CoverDefenders #2, Volume 2
Published by Marvel Comics
April, 2001
Click here for larger version of cover A.
Click here for larger version of cover B.

"The Curse"

Writers: Kurt Busiek & Erik Larsen
Penciller: Erik Larsen
Inker: Klaus Janson
Letterer: Chris Eliopoulos
Colorist: Gregory Wright w/ Color Arts
Editor: Tom Brevoort
Assistant Editor: Marc Sumerak
Editor In Chief: Joe Quesada

Original Price: $2.25

History Behind Issue: The Defenders unite together again after years apart with a brand new series.  Continued from Defenders #1.

Plot: The story begins in the middle of a civil war at Atlantis, where Namor’s rule is being challenged by Attuma.  But Namor suddenly disappears in the middle of the conflict, leaving Atlantis hopeless.  Meanwhile, in a Virginia roadhouse, Bruce Banner has transformed into the Gray Hulk and is playing pool when Doc Samson tries to get him to come with him, so that they can continue to do tests on him.  But Hulk, too, quickly disappears before Doc Samson’s very eyes.  Dr. Strange was in his Sanctum Sanctorum with Hellcat.  Hellcat was watching as Dr. Strange tried to find out what the curse of the last issue meant, when he too was suddenly transported before Hellcat’s very eyes.

All three of them (Hulk now his green self again) were then teleported to Northern Canada, along with the Silver Surfer, who was in the Himalayas.  Dr. Strange assumes this is because of Yandroth’s Curse.  Namor flies off, as Dr. Strange explains that Yandroth saw they did not want to be together and his curse must have put them together.  At that point, Namor is teleported again.  He asks Dr. Strange to end this curse, but Strange admits it is not under his power. 

CoverNamor and the Hulk then exchange a few words and punches, as the story turns to Nighthawk who is visited by Hellcat.  She explains that Dr. Strange disappeared before his eyes, so he goes to get Papa Hagg.  He then explains that he found Papa Hagg a long time ago, when he was cursed with demons by Mephisto.  He also explains that he believes he has found Valkyrie, but she is amnesiac.  He explains he found her on the street a few weeks ago and that she could not speak.  Papa Hagg looked at her and found Asgardian magic around her, so he believes she must be Valkyrie.

Meanwhile, Hulk and Namor are dueling when they are interrupted by an old man and his gun, who asks them to leave.  Just at that time, they are attacked by monsters.  Some believe the monsters but Dr. Strange recognizes them as the Titans, creatures of Greek myths, who are in the service of Pluto, the Lord of the Underground.

Back in New York at the headquarters of Nighthawk, Papa Hagg locates the Defenders in his crystal ball and they see the Defenders are in trouble.  As the battle continues in Canada, Dr. Strange realizes that Yandroth’s dying curse for them to be brought together when ever trouble arrives and that they must team together.  They do so and successfully defeat the Titans but Pluto is unworried.  He then reveals that he has the aid of Valkyrie, though the one who Nighthawk thought was Valkyrie remains with them… leaving the question, who is the real one?

Comments: This was an interesting issue.  The Defenders are fun to read.  As a Silver Surfer fan, I am not completely satisfied with his appearance.  He seems overlooked at times and I find myself getting more enjoyment out of Hulk and Namor at times.  All of their bickering really makes the team a fun read.  The art, though not perfect, seems to grow on me as well.  All together, a title worth getting, but don’t expect a lot of character development with our favorite Sentinel of the Spaceways.

Written by James Pedrick


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