Come On In…The Revolution’s Fine

Avengers #83

Writer: Roy Thomas
Penciller: John Buscema
Inker: Tom Palmer
Letterer: Herb Cooper

Featured Issue: Avengers #83

Plot Summary

While in town to visit an ailing aunt, Janet Van Dyne, formerly known as the Avenger Wasp, decides to pay her old teammates a visit. Little does she know that there has been a change in management at Avengers Mansion. Upon entering the meeting room where the team would hold council, Wasp is greeted by several of her fellow female heroes. Black Widow and Scarlet Witch are old allies, while Madame Medusa is at least known to the Avenger. The groups leader however is new, and introduces herself as Valkyrie. When Wasp questions why they are in Avengers Mansion, Scarlet Witch informs her that the building is now under the control of the Liberators, a new, all female group. Black Widow then ask Wasp to join them for a moment and hear what they have to say.

With that Valkyrie begins to tell her story. Working in a lab for Dr. Erwin, Valkyrie found herself pushed aside and looked down upon by the men she worked with. Determined to prove that she was even  better than they were, Valkyrie worked late into the night and fell asleep while still clutching a smoking test tube. When she awoke, she found that she had gained super human abilities. After that she vows to use her powers to in pursuit of female dominance and begins to call herself Valkyrie.

Although her story is compelling, the assembled women don’t immediately see how the Avengers and other male heroes are to blame for the slights they have suffered. Valkyrie then begins to make the case that in every instance the male heroes have taken the credit and glory for themselves while simultaneously belittling the contributions of the women. Valkyrie points to headlines that refer to “Quicksilver and sister” as well as the fact that Black Widow was repeatedly turned down for membership in the Avengers as evidence to support her argument. One after another, the heroes fall silent as they are unable to refute Valkyrie’s claims. With all of the other women on her side, Valkyrie and the heroes take to the skies in Valkyrie’s chariot in order to attend to their urgent business.

Meanwhile in Rutland, Vermont, the Avengers find themselves the guests of honor of Mr. Tom Fagan, local comics creator and co-founder of the town’s Halloween parade. Little do the Avengers realize that lurking nearby are the Masters of Evil, have recently escaped from prison. Having lead their escape, Klaw now takes control of the team and directs them to kidnap renowned mathematician and expert on parallel time, Dr. T.W. Erwin. As the Masters approach Dr Erwin, Vision notices that they may not be simple revelers in costume, but the real Masters of Evil. With this the Avengers spring into action. Soon the small town of Rutland is engulfed in a vicious life and death struggle between the Avengers and the Masters of Evil with the tide of battle swinging back and forth between the two teams.

It is only with the timely arrival of Valkyrie and her Liberators that victory lies firmly with the Avengers. Unfortunately their victory is short lived as the Liberators quickly turn on the Avengers and take Dr. Erwin into their custody.

Returning to Dr. Erwin’s lab, the Liberators behold the parallel time projector. Having what she truly desires, Valkyrie can no longer keep up her façade and reveals herself to be the mighty sorceress Enchantress. After having been banished along with Executioner, Enchantress is abandoned by her companion when he is seduced by Queen Casiolena. Seeking vengeance at having been spurned, Enchantress swears to take out her rage on all men, everywhere. To further this end Enchantress sought Dr. Erwin’s device in order to return her to Asgard and her full powers.

Just as she is attacked by Scarlet Witch, Enchantress disappears by a means obviously not of her own devising. With that, the device explodes, leaving a smoking crater in the lab. Although the immediate threat is over and the remaining Liberators have been freed from Enchantress’ spell, Scarlet Witch and Wasp still have some choice words for their male counterparts regarding their equal treatment.

Avengers

Black Panther
Black Widow
Goliath
Medusa
Quicksilver
Scarlet Witch
Vision
Wasp

Villains

Enchantress
Masters of Evil
Valkyrie

When Dies A Legend

Avengers #81Writer: Roy Thomas
Penciller: John Buscema
Inker: Tom Palmer
Letterer: Sam Rosen

Featured Issue: Avengers #81

Plot Summary

From the roof of Avengers Mansion, several members watch as their fellow Avengers fly into the distance. As they disappear, Captain America wonders if this is the end of the Avengers as they know the team. With several of their friends going off and refusing to join the chosen mission, it seems as though cracks are finally starting to show in their democratic process. While the remaining Avengers depart the roof, Black Panther reminds the group that he will also not be joining them on their mission. They understand and insist that Black Panther follow his conscience, just as they must follow theirs. As Black Panther leaves, Cap wonders if he’ll actually see his friend again.

Speeding across the country, the Quinjet takes it’s cargo of Avengers towards the American Southwest. On the way, Red Wolf attempts one last time to dissuade the heroes from joining his quest. He knows that he must carry out the mission and achieve his vengeance or die trying, but the Avengers don’t need to be a part of this. If he is unable to do what must be done on his own, then he is unworthy of being Red Wolf and rescuing his tribe. Even though he exudes confidence in his mission, inside he feels shame at his apparent ingratitude. In fact, each of the Avengers harbors their own secret doubts about the actions that have lead them to this point. Vision is unsure that this was worth ending his solitary exploration over. Goliath just wants to help a man whom he feels a sense of kinship with, one that reminds Goliath of himself not so long ago. Finally, Scarlet Witch tries to understand if she joined the mission on a whim, or if there is something deeper, of which she is not yet aware, driving her to do things she can’t fully explain.

The peace of their moment is disrupted when the Quinjet is rocked by a large explosion. Someone has opened fire on the Avengers. Angling in from high above, a craft bears down on the Quinjet with lethal intent. Just as things begin to get truly perilous, Vision is nowhere to be found, having exited the craft by becoming intangible. Although he teammates are unaware, Vision has done this in order to board the opposing craft in an attempt to disable the hostile. Once on board Vision is shocked to discover that it is piloted by robots. Vision immediately takes the fight to the robots, but fails to destroy them in time. Despair washes over Vision as he sees the Quinjet struck a second time and begin to plummet towards the Earth like a flaming meteor. It’s mission accomplished, the enemy craft turns and begins to return home. Vision, so overwhelmed with rage over the apparent deaths of his friends, uses his mass shifting abilities to make himself so heavy that his own craft is unable to stay aloft and it too comes crashing down.

After exiting the crash Vision comes across Scarlet Witch, unconscious and face down on the shore of a nearby lake. Vision fails to see the assembled thugs as he rushes to aid his teammate. As a result, the pair are taken captive and driven back to the palatial estate of Cornelius Van Lunt. While Van Lunt alludes to some kind of big happening in the desert near their location, he refuses to provide any further details about why he is so desperate to acquire the Native American lands. When Vision refuses to help Van Lunt in his pursuits, whatever they may be, the synthizoid is blackmailed into aiding by the threat of violence against Scarlet Witch. With that he agrees to be Van Lunt’s personal body guard.

Elsewhere in the desert, Goliath and Red Wolf survey the land as they try to figure out how they’ve found themselves in their current predicament. Just before the Quinjet crashed, Goliath threw Scarlet Witch out of the aircraft in order to ensure her the best odds of survival. With that finished, the moment the Quinjet hit the water of the lake, Goliath took hold of Red Wolf and Lobo and grew to enormous height. This shattered what was left of the Quinjet and allowed the three survivors to make their way quickly to shore. Having gotten their bearings the trio make their way to the small village where Red Wolf was born and raised. Although he knows everyone, they seem not to recognize him and instead demand proof that he is in fact the Red Wolf foretold in the legends. Even this homecoming is broken up as Van Lunt’s men again attack the town and Goliath and Red Wolf are forced to defend the residents. His actions in the fight provide all the proof the villagers need and they vow to follow Red Wolf.

At Van Lunt’s mansion, Vision confronts Goliath, Red Wolf and the assembled villagers. Things become immediately heated between the two Avengers, resulting in Goliath knocking Vision an incredible distance away. When Vision returns, he quickly puts a stop to Goliath by use of his mass shifting abilities. Seeing that the fight is on his front door, Van Lunt, his men and Scarlet Witch all make their way to a hidden helicopter hanger in order to protect the dam they are certain the locals are trying to destroy. As they hover above, Van Lunt’s men see a group of Native American men crossing the dam and open fire, killing several. The helicopter then lands so that they man finish the men off once and for all. Van Lunt’s men failed to account for Scarlet Witch in their plans. Having freed herself, Scarlet Witch uses her hex powers to blow up the helicopter. Unfortunately it works too well and the dam suffers catastrophic damage in the process.

With his men gone and the dam about to burst, Van Lunt is left to fend for himself. As he attempts to flee Van Lunt is attacked first by Lobo and then by Red Wolf himself. The two men grapple with one another, locked in a life or death struggle in which neither man may walk away. As Scarlet Witch makes her way to safety the dam gives way, flooding the surrounding land. In spite of their efforts, all the Avengers can find is Red Wolf’s cowl. Back in the village the villagers honor the man who gave his life for the protection of the people. Just as the Avengers are about to leave, a young man enters the village with a bandage on his head, and he is warmly embraced by his uncle who encourages him to focus not on the past but only the future.

Avengers

Black Panther
Captain America
Goliath
Iron Man
Quicksilver
Scarlet Witch
Thor
Vision

Villains

Cornelius Van Lunt