At this rate, Nova could have joined the Teen Titans!
And Barry showed up after his *death* in Quasar of all places, winning a super speed contest with little memory of his past and calling himself "Buried Alien". When asked how did it feel to the fastest man alive, he replied, "It feels...right!"
Figserello said:You might want to go the whole hog and read the Nova Essential...
Okay, I did!
When I was very young I was eager to get in on the ground floor of any new title, but by the late ‘70s/early ‘80s I was more interested in completing runs of long-established titles. I was perfectly content to ignore, for example, She-Hulk (until she joined the Avengers and crossed over into Hulk #282) and Rom (until he crossed over into Hulk #296. So it was with Nova, but it was actually the appearance of the villain Blackout( in Avengers #236-237) which lead me backwards into Nova #19. I like what I read well enough to pick up the entire series as backissues. (That would have been 1983.) I read the entire series through once but I wasn’t impressed enough to read it more than once and traded it away shortly thereafter.
I just finished reading the entire series for the second time ever, though, and I must admit I am more impressed than I was the first time 27 years ago. Nova represents Marv Wolfman’s conscious attempt to imitate the old Marvel heroes of the ‘60s (and the addition of artist Carmine Infantino in issue #15 adds a bit of DC flavor as well). Marv Wolfman’s plots were more structured than Stan Lee’s early efforts, with subplots and characterization throughout. Here’s a brief run-down of the series’ main plots by issue:
2: Powerhouse and Condor
3: Diamond Head
4: Corruptor (guest-starring Thor)
5: Tyrannus (and Marvel bullpen)
6-7: Sphinx; Powerhouse, Condor and Diamond Head
10-11: Sphinx; Powerhouse, Condor and Diamond Head
12: Crossover with Spider-Man
13: Sandman; Crimebuster
15: Crimebuster; Nick Fury (CI)
16-18: Yellow Claw; Nick Fury
20: Inner Circle
22: Comet; Diamondhead
23: Comet; Diamondhead; Dr. Sun; Sphinx
24: Comet; Diamondhead; Dr. Sun; Sphinx; Powerhouse; Crimebuster
25. All of the above go into space!
It’s obvious he had the entire arc (and beyond!) plotted out in advance from issue #1, but the problem is he took too long to develop it. (I had the same opinion in 1983, but I’ve grown to appreciate the structure more now than I did then.) Issue #20 begins the arc final story which barrels headlong to the series cancellation. Issue #25 really kicks the story into high gear, but by then it was too late. I think Wolfman wanted to establish Nova as a strictly Earth-bound hero before moving the series in a more cosmic direction, but I think the series might have succeed if he had moved the series to the next level around issue #12 or so.