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Solo Avengers #13: Review

Dec 1988
Ralph Macchio, Ron Lim

Story Name:

Beware the Bullet Biker!!

Review & Comments

4 stars

Solo Avengers #13 Review by (May 4, 2022)

Review: Another nice adventure with the irony of the antagonists being reminded of each other from their carnival days but only Hawkeye discovering he is facing the same guy. Gayle Rogers is cute; too bad she doesn’t return in this title. And there is one curious bit: Bullet Biker mentions a secret employer early in the story but this is forgotten and he turns into a straight-up extortionist by midpoint. Where did the plot go when the writer wasn’t looking?

The Wonder Man story is played for pure comedy which is all well and good as Simon is best suited for that and Hollywood is a fertile ground for parody.

Comments: First story: First appearance of the Bullet Biker; he returns in AVENGERS SPOTLIGHT (this book retitled) #23-25. Second appearance of reporter Gayle Rogers who was introduced in issue #9; she spends the rest of her career in THUNDERBOLTS, starting at issue #18. Hawkeye jokes about Baba Wawa, SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE’s parody of news reporter Barbara Walters, as played by Gilda Radner; he also mentions daredevil cyclist Evel Knievel. Second story starts with the note “With sincere apologies to Richard Rush” who is writer and director of the film THE STUNT MAN (1980). “Fall guy” can refer both to a stunt man and to someone who is being tricked into a bad position. Simon mentions the Buster Keaton film STEAMBOAT BILL JR. with its amazing stunts. There’s also a reference to notorious film flop HEAVEN’S GATE and the tale closes with Porky Pig’s standard farewell.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Solo Avengers #13 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

A blue-clad motorcyclist smashes through the front window at a Los Angeles art gallery. Calling himself the Bullet Biker, he fires a gas pellet at the guards then shoots up several artworks, making his getaway. He leads the police on a wild chase until he turns into an alley and simply disappears….

Hawkeye shows up at the museum to investigate the crime and reporter Gayle Rogers insists on accompanying him on his sky-cycle. Gayle points out that the Bullet Biker has terrorized several art galleries and they were all owned by one man: J. Marcus Waldner and suggests they start the investigation with him. On the way, Gayle tries to interview Hawkeye about his superhero career and he admits he is a showoff. They find Waldner at home after an attack by the villain when he demanded cash to stop his attacks. Deducing that Waldner’s warehouse is next, Hawkeye and Gayle head there and catch Bullet Biker in the act of destroying artwork. The two duel on their respective cycles and Hawkeye is reminded of a motorcycle stuntman he knew in his carnival days named Dillon Zarro. The villain leads them on a wild chase through the city streets and into a parking garage; BB rides up to the top and sends his cycle over the edge toward a crowd below, leaping off at the last second. Hawkeye is able to swoop down and knock the falling bike onto another roof. Hawkeye is then able to circle back to the garage and catch the Biker as he is leaving and he turns out to be Dillon Zarro. Hawkeye turns him over to the police and Gayle Rogers found traveling with Hawkeye to be a lot of fun and she looks forward to seeing Hawkeye soon at the Avengers Compound. Clint is looking forward to it too….

“Fall Guy” 4/5
Writer: Gregory Wright, Dwayne McDuffie. Art: Jackson Guice. Colors: Gregory Wright. Letters: Richard Starkings.
Synopsis: Simon “Wonder Man” Williams was persuaded to do one last stuntman gig for the acclaimed director Eli; however, Simon finds himself treated badly, just a prop for the film’s real star Dirk Studley. Simon is miffed and flies off but soon his jetpacks conk out and he falls to the ground—near a studio guard who mistakes him for Dirk Studley….

Simon is being followed around by a small alien orb, with two voices; the orb possesses a wrecking ball and tries to knock Simon down. His reaction shows they were expecting one “Takumer” to react a certain way. Simon is confused so the orb zips back to the movie studio, creating a giant brick monster to move Simon along.

Back at the shoot, Simon lands in a crash and the orb recognizes that Takumer has mistakenly possessed Dirk Studley. Simon saves Dirk from a falling helicopter and Takumer leaves Dirk’s body for Simon’s—and is immediately repelled. So Taukmer takes on the form of a giant mutated rabbit and fights Simon. The orb animates a camera crane and attacks Simon from the other side, while Eli films it all excitedly. A massive electrical discharge between the combatants wreck the giant bunny while Wonder Man rises triumphantly. The orb reveals itself to be controlled by an alien film director from another dimension, with his actor Takumer taking over Simon’s body to star in the film. Simon smashes the orb, the film turns out to have been ruined by the electricity, and Takumer/giant bunny says they aren’t paying him enough to do it all again and zorps back to his own dimension. Simon shrugs and moves on…”That’s show biz!”

Ron Lim
Jose Marzan Jr.
Janet Jackson
Jackson Guice (Cover Penciler)
Bob Layton (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)
Plot: . Letterer: Jack Morelli.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.


(Clint Barton)

Plus: Bullet Biker (Dillon Zarro), Gayle Rogers.

> Solo Avengers: Book info and issue index

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