Saturday, August 17, 2013

Patsy Walker: Hellcat - The Fault in our Stars, 1st excerpt - R.A. Wonsowski

For the next 3 weeks (or more, depending on the picks), I'm going to try to do an interconnected narrative.  Marvel's INFINITY is starting up, and Bendis's GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY is firing on all cylinders, but they haven't quite gotten around to explaining how they survived Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning's excellent THANOS IMPERATIVE.

THE THANOS IMPERATIVE introduced the concept of the Cancerverse, which was revealed to be on the other side of a Fault in time and space.  The Cancerverse is a Lovecraft-inspired dimension where "Death has died", and the Marvel characters are all immortal worshipers of elder gods.  At the end of the miniseries, (SPOILER ALERT!!) the Fault is closed and a universal apocalypse is averted.

And so, this little experiment.  The set-up:  MANTIS, the precog Celestial Madonna, has augured that another Fault is to open just "above" our Milky Way.  To prevent the dark elder gods known as the Many-Angled Ones from crossing over, MANTIS assembles her own team of "Annihilators" to combat the threat...


Panel 1 - We are in a small apartment kitchenette.  There is no table or chairs, due to the size.  PATSY WALKER, still in her HELLCAT costume but with the cowl down, closes her pantry closet door with one hand, holding a package of Chips'o'Yeah cookies in the other.  A glass of milk is already poured on the counter.  Standing nest to the refrigerator is MANTIS (in her Guardians uniform), pleading her case, and CLEA, the on-again-off-again girlfriend of Doctor Strange, arms crossed and considering the dirty dishes in the sink with distaste.

PATSY:  And please don't think I'm being rude here, but why aren't you at Avengers Tower for the big guns?

MANTIS:  One of the downsides of being precognitive is that most people consider my gifts as nothing more than making hunches that I go out of my way to make not come true...

Panel 2 - PATSY hops up to sit on the counter next to her glass of milk.  CLEA (who looks privately annoyed) and MANTIS (who looks a bit apologetic) continue...

PATSY:  ...and most of the Avengers are men of reason and science, gods with their own agenda, or, in Tony's case, both.  So...

CLEA:  (with a little bitterness) So, no Defenders either.  If Agamotto doesn't see it, Stephen doesn't want to know about it.

Panel 3 - PATSY pulls a cookie from the bag as MANTIS and CLEA go on.

MANTIS:  Clea and I haven't been of this world in quite some time.  We were hoping you could help us with a few more--

PATSY:  Well, I get together with a couple of the girls on Wednesdays for bowling.  I've got two Captain Marvels on my team, and one of them's a pilot...

Panel 4 - PATSY smiles to herself as she dunks a cookie into her milk.  MANTIS smiles in approval, but CLEA still has a look of concern.

PATSY:  I'll make some calls.  Maybe we can get a Quinjet with a star drive out of it...

PATSY:  Yeah, count me in.

CLEA:  Are you sure?  Our road leads to the madness of the beyond.

Panel 5 - Close-up, PATSY, taking a bite from her dunked cookie, munching in one cheek, the other corner of her mouth curved up in a knowing smile.  Her other hand extends the open end of the cookie package toward us.

PATSY:  My ex-husband is the son of Satan.  LITERALLY.  Doesn't get more "many-angled" than that.  I'm in.

PATSY:  ...Cookie?

...up next:  Annihilators Assemble!


  1. Great page RA.

    I especially like "Doesn't get more "many-angled" than that."

    Great characterisation at work here.

    I look forward to the next installment.

  2. A beautifully paced page that is just full of characterisation and voice. It's these kind of slow character beats that I love to read during huge universe changing events.

    Thoroughly engrossing start. Great to see you come at this with such huge scope.


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