Marvel Super-Heroes #13: "Where Stalks The Sentry!"

Marvel Super-Heroes #13
"Where Stalks The Sentry!"
March, 1968

STAN (The Man) LEE
Lovingly Lords It Over A
Culmination Of Co-Creation!

Embellished By:  Lettered By:

Reviewed By:

Within the confines of a dingy hotel room... not far away from one of
America's missile-testing bases... a being from the Kree galaxy is
constructing a device which will prolong his survival on Earth...  The
uni-beam wrist-blaster is almost finished.  If he is to battle against
more of the planet's forces... Captain Mar-Vell will be in possession of
a far mightier weapon than ever before.

A conflict is inevitable, for he is of the Kree... an alien race which
contains thousands upon thousands of solar systems under its control...
and as a soldier of the Kree, he is honor bound to dispatch any threat.
If this is not his world, then why should he care what will happen to it?
It had been the Earth men who have caused the destruction of the Sentry.
The uni-beam has now been converted from handgun to wrist-blaster.  He
will continue to carry the pistol frame in the cylinder... in case it is
needed again.  His right wrist now carries the perfect, all-purpose
weapon...  On his left wrist is the monitor band... which enables Yon-
Rogg to communicate with him at any time.  Such is the colonel's hatred
of Mar-Vell, that he has sent him on a solo mission... in hopes that the
captain would meet his death.  With only one capsule of breathing potion
left, he must drink it... and return to the starship for more.

The hotel clerk watches as the guest heads off in the middle of the
night.  He eyes the strange suitcase, and wonders if the silver-haired
man works at the cape.  After perusing the register, he sees the name of
"C. Marvel" and wonders what type of name is that for a common man.  The
inquisitive clerk then remembers that the guest left without paying his
bill.  The man from another planet continues on his way for the ship...
where Medic Una will be giving him more of the breathing potion.  She is
the one he loves, the one from which Yon-Rogg has sent him away from.
Mar-Vell can only wonder when the mission will end, so that they may be
together once more.  Outside of the small town, the starship has been
contacted, and is about to leave orbit.  At its current speed, it should
arrive in moments.  The captain decides to put the time to good use by
checking out his new wrist lens.

RRRRAKK!!  The regular blaster is too bulky a weapon, especially if he is
traveling in disguise as an Earthling.  With modifications, the
wrist-lens is readied for testing.  BTAP!  A tree which has stood in the
same spot for years... now stands no longer.  SPTAK!  A large boulder
shatters into a thousand pieces.  Mar-Vell is certain that none on the
planet has ever felt the feeling of wielding such power.  The time has
come for a test of a different kind.  As the pieces continue their
outward motion, the lens is adjusted for the opposite effect...

In that moment, an artificial magnetic core is created at the point which
the uni-beam strikes.  The core pulls with such strength that the
metallic contents of the pieces are halted... then pulled together
towards the center... and are reformed... into the shape of the former
boulder.  The lens has passed the test and Kree science is shown to be
second to none.  Surely no other star-spawned race has ever come up with
such a device.  When used in a certain manner, the damage done can be
undone -- and be put right.  The monitor on his wrist senses the approach
of the starship.  The captain dons helmet and battle suit... so that he
may meet the spacecraft in person.

The cylinder is buried within the soil.  It will not be found by the
Earthlings.  The jet-belt has also been modified, and should operated as
well as the blaster.  VROOOOOOOMM  The Kree ship has leveled off and is
now hovering.  No Earthman may see it through its aura of negatism, save
for those with the eyes of... a Kree.  Mar-Vell is anxious to have his
reunion with Medic Una... and to hold her in his arms once more.  Even as
the captain speeds on his way... the cold eyes of Yon-Rogg follow his
every move...  The colonel plans to lean on the laser-beam activator...
so that the death of Captain Mar-Vell may be deemed an accident.  Una
sees what Yon-Rogg is up to... and screams for him to stop.
Unfortunately for her, the other crew members have been told by the
colonel that she is suffering from the strain.

Yon-Rogg orders the poor girl to be locked in her room... and while she
insists in him being a murderer, she is dragged away by the crewmen.  Now
alone in the forward cabin, the colonel watches as Mar-Vell's position is
at three deutrons distance... slightly less than an Earth mile.  In a few
more seconds the captain will be in the proper range.  At that exact
moment... a private plane comes swooping out of the clouds...  With the
Kree starship invisible to it... the pilot has enough time to stare at
the flying figure heading towards him...

BUH-ROOOOM!  The destruct-laser.... has been beamed from the starship...
just as the small plane has flown between them.  The plane is torn apart
and the concussion sends the captain hurtling downwards.

Yon-Rogg sees that Mar-Vell was only stunned, while the private plane
took the brunt of the destruct-laser.  A second strike is unlikely...
since the colonel wants the incident to appear to be an accident.  He can
only do one thing... and he will.  Seconds have past, with the Kree
soldier once again on solid ground...  The starship has gone... back in
orbit above the Earth.  Yon-Rogg will no doubt claim that the mission had
been compromised... and will not be blamed for abandoning Mar-Vell on
Earth.  SWOOOSH!  The captain goes to see if the pilot of the small plane
is still alive.  Although he was the intended victim... it was the pilot
who paid the price.  After sifting through the wreckage, the captain
finds the body, and some identification.  The man's name was Walter
Lawson... a missile guidance systems expert... who was on his way to the
base on reassignment.  If the papers were to be subtly changed, his
mission could continue... and he would be able to enter the cape itself.
With his breathing potion gone, the Kree soldier can only survive less
than an hour without the aid of his helmet.

Within the Kree starship... Medic Una has created more of the breathing
potion, knowing that Mar-Vell had been on his way for more of it.  After
administering some morpheo-gas through a ventilator shaft, the gas takes
effect within a minute.  SSSSSSSS  The colonel and his crew are unable to
stay awake.  The girl uses the transferral machine to beam the breathing
potion to Mar-Vell, wherever he may be.  The captain has removed his
uniform in order to return to his hotel room... and don his helmet once
more.  He sees the glowing circle appear... and with it, a capsule of the
breathing potion sent by Medic Una.  With this in his possession, the
next part of his mission on Earth may begin.

The following morning finds a sergeant inspecting the altered papers of
Walter Lawson.  As the officer pores over the papers, he comments on the
strange happenings which occurred on the previous evening.  Doctor Lawson
is allowed entry, and when asked if he needs help with his heavy bag, he
declines the kind offer.  The following days find Captain Mar-Vell
adjusting to life at the cape...  He sees that the Earthlings are behind
the Kree... in nearly all aspects of missile research.  Although they are
as infants when it comes to space travel... their rate of progress in
technology may prove to be a challenge to the Kree... if they are not
prevented in time.  Thanks to the coffee break, "Walter Lawson" is able
to take his "medicine" once every hour.  A week after his masquerade has
begun... General Bridges, the commander of the cape wants Doctor Lawson
to accompany him.

They head for a reinforced hangar... which is under constant heavy guard.
He had been trying to come up with a way to enter, and now, Mar-Vell has
been granted entry by the base commander himself.  Once inside, the
general shows Doctor Lawson the reason for the heavy security.  A
thirty-foot robot from another world, to be exact.  "Lawson" recognizes
it as Intergalactic Sentry #459... whose subsequent disappearance was the
reason for his solo mission on Earth.  General Bridges and Doctor Lawson
are greeted by the head of security.  The general regards Miss Danvers as
among the finest when it comes to matters of security.  She is pleased to
meet the doctor... but would rather speak with him face-to-face.
"Lawson" admits that he has a hard time taking his eyes off the robot.
He learns that it was found by pearl divers near an island in the South
Pacific.  Mar-Vell realizes that General Bridges wanted him for "Walter
Lawson's" skills in robotics.  The experts are unable to determine what
metal the robot is composed of.  After finishing his work on improving a
space-gyroscope, he would like a closer look at the inert automaton, and
learn why Miss Danvers didn't want him to see the robot.  Her security
division are still inspecting his dossier, and have heard of his
reputation as an eccentric recluse.  After seeing his briefcase, the
rumors have been clinched, too.  As both men leave, Carol Danvers wonder
what Walter Lawson could be hiding.  If he is up to something, she'll
know the reasons why.  Those aboard the Kree starship now know that the
Sentry is still intact... and is seemingly undamaged.  Yon-Rogg's
constant monitoring of Mar-Vell have yielded much in so short a time.
Sentry #459 has grown in size, no doubt due to its exposure to Earth's

The Kree are now aware that the Sentry has been repairing itself.  Now
grown larger than before... the repairs are almost complete. KLIK  A dial
is twisted and the colonel sends constant streams of ionized electrons to
the prone figure... replenishing its artificial life force.  With the
Sentry reactivated, it will be a small matter for it to confront Captain
Mar-Vell... and to destroy him.  The next second finds a sleeping giant
coming once more to life.  It is no longer some motionless automaton...

It is... a Sentry.  SSSSHOOOM!  It was created and trained for
destruction... to rend any who would dare to oppose the Kree... or those
who coveted their interstellar empire.  Its fist strikes down on the
steel floor with such force, that it knocks out the startled guard.

BRAKKA!  Soldiers perched on a catwalk begin to open fire...  RRAAKK!
The bullets do no good, and the catwalk is torn apart.  RRIIPP!  The
Sentry lays waste to the metal structure.  Neither weaponry... nor mere
flames will be enough to contain its approach.  It is... a Sentry!!

PTAK!  General Bridges is on the phone with the field gate, and asks if
they are having an earthquake...  After learning that the robot has come
to life, he orders his men to stop it at once.  He then calls the base
air patrol for some jets, and when asked what this is about, the general
insists that they'll know what it is when they see it.  Bridges next call
is to Doctor Walter Lawson, in hopes that he'll know how to stop the
robot.  KWAM!  The Sentry's fist smashes through a hangar, as if it were
made of butter.  The hotel clerk has received the call...  He hasn't
heard of Walter Lawson, but as the only hotel in town, he realizes that
they must mean the silver-haired guest.

RRINNG  Mar-Vell can only wonder who could be calling him, especially
since he's not registered as Walter Lawson.  After hearing the tone of
General Bridge's voice, he learns about the robot running loose.  After
changing into his battlesuit and helmet, the captain pauses only to
realize the strange coincidence he now finds himself in.  Mar-Vell is
about to head for the very base which is part of his mission, and where
Yon-Rogg undoubtedly hopes that he'll meet his end at the hands of the
Sentry.  The Kree captain must perform his duty... the Sentry must be
stopped.  His orders to study the inhabitants of the planet in order to
determine its fate must be followed.  PUH-WING!  Sentry #459 continues to
defend itself and as part of this imperative, the base must be destroyed.
The soldiers continue to fire their rifles, and watch as it heads for
the nuclear warhead testing center.

Traveling through the air on a modified jump-belt... Mar-Vell wonders
what he can possibly do against the nigh-indestructible Sentry.  Those
onboard the starship listen as Yon-Rogg speaks of Captain Mar-Vell's
bravery in representing the Kree, and fighting the deadly Sentry.  The
colonel continues his display of concern... unless the crew suspect his
true motives.  Soon, the captain will be gone... and Medic Una will be
his alone.  The girl weeps... having been freed from her confinement...
and now forced to witness the death of her beloved.  Back at the hotel,
the night clerk heads up the stairs for the guest's room.  Figuring that
this Lawson used the name of "Marvel" in order to spy at the cape, the
elderly man uses his pass key to enter the room.  Not having heard any
sound from the room, he finds it empty, and figures that the strange man
must have sneaked out.  The inquisitive clerk decides to search the room
for clues...

SWOOSH!  At that very moment...  the Kree Captain confronts the main
threat...  as a menace standing at about thirty feet turns towards his
direction.  Sentry #459 senses the approach of a human, then perceives
that it is one of the Kree themselves.  It asks the newcomer if he has
arrived to aid in its programmed attack?  If not, then those who oppose
it... will be destroyed!  Mar-Vell's fears are fully realized!  The
Sentry is following its original orders... orders which command it to
destroy all potential foes.  When it comes to the conclusion that he has
arrived to stop it, will they meet as allies... or as the deadliest of

With all the discussion and renewed interest in Captain Mar-Vell in both
of his incarnations, I figured that the time was right for this
particular review.

I first read an alternate version of this story in What If #17: "What If
Ghost Rider, Spider-Woman, and Captain Marvel Had Remained Villains?"
(October, 1979),  by Steven Grant (Script), Carmine Infantino (Pencils),
Pablo Marcos (Inks), Bob Sharen (Colors), and Tom Orzechowski (Letters).

The Kree soldier costume is quite striking and resplendent in color and

In this, the second story of Captain Mar-Vell, the character is already
receiving a weapons upgrade.

Mar-Vell bears some resemblance in appearance and function to Michael
Rennie's character of Klatuu from "The Day The Earth Stood Still."

Roy "The Boy" Thomas does a good job of tying in events from Fantastic
Four #64.

The night clerk at the hotel resembles Doctor Sivana with his own
bespectacled appearance.

When the uni-beam BTAPs the tree, the rays emitted from the weapon
resemble bolts of lightning.

Like the Black Condor, Mar-Vell comes across a character whose
identification papers furnish him with a new life, and a identity.

In the case of Wonder Woman and Diana Prince, the two came to an
agreement which was not posthumous in nature.

Carol Danvers would know the life of a super-heroine, in her identities
of Ms. Marvel, Binary, and Warbird.

Sentry #459 suffers through some growing pains and self-repairs, before
lashing out at an unsuspecting world.

General Bridges bears a strong resemblance in appearance to Walt Disney.

This Review Is Dedicated To F.O.O.M. (Friends Of Ol' Mar-Vell)

Steve Chung
"Where Stalks The Review!"