- I was just remembering how I used to be the one who always blew his stack. All of a sudden I feel old... real old.
- -- Hawkeye
Appearing in "Blanking Out!"
- Avengers West Coast
Races and Species:
Synopsis for "Blanking Out!"
The new West Coast Avengers are training on the grounds of their new compound, with Iron Man serving as the attacker. Hawkeye fires a smoke arrow to provide cover, but Iron Man switches over to Infrared lenses to see through it. He attacks Tigra, but she's too fast for him and manages to swing around and jump on top of him, blocking his sight. Hawkeye takes the advantage and fires an arrow which releases an adhesive putty into Iron Man's jet repulsers, sending him tumbling to the ground. But Iron Man uses his glove repulsers to create a concussive blast into the ground and knocking the rest of the Avengers off their feet. Defeated, Hawkeye ends the training session. Hawkeye comments that having everyone together reminds him of the old days, and Iron Man contemplates telling everyone that he's not the man they think he is.
Meanwhile, Freddy arrives at Simon Williams' house to find him using his strength to remove the walls, making it easier to move his belongings out of the house. Freddy asks Simon if he's really serious about going back to being Wonder Man and joining the Avengers, and Simon explains that Wonder Man is who he is and always will be and that the Avengers will always be part of his life. Realizing that he's out of nails to finish the moving job, he asks Freddy to go into town with him. But as they are leaving the hardware store, the alarm at a nearby bank sounds. The Blank is robbing the bank in broad daylight. Wonder Man moves in to stop him, and the Blank opens fire but the bullets just bounce off. One swift punch and the Blank is send flying back through the doors of the bank to smash into a desk across the room. Wonder Man wrestles for control of the gun, but the Blank slips out of his grasp and crashes through the front window to escape. Wonder Man rushes out, but the Blank is nowhere to be seen.
Later, back at his apartment, Clyde watches the news report about the robbery. He remembers how he came about his powers, waiting at the bus stop. There he met a disgruntled scientist for Stark International who had built a wearable force-field generator but, upset that the company had been taken over and changed by Obadiah Stane, quit his job.The scientist, too impatient to wait for the bus, was hit by a car, and Clyde stole the scientist's briefcase in the confusion. It took him a few months to figure out how it works, but now that the trial tests are over he's ready for the big money. As Clyde walks out of the room, he doesn't hear the pleas for help emanating from the force field generator.
Back at the Avengers Compound, Wonder Man expresses his frustration about the Blank's escape. Hawkeye assures him that they'll get full cooperation from the police, and that they have a better chance of finding the Blank if they work together as a team. Wonder Man agrees, and the five Avengers use their skills to comb the city in search of the Blank. That evening, the Blank arrives at his next target - a Wells Fargo armored truck outside of Emilio's on the outskirts of town. He attacks the guards, shooting and injuring one. As they try and drive off, the Blank leaps into the back of the truck and threatens to kill the guard if they don't pull over. When the guards refuse to cooperate, the Blank bails out, grabbing as much loot as he can carry. Mockingbird, having heard about the robbery over the radio, pulls up just as the Blank jumps out. She chases him, reporting her location to the others. Within minutes, both Hawkeye and Iron Man show up and are able to corner the Blank at a gas station. The Blank, knowing that he can never fight the Avengers together, leaps for the gas pumps. He knocks them over, and sparks land in the leaking gas. The entire gas station explodes, allowing the Blank the chance to escape unharmed while the Avengers deal with the raging fire he created.
Arriving back at his apartment, Clyde realizes that Los Angeles may be too hot for a small time crook like himself, and makes the decision to take what little money he stole and leave town. But as he begins to recharge the force-field belt, a figure emerges from the energies. It takes human form... revealing that the man trapped inside the force-field was Graviton!
- Story continues from Iron Man Annual (Vol. 1) #7.
- This issue is reprinted in comics and books, see references for more info.
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- Images from West Coast Avengers Vol 1 2
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