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Marvel Premiere #49: Review

Aug 1979
Mark Evanier, Sal Buscema

Story Name:

Sound of the Silencer

Review & Comments

2.5 stars

Marvel Premiere #49 Review by (May 29, 2018)

Review: Mediocre tale with passable art and writing making a stab at the kind of semi-political material that Captain America often deals with but lacking that hero's focus. And that ending with the revelation of the meaning of OTTFFSSEN is flat-out silly.  

Comments: First solo adventure for the Falcon. Sole appearance of Silencer/Count Barzun; he is not connected to any other Marvel character with that name.



Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Marvel Premiere #49 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

The Falcon attends a party at the Boldavian Embassy, in place of Captain America, who was otherwise occupied. Falcon is introduced to several VIPs, including Sigjid Rosskoff, an inflammatory political opinion-maker. Rosskoff starts in on the Falcon by calling Captain America a coward and a hypocrite. Falcon tries to defend Cap but a masked villain calling himself the Silencer bursts in, shoots Rosskoff with a weapon that paralyzes his vocal cords and knocks out the Falcon before carrying his victim off. When Falc recovers enough to pursue them he discovers Rosskoff's body on a rooftop, an apology written by the Silencer who forced Rosskoff to sign it, renouncing all of his controversial views. But Sam also notices that some letters have been set off by dots to spell OTTFFSSEN, a secret message by Rosskoff, giving a clue as to his killer's identity? At the police station, Boldavian nobleman Count Barzon berates Falcon for his failure to protect the dead man and the press picks up on it, criticizing the winged hero....

At the offices of the Daily Bugle, J. Jonah Jameson has the brilliant idea to hold a contest to let the readers decide what the mysterious message means; Robbie Robertson thinks it's a bad idea....

Meanwhile, Falcon clobbers a fellow who thinks Falc killed Rosskoff while pretending to protect him. Sam goes home and broods, angering his girl Leila Taylor, until he gets the idea to talk to Cap. Cap tells him to ignore the bad press though he has no clue either on the baffling OTTFFSSEN....

Hours later, Silencer attacks an outdoor rally by leftists and when Falcon arrives, the baddie shoots him with his gun, rendering Falcon speechless. Silencer then hurls a grenade into the crowd and escapes while the hero is busy dealing with that....

At the Bugle, JJJ is going crazy over all the ridiculous suggestions submitted by readers and regrets having started the contest....

At a speech that night by Count Barzon, the Silencer arrives and Barzon shoots him down on stage, again mocking the American police and superheroes. The villain is identified as a two-bit crook named Hal Doerner—but Falcon isn't satisfied. Then it hits Sam, and he goes out in costume to confront Count Barzon who killed Rosskoff as the Silencer, then hired a thug to impersonate the villain, unaware that the Count would kill him. The clue? OTTFFSSEN stands for One Two Three Four Five Six Seven Eight Nine—the “count.” Falcon subdues the baddie and turns him over to the police.

Sal Buscema
Dave Simons
Ben Sean
Frank Miller (Cover Penciler)
Klaus Janson (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)

(Sam Wilson)
J. Jonah Jameson
J. Jonah Jameson

(JJ Jameson)
Robbie Robertson
Robbie Robertson

(Joe Robertson)

Plus: Leila Taylor.

> Marvel Premiere: Book info and issue index

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