Daken: Dark Wolverine #16

Issue Date: 
December 2011
Story Title: 
Pride Comes…: Part 1

Rob Williams (writer), Matteo Buffagni (pencils), Craig Yeung (inks), Cris Peter (colors), VC’s Cory Petit (letterer), Jared K. Fletcher (designer), Jody LeHeup (assistant editor), Jeanine Schaefer (editor), Nick Lowe (group editor), Axel Alonso (editor in chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer), Giuseppe Camuncoli with Marte Gracia (cover art)

Brief Description: 

Using his control over Donna Kiel, Marcus Roston convinces her to call the chief of police and order an air-strike on Daken’s penthouse. He also tells her to convince Moon Knight that all is okay, which she does. Nevertheless, Daken manages to survive the strike and makes his way to Roston’s estate. There, he receives a call from Marcus who gloats about his superiority and tells him that he’s going to rip apart his crime “empire.” Realizing what that means, Daken makes his way to Catalina Island, where he sees that Marcus has cut the heads off of some of the crime bosses and slaughters the others who arrive in cold blood. Noticing Daken watching from above, Marcus soars upwards and hovers over Daken, telling his very concerned opponent that he’s going to kill him for fun. See if he can stop him.

Full Summary: 

Sitting on his bed, only wearing a pair of shorts, Daken runs a knife blade across his arm. As his arms bleed from the knife wounds, he says he’s reminded of a proverb from Luke 4:23. “Physician... heal thyself.”

Just then, an attractive young woman enters the room and tells Daken that was a pretty wild night and asks if he has an espresso machine there. She’s got to kickstart the brain cells. Know what she’s on… Upon seeing what Daken is doing to himself, the young woman is in shock. Daken growls at her that his healing factor doesn’t work anymore. Going cold turkey from the Heat seems to have burnt it from his system. Get out.

Immediately, the young woman rushes out of the house. While she does, she exclaims that this town can kiss her #$@. Way too crazy for this… girl. Before she can get any further she comes face to face with the business end of a rifle by a team of police and S.W.A.T. members.

Earlier, at the home of Marcus Roston, Roston calls the L.A.P.D. and asks to be put through to the chief of police’s office. He adds that he’s sorry; he’s not really sure what the protocol is for this type of thing. Oh, okay. Well, it’s kind of about a dangerous individual. He has the current location of someone the L.A.P.D. is looking for. Handing the phone to Donna Kiel, who is sipping a drink, Roston tells her that they seem a little hesitant to believe him. Tell them.

Taking the phone, Donna tells the person on the other end to listen to her carefully. This is F.B.I. agent Donna Kiel. She has the current location of Daken Akihiro. Put her through to the chief of police. Now. Once the chief of police is on the line, Donna tells him that she does. Daken is way too dangerous to be approached by members of the force. His calendar would be full of funerals. It’s a mansion in the Hills but, fortunately, he went for privacy and it’s totally secluded. What does she suggest? This is an ex-Avenger they’re talking about. A cop-killer who’s killed more Americans than cholesterol. It may be illegal but… just how much power does he have? Well, if he had any military contacts, she replies, she strongly suggests he use them.

In his office, the chief of police tells Agent Kiel that this is his call. He’d also like to thank her for her discretion is this matter going forward and for handling this so cleanly.

At his penthouse, Daken hears the L.A.P.D. informing him that he is surrounded and to come out with his hands up. When he doesn’t, the commander radios in that they warned him and that he did not comply. They may deliver the package. With that, military planes fly in and destroy the penthouse. As the penthouse begins to burn, Daken leaps out and onto the front area. Once he lands, he is riddled with bullets from three waiting S.W.A.T. members. After filling Daken with bullets, one of the members begins to approach him. When he gets close, Daken leaps up, jams his claws into his chest and then uses his rifle to kill the other two S.W.A.T. members. As he traverses down the cliffside, Daken states that he can feel the skin on his back burn and the pain, instead of easing, builds and builds. Heat did this to him. Heat has made him… ordinary. And for that he wants to hurt it. He wants to hurt its maker.

At Roston’s estate, Marcus puts his hand on Donna’s shoulder and thanks her for that. If Daken survives, and he presumes he will survive, he’ll come there; he’s sure. He’s the one who gave him the Heat pills in the first place, after all. He thinks they’d be wise to leave. She goes back to her work as normal. Oh, and contact Moonboy in the fetching white cape too, eh? He’ll be in touch with her Heat delivery. But first, would she like another pill? It might be a while before her next one.

After virtually no reaction from Donna the entire time Marcus was talking to her, when he mentions the Heat pill she perks up and reaches out to take it from him. Feeding the pill to Donna, Marcus tells her that he created Heat to control people. Most are heavily addicted and will do anything he asks by the second pill. He didn’t think there was an ordinary human alive who wouldn’t be under its control by the third pill. It took five pills to get her. She should be very proud of herself. Marcus then tells her to speak to no one about this and follow his instructions to the letter. Contact Moon Knight. Get rid of him or he’ll take his arms off his body. She just needs to be Donna Kiel. Cold. Clinical. Transforming his look, Marcus states that he’ll be Daken. He loves playing super heroes.

As she leaves Roston’s estate, Donna gives Mark Spector (Moon Knight) a call and asks him to meet her. In an alley, Moon Knight says to Donna that she disappeared. Donna tells him she’s fine. She was tracking down some leads is all. Moon Knight says he’s not so sure he believes that. Nice bruise she’s showing. Donna answers that good leads tend to bruise sometimes. He knows that. And she’s there, isn’t she? She’s fine. The Claws Killer was Daken. The chief of police…

Moon Knight cuts her off and states that he (the chief of police) has turned the Hollywood Hills into Kabul going after him. Apparently, Michael Bay filmed the whole thing from his balcony. He’s thrilled. What about Marcus Roston and the Heat drug connection? Donna tells him that’s absolutely not to be touched. L.A.P.D. are running heavy surveillance on him to try and nail his suppliers. Look, the Claws Killer murders are over. She promises him. If they start again he can come contact her and they’ll start this up again. Daken Akihiro came to Los Angeles to try and become the West Coast’s kingpin of crime. And that quest killed him.

Running through Roston’s estate, Daken angrily calls out for Roston. Upon reaching his office, he yells at the figure sitting in the chair whom he believes to be Roston that he gave him the Heat pills. That actor Glenn was killed after his party. Talk! Tell him everything he knows about those…

Just then, Daken notices that the figure in the chair isn’t Roston, but a dummy. On its forehead is the work “junkie” and on its lap is a plate full of Heat pills with a sign that says “for you.” Stopping is his tracks, Daken stares at the pills. As he reaches out to grab one, the phone rings. Once the answering machine picks up, it records the voice of Marcus Roston. He tells Daken to take the pills. He’s had a tough time lately. He deserves it. He means… having him messing with him this way. Crazy luck, really. They’d never met before. He was happy at playing the Hollywood star. Well, he was starting to get bored with the nihilistic nature of it all, to be honest. Hence his little murder spree. And then he walks into the party. And boy was he exciting. What a fuuuun time they had that night. Does he know how often he comes across someone who’s actually a challenge to someone as powerful as him? It’s rare dude. You should be flattered. But a challenge? That has to be answered. That’s what sport is. Primal human drama. And that’s what they’ve got there. A fun little game that’s gonna make both their lives on this planet a lot more exciting… while it lasts. Anyway. Good catching up but he has to run. Somewhere he needs to be right now. See, he’s not done with ripping his oh-so-macho life to pieces. His little L.A. crime “empire.” See if he can stop him, huh? He knows he gets bored too. It’ll be a blast. Once Roston hangs up, Daken unloads his weapon into the dummy and is able to do so without taking a Heat pill.

“Your little L.A. crime empire…” Daken knows where Roston’s heading – Catalina island. Daken had convinced disparate L.A. crime families to work with him after the Durrant armored car heist. They were scared and ripe for a takeover due to being squeezed out by Los Angeles’ mysterious new crime king. Waiting for a hit that could rain down on them any second. He needed their connections in L.A. He’d taken over Madripoor, he wanted Hollywood next. They were terrified so they turned to him. They were going to be his network. His building blocks. Not anymore…

On Catalina Island, a number a number of crime families arrive via various means. One of them asks another if they know why Daken called the meet. Another asks if he looks like his press officer to him. Alvarez’s crew is already there. Ask them. Entering the mansion, the crime bosses are shocked to see the members of Alvarez’s crew sitting around the table, all of their heads cut off and sitting on plates in front of them. “Daken” tells them he’s so sorry. He hopes they don’t mind. He was hungry so they started without them.

With that, “Daken” unloads his weapons into the crime bosses, slaughtering them all. One of them manages to survive and begs Daken to please don’t. “Daken” tells him that it’s rude to stare, he knows that, right? He means, he knows this is Los Angeles, but movie stars deserve their privacy. They’re people too. “Daken” then kills the last crime boss and transforms back into his natural form – Marcus Roston. Looking at his handiwork, Marcus says ah… peace and quiet. He’s glad he’s not the one controlling L.A.’s underworld. It’s hard work. He has no idea why his idiot family did it for so many years. They could’ve been having so much fun.

Looking up at the skylight, Marcus sees a figure standing there and says ah… speaking of which. He can see him up there, you know, watching, he tells Daken. He’d have expected him to dramatically smash his way in, firing his little gun and roaring for revenge. But… y’know, he finds his current uncertainty so… endearing.

Just then, Marcus soars upwards and crashes through the skylight. Hovering over a concerned Daken, Marcus asks him if he knew that gods walk amongst ordinary people. And he’s not necessarily talking about movie stars. It gets very boring being a god. But every now and again, they get interested in certain people. And they play with them. He tells Daken that he’s weak but he is strong. That’s just how the world is. And now he’s going to kill him. For fun. See if he can stop him.

Characters Involved: 


FBI agent Donna Kiel

Moon Knight

Marcus Roston

Various unnamed members of the Los Angeles police department including the chief of police

Various unnamed members of the various Los Angeles crime families

Story Notes: 

Daken first met Marcus Roston back in Daken: Dark Wolverine #10.

Daken convinced the crime families to follow him back in Daken: Dark Wolverine #11.

The Durrant armored car heist took place in Daken: Dark Wolverine #11-12.

Daken took over control of Madripoor back in Daken: Dark Wolverine #5-7.

Michael Bay is a famous movie director. Some of his films include: “The Rock,” “Pearl Harbor,” “Transformers,” and “Bad Boys.”

Issue Information: 
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