Nextwave #11

Issue Date: 
February 2007
Story Title: 

Warren Ellis (writer), Stuart Immonen (penciler), Wade von Grawbadger (inker), Dave McCaig (colors), VC’s Joe Caramanga (letterer), Sean Ryan (assistant editor), Nick Lowe (editor), Joe Quesada (editor in chief), Dan Buckley (publisher)

Brief Description: 

Nextwave, on board the Shockwave Rider, follow Number None to a floating factory called State 51. The huge city hovers over Nevada, and is where all the strange creatures and robots that have been thrown at them were created. As they approach the city, Monica determines that they need to find its control center. Aaron takes them down but, as they descend, they are attacked by Dirk Anger in the Aeromarine. Aaron finds a service tunnel below and pilots the Rider inside it, whilst the Aeromarine crash lands on the surface. The resulting explosions cause some damage to the Shockwave Rider’s engines, and Nextwave exit the craft, which then blows up. Still needing to find the control center, Nextwave fight their way through dozens of the Beyond Corporation’s creations. They soon arrive at a quiet factory. As Aaron scans for signs of life, Number None attacks him, shoving a spear right through his chest.

Full Summary: 

After being attacked by several teams of truly awful broccoli-based super heroes created by Number None, Nextwave are on the offensive. The crippled Shockwave Rider chugs through the air en route to Nextwave’s target – State 51. On board, Monica Rambeau questions Aaron Stack’s information. Is he sure the database didn’t mean Area 51? When Aaron replies that computers don’t lie, she reminds him that he has a computer brain and lies all the time. Aaron assures her that he doesn’t. She simply doesn’t like the answers he gives her.

Monica tells him that they are two miles up and there’s nothing there. Area 51 is somewhere below them in the Nevada Desert, but State 51 is nowhere to be seen. She bashes him on the head and asks him to work it out. He must have a calculator inside his head, right? Aaron programs a filter to appear on the window and sits back smugly as State 51 comes into view.

State 51 is the Beyond Corporation’s floating terror factory. It resembles a vast aircraft carrier, only it floats like a S.H.I.E.L.D. helicarrier. Chimneys produce plumes of black smoke, buildings are scattered around its length like a small city and a proud ‘State 51’ sign adorns one of its roofs. State 51 refracts 70% of the light around it and then reboosts the photons as they pass it. This means that the chunk of Nevada underneath still looks like it is receiving normal sunshine. The strange doomed workforce of State 51 live and toil in the other 30% which is constant twilight, but they’re bad guys so what the hell.

The Captain motions to the floating factory and says that this is where the Beyond Corporation has made everything that’s been thrown at them, so what do they do now? Monica guesses that they find the middle of it. It’s got to have a control center. Aaron maps out where that should be but finds it difficult, as State 51 has odd things such as bumpy gravity, competing electromagnetic fields and weird radar resistances going on. As he checks his computers, he tells the team that it’s like they have a massive flying war machine directly behind them.

As the Shockwave Rider splutters over State 51, a massive flying war machine, the H.A.T.E. Aeromarine, approaches them from behind. It opens fire on the tiny craft, forcing Monica to ask Aaron to gun the engines and look for shelter on the surface. Blasts rain down on them as the make their descent.

On board the Aeromarine, the mentally unhinged Dirk Anger is slumped over the ship’s wheel. His assistant informs him that the Shockwave Rider is hit. Should they fire the secondary cannon or try to take them alive? He pauses before asking if she brought him what he asked for. She just wants her orders, but he asks her again. “I want brains!” Still with the rope around his neck with which he tried to hang himself, Dirk rants about how the Beyond Corporation wouldn’t let him die due to a zombie switch in the brain. Of all the stupid things. And then his assistant bugs him with this **** while denying him his brains. “You want orders,” he replies. “You crank this **** thing up to ramming speed and you bring me my **** brains!”

The assistant understandably questions his orders. He asks if she’s deaf. He’s dead and can hear himself perfectly. He wants the Nextwave squad smeared into jelly across the prow and the surface of State 51. Maggots dribble from his mouth as he asks, “And could you please bring me my bucket of brains?” The Aeromarine follows the Shockwave Rider low over State 51. Dirk’s assistant informs him that they’re too close and will crash. Dirk doesn’t care. He has reinvented suicide as a group activity.

Meanwhile, Aaron Stack struggles with the controls before seeing some kind of service tunnel below. The Shockwave Rider drops vertically through it, leaving the Aeromarine to crash land on top of State 51. “My name’s Dirk Anger, and I say **** all of you,” he exclaims as the ship collides with the floating city. The massive explosions on the surface are the least of Nextwave’s concerns. The service tunnels begin to break apart due to the devastation above. Aaron calls for everyone to disembark quickly. The engines just got hit, and since they power the whole thing that makes their ship bigger on the inside that it is on the outside, they have little choice.

They leap from their ship and leave the Shockwave Rider to bounce helplessly along the tunnel until it explodes in a ball of fire. Aaron’s never going to be able to fix that. Monica figures that they’re still facing the right direction for the center of State 51, and they have a fair way to go. On top of that, she adds, she thinks they’ve pretty much announced their arrival, and they’ll probably throw everything they’ve got at them along the way. “Let’s save America by beating up everything we see,” she commands.

Nextwave proceeds to do what they do best, encountering a whole host of crazy robots, monsters, jump suit-wearing gorillas, deadly Stephen Hawkins clones, M.O.D.O.K-like Elvis heads, pirates, ninja, dinosaurs, samurai, aliens and creatures that resemble Wolverine along the way. They finally emerge in a quiet factory after defeating everything in their path. “My God,” exclaims the Captain, “This has got to get easier.” Monica asks if everyone is okay. She asks Tabitha and Aaron to sound off so she knows everyone is still geared up. There could be another wave any minute. Aaron can’t detect anything else in the vicinity. The last one they took down was the last one there was, he assures her. A voice from behind says, “The last one perhaps, but I am Number None! He skewers Aaron right through the chest with a spear. This can’t be good.

Characters Involved: 

Elsa Bloodstone, the Captain, Monica Rambeau, Tabitha Smith, Aaron Stack (all Nextwave)

Dirk Anger

Dirk’s assistant and other H.A.T.E. staff

Numerous unnamed Beyond Corporation creatures and robots

Number None

Story Notes: 

The Shockwave Rider was shot down by the Aeromarine’s Armageddon Horn in Nextwave #5 and is still not fixed.

Area 51 is an Air Force base in Nevada, rumored for many years to be connected with UFO activity.

Issue Information: 

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