What If They Fridged The Invisible Woman?

Forty-two weeks of writing this column has taught me a number of things. The Watcher looks better with a shirt than without. It’s always funnier when somebody destroys the universe. People cared way more about Namor in the 80s then they do now. And if Reed Richards loses his wife, he freaks the fuck out. So this week we’re exploring what would happen if Sue Richards died giving birth to future Deus Ex Machina and member of Power Pack, Franklin Richards. It’s not very good at all.

whatif4201
“Why on Earth would something that could help Sue’s pregnancy be in another universe, Reed?” “Shut up, Johnny. We’re going on a science adventure!”

So Sue’s giving birth to Franklin and the whole thing’s gone wrong. This is probably mostly due to all the cosmic rays that Reed and Sue absorbed and not because of Reed’s terrifying elastic sperm. Good God, there’s an image I regret thinking. So Reed, Johnny and Ben leave Sue’s side to head into the Negative Zone which contains a Cosmic Control Rod. Apparently, in addition to giving the leader of the Negative Zone and metallic bug man Annihilus control over the Annihilation Wave or whatever the hell it was called back in the sixties, the Control Rod also makes for safer pregnancies. I honestly do not recall reading that in the “Did You Know” section of the Cosmic Control Rod’s trading card.

This plan seems perfectly sensible.
This plan seems perfectly sensible.

While the Fantastic Three beat the crap out of Annihilus, Sue sits in bed and remembers how she met Reed and I am very pleased to see this flashback does not include Reed meeting Sue when she was six and he was in college. That shit is canonical and also disgusting.

If there's anyone more attractive than TV's Russell Johnson, I haven't met them."
If there’s anyone more attractive than TV’s Russell Johnson, I haven’t met them.”

In the Negative Zone, Reed manages to snatch the Cosmic Baby Control Rod (That’s a baby controlling rod that is cosmic, by the way. Not a rod that controls cosmic babies. See Jack Kirby’s 2001 comic for that particular rod.) but then he, Ben and Johnny are captured by Annihilus instead.

Hilarious!
Hilarious!

They escape only when Reed stretches out his fingers to give Annihilus history’s grossest face massage. Only then do they escape back to Earth just in time… for Sue to already be dead.Whoops.

Not hilarious!
Not hilarious!

The Marvel Universe gathers for a funeral that would be quite touching if so many people hadn’t shown up in their long underwear. Seriously, Spider-Man. Rent a suit for God’s sake. And hey, Hercules. There’s not a “No Shirt, No Shoes, No Service” sign outside of the funeral parlor but trust me. IT’S IMPLIED.

I can't take you idiots anywhere.
I can’t take you idiots anywhere.

Anyway, Johnny breaks down, Ben gives a speech that’s actually nice enough to be featured in a better comic than ‘What If’ and Reed… spirals into depression. And when the smartest guy on the planet gets depressed, you maybe want to keep an eye on that.

And some pants. Get him some pants.
And some pants. Get him some pants.

After the funeral, Namor offers to stick around for a while. Ben and Johnny both agree because who better to spend time with when you’re grieving than the shirtless dude who always wanted to bang the deceased. Namor’s… honestly a little worried about Reed. “Look, we’ve fought, we’ve been friends, your brother in law burnt off my beard when I was a hobo. I just want to make sure you’re okay.” Also stuff like this can be a good tip-off that someone isn’t happy.

All things considered, this is actually a pretty nice splash page.
All things considered, this is actually a pretty nice splash page.

That night, Reed swipes that weird jet suit that Silver Surfer wore back in issue 37* and heads back into the Negative Zone to kill Annihilus. Namor, doing the nightly bed check, discovers that the Baxter Building is Reedless and wakes Ben and Johnny. They manage to track Reed, finding him on an asteroid where he’s torturing Annihilus. Who is actually super pathetic. He’s already drained from the recent fight over the Cosmic Baby Control Rod and basically just begging Reed not to kill him. Also he didn’t actually kill Sue so he’s super confused about what the hell is actually happening. Poor dope. Unfortunately for him, Reed’s in full-on “My Wife Is Dead And I Am A Super-Hero Dealing With Real Issues” mode.

BEHOLD THE DEADLY FOE OF THE FANTASTIC FOUR!
BEHOLD THE DEADLY FOE OF THE FANTASTIC FOUR!

Johnny, Ben and Namor arrive and try to talk Reed out of murdering Annihilus and probably killing himself in the process but Reed’s having none of it. He shoots Annihilus with some sort of Jack Kirby ray or something and they both fall into the barrier between the Negative Zone and Regular Universe. Ben tries one last shot to save his friend, but Reed’s like “fuck it” and kills himself. Afterwards, Namor, Johnny and Ben head for home, wondering if Reed and Sue are finally together somewhere. I don’t know much about religion but if you buy into that stuff, murdering some guy and killing yourself are not, so far as I know, the keys to the kingdom of Heaven.

Meanwhile, back at the Baxter Building, literally everyone has forgotten about Sue’s still very much alive baby. Nice job, assholes!

And look after the kid my wife died bringing into this world only for me to completely ignore it!
And look after the kid my wife died bringing into this world only for me to completely ignore it!


*Issue 37, True Beliebers!

What If Namor Was A Petulant Whiny Paleontologist?

Hope you guys like tales of Atlantean politics because this week’s story is a doozy. We start with a flashback to twenty years ago when Atlantis met its destiny. And no, this is a not (as I expected.) a metaphor for the destined destruction of Atlantis and the exile of its people all over the world’s ocean. No, Atlantis is literally attacked by an underwater guy named Destiny and only our favorite speedo wearing hairless wonder, Namor can defeat him. Or, as things would normally go in our universe, not defeat him.

But here, in this amazing universe, Namor fights back against Destiny. He swings just a second early, ending the threat and saving the day. And then the machinations begin. Whilst Namor is out in the depths of the ocean burying Destiny’s magic hat, Namor’s brother (uncle? I don’t know. Castle intrigue always confuses the hell out of me.)

Namor's ability to drill into the earth does not feature often.
Namor’s ability to drill into the earth does not feature often.

Byrrah takes the ailing Atlantean king’s signet ring, allowing him to take control of the Atlantean throne. He then travels to the local priest Kormak and WarmasterKrang and convinces them to join him in usurping the throne. Little does he know they both have identical plans to overthrow and betray Byrrah. I swear to God, I have no idea how anything ever gets done in Atlantis.

Byrrah talked to forty-eight other blue guys with ridiculous mustaches and they all thought pretty much the same thing.
Byrrah talked to forty-eight other blue guys with ridiculous mustaches and they all thought pretty much the same thing.

Namor returns home, excited about all the love his people will be showering him with now that he’s saved the day. Unfortunately, he hasn’t counted on Byrrah going on an all-out Namor smear campaign. The watery seabeds of Atlantis are practically littered with signs such as “Namor: Half-Breed Monster?”, “Namor: Really digs little shorts, what’s that about?” and “Namor: How come his widow’s peak reaches his nose? I mean who grows hair that low on their face?”

"We got trouble! Right here in this river!"
“We got trouble! Right here in this river!”

Namor attempts to take his proper place on the throne but Byrrah blocks his path and the guards do not trust him. That night, Byrrah pulls some Hamlet shit, murdering the king with poison. On a knife. Which he stabs the king with and then hides under Namor’s bed. The next morning, when the guards arrive, they quickly find the missing murder knife and Namor is forced to flee back into the unforgiving ocean.

That could be ANYONE'S knife.
That could be ANYONE’S knife.

Confused and ashamed, Namor leaves Atlantis to wander the oceans alone like all Marvel characters when they’re feeling down in the dumps. Just as he’s leaving, the spirit of Poseidon or possibly Neptune appears before Namor in the form of the Ice King and demands that Namor return to his people, bearing Neptune’s magic trident. With it, Namor can easily prove that he is king of all seven of the seas and return his tight butt to the Atlantean throne. Alas, Namor is in one of his legendary snits so instead he leaves to go sea wandering.

"Gunter, you're embarrasing me!"
“Gunter, you’re embarrasing me!”

Back in Atlantis, ruling a country is (of course) not enough for Byrrah so he dons the traditional black top hat and begins demanding rent from his subjects in exchange for not tying them to railroad tracks. The Atlantean people start to think they might have made a mistake. At this point, underwater barbarian Attuma attacks, hoping to capture… I don’t know, Atlantis’ many pearls or oil or whatever the hell.

"Ugh, THIS guy."
“Ugh, THIS guy.”

Meanwhile, Namor is attacked by a kelp monster for a few pages in an effort to kill time. He’s saved when some Atlanteans in a stingray ship arrive. They beg Namor for help in defeating Attuma but Namor’s got a whole lot going on now with the being a proud asshole so he fucks off to the surface.

Could this be my favourite quote in any What If ever?
Could this be my favourite quote in any What If ever?

Namor arrives on Galapagos Island and finds a research team whose boat is on fire. After extinguishing the fire, Namor bonds with an attractive research lady and learns a great deal about evolution and turtles. He also helps find fossils by destroying the rocks they are trapped in with his super strength which Jurassic Park has taught me is exactly how to do that.

No idea what's going on here.
No idea what’s going on here.

Eventually the Atlantean stingray ship arrives and this time tells Namor that his mother is dead. Well, now that the Sub-Mariner has an actual REASON to fight for his people instead of just… “They need help and you are a hero” he heads off, leaving behind his potential career as a shirtless scientist. After a quick stop by Neptune’s house to pick up that trident, Namor returns to Atlantis.

"Why do people not like me? Is it because I'm a magic user?" "You're a sociopath!"
“Why do people not like me? Is it because I’m a magic user?” “You’re a sociopath!”

There he finds his people beaten and Byrrah… dead? Exiled? Whatever. It’s not like Namor returning to free his people from an oppressive tyrant who murdered his father would be cool so we’ll just have him fight some other random dude instead. Which he does, first by dropping a building on the guy and then spearing him with a trident. The day saved and his royalty returned like so much Lion King, Namor prepares to take his place once more upon the Atlantean throne. Unfortunately, his people are all sad and betrayed and so they all go into self-exile, travelling across the sea, leaving to sit on his lonely throne, king of no one. Loser.

Please remember that he is  sitting alone in an empty throne room in an abandoned city.
Please remember that he is sitting alone in an empty throne room in an abandoned city.

 

What If Stephen Strange Was A Doctor… Of Learning?

Looks like it’s another Dr. Strange adventure here at Forbidden To Interfere this week. This time the gross shirtless Watcher asks… what if Dr Strange WASN’T the Sorcerer Supreme? Which, I can’t help thinking is the plot of every What If that Dr. Strange appears in. Except of course the six issue “What If J. Michael Strazynski wrote Dr Strange And Thought It Was The Matrix?” Wait, no, that was a real thing.

"BEHOLD THE GLISTENING NIPPLES OF UATU THE WATCHER!"
“BEHOLD THE GLISTENING NIPPLES OF UATU THE WATCHER!”

Our story begins shortly before Doc is in his hand smooshing car accident. We travel deep into the mountains of Tibet where legendary scumbag Baron Mordo (No one who calls themselves ‘Baron’ can ever be anything but evil. Apologies to any Barons reading this but you know I’m right.) has been training with his master, the Ancient One for many years. One night, as he attempts to pry into deadly secrets that mankind must never know, he is assaulted by thousands of tentacles from another dimension before the camera mercifully cuts away.

Whelp.
Whelp.

The next day, the Ancient One remarks on how much less evil Mordo’s been acting today. Mordo agrees. He’s SO much less interested in evil and way into being a little kiss-ass now instead. The Ancient One remarks that somebody new will be visiting them today. Someone with a great deal of potential. It’s Doctor Strange! Mordo asks (with only a little twinge of jealousy.) if Strange will be the Ancient One’s new disciple but the Ancient One pats him lovingly on the head. “Nonsense. You’ve been not evil for almost… let’s see here, twelve hours. No, I’m backing the Mordo train one hundred percent!”

The Ancient One's bed is covered in students like it's a party at my grandparent's house.
The Ancient One’s bed is covered in student’s coats like it’s a party at my grandparent’s house.

Sure enough, Dr Strange arrives, begging the Ancient One to fix his hands with his magical bullshit. Instead, the Ancient One has Strange stay for a few months while Strange learns the arts of believing in himself and not being a raging asshole. Eventually, Strange returns home. He’s no more magical but he is genuinely happy for the first time in years. And isn’t that the real reward? This will be a fine philosophy to have until Doc starts losing his mind in a few months. More on that later.

The Ancient One, satisfied that Mordo’s training is complete, sends him to New York where he can be Sorcerer Supreme and prepare for the coming of Dread Dormammu, lord of chaos. “Oh shit, did I not mention Dread Dormammu, lord of Chaos was coming?” asks the Ancient One, nervously wringing his collar. “Yeah, you’re gonna need to go to the Dark Dimensions and deal with that.”

Upon arriving in the Dark Dimensions, Mordo almost instantly encounters Clea. In our regular continuity, Clea’s Dr Strange’s occasional lady-friend and sorceress. Here’s she’s just some woman who lives in the Dark Dimensions. She tries to give Mordo a hand and he hypnotises her pretty much instantly. Dick.

Baron Mordo: Douche Supreme.
Baron Mordo: Douche Supreme.

Clea reveals to Mordo the realm of the Mindless One, giant unstoppable monsters who, if released will rampage across the Dark Dimensions. Dormammu has spent a great deal of his strength imprisoning them so it’s too bad when Mordo gives the door a boot. Now, the good news is that Mordo’s a helpful sort and perfectly willing to lend Dormammu a hand shoving those rocky bastards back into their prison. The bad news is that now Dormammu owes Mordo a life debt like so much Chewbacca and he’s gotta stay out of the Earth Realm (as they’d say in Mortal Kombat.). Also Mordo is a total dick about it. Dude, you do not Nyeah Nyeah at the demonic master of a hell dimension. Where were you raised?

I was overcome with the need to post Mindless One pictures from Nextwave but no. No no no.
I was overcome with the need to post Mindless One pictures from Nextwave but no. No no no.

Time passes and Dormammu sends unimpressive mystical hit men after Mordo. They show up, fire the odd magic missile and are then sent to the cornfield as the Ancient One piles praise and ancient treasures upon Mordo in equal measure. Unbeknownst to the Ancient One however, as soon as he hangs up the mental phone, Mordo is on the other line with the faceless evil menace he’s been working behind the scenes with. Who could have seen this betrayal coming? Nobody, that’s who.

"What was that, Mordo?" "Uh, NOTHING. Nothing."
“What was that, Mordo?” “Uh, NOTHING. Nothing.”

Meanwhile, Stephen Strange is going quietly, messily insane. Regularly plagued by horrible nightmares and the occasional attack by swarms of rats, he seeks out Baron Mordo’s place in Greenwich Village. After making some racist comments to Mordo’s manservant Wong, Strange finally meets with the Baron again. Mordo is suspiciously excited by the prospect of helping Stephen by exploring his nightmares. After having Wong fix him up with a glass of warm milk and the All-Seeing Teddy of Tiamat, Mordo sends Strange to dreamland and then follows after him.

Dick.
Dick.

They arrive in the usual Steve Ditkoesque mindscape and explore just long enough for Strange to get utterly terrified and confused before Mordo introduces the Doctor to Mordo’s boss. It’s Nightmare! The immortal personification of… nightmares! And also Marvel’s answer to Sandman but invented years earlier. Nightmare imprisons Stephen in a… dream bubble, I guess. And then he lays out his plan to join forces with Dormammu and rule Earth. “Hey, that’s great.” says Steve from his bubble. “Why am I here? I’m just a simple hand busted doctor who took a vacation to Tibet!”

Who could ever not trust that face?
Who could ever not trust that face?

Nightmare reveals that Strange has the potential for great mystical power which is a pretty stupid thing to tell the guy you’re afraid of. Dude just went from “I’m not important” to “I’m important enough that the personification of dreams and apparently green striped leotards needed to kidnap and bubble me.”

Mordo leaves to go poke Dormammu’s hornet’s nest some more. This time he happily releases Dormammu from his life debt, allowing the fiery headed asshole access to Earth where he promptly sets the sky on fire and begins apocalypsing.

Meanwhile, in magical realm of Slumberland, Stephen focuses all of his will on becoming a wizard, despite not believing in any of that crap. Eventually, his bubble is shattered by an owl delivering his letter from Hogwarts and he escapes. Unfortunately, he just escapes into an endless universe of weird floaty islands. Luckily at this point, Clea arrives looking for him. She’s apparently been having poor after-effects from the mindwipe Mordo gave her and has been drawn to Stephen’s goodness. They escape into dreams like teenagers in a late numbered Nightmare on Elm Street flick.

Ren Faire Strange comes with everything you see here.
Ren Faire Strange comes with everything you see here.

Back in Tibet, Mordo awaits attack by Dormammu. When the Chaos Lord finally appears, he basically fucking massacres Mordo. This leaves only the Ancient One behind to save the world. And that dude is so old, they had to put it in his name.  Dormammu puts that guy down like old chicken in a sink.

Unbeknownst to either of them, Mordo has actually returned to the Dream Dimension, having faked his own death as part of Nightmare’s plan. He reluctantly gives Nightmare the Eye of Agamotto and then flies off to kill Strange and Clea because he’s an asshole who can’t leave well enough alone. He finds the two trying to escape from one of Doc’s dreams and then apparently kills Clea. Having seen his new lady friend die, Strange suddenly releases all of his untrained latent magic powers in a single blast and kills Mordo. That done, he travels through a hole in reality back to Earth where Nightmare and Dormammu are reaching an extremely fair consensus over co-ruling the Earth. Still pissed over dead Clea, Strange blasts the two of them with all of his untrained latent magic powers in a single blast again. He vaporizes them both and then ages hundreds of years and dies. At which point, an apparently alive Clea mourns for him. Except then he’s young again and the Ancient One is offering to train him. Man, magic  is dumb and confusing.

WHAT THE FUCK HAPPENED?
WHAT THE FUCK HAPPENED?

 

What If Thor And Conan Had The Sweetest Bromance In The Hyborian Age?

Know, O Prince, that between this Conan comic and the last Conan comic I didst not move my copy of “The Frost Giant’s Daughter And Other Stories” from its place on mine shelf where I didst put it last time to look up this quote! Hither came Thor, God of Thunder! Yellow of hair, dopey eyed, big fucking hammer in hand. A god, an avenger, a slayer of sheep with gigantic melancholies and impressive pull at the box office to tread the jeweled thrones of earth beneath his big yellow Walt Simonson boots.

This is actually a pretty good gag if you're a Conan fan.
This is actually a pretty good gag if you’re a Conan fan.

The concept for this What If is so simple, I’m shocked it wasn’t done ages ago. What if Conan the actual literary character whom Marvel currently holds the license to battled Thor, God of Thunder and also immortal so it’s entirely possible he’d be alive when Conan was around. (I did some research* and discovered Conan is actually… like, pre dinosaurs or something? So there were no Asgardian creations myths yet or something? Whatever, it didn’t work.) Anyway, this story doesn’t even bother with that little bit of premise. It knows what we all came to see and so spends exactly one page of Loki booting Thor’s ass through a time cave.

Is this supposed to look like  a Prince Valiant panel?
Is this supposed to look like a Prince Valiant panel?

Thor regains consciousness in the Hyborian Age with just enough time to realize he’s lost his memory before Conan drops a rock on his stupid helmet head. It’s all just a misunderstanding, Conan was actually trying to murder some Corinthians (Easily identifiable by their eyes full of teeth.) for some reason. But hey, if some blonde idiot wants to just get MAD because of an innocent mistake, sure, Conan’ll fight that idiot for a few pages.

An almighty CRACK echoes across the mountains as Conan's back literally snaps in half.
An almighty CRACK echoes across the mountains as Conan’s back literally snaps in half.

After a reasonably manly tussle in the mountains, Thor and Conan move on to the second part of the traditional team-up: They realize their fight was a misunderstanding and go fight a greater foe. But, as a greater foe has not presented itself, they decide to rob a temple instead. That Conan is a bad influence. Thus begins one of the finest bromances it has ever been my joy to behold and I will be honest with you guys. I came into this issue hoping to see these two guys beat the shit out of each other. I never expected to be so enamoured with their friendship.

FRIENDSHIP.
If the entire book were these guys drinking and hanging out, I would happily read it.

Eventually the Cimmerian and the Asgardian get shit-faced enough Conan starts ranting about his god and, in a decision that can only come from a long night of drinking, the two of them decide to head for the giant snowy mountains of Conan’s homeland so Thor can meet the guy. Eventually, Conan bails to eat pigs instead but Thor reaches the top and meet Crom. Who is basically King Douche of Mount Ass.

Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.
Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.

If you remember anything about Crom from the Conan movie this will not surprise you, but Thor was never a fan of Schwarzenegger flicks** so it’s pretty unexpected when Crom calls him a dick and throws away his hammer. It’s sad when Gods of different pantheons can’t get along. He DOES throw Thor a bone by restoring his memory before he sends him packing down the mountain.

NOW NOBODY GETS A MAGIC HAMMER.
NOW NOBODY GETS A MAGIC HAMMER.

Thor returns to Conan at camp. “Behold! For I hath both good news and news most dire! Might Crom, though bagged douche most foul, hath restored mine memory, Friend Conan! For I greet you verily now as Thor! God of Thunder! Sent back in time by mine scheming brother Loki! Alas, as payment, Crom didst take mine hammer, Mjolnir and cast it to the four winds. Mine quest is clear! I must seek it out and return home!”

“That…” Conan replies. “is the stupidest thing I have ever heard. And I once fought a gorilla with a cape. But you’re a good guy, Thor so I’ll help you out.”

Seriously, I love these guys.

whatif3907
I would pay real money to replace Conan’s “I see” with “Uh…huh.”

So, while Thor and Conan travel the world searching for Mjolnir. Little do they know, it has already been found by the cruel wizard, Thoth-Amon who is using it to sacrifice scantily clad women to his god, Set. As is tradition in all Conan stories. Now, the question of how Thoth-Amon, his lizard people and his henchmen can all haul Mjolnir around WHEN THE WHOLE POINT OF IT IS THAT NOBODY CAN LIFT IT is never brought up in the comic. But I’ll bring it up now. Hey, guys. What the actual fuck? That shit is so important THEY WROTE IT ON THE FUCKING HAMMER.

Whosoever lift this hammer, if he be a giant gold bird person...
Whosoever lift this hammer, if he be a giant gold bird person…

Anyway, the two very best friends cross the world, ever searching. They don’t have much luck since Conan keeps running up to strangers, pointing at Thor and saying “Hey, you seen this guy’s giant hammer?” Eventually, they manage to rough up the right guy (Clearly an ancient descendant of Frank Miller’s go-to stooge Turk.) and get pointed towards Thoth-Amon in Stygia.

They sneak in (More accurately, they just kick a door down. Conan has not time for your stealth tactics.) and catch Thoth mid-sacrifice. While Conan dodges an army of Lizard Men trying to present him with an autographed photo of Curt Conners, Thor and Thoth wrestle over the hammer like children fighting over a stick. Eventually Thor is able to summon down the lightning. Inside. In a dungeon actually, but whatever. The lightning strikes the two, vaporizing Thoth but also killing Thor because it turns out he’s super weak from being so far from Asgard.

Better get the broom.
Better get the broom.

With his dying breath, Thor begs Conan to take Mjolnir back to the mountains of Cimmeria, climb to the very top of the tallest mountain, find the great grey god Crom and shove the mighty hammer straight up his shitty douchebag god asshole.

"The ship... out of danger?" "Yes." "Do not grieve, Conan... It is logical."
“The ship… out of danger?” “Yes.” “Do not grieve, Conan… It is logical.”

Conan is a true friend.

"Of my friend, I can only say this: of all the souls I have encountered in my travels, his was the most... human."
“Of my friend, I can only say this: of all the souls I have encountered in my travels, his was the most… human.”


*This is a lie.

**Spelled Schwarzenegger right on the first time! Woo!

What If It Was The Future For A Bunch Of Avengers And Also Daredevil?

In honour of the first (admittedly late) Forbidden To Interfere of 2015, and also because it just so happened to work out this way, this week our tales of thrilling alternate realities take us into the Marvel Universe’s far future. No, not 2099. That’s too far. No, nor the incredibly distant future of Iron Man 2020 (AKA Arno “I have a stupid name” Stark.) No, it’s 2050 and a tale of the Avengers! The ones who are still alive anyway!

We join our heroes as they return from a mission. Just so we’re all on the same page, that line up consists of Thor, Jocasta the Android Woman, the Vision, some weird green guy made of energy who also has a moustache and looks like 70s Stan Lee and Devil Ears Iron Man, here played by Michael Rhodes and his giant afro.

2050's looking AWFUL 70s, guys.
2050’s looking AWFUL 70s, guys.

Everyone’s enjoying the post mission cool-down except the Vision. It turns out his wife, Wanda Maximoff AKA the Scarlet Witch is dying of old age and extreme flowyness as shown here in a dress that extends into alternate timelines.

That's a whole lot of... everything... just everywhere.
That’s a whole lot of… everything… just everywhere.

Wanda’s watched over carefully by Thor’s alter ego Donald Blake and also her nurse Cassie Lang. So much for being the awesome Young Avenger Stature in this reality, Cassie! On the other hand, you’re also not dead so I guess it’s kind of a wash.

As Vision takes Wanda for a roll in the garden, he tells her of his plans to deactivate himself once she dies so that, if there is to be an afterlife, they may forever be joined there. It’s a very beautiful sentiment but Wanda’s having none of it, commanding Vision to live for as long as possible. My working theory is that Wanda’s hoping to hook up with Wonder Man in the hereafter. Which is a great theory except that nobody wants to hook up with Wonder Man ever. Wonder Man sucks. While this is going on, Jocasta menacingly watches the duo from a window in the mansion and creeps everybody out. Man, I hope yet another Hank Pym built robot isn’t about to go crazy and murder a bunch of people.

Nothing worrying here.
“I’m your number one fan. Number one fan. Number one fan.”

That night, Wanda has like eighteen old person heart attacks and Doctor Blake tells Vision it’s only a matter of time before she goes to that big lunatic asylum in the sky. Vision remains visionlently, excuse me vigilantly at her side until the end. Then Jocasta kicks in the door, telling Vision that Doctor Blake has made a discovery that may save Wanda and he should go to the library at once. Never mind that the library is empty, dark and locked. And Blake’s in bed. And it’s three AM.

WAAGGGGHDAAAGGGGHHHH!!
WAAGGGGHDAAAGGGGHHHH!!

Vision eventually realizes something’s amiss and returns to Wanda’s bedside only to find her and Jocasta both gone. He wakes the other Avengers and tears the mansion apart looking for them. He eventually finds them both in Jocasta’s lab where Jocasta is performing a standard Freaky Friday operation on the two. She has downloaded herself into Wanda’s shitty dying body and imprisoned Wanda in her unfeeling steel frame. And then Jocasta dies of extreme oldness. Meanwhile, the now immortal Wanda in her unstoppable robot body builds some insane robot sons out of an old freezer and then eliminates all mutants. Stupid Pym built robots….

"She was, in many ways, more human than us all. Especially me. And my robot boyfriend."
“She was, in many ways, more human than us all. Especially me. And my robot boyfriend.”

Next we visit the dare terrifying future of Old Captain America and Really Old Retired Nick Fury! These days, Cap spends his time between training the New Avengers and performing family duties with his wife Sharon Carter and kids Steve Jr and Severus Albus Rogers.

Sharon is in the middle of begging Steve to retire from captaining America when the call goes out: the cast of the Warriors is messing with hardworking future police officers in New New York’s oddly named Punk Row! Cap leaps both onto his flying motorcycle (because the future is awesome and also exactly like Saint’s Row 3) and into action, kicking several punks in the face.

A chillingly accurate portrayal of 1980s New York.
A chillingly accurate portrayal of 1980s New York.

Just as he’s mopping up the last of these jerks, Cap gets a call that his villain proof skyscraper headquarters has been broken into! But who could be responsible? Well, that flying car with the big red skull on the front seems a good indicator: It’s clearly 1930s entertainer Red Skelton out for revenge! Or it’s the Red Skull again. Fucking Nazis. Jeez.

Borrowed from Cobra's new line of flying battle tanks.
Borrowed from Cobra’s new line of flying battle tanks.

Cap chases the Skullmobile to the site of the 1963 World’s Fair. Which is apparently still around in the future. Or possibly rebuilt for the youth of today to enjoy. He finally meets up with the Ancient Red Skull in his (seriously) Armchair of Death.

See?
See?

The Skull battles Cap for a little while before revealing his evil plan (a bomb attached to the Skull’s heart that will go off if the Skull dies) and his evil son (Red Skull Jr, here to kill Cap and save his father. Presumedly by climbing vines and avoiding crocodiles.) Cap manages to defeat both Skulls but then Jr shoots his father, activating the bomb. Luckily, Cap stops it with a handily thrown shield because what else is Captain America going to do? NOT throw a shield at something. Anyway, Cap saves his family and resolves to never stop hunting the Red Skull no matter how old, decrepit or useless he might be. Sharon weeps over the charred remains of their marriage.

Finally we jump into the future of 2013 as Matt Murdock (AKA Aredevil according to the title page)

See? See?
See? See?

and his friend Vice President Foggy Nelson await the arrival of the new president of New Russia Natasha Romanov (AKA the Black Widow). Foggy and Natasha are here to take part in a new peace conference with important leaders from all over the world. Matt’s here mostly because he’s sad that his (unnamed) wife is dead and Foggy’s trying to cheer him up. Foggy, you’d think you’d know by now that nothing can stop Matt Murdock from being in a shitty mood except beating the hell out of people.

More like 'Mope Murdock.'
More like ‘Mope Murdock.’

Luckily, the conference is attacked by a new and mysterious Kingpin of Terrorism and his faceless army. Gee, I wonder who it could be? My money’s on the Owl. Natasha and Matt both change into costume (which they both luckily decided to wear for the first time in twenty years) and start handing out beatings. They eventually reach the top of the building and face the terrorists’ mysterious leader and SHOCK FOLLOWS SHOCK, it’s Wilson Fisk AKA the Kingpin. There’s like three minutes of fighting before Matt knocks Fisk off the roof, smooshing him like so much Allfather from Preacher. This finally pulls Matt out of his shell again, proving once more that murder can solve anything.

Yaaaaaahahahooey!
Yaaaaaahahahooey!