Saturday, January 11, 2014

365 Days of KirbyTech, Day 11: The Enclave's Electronic Bracelet

Previously on 365 Days of KirbyTech...

Splash from Fantastic Four (1961 series) #66 (September 1967), co-plot and script by Stan Lee, co-plot and pencils by Jack Kirby, inks by Joe Sinnott, letters by Artie Simek

Yes, Alicia Masters, the beautiful, becoming, and probably-some-other-word-that-begins-with-B-I-can't-think-of-right-now, has disappeared! Thanks to Reed Richard's (and Jack Kirby's) amazing Heat-Image Tracer, the Fantastic Four have discovered she's been taken away by an agent of the enigmatic Enclave, a mysterious man in a crimson crash-helmet! Which, technically, I s'pose, would qualify as one of the 5,000 Hats of Jack Kirby, but we're not doing that feature today.

Reed's Heat-Image Tracer only broadcasts images, not sounds, so the FF can't overhear the discussion between Alicia and The Man in the Yellow Red Hat. But we can! Let's flash back a few hours using the miracle of the Flash-Back-O-Tronic (which I'm pretty sure Jack has invented) and scope out the real skinny!

Panel from Fantastic Four (1961 series) #65 (August 1967), o-plot and script by Stan Lee, co-plot and pencils by Jack Kirby, inks by Joe Sinnott, letters by Artie Simek

I'm taking two things away from this scene: 1) Alicia is really deft despite her blindness, because her cluttered apartment looks like a shin-scraping minefield for even a sighted person! (How the Sam Scratch does Ben get around?) And 2) Dig that kuh-rayzee modern art on the wall! In addition to her guests, she probably enjoys artwork in the same way she can savor her own sculpture, by touching it. (See, f'r instance, this New York Times article on blind people appreciating art through tactile sensations.) And 3) Hey! There's that guy with the wacky Zodiac-styled bracelet!

No, no, the KirbyTech for today is not that mysterious Cone (and stop firing at it point blank, NYPD!), but is actually that cool electronic bracelet which allows them to walk right through the wall!

Panel from Fantastic Four #66

Sherlock Holmes once said that "when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth," and Reed immediately solves the dilemma: Alicia is in truth Kitty Pryde! Which, fair enough, is improbable, but in the Marvel Universe, not impossible. Well, that solves the Case of the Misplaced Miss!

Or, Reed could set to work duplicating that electronic bracelet.

Which, y'know, is pretty impossible since all Reed saw was a heat-image two-dimensional view of the outside of a three-dimensional piece of mysterious technology. Yeah, I don't think Reed is going to get very far figuring out the inside workings of this bracelet...

Panel from Fantastic Four (1961 series) #67 (October 1967), co-plot and script by Stan Lee, co-plot and pencils by Jack Kirby, inks by Joe Sinnott, letters by Artie Simek
(Click picture to Reed Richards' big brain-size)


Which is not to say that Reed can get by without a little help from his friends. While Mr. Fantastic does have a huge assortment of electronic and mechanical equipment that is probably almost as big the Mythbusters's M-5, he doesn't have everything under the sun. So occasionally he has to order it from And, in just about an hour (or it's free!), an AIM cosplayer who got the colors wrong arrives from Stark International on Long Island to deliver micro-units. Which are, I'm guessing, very tiny units.

Yep, those are tiny all right! Really eensy-weensy! They're soooooo small!

Tomorrow: what is the startling senses-shattering secret of the specks? Reed Richards Explains It All For You!

Me, I'm bettin' it's Candy Buttons.


Smurfswacker said...

I was always a sucker for panels showing people halfway through walls. Kirby was King of them, too.

Suzanne de Nimes (suedenim) said...

And halfway through things that aren't walls too, like Doctor Doom's Time Platform (TM)!

Doom's time machine has always been one of my favorite comic book visuals. It's unlike any other attempt to show time travel before or since, but somehow it makes perfect sense.