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Monday, October 21, 2013

Mind Games

A story idea originally kept on hold for a possible fill-in issue of Volume 2 of the Defenders eventually saw the light of day as Defenders: From the Marvel Vault (September 2011).

A curse from the magician Yandroth seemed to transplant the minds of four college students into the bodies of Sub-Mariner, Silver Surfer, Hulk, and Dr. Strange. Making reference to dungeon-crawls and random-encounter tables, the four suspected they were playing a surreal game and that the Defenders were their avatars.

While inhabiting the physical selves of the Defenders, each of the four experienced situations that tugged at the emotions.

  • Sub-Mariner (Jerry) reunited with his lost love Dorma on a version of the Earth where the surface world was submerged underwater.
  • Silver Surfer (Tyler) reunited with romantic interest Shalla-Bal while retaining the power to explore the cosmos.
  • Hulk (Ramona Fischer) discovered that the Abomination and other long-time enemies now wanted to be Hulk's friend.
  • Dr. Strange (Morgan Nicholls) felt the wisdom of eternity.

The foursome deduced that they were in fact trapped in a dream-like reality, and Dr. Strange finally returned things to normal with these magic words:

Winds of Watcomb,
embrave you this power,
Sweep through the cosmos,
where'er life doth flower!
Find you the kinsmen of
these that did roam.
Then loft up their fellows, and transport them … home!

Kurt Busiek wrote this story "Mind Games" more-or-less from a plot by Fabian Nicieza.

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