Captain Britain (1st series) #12

Issue Date: 
December 1976
Story Title: 
<BR> … To Die A Superhero! (1st story)

First story: Gary Friedrich (author), Herb Trimpe & Fred Kida (artists) I. Watanabe (letterer), Marie Severin (colorist), Larry Lieber (editor)

Brief Description: 

First story: Captain Britain saves the young woman from being burned at the stake by the village mob but loses his weapon – his quarterstaff - in the flames, while doing so. Dr. Synne attacks him and, elsewhere, Synne’s secret master, a mysterious computer, diverts all of its energy to Synne, drawing energy from elsewhere. As a result, Betsy Braddock awakes from her coma, induced by Synne. Her brother does not fare as well, however, as Synne mentally paralyzes Captain Britain, levitates him above the fire and then drops him into the flames.

Full Summary: 

First story:

Captain Britain runs to save the young woman whom the villagers, whose minds are clouded by the mental powers of Dr. Synne, intend to burn at the stake. Over the villagers’ protests, Captain Britain jumps over the flames, puts his quarterstaff between the stake and the chains holding the girl and uses it as a lever to break them. The hero grabs the falling girl and then gets ready to defend her from the angry mob. A difficult task, as his sole weapon now lies in the flames.

But, suddenly, the attackers freeze and the hero turns upon hearing an all too familiar voice. Dr Synne announces that it is not for them to destroy Captain Britain. That pleasure belongs to him. So Synne is the puppeteer, the Captain announces. But how? And why? By the utilization of greater mental power than man has ever known, the villain boasts. As for why: to test that power. First on these simple country folk, then on more sophisticated city dwellers. And, finally, on all mankind.

While Synne speaks of world domination, in a certain nearby mansion, his every action, every move he makes and every word he speaks are painstakingly plotted in a huge computer complex. However, at this crucial moment, the artificial monstrosity senses that something is wrong – its foe is more powerful than anticipated, therefore it will have to divert all its energy to Synne. Its energy flow to other subjects is temporarily lost. It watches on its screen how Synne seems to be gaining the upper hand in the struggle with Captain Britain.

In the meantime, at a hospital specializing in mental disorders, a doctor informs Jamie Braddock that it’s hopeless: his sister is never going to wake up. At that very moment, Betsy Braddock does just that – she wakes up, completely recovered, while the doctor silently wonders what happened: Synne was certain she wouldn’t regain consciousness.

Synne has more pressing concerns, as his mental energy tears at Captain Britain’s brain. The hero refuses to be stunned and attacks his foe but Dr Synne is safe behind a mental force shield. As Captain Britain lies stunned, Synne levitates his fallen form and vows to send him to his final fate.

The computer is satisfied. His subject seems in total control and it anticipates completion in fifty seconds. It commands Synne to levitate Captain Britain into the flames and, in a few seconds, the hero will be destroyed.

Before Captain Britain’s mind’s eye, Merlyn and Roma appear and he desperately wonders why they chose him. Was it their intention to have him die here?

Synne laughs as he withdraws the mental shield that held the Captain and the hero tumbles towards the raging inferno.

Characters Involved: 

First story:

Brian Braddock / Captain Britain

James “Jamie” Braddock

Betsy Braddock

A young woman

Mindcontrolled villagers

Mastermind II (The Braddock’s sentient computer)

Dr. Synne

A doctor working for Synne

in Captain Britain’s memory



Story Notes: 

This story was published by Marvel UK.

The 2nd story in this issue is a b&w reprint of the second half of Fantastic Four (1st series) #115, the 3rd story reprints the second half of Strange Tales #164.

Issue Information: 
Written By: