Friday, July 8, 2011

OMAC #2 (November-December, 1974)

One-Man Army Corps…
Is a fighting force in The World That’s Coming! His decade is riddled with new and dangerous innovations…

It is the era of the SUPER-RICH! When money, like technology, reaches complex proportions, complex situations arise--- and this one could spell death---

Armed private military troops refused OMAC entry into a city that had been rented for the night by a high-roller. “I’m OMAC! No city is closed to me!!” Gruffly refused entry due to a lack of party invitation, OMAC began tearing through the soldiers, and when all opposition was smashed, he was surprised by a car horn. Two revelers dressed as a grim reaper and a dunce offered OMAC a ride to Mister Big’s party. “Why did the guards try to stop you? That costume’s a dandy!” OMAC was the strong silent type who didn’t respond to banter en route, but he did learn that the city’s population had agreed to vacate for the night to avoid paying taxes for a year. Of course, the partiers were really agents of Mr. Big, and tailed OMAC after dropping him off on a deserted street.

Professor Myron Forest worked a unit of NASA on his own atop a skyscraper in Electric City. with the help of advanced machines. OMAC learned that he had been guided to this lab by Brother Eye. “You were changed--- by remote-controlled hormone surgery--- from space!” The satellite had accomplished this “With almost instantaneous precision! Brother Eye is the most sophisticated machine ever devised--- Forget who you were. The world needs you as you are--- a force of peace!! …The nations dare not use large armies. Large armies lead to large wars-! That’s why you exist, OMAC. To contain conflict before it grows…” Brother Eye would supply all the power OMAC needed, as he needed it, to meet his goals.

Mr. Big’s men burst into the room with guns blazing, killing Prof. Forest. OMAC struck back, but the creeps’ costumes were wired with electrical current, which tazed OMAC until they could escape via hovering aircraft. OMAC accused Brother Eye of failing him, but the satellite had rerouted its power in an effort to keep Prof. Forest alive just long enough for OMAC to vow revenge. Brother Eye urged OMAC to go on the offensive, taking the battle to Mr. Big that very night. Recognizing Forest’s lab could not fall into evil hands, Brother Eye destroyed it from space as soon as OMAC reached a safe distance.

Major Domo ordered that the city be left as it was found by revelers once dawn arrived, and made sure to keep them back from Mr. Big. The party was merely a cover for the destruction of "Project OMAC," so Big was disgruntled when his agents had only managed to murder its architect. “OMAC must be dead by dawn-- or you two shall die in his place!!”

OMAC walked the streets of Electric City, hoping to stand out amidst the madness of the costume party rocking the metropolis. Assassins didn’t keep him waiting long, as OMAC evaded a spear gun before using one of its missiles to burst a hot air balloon carrying the killers. The first pair was joined by a second, the murderers of Prof. Forrest, who led an effective ambush. While OMAC was held down, a round was fired into his chest, seeming to kill him. OMAC’s body was brought back to be inspected by Mister Big’s personal physician and pronounced dead. Big couldn’t believe Project OMAC was finished, as he suspected that there was a mysterious second component.

Electric City’s mayor and two Global Peace Agency agents arrived to arrest Mr. Big, based on evidence gathered by that unknown factor. Big knew that none of the officers were armed, but before his men could kill them, their weapons were destroyed through the concealed actions of Brother Eye. These same machinations allowed Brother Eye to dissolve the bullet fired at OMAC with a laser beam and use “computed molecules” and remote control of OMAC’s life functions to fake his death. The revived OMAC thanked a faceless peace agent, whose identity must remain concealed to help patrol the world without any hint of nationalism. “It’s a rough job-- keeping the peace in a world stacked with atom bombs--“ OMAC was grateful for “the most fantastic helper man ever made” while Brother Eye’s beams remained at the ready whenever action was required.

“Rent A City!” was by Jack Kirby with Mike Royer. Keeping in line with its origins as a “future Captain America” project for Marvel, the parallel between meek Buddy Blank being the sole individual given the abilities of a one man army core before his scientist maker is assassinated and the first Steve Rogers adventure are pretty hard to miss.

No comments: