SavageDragon50.jpgSAVAGE DRAGON #50

June 1998

Unfinished Business - 3 of 3

24 Pages

CREDITS

Erik Larsen: Creator / Writer / Penciller / Inker

Chris Eliopoulos: Letterer

I.H.O.C.: Colors
- Reuben Rude
- Abel Mouton
- Bill Zindel
- Lea Rude

Josh Eichorn: enjoys an evening of fatty snacks and malt liquor as well as the next slob

Vic Bridges & Terry Austin: Pin-Up (Freak Force)
Dave Johnson: Pin-Up (Dragon)
Chris Marrinan: Pin-Up (Dragon)
Walter Simonson: Pin-Up (Dragon)
Greg Capullo: Pin-Up (Dragon)
Todd McFarlane: Pin-Up (Dragon)
Rob Liefeld: Pin-Up (Dragon & Fighting American)
Erik Larsen: Pin-Up (Dragon)
Larry Marder: Pin-Up (Dragon)
Jeff Matsuda & Jonathan Sibal: Pin-Up (Dragon Universe)

HEROES

The Special Operations Strikeforce
- Dragon (Quits)
- Rock
- Barbaric
- Smasher
- SuperPatriot

Fon~Ti (First Appearance)

Mighty Man II

She-Dragon

SUPPORTING CHARACTERS

Chicago Police Department
- Lt. Frank Darling
- Detective William Jonson (Joins)
- Sgt. Alex Wilde
- Officer Bill Ford
- Officer Chris Robinson
- Officer Howard Niseman
- Officer Mercy Rodriguez
- Officer Ray Wong
- Officer Rita Medermade (Joins)
- Officer Vic Nixon

Ralph Jonson

Stephenson

VILLAINS

The Vicious Circle
- Horde (Death Issue)
- Abner Cadaver
- CyberFace (Death Issue)
- PowerHouse
- Octopus
- OpenFace
- BrainiApe
- Body Function (Joins) (Disbands)(Backfire, Belcher, Nasal Ned)
- Bandit
- Bludgeon II
- Brain-O
- Brawn
- Bud Ugly
- DownLoad
- Fever
- HellRazor
- Human-Sparkler
- Intruder
- MegaTech
- Rawdog
- RoadBlock
- Super-X
- UnderMind
- Vein
- Volcanic
- Washout

OverLord (Armor Only)

The Wicked Worm (Some Die)

SUMMARY

Hitler’s Brain fires his weapon at CyberFace that leaves him dazed; enabling him to use his telekinesis to separate the villain’s disembodied head from his own ape body. CyberFace’s head is then shot dead as the brain is reunited with the ape body and BrainiApe is reborn. Dragon threatens to shoot him dead unless the OverLord armor is surrendered. It is removed via telekinesis before BrainiApe throws it at Dragon, knocking him off of a rooftop only to land on Bud Ugly, who unwittingly cushions the fall.

The renegade Vicious Circle members have now been joined by Mako and they have taken Alex Wilde prisoner. Dragon informs them of CyberFace’s death but this news is shrugged off. PowerHouse states that they will use Dragon to rid them of Horde and they will use Alex as a hostage to ensure this is the case. As the villains escort their prisoners away, She-Dragon watches on from the shadows.

William Jonson and Rita Medermade arrive back in Chicago where Chris Robinson picks them up. They are unaware that Ralph Jonson is stalking them as they drive off with Chris catching up his passengers on recent news. Dragon sleeping with Alex has left Chris feeling devastated but a call comes through when She-Dragon alerts the rest of the Chicago Police Department to Dragon’s situation. They opt to respond and their rapid change of direction leaves Ralph unable to follow but he vows to claim revenge upon William sooner or later.

As Dragon accompanies the renegade Vicious Circle as they go to confront Horde, he notes that their headquarters is close to where the Underground Freaks used to live. This must have been the reason that Captain Mendosa had the police evict those super-freaks many months ago. Dragon is given a weapon containing a poison gas that should exterminate the Wicked Worms. He finally comes face-to-face with Horde who is now wielding the power gloves.

Horde physically attacks Dragon before having dozens of his leeches overwhelm his foe, hoping that their numbers will enable them to take possession of Dragon where one failed on its own. Dragon removes the leeches which causes the rest of the Vicious Circle present to join the fray. Abner Cadaver begins temporarily restoring the miniaturised members and they assault Dragon too.

The S.O.S. received a phone call from She-Dragon to alert them to the situation regarding Dragon and Rock enters into Stephenson’s office. He demands to take a team with him to aid Dragon but his threats are not needed as permission is given as Stephenson does not want Dragon harmed either. SuperPatriot opts out of joining the team as he has still not recovered from witnessing Dart’s injuries. Rock takes Smasher and Barbaric and they race towards Chicago in a flying saucer.

The Chicago Police Department reach the Vicious Circle’s Pipetown domain and do their best to defend an outnumbered Dragon. Dragon avoids strikes from Bludgeon as he then delivers a killing blow to Horde, although as the leeches begin to die, a figure emerges from their bodies. Chris, Rita and William catch up with their old colleagues but even though Dragon can sense that defeat is coming when all of the villains begin vying for Horde’s position. Dragon’s left arm is shot off but with no other options; he simply picks up the lost limb and uses it as a weapon to hit his foes.

The trio from the S.O.S. arrives just in time and their arrival begins to turn the tide of the battle. In the confusion, someone takes possession of the OverLord armor and flees with it. Bludgeon recognises his brother Chris Robinson amongst the cops and reveals his own true identity to him. Mighty Man bursts onto the scene and any conscious villains realise that they now have no chance. BrainiApe leads them all in retreat, noting that they can fight amongst themselves at a later date.

Abner Cadaver remains and he claims to have been the true force behind Horde and CyberFace, they were merely his pawns. He casts a spell upon Dragon so that he can finally rid himself of the greatest threat to his plans. Dragon’s body begins to dissolve into nothingness but William Jonson strikes down Cadaver. Dragon continues to dissolve and runs towards William, vanishing from sight as they make contact. All of hero’s friends look on and mourn the apparent death of Dragon…



SavageDragon50bu1.jpgBACKUP STORY

“Mighty Man and the Critter Crime Wave”

9 Pages

CREDITS

Gary Carlson: Writer / Colorist

Bill Fugate: Artist

HEROES

Mighty Man

SUPPORTING CHARACTERS

Philip T. Luker (First Appearance)

VILLAINS

The Wicked Worm (First Appearance)

SUMMARY

Back in the 1940s, boy radio announcer Bobby Berman is rewarded with a bonus for gaining higher ratings than he has ever received before. He takes his new cheque to the bank to cash it and is shocked to discover a talking lion that is dressed like a normal human and is robbing the bank. Bobby transforms into his alter-ego of Mighty Man and makes short work of his foe with a single punch. The animal seems to revert to its normal bestial state, leaving the hero confused by the events, and determined to reach the bottom of the case.

A kangaroo and then a gorilla are also discovered performing robberies and it is against the latter animal that Mighty Man discovers the cause of the crime wave. A small leech-like creature attacks the hero and bites his finger, actually harming him like nothing ever has, through the invulnerability. The child-hero calls the creature a wicked worm and the name sticks.

The Wicked Worm attempts to hide in a fruit basket but the gorilla takes a bite out of the banana and reveals a severed body of the leech. Mighty Man gathers up the remains of the Wicked Worm and decides to keep it stored inside a jar where it can be preserved and studied to learn its origins.



SavageDragon50bu2.jpgBACKUP STORY

Freak Force #0

22 Pages

CREDITS

Erik Larsen and Vic Bridges: Storytellers

Al Gordon: Inker

Chris Eliopoulos: Letterer

I.H.O.C.: Colors
- Reuben Rude
- Abel Mouton
- Bill Zindel
- Lea Rude

HEROES

The Special Operations Strikeforce
- Dart
- SuperPatriot

Past:-

Freak Force
- Dragon (Quits)
- Dart
- Barbaric
- Horridus
- Mighty Man II (Joins)
- Rapture
- Ricochet
- SuperPatriot (Joins)

SUPPORTING CHARACTERS

Alison Summers

Past:-

Captain James Stewart

Major Jake Farrell

Phyllis Deeder

VILLAINS

Past:-

The Annihilators
- CyberFace
- Animal
- Bloop
- DeathMask
- Dung
- LowBlow
- MindWarp
- Outrage
- Shard
- Ultimatum

Chelsea Nirvana

Master Atom (First Appearance) (Death Issue)

SUMMARY

Dart tells her niece the origins of her former superhero team known as Freak Force. She explains how the team used to be apart of the Chicago police force before costume restrictions forced them out. The freaks first came into contact with the new Mighty Man while in combat with the rebel villains known as the Annihilators.

She then reveals how she warned Mighty Man that he may have to pick up the slack that will be created when they leave the police. The immensely powerful hero’s roommate suggests that they form their own team and use their apartment as a temporary headquarters until a better one can be found. The idea of Phyllis Deeder’s rings true to her best friend and the decision to keep Freak Force was made.

SuperPatriot rejects an offer to join with the government on a permanent contract and is contacted and convinced to join the fledgling young team of Freak Force by his old teammate in the Liberty League. The two heroes make their way to their new team and find them just in time to help destroy the android villain known as Master Atom, disappointing the woman who had unleashed the being.

The team were together for the first time and returned to their apartment headquarters where they plan out their agendas. Dart met the living legend known as SuperPatriot for the first time that day and they have forged a friendship together that is stronger today than ever before. The cyborg hero wheels his crippled teammate out if her niece’s room and leave young Alison Summers with a brief message, embrace life while you can or it may be taken away from you.



SavageDragon50bu3.jpgBACKUP STORY

“Mighty Man and the Wicked Worm’s Circus of Evil!”

8 Pages

CREDITS

Gary Carlson: Writer / Colourist

Bill Fugate: Artist

HEROES

Mighty Man

SUPPORTING CHARACTERS

Ma Becker (First Appearance)

VILLAINS

The Wicked Worm

SUMMARY

A tiger robs a jewellery store dressed as an elderly woman and the familiarity of this crime sparks suspicion in Mighty Man. Bobby Berman heads home where his landlady reveals that she accidentally knocked over the jar that had contained the Wicked Worm’s remains. The lower half of the leech is still there and so Bobby believes that the top half regenerated a new tail and has escaped.

Bobby investigates the recent crimes performed by animals and is surprised to learn that no animals have gone missing from the local zoo. A passing child mentions going to the circus and Bobby transforms into his alter ego over to the entertainment event. Mighty Man locates the Wicked Worm riding an elephant but another elephant arrives with another leech that claims to be the Wicked Worm.

Mighty Man watches on as the two leeches realise that they are the same person and that the bottom half of the original had also regenerated. The Wicked Worms join forces and hope to use their animal steeds to trample their foe but the dog of Bobby Berman’s lady scares the animals. The leeches fall from their hosts and are captured by Mighty Man.



SavageDragon50bu4.jpgBACKUP STORY

“The Dragon/Kaboom: Basic Training”

5 Pages

CREDITS

Jeph Loeb: Writer

Jeff Matsuda: Penciller

Jonathan Sibal: Inker

Chris Eliopoulos: Letterer

I.H.O.C.: Colors

HEROES

Dragon

GUEST HEROES

Awesome

Kaboom
The Zang

VILLAINS

The Vicious Circle
- LowBlow
- OpenFace

SUMMARY

The young hero known as Kaboom is given a training session by Dragon who is helping out an old friend, the Zang. A boxing match is scheduled and Kaboom does relatively well before eventually getting knocked out by a simple finger flick from Dragon. As the teenager recovers, Dragon offers him an invitation to the wedding of Barbaric and Ricochet.



SavageDragon50bu5.jpgBACKUP STORY

Savage Dragon # ½ (Reprint)

9 Pages

CREDITS

Erik Larsen: Creator / Writer / Penciller / Inker

Chris Eliopoulos: Letterer

I.H.O.C.: Colors
- Reuben Rude
- Abel Mouton
- Bill Zindel
- Lea Rude
- John Zaia
- Jose Arenas

Kell-O-Graphics: Film Output

Garrett Chin: Chief Executive

Josh Eichorn: Reads Wizard Magazine

HEROES

Dragon

Rapture

VILLAINS

The Covenant of the Sword
- The Covenant Drones

Horde

SUMMARY

Rapture is crouched down by the gravesite of her recently deceased newborn son when she is startled by the arrival of Dragon. He apologises to her over how he had treated her the past few weeks but Rapture remains upset about it all. She calls Dragon out over his lack of trust in her and how he abandoned her during the months that she was carrying his unborn child.

Dragon admits that he messed up but points out that the extenuating circumstances regarding his believed sterility and the Peter Klaptin videotape affected his judgment. He points out that Rapture is the first long-term relationship that he remembers having and it has not been easy. Dragon does not want their relationship to end in this manner but it is clear to Rapture that he does want an ending.

The fact that Phil Dirt died as a result of blood transfusion and now their son having died, Rapture believes that whatever makes Dragon the man he is also prevents another of him being created. As she desires to have children, perhaps it is a good idea that they break up now rather than a few years down the line. The couple reconcile before parting company, unaware that they are being monitored by an agent of the Covenant of the Sword. Their child had been replaced by a drone and is now being raised to support their group, neither parent having any idea that their son still lives.

Dragon stops by the grave of Phil Dirt and apologises for inadvertently causing his death, even if it was Phil’s idea to use his blood in the first place. Dragon feels guilty about several deaths that he blames himself over. Debbie Harris’s murder, those he killed whilst possessed, presumably his own son and Phil all weigh heavily on his soul.

As Dragon departs, one of the leeches drops down from a tree and attempts to take possession of him once more. Dragon refuses to be a pawn of another again and struggles to remove the creature before crushing it to death. This incident is reported back by another leech as it returns to Horde. The villain shrugs off the setback as Dragon is the only person now immune to his poison and he will eventually enslave all of humanity and lay claim to the entire world.

NOTE: This story continues from SAVAGE DRAGON #33

NOTE: This story continues into SAVAGE DRAGON #34




BACKUP STORY

SavageDragon50bu6.jpg“Mighty Man Battles the Conqueror Worm!”

7 Pages

NOTE: This story is reprinted from SAVAGE DRAGON #½ and is set entirely in the past

CREDITS

Erik Larsen: Editor & Creator

Gary Carlson : Writer

John Thompson : Artist

Reuben Rude & I.H.O.C.: Colors

HEROES

Mighty Man

SUPPORTING CHARACTERS

Philip T. Luker
Miss Eando (First Appearance)

VILLAINS

The Wicked Worm

SUMMARY

The boy reporter Bobby Berman completes his latest radio news broadcast which featured his alter ego of Mighty Man saving lives. He is asked to speak with his boss Philip Luker who abruptly fires the youngster, citing his constant reporting on Mighty Man. As the upset boy leaves his former employer’s office, the secretary Miss Eando is pleased that Bobby has been fired, sending him home to his parents.

Bobby suspects something has gone wrong as Miss Eando is fully aware that he is an orphan and knows of only one entity capable of controlling minds, the Wicked Worm. Bobby races to the prison where the two Wicked Worms are incarcerated, only to learn that they have escaped. Mighty Man returns to the radio station where he removes the two leeches from the necks of his friends.

The Wicked Worms then announce that since they were first apprehended that they have been dividing themselves so that their numbers could increase through regeneration. This horde of leeches attempt to overwhelm Mighty Man but he keeps his neck clean. The World’s Mightiest Man then spins around as super-speed to send the leeches all flying. Mighty Man proceeds to squash all of the Wicked Worms that he could find but is not certain that he got them all.



NOTE: This issue features DESPERATE TIMES by Chris Eliopoulos