Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Warlord Wednesday: Back in the U.S.S.R.

Let's re-enter the lost world with another installment of my issue by issue examination of DC Comic's Warlord, the earlier installments of which can be found here...

"Back in the U.S.S.R."
Warlord (vol. 1) #52 (December 1981)

Written and Illustrated by Mike Grell; inked by Robin Rodriguez

Synopsis: In the Terminator, the twilight zone between Skartaris and the outer Earth, Morgan trudges through a snowstorm. His only guide in the trackless waste is his compass and its pointing due south.

Getting lost isn’t the only danger. A looming shape out of the blowing snows reveals itself to be a wayward (and hungry) polar bear. With the bears reach, Morgan’s sword isn’t of much use, but he has his pistol and is able to dispatch the beast.

Meanwhile, in Castle Deimos, Shakira, Tara, and Faaldren worry over Jennifer. She’s still in a catatonic state, and none of them know what Deimos might have done to produce it--or how to reverse it. Tara is more worried about Morgan. She decides to go after him, and Shakira demands to accompany her.

The two ride out, Shakira in cat form on Tara’s fur-cloaked shoulder. They’re united in purpose, if not exactly on friendly terms. They leave Jennifer in Faaldren’s attentive care.

Out in the wastes, Morgan is worried he hasn’t seen Skartaris’ eternal sun yet. He mounts a rise and sees dawn breaking on the horizon--and realizes he’s been going the wrong way and is in the outer world! From the North Pole, all compass directions are south, he now recalls (which isn’t really right either, but Morgan’s science has never been the best). The only thing he can do is retrace his steps and go the opposite way.

He hasn’t gone far when he hears something coming toward him from the horizon:

A Soviet MiG “Foxbat!” The pilot turns and circles back--he spotted Morgan. He strafes at him with his machine guns, and Morgan defiantly shoots back with his pistol.

The pilot turns for another pass. Morgan reloads. He knows his chances are slim, but he’s determined to make a stand. The plane comes straight for him, but Mogan holds his ground:

Miraculously, he puts two bullets through the canopy, and one of those hits the pilot in the head. Morgan drops to the ground as the out of control jet passes right over him, then crashes a distance away.

Pretty pleased with himself, Morgan blows on the barrel of his gun, before twirling it around his finger and holstering in Western movie style.

He resumes his trek, but things aren’t going to be that easy. A familiar sound causes him to turn and look back at the plane’s wreckage. A helicopter is coming in for a landing!

Things to Notice:
  • Morgan seems to have (slightly) warmer clothing now than when he left Castle Deimos.
  • Morgan's compass comes out of nowhere.
Where It Comes From:
The title of this issue comes from a 1968 Beatles' song appearing on the White Album (actually titled The Beatles, according to Wikipedia).  It was released as a single in 1976.

"Foxbat" was the NATO reporting name for the MiG-25.  As Morgan knows it from the early stages--the prototype flew in 1964--but it didn't enter service until 1970, after he was in Skartaris.


Jimmy Simpson said...

It's issue 52.

netherwerks said...

Perhaps Morgan carried his compass just like Bruce Willis' dad carried that watch in Pulp Fiction?

The Angry Lurker said...

Thanks for that image NetherWerks:D

Trey said...

Well, he doesn't have any pockets, that's for sure.