Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The end for Nova, the Human Rocket[/ HE’S GONE! The HUMAN ROCKET! NOVA

One novice hero, one recovering amnesiac, a father/ son crime fighting team, one hard-boiled thug and two masterminds at opposite ends of the mystical and the mechanical now comprise the New Champions, flying now towards the original Nova Prime Centurian home, Xandar.

Powerhouse pilots the space-phasing Nova Prime Star Ship, warping space to cross the galaxies. His memory recovered, he surprises Nova greatly---as do the inversions of color in space.

Meanwhile, Doctor Sun’s interrogation of the Sphinx intimidates the Pharonic Sorcerer not one speck. He holds his silence as a counter to Sun’s power trip, but answers Nova: why IS he aboard this ship? In fact, Nova thought he was sent spinning off into space by the Fantastic Four! (See Fantastic Four for that story; I forget the number---175?.)

He replies that Black Bolt, in fact, was the power that cast him adrift in space, tumbling on with his ruby Ka Stone’s power for support. Through the outer reaches he spun, until the Ka could reach a small moon. Now for a year did the Ka regenerate its immortal master, until, weeks ago, he “sensed a star ship approaching.” This held the ill-fated Quasimodo, who he controlled into picking him up, in, ironically, a Fantastic Four ship, which happens to detect Nova’s invisible ship. Unbridled joy: Quasimodo’s special computer sensors can lead him to the source of the answers he’s sought for a 5,000 year old lifetime: answers linked to the world of Xandar’s computers.

Wait: wasn’t Nova Prime’s world destroyed, asks Nova? Sphinx haughtily assures him, Xandar yet lives.

Meanwhile, father and son discuss their joint adventure as being a dream come true. Two weeks away from home have left The Man Called Nova a tearful boy in the dark of night, thoughts of his family---and thank Crom they at least know of his secret identity now (this is the cumulative result of year two’s plots) but they all three watch the night sky...worry...and pray.

Powerhouse irritates Doctor Sun; “the Sphinx,” he says, expressly forbid you from tampering with these computers.” Sun refuses this status quo, as the ship’s computers, and not Xandar, were his original goal. So long as the Sphinx wishes to reach Xandar, that is home, so Powerhouse will go along in his best interest, to uncover what became of the conflict, whose face he has yet to see.

But Sun jumps the Sphinx, who crushes his hand; Nova’s effort to break up the fight leaves him smashed into the panels, and this brings Comet’s lightning to the fray. Powerhouse absorbs the ray, however, demanding a peaceful egress to his homeworld. He assures them he could absorb their lives just as easily. Diamondhead breaks from his hiding place; he demands to be returned to Earth. His blow draws the Sphinx’s punishment; with the Ka stone he bashes him into solid, living pieces in a flash. He reassembles him as Nova protests, ending his lesson; “I don’t think you’re the right guy to teach anything, Sphinx,” says the Comet.

(The other thing is, Doctor Sun just disappears halfway through the issue.)

Powerhouse gets blips: invasion fleet on the screen! They converge on the Prime ship from every side. (right about now, I remember us talking about the size of that ship upthread). Nova blasts into space to re-establish some agency in their fortunes, with answers: the Comet retaliates, finding himself for the first time living out Heinlein and Buck Rogers! The auto-pilot ship frees Powerhouse for the fray, and Crimebuster takes Diamondhead’s shoulder before he can touch a button.

The Sphinx takes out ships, drawing up and focusing out power blasts. Nova peels open a ship to reveal the Skrulls; Comet chastises him for bragging, rather than silence. Then he radiates voltage for all surrounding Skrulls. Powerhouse recognizes them from a treaty against which he warned; from their in-battle dialog we learn of a hundred-year-old battle ‘twixt Xandar and “the Skrullworld.” Their oaths for the glory of the empire seem absorbed along with their lasers; now Powerhouse will show them “the true power of a Syfon warrior!” (This is the rank below Nova Centurians, as noted elsewhere by P.H.---Lucky Lue.)

Good to his word, Powerhouse returns their energies and wipes out staggering portions of the fleet. (This makes you wonder what Nova might learn to do on Xandar!) Nova finds him adrift helplessly. Diamondhead over powers the human Crimebuster; the Sphinx senses this inner battle, and halts Diamondhead with a “deep ruby aura” and saves C.B.’s hash and leaves the control panel unmolested, so that he might resume battle.

Half the fleet’s routed; Nova punches through another ship, still clueless. Nova’s solo flight takes him after them, tracking their homebase.
Sphinx observes to frustrated Diamondhead a larger invasion fleet is sure to approach them soon. “We need all our power intact---else they will destroy us before I reach the planet Xandar...where my destiny awaits!”

The End...for Now!

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