeye’s Sky-Cycle in his first miniseries (HAWKEYE (1983)). Annihilus lost the Cosmic Rod which granted him immortality in MARVEL TWO-IN-ONE #75. The letters page contains one by future author Kevin Scott Collier

Review: A lot of cool stuff as the Avengers essentially fight an immovable force field for most of the issue. Not to worry, the Fantastic Four are going through more danger and madness over in their own book. Each member of the team has his or her own moment to shine, even when things don’t turn out so well for them. And new member Captain Marvel has quite a showcase, being the first one we see and being the one who manages to pierce the force-field in spectacular fashion. Starfox is also new to the team and he shows off his special ability by chatting up a paramedic. But then he also figures out the part about the imminent destruction of two universes but only because the science is known on his planet. Nice all around.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers #233 Synopsis by T Vernon
Story takes place concurrently with FANTASTIC FOUR #256.

Returning from last issue’s adventure, Captain Marvel is flying through the skies of New York when she hits an invisible obstacle. She studies it and tries to penetrate it with other types of energy but only gamma radiation makes even the tiniest dent in it. Cap M heads to Avengers Mansion where she informs Wasp of the force-field; Jan already knows about it and was just comparing notes with the Police Department. A quick check reveals that the field is centered on the Baxter Building….

At home, Steve Rogers is worried about Tony Stark who appears to have slipped into alcohol again but he doesn’t want to talk to his girlfriend Bernie Rosenthal about it. He receives a summons from Jan so he suits up as Captain America and heads to the Mansion….

Inside the Baxter Building, Annihilus is torturing Alicia Masters, telling her that since he is no longer immortal, he is ready to destroy two universes out of spite. Then he spies on the monitor that someone is slowly hindering the expansion of the force-field…

...and that person is She-Hulk, pushing back against the force-field with all her might. Cap, Cap M, and Wasp arrive and Cap offers her his shield. She jams it in the ground but the expanding force-field slowly pushes it along, creating a burrow in the street. Thor and Starfox arrive; the latter bounces off the field so Thor hurls Mjolnir at it. The hammer penetrates the field but then falls to the ground after a few feet. Thor is concerned that it will not return to him; Cap is more concerned that after sixty seconds Thor will revert to his Donald Blake persona. The Thunder God dashes into an alley and changes unwitnessed by mortal eyes….

At the offices of Cross Technological Enterprises, Hawkeye talks with designer Jorge Latham about building a Sky-Cycle; he hears about the force-field on the radio and wishes he were with the Avengers but his broken leg will prevent that….

Scarlet Witch and Vision arrive at the Avengers site. Vision lowers his density and walks through the force-field but takes a few steps and collapses to the ground. Wanda frantically tries to hex her way in but nothing happens. While Starfox is flirting with a female paramedic he notes that the Building is glowing; he tells the others that a second null field has appeared within the first one and that when they coincide it will mean the destruction of this universe and the Negative Zone. He does have a suggestion for Captain Marvel: she shoots into space at high speed as Annihilus appears in the sky boasting of his plan to destroy two universe. Monica heads into space, circles the sun, and heads back to Earth as a beam of gamma energy. She hits the field and it suddenly dissolves. When no one is looking, Don Blake recovers his hammer and changes back into Thor. Wanda can find no signs of life in Vision. The Avengers enter the building and head up to Fantastic Four’s headquarters. They find Reed Richards and Human Torch with Cap M and they all catch up with their respective adventures. Scarlet Witch shows Reed the comatose Vision and he determines that the android has slipped into a sleeplike state to repair himself. Then Invisible Woman enters with her critically injured son Franklin Richards and the heroes rush the boy to the hospital, leaving Wanda terrified and alone with Vision….

Joe Sinnott
Joe Sinnott
Christie Scheele
John Byrne (Cover Penciler)
Joe Sinnott (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)
Plot: . Layouts: John Byrne. Letterer: Jim Novak.
Editor: Mark Gruenwald. Editor-in-chief: Jim Shooter.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)

(Clint Barton)
Human Torch
Human Torch

(Johnny Storm)
Invisible Woman
Invisible Woman

(Sue Storm)
Mr. Fantastic
Mr. Fantastic

(Reed Richards)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)

(Jennifer Walters)



(Janet Van Dyne)

Plus: Alicia Masters, Bernie Rosenthal, Captain Marvel (Monica Rambeau), Franklin Richards.

> Avengers: Book info and issue index

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