No One Escapes… The Fury!
The Fury was originally co-created by Stephen R. Bissette for the Image Comics series ‘1963′ (1993); The Fury, the Voidoid, The War-Beast, Commander Solo, L.A.S.E.R. and all related characters and concepts are © and TM Stephen R. Bissette, per contractual arrangement with the original co-creator; all rights reserved. Unless otherwise specified, all art is ©1992, 1993, 2009 SR Bissette, all rights reserved.
Who is — The Fury?
There was also a French comics ‘Fury,’ too, who was a Korean War paratrooper commando (originally published in Zembla #1-16, Baroud #46-49, and Special-Rodeo #22; art by Giorgio Trevisan). But that isn’t our Fury!
No, comics historians, scholars and fans will tell you that The Fury was co-created by Stephen Bissette for the six-issue 1963 series for Image Comics, created in 1992 and published in 1993 in 1963 #2, No One Escapes… The Fury! , featuring the issue-length story “When Wakes the War Beast!”
That’s true, as far as it goes. But the Fury actually has a legacy predating that fateful comic appearance, and a history that extends beyond his 1993 appearance…
(Above: Bissette’s original pencils for page one of “When Wakes the War-Beast!”, for 1963 #2 (Image Comics, 1993); artwork ©1992, 1993, 2009 Stephen R. Bissette, published art ©1993, 2009 SR Bissette and Dave Gibbons, script by *** [name removed by writer's request], letters by Don Simpson, color by ‘Marvin Kilroy.’)
Prominent among the threats to his home town, mankind and the world the Fury has faced and conquered (or at least temporarily derailed) are Dr. Diabolikill, Gravelface, the Voidoid, the War Beast, ECT, and many others.
“The 5000 Eyes of Dr. Diabolikill!” pitted the Fury against Dr. Diabolikill for the first time — sparked by the Fury’s discovery that every TV set in his Aunt’s neighborhood had been rewired to spawn an army of remote-controlled citizen ‘zombies’ to do the Doctor’s bidding — which introduced the Fury to Commander Solo and L.A.S.E.R., opening up the series to a whole new level of excitement. This dramatically launched the Fury beyond the urban confines of his previous adventures into a wider arena of action, beginning with the story “The Ethereal — ECT!”, in which the Fury and Solo joined forces to solve the riddle of high-security government installations being invaded by a mysterious being composed of ectoplasm.
The L.A.S.E.R. Casefiles
The complex evolution of various Golden Age and pre-Silver Age characters and stories that eventually became the now-familiar characters The Fury and Commander Solo of L.A.S.E.R. is too convoluted to go into now.
Suffice to note that by the time the Cold War espionage/science fiction series The Ladies of L.A.S.E.R. (Law And Security Enforcement Reserve) gained momentum as a regular back-up feature in Astounding Adventures, heroines and femme fatales were a fixture of the spinner racks. The links between the Golden Age post-WWII, non-superhero spy-smashing hero The Fury and the mysterious military belle called Solo seem to be based in only two obscure published stories; clearly, the characters were never conceived as companion features prior to the almost accidental collision of the Silver Age Fury (son of the Golden Age character) and the James Bond-era revamp of Solo and L.A.S.E.R. in the early 1960s.
Before the introduction of the Silver Age Fury, Commander Solo had become the head of the covert Domestic Security unit, and she was the lead of almost every one of the “L.A.S.E.R. Casefiles” back-up stories for Astounding Adventures (the title became No One Escapes… The Fury in January, 1963). Though Solo and L.A.S.E.R. never earned a cover spot or lead story position in Astounding Adventures, they were popular enough to hold their back-up spot from 1957 through 1963.The Fury was introduced in Astounding Adventures in 1960. Within two issues, The Fury owned the cover and lead story, eventually scoring enough of a following to prompt the retitling of the comic series. Commander Solo and L.A.S.E.R. were squeezed out of their own series, but Solo and L.A.S.E.R. were frequent co-stars in the Fury’s adventures.
In France, where The Fury was an unexpected hit (under the slight retitling L’Imbattable Fury!, or No One Beats… The Fury!), Commander Solo and L.A.S.E.R. continued to hold their spot as a companion feature, initially via reprints of the 1957-62 American stories. New solo adventures of Solo were scripted and drawn for the French editions until 1969, obviously patterned after the popular British Modesty Blaise comic strip and other elements of French pop culture (like the silent serials Les Vampires, Fantomas and Judex). These Solo stories have never been translated or reprinted in other markets — until now!
The Fury Cameo Casefiles
The Fury has popped up in a handful of comicbooks since his appearance in the Image series 1963: No One Escapes… The Fury!
These appearances include his cameo in Jim Valentino’s Shadowhawk #14 (October 1994), “I’d Rather Be — In 1963!”, part three of “The Monster Within” storyline. Seeking a means of curing the AIDS he has become infected with, Shadowhawk (with the assistance of a living computer named Phoebe) was bopping through time, space and ‘Alternity,’ the various levels of alternate universes. He arrived in the year 1963 and crossed paths with The Fury. After they initially clash, Phoebe communicates with the Fury and asks for help, at which point the Fury put Shadowhawk in touch with the Tomorrow Syndicate — and things escalate from there.
Above two pages/images only: Shadowhawk © and TM Jim Valentino; art ©1994 Jim Valentino; The Fury is © and TM 1994, 2008 SR Bissette, all rights reserved.
The Fury later appeared in the Image Comics series Noble Causes #3 (the cover to #3b — there were two alternative covers — appears below; December 2002), scripted by series co-creator Jay Faerber, art by Ian Richardson and Jon Sommariva.
Above cover image only: series, all characters pictured © and TM respective creators/proprietors; cover art ©1994 Jim Valentino and Damon Hacker; The Fury is © and TM 1994, 2008 SR Bissette, all rights reserved.
Why Did The Fury Cross the Road? Or; Fury Fone Home!
Above image ©2006 Media Lead LLC; The Fury © and TM Stephen R. Bissette, all rights reserved.
Fury Fun Fact: Among the most unusual of all merchandizing we’ve had a hand in is the Fury phone computer game. Yep, Media Lead LLC developed a licensed Fury in-game in 2006. Wild! Alas, since I don’t even have a 20th Century cell phone, I’ve never seen or played it. Special thanks and a toss of the disc to Chris Beer of Media Lead LLC.
[More on The Fury, Commander Solo and L.A.S.E.R. to come!]
Note: If you are interested in licensing The Fury, The Hypernaut or N-Man, or any of their concepts or characters, click this link to visit the Hollywood Comics website!
2010 will be a new year of new life for The Fury!
Lots of new info, art and comics coming soon!