Review: The Avengers #146

The Avengers #146 cover
Cover by Gil Kane and Al Milgrom

The Avengers #146
Published and © by Marvel, April 1976

Title: “The Assassin Never Fails!”
Synopsis: As Captain America lies dying, the rest of the Avengers find themselves the target of the Assassin’s evil plot.

Writer: Tony Isabella
Penciler: Keith Pollard and Don Heck
Inker: John Tartaglione (as John Tartag)

Review: Tony Isabella follows up a strong first half to his “Assassin” story (see review) with this equally well-done conclusion. While the story suffers a bit from the odd twists and logic quirks that plague many comics of the era, Isabella’s handling of the characters makes up for it; he gets the Avengers, both emotionally and in terms of team dynamics. The writer also gets points for not one but two twist endings. It’s a shame he didn’t get better art support for this two-part story – and that he wasn’t rewarded with a longer stint on The Avengers.

Grade: B

Cool factor: Another nice Gil Kane cover.
Not-so-cool factor: More Don Heck interior art. (I know there are a lot of fans of Heck’s work out there. This reviewer just isn’t one of them.)

Notable: According to “Avengers: Official Index to the Marvel Universe,” the story that appears in The Avengers #146-147 was originally scheduled to be Giant-Size Avengers #5.
Collector’s note: According to the Grand Comics Database, there is a 30¢ variant of this issue. … According to MyComicShop.com, there are also Mark Jewelers and National Book Store variants of this issue.

Character quotable: “I am the Assassin – and the Assassin never fails!” – The Assassin (hence the title of the story!)

Editor’s note: This review was originally published by Comics Bronze Age on July 31, 2009.

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