FORCE WORKS #1-3 (1994): 1st Scatter

The cover to #1 of this series was a pop-up. That’s really all you NEED to know. Force Works was another example of gimmicks and appearance over content. Most ’90s Marvel fit this model.

West Coast Avengers descended into sub-mediocrity and was rebranded Avengers West Coast, which was worse. That series ended and we got Force Works. Tony Stark assembles a team that, instead of “avenging” crime, will stop it before it starts. They have a supercomputer that can predict the future, that’s how they’ll do their missions. Tony names the new team Force Works. I guess he thought “The Preventers” wouldn’t be catchy. And speaking of not catchy, these are the guys he assembles:

Iron Man (himself), Wonder Man and Scarlet Witch are all wicked powerful, so they make sense against cosmic threats. Spider-Woman…OK. I guess so. But U.S. Agent? He’s just terrible. But he’s rebranding himself as simply “The Agent.”

Scarlet Witch is both drawn and portrayed as a sexpot. She deserves better than that.

The first adventure involves preventing a Kree attack on Earth (which started at the end of the Avengers West Coast series), and Black Widow and Vision come along. The Kree have a special weapon that only hurts Vision and Wonder Man.

Oh, and there’s a Rigellan Recorder in the cast too.

Tenney’s art is good–reminiscent of George Perez.

The weapon are The Scatter. They’ll appear in a few more stories but nothing really worth noting about them.

They’re just a generic bunch of swarming aliens.

Wonder Man dies trying to stop them. That guy on the cover of #2 is Century, aka Parallax.

He also becomes a “kind of” team member.

He knows a lot of crap.

I will say that at least this story takes three issues to try to get us to care about another generic space dude with a boring name. Three issues to introduce someone is much more than any of the X-books bother to do in this era of Marvel.

Wanda becomes leader of the team.

OK. That’s what this book will continue to be: Big nonsensical fights. It’s 1994.

Abnett and Lanning, as a writing team, will get much better. They’re learning how to write “big cosmic” in this series. Again, nothing really bad here but nothing really great–and more boring than fun.

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