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Monday, 8 July 2019

Captain Atom 32 - powered down


Captain Atom has power troubles in the Bates, Weisman, Kayanan, and Tanghal tale from issue 32 (Aug 89).


In the last couple of issues General Eiling and Dr Megala had made reference to a purchase of military land by a private investor, and the need to move something called the Silver Shield. At the top of this issue, that is what takes place, at an abandoned air force base. The Silver Shield is the alien craft that was used for the Captain Atom and Major Force projects. It has been totally dormant for many years, but now starts to glow and hum after being exposed to sunlight during the move.


Captain Atom feels like he is coming down with the flu, and then Major Force bursts into his home. He is also ailing, with massive headaches, and had assumed that Eiling and Megala were doing something to him. But when both men discover the other is also sick, they realize something else is going on. Not that Major Force gets much opportunity to do any realizing. Captain Atom collapses in pain, but Major Force winds up encased in his own dark matter emissions.


Randy, meanwhile, has been assigned to the US embassy in Yemen, where he winds up shot and captured by Bialyan terrorists. These are men loyal to the dead Rumaan Harjavti, who intend to overthrow the Queen Bee, and blame the US for not ousting her. 


The Silver Shield has begun to shrink in size, condensing itself. Megala is not able to do anything to help Major Force, and Captain Atom discovers that he can no longer manifest his metallic skin, or use any of his powers. But he is determined to join the mission to rescue his son, and goes along with Eiling, Allard and Babylon. They fly to Yemen and break into the embassy through the sewer system.


In the midst of battle, Nathaniel Adam sees one of the terrorists about to kill Randy. He dives to stop the bullet, and his metallic skin manifests to save him, but then it goes away, and Adam can tell it is now gone for good. Back in the US, Megala confirms that there is no longer any quantum radiation in his body. Captain Atom is gone for good, and the Silver Shield keeps humming and shrinking.

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