Sunday, 28 July 2013

M.A.S.K. Comic UK Issue 14

Table of Contents -

  • Front and Back Wraparound Cover
  • Five Pages - "Project Dinosaur" Part 7 (B&W with Pink Tint First Cell)
  • Four Pages - "Danger in the Outback!" Part 2 (Colour)
  • Five Pages - "The Main Feature" (B&W)
  • Centre Page Spread - Matt Trakker with Spectrum and Ultraflash
  • Five Pages - "Maelstrom Mayhem" Part 4 (B&W with Pink Tint First Page)
  • Single Page - Competition
  • Single Page - MASK Art
  • Single Page - Advertisement
  • Single Page - Letters Page
  • Four Pages - "UFO Over Africa" Conclusion (B&W)
  • Single Page - Advert and Preview of next issue
Every now again there was an issue of M.A.S.K. that left me feeling a little underwhelmed by the end of it.  There might be no specific reason or it might be a combination of issues - Issue 14, dated 25th of April - 8th of May 1987 was one such issue.

I can't really put my finger on why I felt underwhelmed but maybe my review may shed some light on it.

After a V.E.N.O.M. lockout of the front cover over the past few issues, we have T-Bob on the front cover proclaiming he is a "V.I.R. - a Very Important Robot!" and we are told that this is a T-Bob Special - so that may have something to do with my non-excitement of this particular issue.

T-Bob is holding a complimentary ticket to a Movie Première in his hand and is standing against and image of the cinema with crowds watching as the VIP guests enter the cinema.  This image is set into the cover like a TV/Cinema Screen behind T-Bob with a vibrant red border all round.  I'm not too keen on the insert image - it's a very different style to the rest of the cover and the previous covers I've been used to.

Down the bottom of the cover, Miles Mayhem is out to cause mischief!  On the back page Matt and Scott Trakker are in their box at the cinema with Miles Mayhem on screen with the words "The End".

Down below, Matt points out that "Hidden jets blasting out some kind of white mist!" and Scott Trakker replies "People are dropping like flies.  It's a Sleeping Gas!"  What I don't understand is, why it takes a 10 year old kid to deduce it's a Sleeping Gas and not the Leader of M.A.S.K.?

We kick off this issue with part 7 of "Project Dinosaur" as Miles Mayhem's Triceratops is about to wreck havoc on the US town of Salt Flats.  As Miles Mayhem flies over the monster gloating, we discover that he has fitted a control implant in the beast - this story now reminds very much of previous "Monster Mountain" storyline a number of weeks earlier.

Back at the V.E.N.O.M. hideout, Sly Rax is beginning to have doubts about his role within the team.  He fears that with the might of this beast on his side, Miles Mayhem may no longer require his minions.  Floyd Malloy tends to side with Rax but Cliff Dagger is too stupid to see the logic of Rax's argument!

Back at Boulder Hill HQ, Alex Sector gives the bad news to Matt Trakker and the rest of the M.A.S.K. team about the carnage in Salt Flats created by V.E.N.O.M.!  Matt heads out in Thunderhawk, Dusty Hayes and Hondo MacLean in Gator and Julio Lopez in Firefly.

Disgruntled that his father wouldn't take him with him, Scott Trakker decides that he needs to sneak after them astride T-Bob.

As Matt arrives by air at Salt Flats, he takes the opportunity to fire at Switchblade - but misses!  However, this was deliberate by the M.A.S.K. leader!  Knowing that Miles Mayhem would gloat to his minions back at V.E.N.O.M. HQ, the M.A.S.K. team are able to trace the transmission and find the location of the hidden enemy base....

After being struck by fire from Jackhammer, Julio Lopez has to make a crash landing in Firefly as Danger in the Outback continues.  Sly Rax and a team of V.E.N.O.M. soldiers run to the crash site but they are easily taken out with a combination of water then oil from Julio's Streamer Mask - but he is no match for Miles Mayhem as he fires Corrosive Poison from his Viper Mask that eats into Streamers Visor!

Rax receives a smack to the jaw from Julio as he and the V.E.N.O.M. minions overwhelm him and eventually take him prisoner.  Once in custody, Mayhem threatens to kill Julio unless PNA (Peaceful Nations Alliance) Scientist Jerry Carter gives him the plans to a secret new weapon!  He agrees!

Outside, we see Matt Trakker and Bruce Sato in Rhino on the approach to the V.E.N.O.M. compound and easily take out some guards but then face off against Jackhammer....   Who will win?

Following on from our cover, we then come to "The Main Feature"!  Matt Trakker and the M.A.S.K. team have prime seats in a box at the Première of a new Hollywood Blockbuster.  Dressed for the occasion in Tuxedos, even T-Bob is wearing a black tie!

As the curtain draws back, the audience are greeted by the face of V.E.N.O.M. Leader, Miles Mayhem, instead of the movie on the screen!  The image of Miles Mayhem proclaims that this will be the end of Trakker and his team as sleeping gas fills the cinema theatre.

The conversation from the back cover re the sleeping gas is also in the strip but you can't really make out who says what - so is Scott Trakker really as intelligent as made out on the back cover?

Their attempt to flee is blocked by iron bars sliding down at all the exists preventing escape!  Luckily, "Old Tom" a stage hand manages to lead our team to safety and they are soon reunited with their vehicles and Masks across the road at the Mammoth Film Studios.

As our team engage the enemy, they have to contend will all manner of film sets in their way that leads to our team out of their vehicles with Sly Rax having the upper hand and pinning them down.  Help comes in the unlikely form of Scott riding T-Bob who manage to take out Rax and he and the rest of the V.E.N.O.M. team turn tail and run!

After last weeks disappointment at there being no vehicle centre page, this weeks continues along that line.  We have Matt Trakker in his Spectrum Fatigues with two inserts - one of his face and another in his Ultraflash Fatigues attacking Switchblade!

The River Thames Flood Barrier is under threat in Part 4 of "Maelstrom Mayhem"!  Brad Turner on Condor and Matt Trakker in Thunderhawk are on the scene to aid in a rescue mission.

A tidal wave hits the barrier and throws two of its workers up in the air and are caught on the bonnet of Thunderhawk.

The torrential weather dissipates as Miles Mayhem makes a radio broadcast again threatening that he will cause more havoc unless he is made King and Prime Minister of Great Britain!

In the previous issue, Matt Trakker was confident that Sir Joshua Snyde had something to hide about a weapon that could create this weather that Miles Mayhem is able to control.  They obtain plans to Snydes house and he and Bruce Sato infiltrate it and obtain the information they need from Snydes computer.

Unfortunately, a trap door opens and they fall into sealed room used to experiment extreme weather conditions.  They are left freezing - will they survive?

This issues sees the conclusion of the M.A.S.K. "Collect-a-word" competition!

Each issue, a word has been printed in the comic (two words in issue 1) and this issue we are given the details on who to enter the competition and details of the prizes.

You have to make a sentence that relates to M.A.S.K. using the words printed which are -

1. Triumph
2. Will
3. Illusion
4. Over
5. The
6. Allow
8. Is
9. Weapon
11. Which
12. Ultimate
13. To
14. Finally

Post your answers in the Comments Field below or on my Facebook Page!  By putting in a competition like this that spans 14 issues of the comic, the publishers were attempting to build a loyal fan base.  I was already hooked and didn't need such persuasion to continue buying this great comic!

The main prize states "2 complete sets of the toys, as shown in the photograph".  This is a bit of a disappointment after last weeks issue where we find out there are more toys available and the toys featured are only the series one toys but the series two and racing series were already available in some stores by now.

We then have a T-Bob Special MASKart page - that features various pics of our beloved rotund robot including a pic from a Stuart Crews of Clackmannan that isn't too far away from where I live!

"T-Bob Rolls In!" and takes over this issues letters page as his domination of this issue continues!

Miles Mayhem manages a direct hit on Thunderhawk from his Switchblade fighter causing her front drivers side wheel to be blasted off as we conclude "UFO over Africa"!  Like one of our other stories this issue, Sly Rax has the upper hand and has Dusty Hayes and Hondo MacLean in his sights!  Until, that is, a rogue wheel from Thunderhawk crashes down on top of him - a lucky escape for our duo!
As the team regroup, the cavalry of Julio Lopez in Firefly and Ace Riker in Slingshot arrive.

As various skirmishes ensue, Dagger losses the Diamonds and ends up on top of Mount Kilimanjaro!

We end off this issue with a half page advert for a M.A.S.K. holiday special that is out on the 2nd of May and T-Bob telling us of a free gift in the next issue of M.A.S.K.

As I said previously, this wasn't one of my favourite issues of M.A.S.K. and didn't leave me inspired.  Although, knowing there was a Holiday Special and free gift to come I at least had something to look forward two over the coming weeks.

Feel free to leave your comments below - +1 on Google, share on Facebook and Twitter, etc., etc.

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Thank you!

1 comment:

  1. Guess no one is going to win the prize as no response to the Collect-a-word Comp!