Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Magnus, Robot Fighter #3
It is perhaps not surprising that alien robots would be the next enemies for Magnus. The stage is set with the opening panel:
Hmmm, hadn't noticed it before, but Magnus is wearing, well, kind of a dress, isn't he? Of course, the computer "tape" is a bit of a failure of imagination; I do remember tape like that back in the early 1970s, so maybe I shouldn't criticize Magnus' attire, since it is stretching the envelope a bit.
Magnus and others go into action against the aliens, but it is clear they are outgunned. Fortunately the aliens do not attack, yet. But they do eventually:
I'd have to check, but I doubt even Marvel was doing full page interior panels very often at the time (August 1963). Beautiful art by Manning. Magnus realizes that he must go nuclear:
Things are looking grim, and Magnus decides to find Xyrkol. He reasons that the giant robot will eventually contact its master, and traces the signal:
He blasts off for Planet X, where he confronts Xyrkol, who warns that he can instruct his giant robot to kill everyone on Earth. We get the inevitable offer to join forces:
But when Magnus overcomes Xyrkol and instructs his companions robots to destroy the controls, Xyrkol reveals that he's planned ahead so that this will result in the automated destruction of his own base, and the giant robot going wild. Sure enough:
Magnus has fighter jets attack the robot so that he can slip into the eye-slit unnoticed, and pretty quickly we hear the robot death sound:
Comments: The art saves this otherwise pedestrian story. I'm hoping that we get some more characterization for Magnus, particularly an origin story. At this point, we haven't seen Magnus' mentor, Robot 1A, since the opening scenes of Magnus #1. I still like the series a lot; I'm just looking for a little more depth.