Guardians of the Galaxy (Vol 1) 62: Final Issue

 

 

Guardians of the Galaxy 62 was cover dated July 1995 and was on sale in May 1995, sharing the spinner racks with Aquaman Annual #1, Grifter #1, Nocturne #1, Operation Knightstrike #1, Sovereign Seven #1 and X-Men: Prime.

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We have two stories here of about equal length and import, so we’ll start with Starhawk’s story.

Endgame was by the usual people with Michael Gallagher on words and Kevin West and Steve Montano on pictures and continues the previous story with Pathbreaker (now suddenly differently coloured) trying to prevent Starhawk’s descent to Vesper. That doesn’t go well, with Starhawk quickly dispatching this machine.

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On Vesper he finds Kismet and convinces her to come with him to visit the grave of Wendell (Quasar) Vaughn. He tells her of his encounter in the White Room and how this occurred, with Eon’s help. Hearing Eon’s name enrages Kismet, who blames Eon for taking her baby away, crying that she never learned if it was a boy or a girl. Starhawk assures her that it was a boy and that the boy’s name, his name was Stakar. This joyous reunion is halted by Eon’s arrival. We are then told that this in actuality Era, son of Eon. Since they know of this, Era intends to destroy them.

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The pair team up and are able to hold him off and Era decides to leave. Then up pops the Hawkgod who points out that Era is planning a war of cosmic beings, leading to some unltimate calamity. This was the reason for the quest, when Starhawk found Quasar and met with Kismet, the Hawkgod knew that this would flush Era out and force Kismet and Starhawk to join forces to stop Era’s plans.

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Notes:

This brings to an end the story of Starhawk as he was in this title. Despite the ongoing threat that  Era poses, it is something of a happy ending. Stakar is reunited with his mother and avenging the mentor of his father after freeing himself of his obligation to the Hawkgod.

I was under the impression Eon was a male, not much of an issue, but last post did mention him as a male.

Era’s long term plans are a mystery and since this title was cancelled it remains one to this day.

I did enjoy this story, but ultimately had no real investment in the story of Starhawk.

Second Story

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Time to Go was written by Michael Gallagher, with art by Sandy Floreau and opens with Charlie-27 and Nikki retrieving Yondu from his spiritual retreat.

Back on the Icarus, Vance Astro’s new black body-suit is being analysed by Aleta and a returning Martinex to learn everything about it. Vance and Martinex briefly butt heads over Martinex’s interference and surveillance, shortly before the rest of the crew return in shuttles. Martinex explains the absence of Yellowjacket and Talon while an unseen enemy plots.

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Now gathered together again, Martinex shows the results of Vance’s scan, revealing the body-suit to be a sympathetic bio-armour and not a symbiotic being as was first thought. The increased power he has displayed since he got it is simply a side effect of his transfusion by Hollywood, who arrives in time to point that out.

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Now that is resolved, Mainframe appears on one of the Icarus’ view screens and tells the team that they have the opportunity to prevent the war of the worlds. Considering this was  a huge event in history for the entire team, everyone is on ready to take on the mission, under the new leader of the Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain Charlie-27.

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The dawn of the 20th century and the martians are planning their attack on Earth, when they become aware of a massive temporal displacement.  Then they are shocked by the arrival of the Icarus, then amused by Charlie’s warning. So they open fire, despite the size and power of this unknown ship.

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The Guardians fire back, cripple the flagship, to make their point. The martian overlord is not put off and orders the attack. While the Icarus’ weapons are being made ready, Charlie deploys Hollywood, who with over a thousand years worth of rage built up smashes into the martian fleet and just lays waste to ship after ship.

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Charlie offers one more chance, is refused and fires a concentric energy tsunami which added to Hollywood’s kill total leaves 62% of the fleet destroyed and the rest of the martian fleet retreating back to their homeworld. As they head back to their own time, the hidden bad guy is revealed to be Wormhole, one of Loki’s Inhuman warriors who in revenge for their defeat of Loki’s plan in issue 43. He creates an escape portal before opening a much larger one in and around the Icarus.

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Their passage is quite jarring, the ship rocked this way and that and then they crash land, not knowing where or when they are in a crippled ship on an unknown planet. And it’s there that this tale has come to an end.

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Notes:

This is not the send off that the Guardians of the Galaxy deserved in some respects, but in others it makes a lot of sense. There has been an obvious link between the present day marvel universe and this one, with the War of the Worlds being an odd speed bump between the two, so this story tying up that story idea is sort of fitting.

Sandy Florea is a decent enough artist, but this was very much Kevin West’s book visually and his absence is felt.

Charlie-27 as team leader is such a good idea, with his military history and his good standing with the whole team most of the time makes him a more obvious choice than previous leaders like Martinex and Vance.

A better ending would’ve been a Guardians/War of the Worlds mini series and fleshed out the events that took place here, but that wasn’t to be and as result, this feels like a last minute rush of a series climax.

Wormhole being the villain who gets his revenge is kind of fun, considering the level of villains that this team has beaten, including this issue’s entire martian fleet.

There is a lovely little moment, where Charlie calls Nikki smouldylocks and she whispers “I love it when you call me that.” Just a lovely little moment between them,  just as the series ends.

NEXT TIME: One more hurrah as guest stars for the Guardians of the Galaxy.

 

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