Appearing in "The Hammer Strikes!"Edit
- Hammer Industries
- Hammer's Super-Army
- Ling McPherson (First appearance)
- Princess Grace (Mentioned)
- Ant-Man (Only in flashback)
- Sergei Kotznin (Only in flashback)
- Avengers (Only in flashback)
- Bambi (Only in flashback)
- Tricky Dick (Mentioned)
- Jacques Cousteau (Mentioned)
Races and Species:
- Iron Man Armor Model 4
- Blizzard Armor
- Constrictor's Battlesuit
- Beetle Armor MK I
- Melting Ray MK III
- Leap-Frog's Suit
- Captain America's Shield (Only in flashback)
- Captain America's Uniform (Only in flashback)
- Falcon's Wings (Only in flashback)
- Ms. Marvel's Suit (Only in flashback)
- Ant-Man's Helmet (Only in flashback)
- Ant-Man's Suit (Only in flashback)
Synopsis for "The Hammer Strikes!"Edit
The story opens in a beach of Monaco, where Jim Rhodes tries to explains his recent actions to the local police. They are surrounded by an angry crowd, which calls Rhodes an American pig and a Yankee hoodlum. Rhodes claims that a few minutes before, this whole beach was covered with armed goons. He was just fighting for his life. Someone then knocked his head and left him unconscious. He claims that his opponents left the beach while he was passed out. The crowd claims that Americans are liars, just like Tricky Dick. They blame Rhodes for destroying the beach, and want to teach him a lesson.
The police arrests Rhodes and one of the ringleaders of the angry crowd, intending to question them at the police headquarters. Rhodes wants the police to go after the goons, because they have abducted his boss. Rhodes further claims that he works for Tony Stark. The police officer in charge of the situation does not believe that Rhodes has any connection to Stark. He mocks Rhodes for his claim.
An extended flashback begins The flashback begins with Iron Man fighting against the Blizzard, the Melter, and Whiplash. The battle hinted at a master plan behind the villains, and it was connected to a mysterious man who was called "Hammer". Iron Man had little time to consider these clues or the existence of a possible conspiracy. The battle had caused a rift between himself and Bethany Cabe.
The flashback continues. Iron Man sought to lose himself in his work. He served as a representative for Stark International at a contract-signing ceremony for a foreign ambassador. The repulsor of the armor malfunctioned and killed the ambassador. The crowd of bystanders viewed Iron Man as a murdered. He was shocked to see the same accusation in Bethany's eyes. He managed to convince the police that the death was caused by a systems failure. The police then insisted on impounding the armor. Tony Stark reacted to the tragedy by starting to constantly consume whiskey. He eventually pulled himself together, and became determined to clear Iron Man's name. He informed the Avengers that he would temporarily step down from his position as their chairman.
The flashback continues. Tony Stark requested and received intense martial arts training from Captain America. Using martial arts was not as effective as using his armor, but it felt good to Tony. He enlisted his employee Scott Lang, sending him to interrogate the incarcerated Whiplash about "Mr. Hammer". Lang used his Ant-Man alter ego to get persuasive. Tony used the garnered information to follow the trail to Monaco, accompanied by his private pilot Jim Rhodes. They were soon surrounded by armed soldiers and got into a fight. While Stark and Rhodes were trying to escape, they ended up on a deserted beach. Then an amphibious landing craft appeared, blocking their path, and unloading an army of costumed combatants. Tony was able to hold his own in battle, and Rhodes turned out to be even more effective in combat. But then Rhodes was knocked out, and seconds later Tony was also knocked out. The soldiers proceeded to remove all evidence of their part in this battle, abandoned Rhodes at the edge of the bathing area, and dragged the unconscious Tony to their amphibious craft. The craft traveled in the Mediterranean Sea. The flashback ends.
In the present, Tony Stark awakes at Justin Hammer's Villa and comes face-to-face with Justin Hammer himself. Hammer introduces himself and claims that Tony is his primary competitor. Tony points out that he had never even heard of Hammer. Hammer replies that he goes to great lengths to avoid official attention. He distributes his influence among a great many diverse enterprises. His power and holdings in the business world are second only to those of Tony Stark. Stark International has been a thorn in his side for some time. Hammer reveals that they recently competed for the contract with Carnelia. He had made a generous offer to the ambassador to get that contract. The ambassador chose Stark International instead, because he was fascinated with Iron Man.
Hammer leads Stark to a board room, where Phillip Barnett is working on opening Stark's briefcase. Phillip reports that he and his team have been, so far, unable to override the print-lock mechanism of the briefcase. Hammer warns them not to damage the briefcase, in case it contains something important. Stark contemplates that his spare armor is in that case. Hammer introduces Barnett as the man who developed the computer system of the room. The system utilizes a hypersonic scan technique to bypass the protective coating of Iron Man's armor.
While Rhodes explains his predicament to the Monaco police Tony awakens at Hammer's villa, face-to-face with Hammer himself. Hammer explains that he is a business rival of Stark International and that he struck at Iron Man because Kotznin gave Carnelia's business over to Stark. Hammer displays the machine he and Barnett used to control the Iron Man armor. Tony tries to escape the Villa but discovers that it is an immense floating craft in the ocean. Tony is locked up but quickly outsmarts the guard and escapes. As he sneaks through the Villa he sees a helicopter deposit Blizzard, Melter and Whiplash on the premises, newly sprung from Riker's Island. Using a belt which doubles as a grappling line, Tony breaks into Barnett's lab and reclaims his attache case. Hammer receives word that Tony has escaped and sends all the costumed criminals in his employ to find him, but when they reach the lab they find Iron Man waiting for them.
- As seen on page one, this issue is Story# LG 496.
- This issue contains a letters page, "Printed Circuits". Letters are published from Blair Young, Jon Green, Brian Wenzel, and Lynn Gibbs.
- The issue makes mention of Richard Nixon's reputation for lying. Richard Nixon, nicknamed Tricky Dick, was President of the United States from 1969 to 1974. He was elected twice, representing the Republican Party. He was forced to resign the office, following the investigation of the Watergate scandal. The scandal involved Nixon financing his own team of operatives for the wiretapping of the Democratic Party's headquarters in Washington, D.C.. After Nixon repeatedly denied his involvement in the scandal, Nixon's habit of covertly tape-recording his conversations provided evidence against him. He had recorded incriminating conversations. The scandal solidified Nixon's reputation for corruption and encouraged the American public's distrust of their own government. The Marvel issue was published in 1979, only 5 years following Nixon's resignation.
- The officer who arrests Jim Rhodes, mockingly claims to work for Jacques Cousteau. Jacques Cousteau (1910-1997) was a famous French explorer, marine conservationist, and documentary filmmaker. He devoted his life to the study of the sea and of aquatic lifeforms. Cousteau did pioneering research in underwater diving and marine archaeology, improved the technology used for diving, and filmed a large number of his expeditions. He became a household name for much of the 20th century. His ship, the Calypso, was among the most famous ships of the era.
- This issue is reprinted in other comics and books, see references for more info.
- No trivia.
Links and ReferencesEdit
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