Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Beware The Judgment Calls of... Ms. Marvel!

The last time we checked in on the Super-Skrull, he was just about to end Spider-Man's annoying interference in his plans forever! And it doesn't look like he's backed off from that position in the slightest:

Despite sometimes being a wisecracking, annoying pest to the villains he goes up against, Spider-Man is also a realist on occasion--and even he knows that he's hard-pressed to survive a battle with a foe who possesses the might of the Fantastic Four, and stronger might at that. And with the Human Torch having been taken out of the fight, Spidey knows that his moments are numbered if he doesn't get help soon. Of course, that annoying sense of humor of his is still functioning at peak efficiency:

And so it's Spider-Man vs. the Super-Skrull, to the finish! But, wait a sec--this mag is called Marvel Team-Up, isn't it? So who's waiting in the wings to join forces with Spidey and foil the Super-Skrull's plan to snatch a rare power crystal which he needs to return to his home planet? None other than the woman warrior known as:

But, here's food for thought:
Why would anyone in their right mind want to prevent the Super-Skrull's departure?

Be that as it may, Spidey continues to fight the good fight, though he doesn't realize that neither the rest of the FF nor the Avengers could be reached, and so no one is rushing to his aid. Yet, he does realize that the Super-Skrull seems weaker than he'd been--and so he now has an opening to meet the Skrull on more even ground and possibly take him out. Assuming the Super-Skrull doesn't act quickly to negate that advantage:

With Spider-Man at least temporarily dealt with, the Super-Skrull returns to locating the crystal he seeks, and he detects it on the nearby QE2. But if he thinks the field is wide open for him to take possession of it, he reckons without a very special passenger on board--one who was trying to enjoy her vacation, but instead will have to settle for a knock-down drag-out with one of the Kree's mortal enemies:

With only ten issues under its belt, struggling in sales, and destined for cancellation after another thirteen issues saw print, the Ms. Marvel book was perhaps depending on hoping for a bounce in sales with the character's exposure here. And so while Spidey is on his way to the QE2, Ms. Marvel gets her chance to throw down with the Super-Skrull, doing reasonably well against such a powerhouse:

(Gee, was that last panel referring to the present battle--or was it heralding the fate of the Ms. Marvel book? All right, that was a cheap shot, I KNOW.)

Fortunately for Ms. M., her team-up partner has arrived on the scene, though in saving the hurtling form it looks like Spider-Man has acted on a case of mistaken identity:

From here, the two act on Ms. Marvel's plan, based on Spider-Man's earlier experience with the weakened Super-Skrull. Spidey will act to keep the Skrull busy, while Ms. M. hurries to construct an energy lattice aboard ship that will hopefully give the two heroes an edge in trapping and dealing with the Skrull:

It looks like writer Chris Claremont is making an effort to distinguish Ms. Marvel by demonstrating that she has no hesitation in making the hard call, even when her fellow heroes would likely censure her for acting on a decision that would sacrifice lives; and since Claremont writes the Ms. Marvel book, as well, we can presume that she's of the disposition to make similar calls in that title. Given that book's short life, and as harsh as this might sound, it's almost reassuring to find that Mr. Claremont's choices and direction for a character aren't always going to take hold and set a new standard for comics characters. For instance, as far as this battle is concerned, why risk the loss of lives to act at all costs to "stop the Super-Skrull"? Stop him from what, exactly? Leaving?

At any rate, the trap is finally sprung:

As with the situation back at the rail yards, the blockage of the Skrull power beam is less than perfect; but it turns out Ms. M. has planned ahead, and intends to make use of the crystal's space warp properties to act in conjunction with the beam's energy. And before you know it, the Super-Skrull is indeed sent on his way, though not in the manner he'd planned on:

With the scene above, you have the story's conclusion for all intents and purposes. There's a final panel which contains a not-so-subtle nudge to explore the ramifications of the crystal's recovery on both Ms. M. and Carol Danvers in the pages of Ms. Marvel--and if you're not curious about that in the slightest, you're likely in good company with the rest of us who wished Carol well in enjoying the rest of her vacation on the QE2, but otherwise would end up waving the Ms. Marvel book off to a bon voyage.

Marvel Team-Up #62

Script: Chris Claremont
Pencils: John Byrne
Inks: Dave Hunt
Letterer: John Costanza


Anonymous said...

When I first saw Ms. Marvel the biggest problem was how to pronounce "Ms." - I assumed it must be some alternative way of saying "Miss" so she was Miss Marvel to me. One of my friends, who was also a big Marvel fan, thought you had to spell out the letters so it would be pronounced as "M" "S" Marvel - I was sure that couldn't be right. We were kids, what did we know about feminism ??

Darci said...

Ms. Marvel had experienced the effects of a space warp in her own issue #8. She'll return to MTU in #s 76 & 77, much closer to the end of her own series.