|Series #1 - NOVA #19|
Cover Date: May 1978
Writer/Editor: Marv Wolfman
Artist: Carmine Infantino
Inker: Tom Palmer
Letterer: Joe Rosen
Colorist: Michele Wolfman
Cover Artists: Carmine Infantino & Tom Palmer
Title: "Blackout Means Business,
And His Business Is Murder!"
Suddenly, Nova finds himself engulfed in darkness. The darkness is so black that even his helmet's special lenses cannot penetrate it! As he struggles to figure out the situation, Nova is blasted by an energy beam and knocked through a building! As the blackness clears, Nova sees a man standing on a pair of black glowing circles made of light! The mysterious man asked Nova if he was spying on him and if Croit fired him. He calls himself Blackout and again attacks the young hero with his black light beams. The black light removes all heat from its victim. Before the attack can be fatal, Blackout breaks off his strike and offers Nova the chance to leave.
Nova tells Blackout that he wasn't spying on him but now he wants answers. The two resume battling and Nova is encased in a block of solid black light! As the rectangular trap floats in mid-air, Nova begins to work himself free. With his costume's recycling air supply in place, the Human Rocket slowly pulls out of the solid light. However, while Nova was trapped, Blackout escaped.
Arriving at school, Nova changes back to Rich Rider and meets up with his girlfriend, Ginger Jaye. Ginger tells Rich that his father had given her a ride to school on his way to a business meeting. Rich is puzzled since his father hadn't said anything about a meeting to him. Ginger also reminds him that they have a study date after school to prepare for Rich's make-up exam.
Over on Manhattan's Canal Street, Blackout uses a black light blast to break into a secret laboratory. Inside the lab, Blackout uses his black light powers to lower the temperature to absolute zero. The freezing temperature allows him to shatter the steel door of a locked safe. As he is taking the items inside, Blackout encounters the man he earlier called Croit. Croit calls Blackout by his real name; Marcus Daniels. Croit swears he can cure Blackout of his powers if he'll give him a chance. Blackout doesn't believe Croit and insists the doctor will pay for turning him into the man he is now. The villain grabs the scientist and uses his light-based power to merge Croit into the color spectrum by turning his flesh and bone into black light. Croit can still hear and think but exists only as light.
Blackout turns and destroys Dr. Croit's laboratory and takes a device called the Stabilizer. The Stabilizer allows Blackout to maintain a state of stability. As he holds the device, Blackout remembers how he gained his great powers. He was once Marcus Daniels, a research assistant to Dr. Croit. After discovering Croit was defrauding the government, Daniels was framed by the doctor for the crime. Dr. Croit arranged for the courts to drop the charges if Daniels agreed to participate in his black star experiment. Faced with the certainty of fifteen years in prison, Daniels agreed to the terms.
In Croit's lab, Daniels was bombarded by the energy of a black star. As a result, Daniels now possessed the power to harness black star energy! Croit, still hoping to control Daniels and his new powers, created the Blackout costume to help contain the fantastic energies. Blackout was born!
Back at Harry S. Truman High School, Rich and Ginger are watching the end of a school basketball game. Ginger reminds him that they need to go study for Rich's exams. The two leave and study for the next two hours.
Afterwards, Nova is flying home when the sky turns pitch black. Also, an unnatural rain storm begins to drench the city. Nova moves into action as he notices a car lose control in the storm and is heading for a little girl. The Human Rocket grabs the car, lifts it over the girl and sets it down safely.
Elsewhere, we discover that Blackout is responsible for the weather changes. Blackout needs the lightning storm to power the Stabilizer which will drain off his excess energy. Without the power drain, Blackout's metabolism will lose control and merge him with the light spectrum. The villain also plans to use the excess energy to cripple the city and begin a crime spree.
Nova arrives and the two begin an incredible battle! Blackout is able to momentarily knock Nova back with a solid light shield. Bracing himself, Nova smashes through Blackout's shield and then again through a second stronger one! The black-light villain changes tactics and freezes Nova with a his light beam. The Human Rocket uses his fall to tumble into the side of a building. Having cracked the ice, Nova uses his super-strength to break free! As the young hero punches Blackout, the villain is able to charge Nova's body with black light energy! As he begins to merge with the light spectrum, Nova focuses all his will-power and delivers a stunning two-fisted punch to Blackout! The villain is knocked backwards and smashes through the Stabilizer!
With Blackout's concentration broken, Nova reforms into his normal self. However, with the Stabilizer's destruction, Blackout's atoms merge with the light spectrum and he disappears. Nova is left wondering if there's any way to bring him back.
Special Note: In an unofficial DC/Marvel crossover, Wally West (Kid Flash) appears on page 10, panel 6. Nova's artist, Carmine Infantino, was also the artist on DC's The Flash and slipped Wally into the panel.Back To Series 1 Index