CAPTAIN AMERICA #357-362 (1989): Bloodstone Hunt; 1st Crossbones; original Zemo lives again (not!)

A six-part saga.

Batroc and his buddies Zaran and Machete are hired by Baron Zemo to steal the bones of Ulysses Bloodstone.

Zemo also hires Tristam Micawber the Psychic Detective.

He “reads” the bones (last seen in Rampaging Hulk magazine, which you can find here) to learn Bloodstone’s history and discovers that the legendary bloodstone gem was shattered into pieces. Helmut Zemo wants to bring his daddy back from the dead, and believes that the mythic Bloodstone will help him do it.  It’s the stone that gave power to Man-Wolf, Mummy, and others–so the story lets us hear a bit about those characters, too.

Basically, it’s another “quest for pieces of a rock” story.  A common trope.

Diamondback (who tries to stop them), and they put her in same crate the skeleton had been in.  Creepy!

Cap rushes in to rescue her. After an extended deathtrap sequence inspired by Raiders of the Lost Ark, he gets her back and they undertake to track down the pieces of the stone.

Everyone ends up in the Amazon captured by a tribe of bloodstone-empowered worshippers.

This is a little silly and culturally offensive.

Of course they all get free and then it’s more “racing to get the stone.”

Cap fights the Living Mummy to get a piece.

“I have to revise my estimate of his fighting prowess.” Come on, Gruenwald. You’re over-writing.

Cap searches for a piece underwater and punches a shark.

And there’s a third party searching for the stone fragments…


Crossbones! He takes the Avengers plane being flown by John Jameson, and he and Cap face off.

Crossbones is working for Red Skull, and they’re a third cohort looking for the shard of Bloodstone.

Crossbones is a badass.

In the final chapter, Heinrich is revived.

But Crossbones kills him by shooting the bloodstone gem, off his undead head.

And his son falls to his death. We don’t see the body, thgough, so…He’s not dead.

There’s also a series of back-up stories here about USAgent tracking the new Scourge, who is of course busy killing all kinds of bad dudes. 

His target is Curtiss “Power Broker” Jackson.  I don’t care for US Agent, and I don’t appreciate Scourge morphing from a sniper assassin to a full-blown action hero who goes toe-to-toe with a superhero.

The back-ups end with Scourge being captured by USAgent, and then being shot by an unseen sniper–just like what happened the last time a Scourge got caught.

Note: issue #357 starts with a Teen Cap story holding over from the prior story arc.

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