Micronauts vol.1 No.29 (May 1981)
Writer: Bill Mantlo
Artist: Pat Broderick / Danny Bulandi
Letterer: Joe Rosen
Colorist: Doc Martin
Editor: Louise Jones
EIC: Jim Shooter
The following bit of information doesn't say much for my powers of observation, I'm sad to admit. But perhaps it's indicative of just how deeply ensconced I am into the world of Micronauts that I hadn't previously noticed that Michael Golden hadn't done the last five covers (including this one). Pat Broderick has been on cover duty and, while it's not indistinguishable from Golden by any means, it captures the same level of highly palatable detail but simmers with kinetic energy in Broderick's signature style.
|This seems strangely intimate.|
But that's enough behind-the-scenes, here's the skinny: Providing a coda to the knock-down, drag-out rematch between Karza, Hydra, SHIELD and the Micronauts which took place at a lookalike Disneyworld, we have the traditional post-climax cool-down. The heroes stand over their fallen comrades -- the Micronauts honoring Queen Esmera, Biotron, and what remains of Shaitan, while Fury and the other agents of SHIELD look down on a hangar-full of flag-draped coffins. It's gonna be hard for mommy to explain to little Billy that daddy can't come home because an action figure teamed up with a green plastic Nazi and blew him to pieces all over Pirates of the Caribbean. I mean, where are you gonna take the kid to cheer 'em up, Disneyworld?
|I keep forgetting to|
mention that this book
really leans on the
Post-ceremony, supporting "Incredible Hulk" character Doc Samson is summoned to help rouse Arcturus Rann from the coma into which he was shocked by the dissolution of the Enigma Force. Doc's one of two very well-done crossovers into the Micronauts universe in this issue (three, if you count SHIELD), and should probably be a blueprint for how to do it right. Most of these crossovers with mainstream Marvel characters have come off anywhere from lackluster to awful. Perhaps Mantlo's happier with the weirdos.
(Part of the charm of Doc's appearance, for me, was that his entire spiel was inspired by Julian Jaynes' early-80s psychology tome, The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind. This was the first "smart book" I read when I was a kid, and I read it entirely because The Beast mentioned it in an issue of The Avengers. I'm delighted to find a second Marvel comic making direct reference to it. I imagine a copy must have been floating around the bullpen ...)
Doc shrinks a trio of Micronauts down to Fantastic Voyage size. Marionette, Bug, and Acroyear (whose lover and fellow Spartak warrior, Cilicia, has just cursed his name and left him following Ayo's choice to deplete the Worldmind and condemn Spartak to lifelessness) lead the crew, with Microtron and the faux-Spartak Dagon keeping watch over the Commander teensy-tiny body.
|SMASH 'IM, AYO!|
The fight with Nightmare occurs simultaneously as Dagon makes his move in the waking world -- he's gonna slaughter the sleeping Rann! It turns out that Dagon is a Dog Soldier and that his arc wrapped up a lot faster than I expected. That makes me a little uneasy for the future. Dagon is also uneasy about his future, because he does not have one, because Microtron kills him with the roboid's boob-cannons.
As the Micronauts manage to pierce the blocked brain barrier which keeps Rann asleep, they discover a strange golden monolith in Rann's mind, bearing a strange inscription. The mystery is enough to send them ... back to Homeworld! And a whole new arc!
Lettercol! It's this ungrateful jerk, buying a book he doesn't like just to write pissy letters about it. Is he the Internet's father?