Nick Fury and His Agents of SHIELD #4 [1973]

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Two STRANGE TALES reprints from 1966 in this issue, the SHIELD stories from #152 and #153, both drawn by Jim Steranko over Kirby layouts, both edited down to 11 pages from the original 12. Steranko would of course take over the full art in the next issue.

“The Power of SHIELD” starts with Fury trapped on a runaway plane with the Overkill Horn, about to be shot out of the sky by SHIELD. Meanwhile, back below the ruins of Karnopolis, the Supreme Hydra switches identities for the next phase of his plans.

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He leaves just in time, as Fury is able to escape from the plane before SHIELD’s attack hits and redirects the plane to Karnopolis, which is destroyed when SHIELD’s Strato-Mine homes in on the Overkill Horn. Fury then leads a rescue of the daughter of the previous Supreme Hydra, who had helped him escape earlier. The story finishes with a pretty funny scene of Jasper Sitwell, temporarily in charge of SHIELD, trying to smoke one of Fury’s cigars.

Next up is “The Hiding Place”, which opens with Fury getting a shave at the SHIELD barber shop, so I guess it’s more than a front for the entrance to the SHIELD base. Anyway, as he cleans up, the car that Gabe and Jasper are taking the rescued daughter to safety in is attacked, and Fury and Dum Dum Dugan are off to the rescue. As they are, though, the new Supreme Hydra changes faces yet again, this time to that of a SHIELD agent they captured, and infiltrates SHIELD HQ, leading the forces that go to help fight off the Hydra attack and capturing his own men to win Fury’s confidence.

Just Kirby layouts, of course, and Steranko at the time was quickly developing his own style, but at this point a lot of the Kirby comes out both from the layouts and Steranko’s own work being influenced by Kirby. The SHIELD stories are really plot heavy at this point, with a lot of twists in the half-issues they got.

Published 1973

1 thought on “Nick Fury and His Agents of SHIELD #4 [1973]

  1. inkdestroyedmybrush

    always thought that the steranko stories were a bizarre mix, with all the little noodly steranko rendering on top of the powerful kirby layouts. they almost seemed to be fighting each other, which steranko I think rather admits to years later. Unlike woody inking jack on the skyhuters strips where the rendering clearly works iwth the layouts.

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