THE DEFENDERS #26-30 (1975): Guardians of the Galaxy!

guardians of the galaxy defenders

In this issue, and the three that follow, The Defenders team up with the 1969 lineup of the Guardians of the Galaxy.  It was the first time that team was featured in a major ongoing book.

Their presence in “our” time causes all kinds of disasters to occur–which is a really cool way of showing The Butterfly Effect.  Most of the time, time travel happens and we don’t really see a big effect.

After resolving the temporal anomaly, the team goes forward to the year 3015 (this is the first time we learn the actual year in the future where the Guardians exist) to help in a war with the Badoon.
THE DEFENDERS #27 first appearance of Starhawk

This story is also the first appearance of Starhawk.  He shows up as a healer, who saves a wounded Valkyrie during a battle with the badoon race.  And he’s not humble about it, saying clearly that she is in his debt now.

Yondu and Hulk are forced into a gladiator-like game show.  Yet another precursor to planet hulk.

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Although this is a long arc with lots of sidestories–as Gerber is prone towards–it’s also fairly straightforward as a big future/space epic.

The story actually ends in #29, but I’m not covering #30 here.  It’s a terrible fill-in by Bill Mantlo and Sam Grainger.

Creators: Steve Gerber and Sal Buscema

Grade: B

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