Captain Britain (1st series) #31

Issue Date: 
May 1977
Story Title: 
<BR>In the Shadow of the Hawk!

Gary Friedrich (story), Gary Friedrich & Larry Lieber (dialogue) Ron Wilson, Bob Budiansky and Fred Kida (artists), Irv Watanabe (letterer), Larry Lieber (editor)

Brief Description: 

As Brian Braddock leaves Piccadilly Circus, Chief Inspector Thomas still rants about the danger of superheroes, even giving an interview about the topic. Seeing the interview, Jamie Braddock decides to help his younger brother. He visits Brian and announces his intentions and that the only way Brian sees to stop him is to knock Jamie out and tie him up. The next morning, Lord Hawk attacks the university grounds to draw out Captain Britain. Cap faces him but gets diverted by Jacko Tanner, who wants to make him look back out of jealously over Courtney Ross. Hawk uses the diversion and has his mechanical hawk grab Captain Britain and fly up with him. At Scotland Yard, Thomas’ superior takes him off the Piccadilly case because they need Captain Britain. The result is that Thomas is more determined than ever to get Captain Britain.

Full Summary: 

Piccadilly Circus resembles a warzone and chief inspector Dai Thomas angrily exclaims that he warned his superiors about superheroes being a menace. But the top brass didn’t believe him. And this the price. He won’t rest until he has captured Captain Britain, he vows.

Walking by, Brian Braddock thinks to himself that Thomas is daft for blaming him. As Captain Britain, he did his best to stop Lord Hawk. But Thomas is too bitter and vengeful to be convinced as his wife was killed during a superhero battle in America.

Meanwhile, in the posh flat of Jamie Braddock, Brian’s siblings watch the battle on the news, fearing for their brother’s life. They witness an interview with Dai Thomas, who blames Captain Britain for this catastrophe. When the interviewer mentions Lord Hawk, Thomas explains that superheroes attract madmen. If there were no Captain Britain, there wouldn’t be a Lord Hawk. Having heard of enough of this rubbish, Jamie switches off the TV set. Now they know Brian’s alive and facing a foe who’s more than his match. So he intends to lend him a hand.

Hours later, as night envelops the campus of Thames University … Lord Hawk arrives, led there by the homing device implanted in Captain Britain. He finds the house he lives in and Hawk decides to draw him into the open at daylight by attacking the university – thus destroying two symbols of this unholy age.

Meanwhile above, Brian is studying the hawk’s blueprints when there’s a knock at the door. Jamie has arrived. Jamie announces that he knows Brian is in trouble and he wants to help fight Lord Hawk. Brian sees only one way to put paid to Jamie’s well-intentioned meddling. He changes to Captain Britain and socks his brother. He has no intention of watching him risk his life against that madman. From the next room, Dr. MacKenzie, Brian’s landlord, calls out having heard a noise. Some dropped books, Brian quickly explains, as he ties his unconscious brother to a chair, while MacKenzie calls out that he shouldn’t study too late.

Speaking of unwanted visits, Dai Thomas receives one from one of his superiors, who reprimands him for chasing his personal agenda on duty and in front of television cameras. They need Captain Britain’s help and, since Thomas can’t swallow that fact, he’s off the Picadilly disaster case. Alone, Thomas angrily slams his desk. First he lost his wife, now perhaps his career. All because of those freaks who flout the law – superheroes! Well, he isn’t backing down. He’ll get Captain Britain – with or without the Yard’s blessing!

The morning in Brian’s apartment. As Captain Britain, he slouches over his desk, while Jamie angrily shouts at him to awake up! Why did he tie him up!? He only wanted to help, Jamie angrily states. But his enthusiasm has waned. Brian’s on his own now. So he needn’t keep Jamie bound.

At that moment on the street down below, Lord Hawk has his creature strike at the university. Hearing the explosion, Captain Britain rushes down – without freeing Jamie.

Students run away in panic, as Captain Britain confronts the madman, asking him to stop slaughtering the innocents. There are no innocents in this modern world, Hawk shoots back.

Among the students are Jacko Tanner and his friends and Jacko announces that Britain is an overrated creep. Courtney doesn’t think so, his friend reminds him. She sure fancies him. Well, maybe he can change her mind, Jacko decides, by knocking her idol off his pedestal. He jumps at Cap, whose back is turned towards him and tackles him. With Cap distracted, Lord Hawk changes his hawk’s trajectory, having it attack Captain Britain from behind. It grabs the hero with its claws and carries him off.

Characters Involved: 

Brian Braddock / Captain Britain

Jamie Braddock

Betsy Braddock

Jacko Tanner and other students

Dr MacKenzie

Chief inspector Dai Thomas

Thomas’ superior at Scotland Yard

Story Notes: 

This story was published by Marvel UK

The issue contains three reprinted backup stories:

The second part of Fantastic Four #124; the fourth part of Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD #1 and the second part of Marvel Team-Up #11.

Issue Information: 
Written By: