Pulse #7

Issue Date: 
March 2005
Story Title: 
Secret War - part 2

Brian Michael Bendis (writer), Brent Anderson (artist), Pete Pantazis (colorist), Virtual Calligraphy’s Cory Petit (letterer), Mike Mayhew with Avalon’s Andy Troy (cover art), Omar Otieku (production), Nicole Wiley & Molly Lazer (assistant editors), Andy Schmidt (editor), Joe Robertson (editor in chief), J. Jonah Jameson (publisher), Joe Quesada & Dan Buckley (interns). The Pulse was created by Brian Michael Bendis

Brief Description: 

Daily Bugle reporter, Ben Urich, startles Jessica Jones, who is asleep in the ruins of the apartment she shares with Luke Cage. She gives a stilted explanation of recent events, and informs Ben that she simply wants to know what Nick Fury and Captain America’s involvement in this affair is. She shows Ben the ruined hospital and he calls the Bugle, but Glory can’t tell him anything, apart from a couple of people called to say they saw ‘fireworks’ down by the pier. They investigate, and Jessica speaks with a homeless man, who informs her that there was a big fight involving Captain America, Spider-Man and Daredevil. Jessica tries to call everyone she knows, but no one is answering their phone. They head to the Bugle, where Jessica tries to get through to Jonah. He leaves his office without speaking to her, and it’s up to Robbie to tell her what the score is. He says that Nick Fury is essentially off limits to the press. If he doesn’t want something reporting, no one will touch it if they value their careers. Frustrated, Jessica leaves and notices that the papers have no mention of the incident, despite the scale of the events. She notices a suspicious man across the street, but he vanishes before she reaches him. She then decides to visit Misty Knight but, as she arrives at her apartment, she faints and is found by three members of Hydra.

Full Summary: 

Jessica Jones is asleep in the ruins of her apartment. A photograph of her boyfriend, Luke Cage, and his buddy, Iron Fist, still hangs crooked on the wall. The blinding light from the early morning sun doesn’t wake Jessica, but the click of reporter Ben Urich’s camera does. She wakes with a start and is momentarily disoriented. She asks what time it is, and Ben replies that it’s six in the morning. He’s been chasing her for hours. She didn’t tell him what hospital she was at. He tells her he came here on a lark, and asks what happened.

Jessica covers her eyes and tries to get her brain into gear. She then explains that she and Luke were attacked in their home last night. There was a woman standing there when they entered the apartment. She either blew up or something hit them, ripping the room in half. Luke jumped in front of her but she still went flying down the hall and hurt her arm. Unfortunately, despite his steely skin, he was thrown into a coma. Ben can’t believe it. He enquires as to the condition of her baby, but Jessica replies that it’s fine. She adds that Luke was taken to the hospital, but they attacked it. “Who did?” Ben asks. Jessica doesn’t know. There was an attack at the hospital too, just as she called him.

Ben asks who it was that attacked. Jessica doesn’t know. It was like a war zone. She went back to Luke’s room, and he was Vagrant gone. Ben is struggling to take all this in, especially as Jessica’s explanation is part incoherent ramble. He hugs her, trying to calm her down. Finally, she does, and tells Ben that she just wants to know what Captain America and Nick Fury were doing there.

Ben’s expression changes. He is very surprised at this information. He asks where they were. Jessica informs him they showed up at the hospital. They’d come to see Luke. Ben asks if they are friends of his. Jessica doesn’t really know for sure, but that isn’t the point. No one even knew they were there. They didn’t call anyone except Danny Rand, and he was just as surprised to see them as anyone. Ben suggests maybe Danny took him somewhere safe. Jessica replies that she called him. He didn’t answer. He hasn’t been home, and anyway, he would have called her. They’re practically family.

Ben admits that he’s been working days lately, and didn’t receive the news from the Bugle. Jessica says that’s her point. No one knew, so how did they know? She asks if Ben knows who Nick Fury is. Of course, he replies. Jessica points out that he just showed up. That means this isn’t just some super-villain cracked-out whore, looking to give her boyfriend payback. Something’s going on! As they step into the street, she can’t believe the mess that has been made of their building. Right across the street is the hospital. A vehicle lies burnt out on its side, one resides in a nearby tree and a section of the building has collapsed, dangerously.

Ben approaches a police officer standing guard outside with a notepad. He introduces himself, but the officer simply says he’s standing on a crime scene. Ben asks what happened here. “Galactus sneezed,” comes the response. The officer clearly isn’t interested in entertaining a journalist, and points to the press stands over yonder. When they’re ready, they’ll have a statement for them. A black nurse approaches and says this is just great. The officer asks if that’s her car in the tree. “It was!!” she replies. “I don’t got insurance yet!”

The nurse looks at Jessica and asks if she did this. No, she replies. The nurse continues on regardless, saying this is what she gets for tending on her. Jessica pleads her innocence, and asks her if she knows where her boyfriend is. She was his nurse, so she asks her if she saw where they took him. The nurse tells her she didn’t. She’s been helping people all night who don’t have unbreakable skin and who don’t date white girls. “Serves him right.” Jessica is apoplectic. “What did you just say?!” She turns to Ben. “What year am I living in??” Ben gets on the phone to Glory at the Bugle. He asks if Jonah or Robbie are in yet. They need to call him ASAP on his cell.

Ben then asks if she heard any noise last night about Metro Hospital; something with Captain America. Glory hasn’t heard anything, but she mentions another incident at the pier. He asks her to call if she hears anything else. Jessica asks what’s going on. Ben tells her that some people called in some ‘fireworks’ down by the pier. Jessica looks over in the direction of the pier. “Over there?” she asks. That’s where it moved to. It looked exactly like fireworks.

Ben and Jessica stroll over to Pier 5. The place is a real mess. Vehicles and buildings lie in tatters. A boat sits half-submerged in the water, and others are on land, their bodywork shattered. There has been a serious firefight there. The water is still oily, and the pier looks very unstable. As Ben speaks to Glory again on his cell phone, Jessica notices a vagrant pushing a pram nearby. She runs over to him, and asks if he saw what happened there last night. The guy replies that it was the hammer of the gods. It was a contest of champions.

Jessica asks the man who was there. Did he see Captain America? “He threw his mighty shield… but it was the devil that saved me. Isn’t that funny? A devil saved my life.” Jessica smiles for the first time in what seems like an age. “Daredevil?” The guy opens out a newspaper, one of many he is carrying in the pram. The headline is ‘Daredevil & the Black Widow back in action. Jessica asks if he was there. The guy replies that they all were. All the good ones; and that disgusting Spider-Man.

Jessica hands him a $10 bill for which he is grateful, and asks him if he saw which way they went. He replies, quite sarcastically, that he believes he heard something along the lines of them all going to Denny’s for breakfast.

Jessica grabs her cell phone and calls Matt Murdoch’s place. His answer machine picks up, so she leaves him a message for him to call, immediately. Ben knows Daredevil didn’t do this by himself. All he has is a Billy club. Jessica puts her hands on her knees, and tries to take stock of everything that’s happened. She doesn’t feel too great, so Ben decides to get them a cab over to the Bugle. They can talk to Jonah. Jessica wonders what he’s going to do, before adding, “@#$%ing Nick Fury. This is exactly why I didn’t go to work for him.”

She searches through her purse for something. Ben asks if Fury really asked her to be a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent. She replies that he asked her a couple of years ago to kinda sorta run the Avengers. She said no, because who wants to live like this everyday? She finds what she’s looking for. It’s a card with the number on it. She makes the call, but is surprised at what she gets. She can’t believe it. She tells Ben that the number is of an ex of hers who is an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D., but now the number is out of service. She wonders what that means. She looks around, and notices a strange lack of people in the vicinity, except for one shadowed man across the street. When she looks back again, he is gone. “Where is everybody?” she asks.

Jessica makes a call to Danny Rand, but his answer machine picks up too. She then tries her own voice mail, Matt again and Misty Knight. All their phones are on answer machines or are answered by secretaries. She finally calls Luke’s but gets the same response. Frustration and fear begin to get the better of her, so Ben leads her away. There is so much that requires an explanation, and she isn’t getting anywhere.

(the Daily Bugle)

J. Jonah Jameson is sitting behind his desk with Robbie Robertson necking a drink nearby. Ben and Jessica arrive, and Jessica wants some answers. She tells Jonah that the cops know nothing; they don’t even know what they’re talking about. Luke is missing and their home is destroyed. She can’t understand how something this big can happen right in the middle of New York City - and no one knows anything? How does that happen? she asks. City blocks are destroyed, and all this happened right outside a major city hospital. Jonah remains silent as she mentions the names of Captain America and Nick Fury. She wants help in finding Luke and wants help with this story.

Without a word, Jonah rises from his seat and departs, asking Robbie to take care of this. He has a meeting with the sales team. Jessica stands, furious. “Did he just walk out of the #$@!ing room??!!” Robbie calmly informs her that the problem is Nick Fury. Jessica stops in her tracks, and asks why. Robbie tells her Fury gets a pass from them. They look the other way. Jessica asks what exactly that means. Robbie replies that he means the media - all of them. This is probably why she hasn’t seen or heard anything about this. The press isn’t covering it because Fury either doesn’t want them to, or they hear his name and look the other way.

Jessica doesn’t care about Nick Fury. She’s more concerned with Luke Cage. She reminds Robbie that Luke once saved his life. Robbie acknowledges this, and tries to get her to calm down before she faints. Jessica’s pretty wound up from this runaround. Robbie continues to inform her that Nick Fury runs S.H.I.E.L.D. He is S.H.I.E.L.D. He’s the most powerful man on Earth, running the most powerful espionage organization on Earth. If he wants something to stay secret, it must stay secret. He reckons that if Fury is involved, they look the other way because they assume that thousands of lives, or their basic freedoms, are very much at stake.

Ben knows Robbie isn’t spilling the whole truth. He informs Jessica that if the Bugle, or anyone else in the media, goes after S.H.I.E.L.D even a little bit, they know they’re cutting their own throats. After that, there’ll be no more access to the White House, the Pentagon, the Avengers and all the other government access to stories that no one in their business can afford. Jessica turns back to Robbie, who admits that this is true.

Jessica flees the office and heads out into the street. She heads straight to a news vendor and takes a look at the headlines in the morning’s papers. The Bugle leads with a Kat Farrell story about the Hulk’s latest rampage in Arizona. She’s miffed. She notices a man in a long dark overcoat standing on the other side of the street. She thinks he’s suspicious. The man puts his hand to his ear, as if he’s using a radio set, and Jessica rushes across to speak with him. She dodges the traffic, but finds that when she is almost within reach, the man’s body shimmers away into nothing - as if his image was a hologram.

A cab driver honks his horn to get her to move, but she is so angry she turns and smashes his hood. The cabbie gets out of his vehicle. “Holy - ” As Jessica wonders what direction to take next, the driver asks her to look what she did to his car. She glares at him, forcing him to retreat to the safety of his cab. Ben appears outside the Bugle, following her, but by the time he hits the street Jessica is long gone.

Jessica takes a stroll, still nursing the pot on her right arm, and rings Misty Knight’s bell. As she waits for a response, she comes over all faint, and stumbles to the ground, unconscious. Some kids discover her, and think about grabbing her wallet, but they are ushered away by three guys, all wearing dark overcoats. One of them says, “Get her and let’s go.” The others agree, and as they stare at her sleeping form, say, “Hail Hydra!”

Characters Involved: 

Jessica Jones

Ben Urich

Police officer



J. Jonah Jameson

Robbie Robertson

Residents of New York

Cab Driver

Curious kids

Hydra operatives

(in photographs)

Power Man and Iron Fist

Black Widow


Story Notes: 

This is a tie-in with the Secret War series.

The attack on Luke Cage occurred in Secret Wars #1.

Galactus, formerly known as Galen, is a force of nature that has been around since before the creation of the existing Marvel Universe. He is often seen in the pages of Fantastic Four.

The ‘fireworks’ by the pier were seen by Jessica at the end of The Pulse #6. The cause of these fireworks is shown in Secret War #4.

The vagrant mentions the hammer of the gods and a contest of champions. These are both Marvel storylines from several years earlier.

There is a minor lettering error. As Jessica hands a $10 bill to the vagrant, their voices come from the wrong direction. Also, Ben Urich mentions Metro Hospital when speaking with Gloria on the phone, but the action takes place at Mt. Sinai hospital.

Denny’s is a chain of food outlets, located entirely in the United States, Canada, Costa Rica, Guam, Mexico, New Zealand and Puerto Rico.

The Hulk photograph in the Daily Bugle comes from the Hulk/Thing: Hard Knocks series, penciled by Jae Lee.

Issue Information: 
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