X-Men: Spotlight on The Starjammers #1

Issue Date: 
May 1990
Story Title: 
Phalkon Quest - part 1

Terry Kavanagh (writer), Dave Cockrum (artist), Jeff Albrecht (inker), John Wilcox (colorist), Agustin Mas (letterer), Kelly Corvese (assistant editor), Mark Gruenwald (editor), Tom DeFalco (editor in chief)

Brief Description: 

The Strajammers discover that Shi’Ar Empress Deathbird is trying to explore the “Phalkon“ a force of power. Knowing that this would end their rebeliion, they try to beat Deathbird to some pods on different planets, which all contain parts of a map to the “Phalkon“. The Starjammers split up and each team fulfills their task, but then they are betrayed by their medic Sikorsky, who allows Shi’Ar troops to teleport into the ship. Deathbird kidnaps her sister Lilandra. The Starjammers wonder what to do, about Xavier whose body is in a coma, while his mind connected with the ship’s artificial intelligence, and about rescueing Lil or following the Phalkon, so that not Deathbird gets to it first.

Full Summary: 

Chapter 1 – Boarding Party

In outer space the Starjammers‘ ship flies near a big freighter and provokes it to attack. As it fires the Starjammers carry out their plan. Xavier with the aid of the ship’s computer Waldo psionically replaces the ships shield, allowing the Starjammers to teleport into the freighter, which wouldn’t be possibly with full shields. As the attack team fades out, the ship is hit by the blast and Xavier screams in agony. Corsair, Hepzibah, Ch’Od, Raza, Cr+eee and Binary materialize inside the freighter. Quckly they fight their way through some crewmen, capture Oooozo, the freighters captain, and teleport out again. Back in their own ship, Lilandra fills them in that Xavier was injured by some bachlash of the shields. He now is placed in a stasis tube, watched over by the Starjammers medic Sikorsky, though his mind is able to fuse with Waldo, while his body will heal. After putting some distance between the freighter and themselves Corsair satrts interrogating Oooozo in pirate style, they are wearing spacesuit with magnetic boots and walk on a plan outside of the ship. Corsair orders Oooozo to give away what the freighter was carrying and where it was headed, otherwise he would be forced to walk off the plank. Frightened the freighter captain whispers “Phalkon .. Cargo ... Manifest ... Destination ... here“, but he forgot some code and suddenly five small pods launch from his gut, killing Oooozo. Immediatly the small devices fly away in different directions, one even penetrates the Starjammers‘ hull. The ship is already weakened and can’t self-repair in time, so the Starjammers are forced to close the holes manually. Afterwards Lilandra explains that the “Phalkon“ is a legend about some very powerful force, she had always thought it to be a myth. The Starjammers scanners track down the pods, that are carrying parts of a map, to four different world, while the fifth is a homing beacon on the way to Deathbird on the Shi’Ar thronworld. Quickly the Starjammers divide in four teams and beam to the various planets while Lilandra stays on board to handle the teleporting device.

Chapter 2 – Castaway

Corsair lands on a moon of the three-sun Grof system. It is a spooky worls and he decides to start his search at a nearby castle. On the way Corsair questions his place among the Starjammers. Meanwhile he is watched by Vam and Mer, two creatures looking like they a vampire and werewolf from a horror movie. Suddenly Xavier’s astral image, amplified by the ship’s artificial intelligence Waldo appears in front of him. He tells Corsair that he senses no lifefoprms on the planet, which should make recovering the pod an easy task; then he departs to the planet where Hepzibah and Ch’od are on. Corsair thinks that accidentally Xavier answered why he is still with the Starjammers – Hepzibah. As long as she is committed to the rebellion, he will fight in it too. Suddenly the two creatures attack, Corsair fights the vampire on a tree and cuts off the brach he was standing on. Vam crashes down on Mer, who dies and reverts to a beautiful meremaid. In despair Vam flies away into the castle. Corsair follows and searches the building till he finally finds a crypt where both Vam and the pod are. He tries to secretly snatch his price, but Vam wakes up and another brutal fight starts till finally the vampire is slain. Lilandra teleports corsair back on board.

Chapter 3 – Plunder

Xavier, now calling himself Xavier/Waldo, contacts Ch’od and Hepzibah on the planet Tronik. The race living there perished long ago when a comet passed too close and drew away it’s atmoshpere, still their mecahnical defenses are working. The mental image fades ou, since he can’t help the couple, as they are attacked by lasers and other weaponary. The two Starjammers are able to save each other from ceratin attacks, each utilizing his own skills. On the ship, Sikorsky notes that Xavier’s body took a turmn for the worse, but the mental image does not care much. Xavier/Waldo connects with the ship’s main computer (now calling itself Waldo/Xavier) and overrides it to get hold of the pod that Corsair already aquired. He then broadcasts it’s scent down to Hepzibahm that she might easier track it. Another attck get’s her and Ch’od split up, and each enter some tunnels and hallways. While the catwoman trusts her insticts and traces the scent, Ch’od reasons that to follow the path of most resistance would bring him to the brain center of the defense system. Both arrive in this main chamber at the same time; it seems that the weapons were reactivated by the pods energy and as Hepzibah removes it, she dooms a whole planet of semi-setient technological life to inactivity. Having claimed their price, both are beamed upo the the Starjammers.

Chapter 4 – Wenches

Cr+eee emerges at his homeworld Lupus. Apparently he had earlier fled the planet because of some unrevealed crime, and as he now came back he was soon captured by a police of beavers. Realizing that his punishment is to be hanged, Cr+eee escapes from prison. Far above the Starjammers would like to help Ch’od’s pet, but they can’t decipher Cr+eee’s language. Xavier/Waldo telepathically projects a picture of the pod to remind the alien animal of it‘s goal, but suddenly the mental image pops out. Sikorsky alerts the crew that Xavier’s body is dead.Down on the planet Cr+eee reads a newspaper, in the news is a story about the pod and a feamle of his race. Both seem connected, Cr+eee searches out her place, and meets the female‘s lover, supposingly a friend of him. Suddenly the police arrive again trying to put them into custody, but the woman orders them to stop. Obviously the criminal charges against Cr+eee were held in her name and she calls them off as she loves him. Also she has the pod in her possession. Cr+eee beams back aboard and takes his love and their offspring with him.

Chapter 5 – Holding Action

Raza and Binary find themselves on the planet Ch‘‘rp, a colony so full of mansized insects, that there is almost no space to move. The two Strajammers have searched the pos for a long time and are no step nearer to finding it, as Raza’s scanners indicate that the pod is moving. Annoyed Binary blasts some insects away, but more and more of them keep coming and they are almost droiwing raza and Carol. They decide to go with the flow and let themselves get carried away, hopefully to the same place where the last pod is. On the Starjammers ship, the astral self of Xavier / Waldo says that he has no time to check on his body, he needs to help the pair still searching for the last pod. Suddenly Lilandra becomes aware of an appraoching fleet of Shi’Ar ships. Apparently the homing beacon to Deathbird worked very well, or otherwise they couldn’t have made their way this fast. Below Raza and Binary are carried into the insect hive where they witness their captors feedinga huge insectoid queen. Binary is disgusted by it’s sight and wants to kill it with her powers, but Raza objects as the queen just „ate“ the pod and is a sentient being. Xavier / Waldo’s mental image appears to tell them that Shi’Ar troops arrive and that they need to come back aboard with or without the missing piece.

Chapter 6 – Mutiny

Yet it’s already too late as the starjammers ship is under attack. Stray balsts damage the carft even more than before and while most present can get hold of something, Cr+eee is hurled through an outer wall, before the ship repairs itself. On the surface below Xavier / Waldo mentally connects with the insect being and telepathically downloads the digested information from the pod. Raza and Carol teleport back aboard, only to find themselves facing a battalion of Shi’Ar soldiers led by Sikorsky. Suddenly a trap door opens below them and they are reunited with their teammates, who fill tham in that Sikorsky betrayed the team. While the ship was under fire, the medic Sikorsky teleported Deathbird’s troops inside the Starjammers. The team discusses strategies and decide to use some hit and run tactics as they are more familiar with the layout of the ship. Just as the team believes to have dealt with the invading forces Deathbird arrives behind her younger sister. She grabs Lilandra and teleports away with her. While fading out, Lilandra orders not to care for her, since reaching the Phalkon before Deathbird has top priority.

Characters Involved: 

Binary / Carol Danvers, Ch’od, Corsair / Christopher Summers, Cr+eee, Hepzibah, Lilandra, Raza Longknife, Sikorsky, Waldo, Professor Charles Xavier (all Starjammers)

Oooozo, a freighter commander

Cr+eee’s family

Deathbird, Lilandra’s sister and Shi’Ar Empress

Story Notes: 


Issue Information: 
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