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Defenders, The #35: Review

May 1976
Steve Gerber, Klaus Janson

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Story Name:

Bring Back My Body To Me, To Me...!

Review & Comments

4 stars

Defenders, The #35 Review by (July 19, 2021)

Review: My, this is bizarre: the first half of this issue looks like a normal comic book, introducing a female Russian hero who would not be out of place in the Invaders. But she’s plopped in the middle of a plot involving brain transplants and mind transfers (most weird tales feature one or the other but not both) and a cranky goat with a carnival magician’s mind. But then everything goes back to abnormal with the introduction of the strange new body for Chondu, which he hates more than we do, even though it’s we who have to look at it. So, another goofy issue with an aerial battle and an arrest which promises more fun.

Comments: Part five of six parts. Title is a play on the song “My Bonnie.” First appearance of Red Guardian (Tania Belinsky) who will be around for quite a while, both under this name and as Starlight. The Nebulon/Headmen story arc from issues #31-35 concludes in DEFENDERS ANNUAL #1, which chronologically falls after DEFENDERS #40. Jack Norriss mentions the Lone Ranger to Val, who does not understand.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Defenders, The #35 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

Moscow: the female Red Guardian swoops down to rescue a woman from a knife-wielding robber but when the police arrive it is she who has to flee as she is the one without official sanction. Red Guardian returns to her apartment to answer a telephone call for her alter ego, neurosurgeon Dr. Tania Belinsky. It is Doctor Strange from the United States who urgently needs her help—with a brain transplant. All is arranged and Strange is able to return Jack Norriss’ consciousness to his body, leaving Nighthawk with the empty brain of Chondu the Mystic in his skull. Valkyrie and Jack accompany the Hulk in his search for his abducted fawn Bambi (which has Chondu’s consciousness in it) while Strange remains behind to guard Kyle Richmond’s brain for transplantation….

At the headquarters of the Headmen, Arthur Nagan shows Ruby Thursday and Jerold Morgan the hideous results of his latest experiment; they are interrupted by the arrival of Nebulon and Bambi/Chondu, the latter having tapped Nebulon’s powers to bring them there. The fawn manages to explain everything about the weird brain and mind switching operations and the Headmen concentrate on his troubles for now. The irked Nebulon teleports himself back to his business….

Dr. Tania Belinsky arrives in New York and is greeted by Dr. Strange and an official from the State Department. She is accompanied by some minders who pretend they are there for her protection but she confesses to Strange that their chief job is to prevent her from defecting….

Hulk goes to the Central Park Zoo where security guards try to prevent a disaster by shooting him. Valkyrie drops from her horse Aragorn onto Hulk to prevent disaster. Hulk gets mad and bounds away into the distance….

Chondu awakens from anesthesia to discover that Nagan has transferred his mind into a new body, one Nagan considers more functional: he now has four lampreys where each arm had been, the legs and talons of a giant bird, red batlike wings, a twisted horn on his head plus a snakelike mouth and tongue. He is understandably a bit peeved; Ruby must restrain him from killing Nagan. She explains that his mind is now immortal and if he wants a better body he can find it himself and they will transfer his mind….

In his new, gruesome body, Chondu swoops down on a construction site and carries off a buff worker. Val and Jack, having lost track of Hulk (who has landed in OMEGA THE UNKNOWN #2), spot Chondu flying with his victim and pursue on Aragorn. Chondu sees them, drops his victim on a rooftop and attacks. He snatches Val off the horse’s back and she slices one of his wings off. They both fall, crashing through the glass rooftop of a classy restaurant. As the diners flee, Val beats the living hell out of her monstrous foe. Police arrive, prevent her from killing Chondu, and place her under arrest….

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Barberoids 1 cover original artwork on ebay

Klaus Janson
Klaus Janson
Petra Goldberg
Gil Kane (Cover Penciler)
Mike Esposito (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)
Layouts: Sal Buscema. Letterer: John Costanza.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange

(Stephen Strange)

(Bruce Banner)

(Kyle Richmond)
Red Guardian
Red Guardian

(Tania Belinsky)


Plus: Chondu the mystic (Harvey Schlemerman), Gorilla-Man (Arthur Nagan), Jack Norriss (Jackson Norriss), Nebulon (The Celestial Man), Ruby Thursday (Thursday Rubinstein), Shrunken Bones (Jerold Morgan).

> Defenders, The: Book info and issue index

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