Friday, July 18, 2014

The Eternals - The Astronauts!


"The Astronauts" is one of the best Eternals stories and introduces one of the most fascinating characters. "The Forgotten One", an Eternal punished by Zuras for unnamed crimes has in Earth's past been a great hero. Later it will be revealed he was Gilgamesh, Hercules, and others.



When the Deviants send a flying bomb to the ship of the Celestials, Sprite, an always-young Eternal who inspired Shakespeare's Puck,  goes to the Forgotten One and enlists his aid. All the other Eternals are within the Uni-Mind, so with Sprite's help the newly clothed hero flies to intercept the kamikazi mission by the depraved Deviants. Also flying to the great ship is a space shuttle piloted by two American astronauts.



The One-Above-All, the hidden leader of the Celestials detects the threat and solves the problem with typical Celestial cleverness by shifting the crews of the three vessels. The American end up on the Eteranal ship which they are able to fly safely to Earth. The Deviants end up on the American shuttle which they crash, thus fulfilling their death wish. And the Forgotten One ends up on the Deviant bomb-ship which he disables before being transported to the great Celestial ship itself. The story ends with the hidden Celestial taking an interest in the nameless Eternal hero.


The matter-of-fact manner in which the Celestials deal with the puny threats they face from the races of Earth only reinforces their superior natures, their godlike aptitudes. They calmly and without seeming malice merely eliminate the threats with the most basic adjustments.

The Forgotten One is a great character who alas will get no more play in the relatively short run of the series.

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6 comments:

  1. I've been digging this series and hope to have something to add at its conclusion.

    But today I'm here to plug a friend's new website, if it's okay. Stuart Hopen wrote comics, for DC and others. I know you're also a bit of a pulp fan and he has a very weird air war pulp series called the Twilight Patrol. A comic he did with Sam Kieth was eventually published as a novel by Tor Books. I illustrated his comic Daemon Mask back in the 80s and he has that up along with other comics, stories and criticism.
    At this early stage, he's invisible on the internet, so a comment would be welcome. And if you like it enough, a link would be fantastic. It's called Celestial Cities of Science and Magic and here's the link: http://www.stuarthopen.com/

    Thanks for your indulgence, Rip.

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    1. No problem. I'll check it out. Looking forward to your commentary.

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  2. So the Forgotten One was Hercules - and what about the other Hercules of the Avengers and the Champions ? This illustrates the confusing muddle when the Marvel Universe is brought into the Eternals storyline.

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    1. It is confusing. But trust me, Roy "The Boy" Thomas fixed it all in his Thor saga which blended the Eternals into the other pantheons then already extant in the MU. I still think it's one of the best and most completely successful retcons in comics history.

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  3. Rip! I stopped by the Dojo yesterday – and Tiger and Yang we’re hanging out in front smoking cigarettes and charging Dojo patrons a “cover charge.” Can you talk to them about this?...Best regards, RickM

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    1. I don't mind cover charges; it's the interminable alternate cover charges that get me annoyed.

      Tiger is a troubled youth indeed and I'd hoped Yang would've led him down a better path. Sigh. I need to slap some sense into these boys.

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