Balladeer’s Blog’s “Script Doctoring” of Marvel’s Foolkiller continues with Part Three. FOR PART ONE OF THIS ARTICLE CLICK HERE
DEFENDERS Vol 1: Number 77 – WAITING FOR THE END OF THE WORLD (Nov 1979)
A. Synopsis of the “real” story – The Defenders (Valkyrie, Hellcat, Moondragon and the Wasp), still puzzled about how Omega’s dead form and James Michael Starling’s live form switched places, arrive in Las Vegas.
James Michael escapes from the supervillainess Ruby before she can experiment on him. The Defenders encounter him shortly after his escape, but the pursuing Ruby and her monstrous creation Dibbuk arrive on Starling’s trail. A battle breaks out between the Defenders and the Ruby/Dubbuk pair in the heart of Las Vegas.
This fight becomes a three-way battle with the arrival of the Protarians in another squadron of spaceships. In all the resulting chaos Ruby and Dibbuk are defeated while Moondragon’s mind powers at last fill in all the blanks on Omega and James Michael Starling.
The Protarians are a mechanical-based life-form just as humans are a chemical-based life-form. They created figures like Omega and James Michael and scattered them on various planets to gain data to help them evolve, since their natural evolution was at a stand-still, like the Kree.
A side-effect of their creations’ data-gathering functions resulted in those creations drawing power from their adopted planets’ biospheres and wielding it in the form of super-strength and the Omega-fire. With Omega dead all of that biospheric energy has been flowing into the boy Starling.
His inability to control it is leading to a globe-spanning conflagration of Omega-fire, already starting to fill the skies and cities. This would destroy Earth like Omega’s misuse of the Omega-fire on his adopted planet resulted in its destruction in the first issue of Omega the Unknown.
Moondragon explains this to James Michael, who has helped the Defenders wipe out the Protarians. Not wanting to destroy the Earth, Starling turns all the Omega power on himself, sacrificing his own life instead. Moondragon blames the Defenders for ending the Protarians’ quest to extend their evolution. She leaves the team and warns them never to try contacting her again.
B. Balladeer’s Blog’s Alternate Treatment – Foolkiller (Greg Salinger), having joined the Defenders a few issues back, would be with Valkyrie, Hellcat, Moondragon and the Wasp. In the initial battle with Ruby and Dibbuk, once Foolkiller learned Dibbuk’s origin he would judge anyone who willingly submits to that type of inhuman experimentation to be a fool. (And we all know what that means.)
As the battle rages the energy blasts from Foolkiller’s Purification Gun hurt and rattle Dibbuk but his enhanced nature lets him recover from all the blasts that hit him. At one point Foolkiller is unable to dodge one of Dibbuk’s leaps and winds up pinned under him. Before Dibbuk can finish off Foolkiller he jams his Purification Gun into the being’s mouth and shoots its brains out, finishing it off.
Everything else would be the same, but when it becomes clear that James Michael is plotting to kill himself, Foolkiller surprises everyone by offering to slay him instead. Greg’s reasoning, with his poetic aspirations, is that every belief system threatens horrific consequences for suicide. He feels that Starling does not deserve that since he’s noble enough to sacrifice himself.
Starling obliges by momentarily diverting some of the Omega energy, enabling Foolkiller to blast him to death with the rays from his weapon. Moondragon’s (somewhat irrational) blaming of the Defenders for what happened to the Protarians still holds, however. +++
I’LL PICK UP FROM HERE WITH THE NEXT INSTALLMENT IN THE NEXT DAY OR TWO AS TIME ALLOWS.
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