And so we left our avengers story from the last blog with a tragic cliffhanger. What was the specialness about a cliffhanger?

Dear readers, it is the possibility of discovery. It is placing readers on a cliff, letting them overlook a beautiful canyon, and as they gaze upon that tremendous fall, the pregnant danger foregrounding subaltern monuments, a helicopter lands behind them. With a charming, handsome pilot. check here for a long and short appreciation of the charming pilot greeting us at this moment between avengers 92 and 93.

It is ending one comic leaving the future of avengers team-ups in serious jeopardy for the first time. It is watching the Vision leave the avengers mansion a willing exile, and seeing him burst through the doors as a desperate refugee. It is leaving a world that is drawn by Sal Buscema, and opening another drawn by Neal Adams.


It is more than moving from Buscema’s round, idealized refined kirby figures to Neal Adams’ gangly and jerky heroes. It is also moving from the perspective of an equal, looking at these heroes chests, to the perspective of an ant, looking up to a god instead of with him.

The perspective shift continues over the next couple of pages, as we follow Ant Man into the throat of a damaged Vision.


Yet more shenanigans continue as we see a hero not succeed in battle, but instead he loses one of his companions, and, with more than a little grief, decides that he really should go it alone. The prose narrating the death of his ant comrade is enough to make one consider one’s steps more closely while trodding concrete, fearful that one of their screams might be let out, and their brethren, stoic as ever, carry on.

The villains for the comic aren’t even that tangible! rectangles (the vision’s immunity system, of course) plague Ant-man and force him to run!

After that breathlessly surreal Mystery in Space/Circuitry issue (that’s double sized, no less), we see Neal Adams contributing page after page of sheer formalistic joy, drafted by Michelangelo, so far are Neal Adams’ anatomically magnificent renderings from John and Sal Buscema’s minimal might.

In the next issue, he even renders a captive watching fat overlords probe at him beneath a bubble head hold.

 

But it’s not just this similarly spectacular final page of this run in which we see Neal Adams masterfully manipulate time on a page to really convey Rick Jones, falling into the negative zone.

No, what really has me coming back to this comic and wanting to praise it to high heaven is Neal Adams’ drawing the Avengers in their star wars outfits.

They’ve never looked better than when they’re in space.

until next time, blessed reader.

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