The Defenders Fansite

Dedicated to the definitive superhero non-team.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Even More Coming Attractions

Expanding on earlier posts, here are additional promotional blurbs about the Defenders from the Comic Attractions section of Marvel Age magazine.

Marvel Age #1 (April 1983):
  • DEFENDERS #121—Written by J.M. DeMATTEIS. Pencils by DON PERLIN. The Defenders are put in a bizarre position in "Savior" as, on an Indonesian island, they fight to stop the all-powerful Miracle Man from … saving the world? Also: a major turning point in the lives of Daimon Hellstrom and Patsy Walker.

Marvel Age #5 (August 1983):
  • DEFENDERS #125—Written by J.M. DeMATTEIS. Pencils by DON PERLIN. Inks by KIM DeMULDER. It's the one we've been leading up to. To save the world, the Defenders must — break up! But from the ashes rises a new team! Would you believe — the Ex X-Men!? Also, Hellcat's wedding! The debut of Mad Dog! And the Mutant Force returns! Whew! So much action we took 48 pages to tell it!

Marvel Age #8 (November 1983):
  • DEFENDERS #128—What is Project: Sublimate? Let's just say that 1984 arrives a year early, as the most far-reaching of all Defenders sagas draws toward its dramatic conclusion! Written by J.M. DeMatteis, and featuring the outstanding penciling of Alan Kupperberg!

Marvel Age #14 (May 1984):
  • THE NEW DEFENDERS #134The New Defenders have nothing to fear—do they? When a maniacal killer comes to the Defenders' Aerie in the New Mexico Rockies, he brings death with him! And he brings it … one victim at a time! Not for the weak of heart! Plus: we've been hinting about the relationship between Cloud and Moondragon! Now you get to see their lives take a bizarre turn! "Manslaughter" is written by Peter B. Gillis, penciled by Don Perlin, and inked by Kim DeMulder!

Marvel Age #29 (August 1985):
  • THE NEW DEFENDERS #147Hotspur is just a demon who loves to have fun! The New Defenders discover that his idea of fun is destroying property and killing people! But what can the New Defenders do? The villain has the power to warp their minds anyway he wishes! "… And Games" is written by Peter B. Gillis, pencilled by Don Perlin and inked by Art Nichols. 65¢.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Meet the Press

Soon after his losing battle in Defenders #104, the magician named Ian Fate returned in Marvel Team-Up #112 (one of many cross-over stories between the two series).

Demoralized and downtrodden, Fate felt an emotional connection to the misunderstood creature called Man-Thing. The feeling was mutual, and Man-Thing accompanied Fate from the swamplands of Florida to New York City.

On the streets of Manhattan, Peter Parker's "Spider Sense" began to buzz as Ian Fate and a suspiciously disguised Man-Thing made their way to Daily Bugle newspaper.

With Man-Thing (no longer disguised) at his side, Fate begged editor J. Jonah Jameson to use his journalistic influence to stop all suffering and violence among humanity. Standing on principle, Jameson countered that he had a responsibility to report the news as he saw it and not promote an idealized vision of the world.

When Jameson refused to cooperate, Fate punched him, which prompted a confused Man-Thing to grab Fate.

Spider-Man, who had followed Fate and Man-Thing to the Daily Bugle, entered the scene. But the web-slinger's intervention caused Man-Thing to go on a rampage. In the end, Fate teleported both himself and Man-Thing back to the Florida swamp where they had met.

Marvel Team-Up. Vol. 1. No. 122. October 1982. "A Simple Twist of … Fate." J.M. DeMatteis (scripter), Kerry Gammill (penciler), Mike Esposito (inker), Diana Albers (letterer), Bob Sharen (colorist), Tom DeFalco (editor), Jim Shooter (editor-in-chief).

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

The Son of--?!

An issue of What The--?! included a satire about a ban on hellish terminology at Marvel. As a result, Son of Satan became Son of Santa, with a Christmas wreath appearing on his chest in place of his signature pentagram (#8).

As the comedic story progressed, the hero changed again—this time becoming Son of Stan, with a costume combining elements of several other characters created by Stan Lee.

What The--?! Vol. 1. No. 8. July 1990. "The Son of Satan/Censored." Kurt Busiek (diabolical script), James W. Fry III (fiendish pencils), Brad K. Joyce (malevolent inks), Chris Eliopoulos (demonic letters), Kris Renkewitz (infernal colors), Terry Kavanagh (most heinous edits), Tom DeFalco (exorcist in chief).

Monday, March 23, 2015

The Harder They Fall

Reading almost like an epilogue, Captain America #338 found the title character (then John Walker) and Buck (Lemar Hoskins) on assignment to recapture the escaped Professor Power and mop up any other at-large lackeys of the Secret Empire.

The biggest threat the duo faced was Leviathan (accurately shown here with black hair, as opposed to the white-haired rendition from the cover of New Defenders #126).

In the heat of battle, Captain America (Walker) killed Professor Power (who was already at death's door following his defeat in New Defenders #130). Ashamed at what he had done, the patriotic hero questioned whether he even deserved to wear the uniform of Captain America.

Captain America. Vol. 1. No. 338. February 1988. "Power Struggle." Mark Gruenwald (writer), Kieron Dwyer (penciler), Tom Morgan (inker), John Morelli (letterer), Gregory Wright (colorist), Ralph Macchio (editor), Tom DeFalco (the boss).

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Shambling Mound

A previous post likened several of the Defenders to characters (or monsters) from Dungeons & Dragons.

The D&D ad that ran in Defenders #98 accentuated the similarities between the fantasy role-playing game and the superhero comic book.

The comic-strip style ad that month depicted a party of adventurers encounter a Shambling Mound, a semi-intelligent creature composed of vegetation.

Coincidentally, in that very issue, the Defenders met Man-Thing, a semi-intelligent creature composed of vegetation.

In the ad, Grimslade the magic-user cast a charm spell to stop the monstrous Shambling Mound.

In the Defenders story, Dr. Strange entered into his astral form to face the demons that had gained control of the typically timid Man-Thing.

Defenders. Vol. 1. No. 98. August 1981. "The Hand Closes!" J.M. DeMatteis (writer), Don Perlin / Joe Sinnott (artists), Allen Milgrom (editor), Jim Novak (letterer), George Roussos (colorist), Jim Shooter (editor-in-chief).

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Dog Days

Canine characters were a recurring theme among the Defenders.

As Beast began to consider himself a mainstay member of the group, he decided to get a pet dog. Introduced in Defenders #122, Sassafrass would remain a loyal companion and provide (unnecessary) comic relief throughout the run of the New Defenders.

Determined to stop ex-wife Patsy Walker (a.k.a. Hellcat) from marrying Daimon Hellstrom, Buzz Baxter assumed the criminal identity of Mad-Dog (#125).

The hero Red Wolf helped the New Defenders on one occasion. Although Beast indirectly asked Red Wolf to become a regular member of the team, Red Wolf's strong ties to Cheyenne nation prevented him from uprooting (#139).

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