World’s Finest Comics – 248


World’s Finest Comics – 248

General Info

Issue No:
248
On Sale Date:
September 1977
Cover Date:
January 1978
Era:
Bronze Age
Story Title:
Amazon and the Rock

Creative Team

Cover Artist:
Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez, Dick Giordano
Writer:
Gerry Conway
Penciller:
Mike Vosburg
Inker:
Dick Giordano
Letterer:
Bill Morse
Colourist:
Liz Berube
Editor:
Jack C Harris

Characters

Main:
Wonder Woman (Diana Prince/Princess Diana), Steve Trevor, General Blankenship
Heroes:
N/A
Villains:
Doctor Psycho, Joan White
Olympians:
N/A
Amazons:
N/A
Other:
Easy Company (Sergeant Rock, Bulldozer, Ice Cream Soldier)
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Comments

This two part story is told from the point of view of DC character Sergeant Rock, who is a soldier in the Second World War. The story also features a villain from Wonder Woman’s past, whom she first met back in issue 5 no less!

Another item worth mentioning is the fact that Wonder Woman’s boots are depicted with a yellow stripe instead of the normal white in this issue. I do not know whether this was a conscious decision on the part of the Editor, or whether colourist Liz Berube just had a bad day at the office!

Synopsis

Sergeant Rock and his men are presently based at a camp situated on the banks of the River Thames in war torn London. Suddenly through the night skies they see two futuristic looking missiles streaking towards the city. As the men dive to the ground for cover, Rock sees Wonder Woman arrive astride the wings of her invisible plane. In amazement he watches as she unhooks her lasso and bears down on the weapons. She swiftly loops her golden rope around one of the warheads and yanks it towards the other. They collide and explode safely in mid air.

As the soldiers climb to their feet, Sergeant Rock scans the sky for the Amazing Amazon but she has disappeared. He hopes that the explosion has not taken her with it and he and his men turn to enter the briefing office. They are met by Major Steve Trevor and General Blankenship, who tell the GI’s that the missiles they had seen tonight are merely a sample of what might soon hit London again and even New York! The General explains that the Germans have somehow developed a ‘guided’ missile, almost like a robot bomber with a range of up to ten thousand miles. It packs a powerful warhead with enough megatons to wipe out a city the size of Washington DC. Army Intelligence does not know how the Germans are building these but they do know where. Major Trevor then goes on to recount how he had flown a reconnaissance mission over North Germany the previous night and had located an isolated factory. His infra red camera had picked up stockpiles of these missiles inside. Sergeant Rock is given orders to destroy the factory but he responds that his men are infantry and not commandos, without the specialist training needed for such a mission. Steve replies that unfortunately all their commando units are on assignment in France and that Rock and his men are the only alternative they have.

Just then Yeomen Diana Prince enters the room and Steve asks where she has been all this time. She replies that something urgent had come up but that it won’t happen again. The Major curtly says that he “hopes not” and then informs Sergeant Rock that his unit will debark at 2300 hours tomorrow. He wishes them good luck and they leave the room. Diana says to Steve that the missiles shown from the reconnaissance mission photos could not have been invented by the Germans as the technology seems far too advanced. Major Trevor sarcastically asks when she had become a scientist all of a sudden, adding that all she needs to worry about is filing the maps and photos safely in the vault. He finishes by stating that the next time she wants to learn something then she should make sure she is not late for a briefing. Diana quietly fumes at this while thinking back to the close look she obtained of the two missiles earlier. One thing she is certain of is that they were not made on Earth!

The next night Sergeant Rock and his men parachute into enemy territory while Wonder Woman follows them unseen. She has decided that she cannot let them face the Germans alone as if her suspicions are correct they will all be killed. Meanwhile, even though they have parachuted in total darkness the GI’s have already been spotted. Machine gun fire rattles from the bushes as Rock and his men dive for cover. Returning fire, he orders two of his unit to lob grenades at the lookout nest. The resulting explosion does its job and the unit make their way towards the location of the factory, leaving the dead German where he lays. Watching all of this, Wonder Woman thinks to herself that she will never understand war. Even good men become capable of such violence.

Just then she hears someone else coming and crouching in the bushes, she sees two German soldiers walk past. One of them is dressed in the standard uniform but the other is wearing a device unlike anything she has ever seen. She deduces that it was made by the same hands that constructed the missiles and she decides she cannot allow them to locate Sergeant Rock and his men.

She springs from her hiding place and clouts the first soldier unconscious. But the other one responds by firing a searing cold energy blast from his helmet which she only just manages to avoid. Cursing herself for not taking him out first, she quickly uses her legs to trip the top heavy suited German over. He falls to the ground still firing his ice ray, which coats the tree branches above in a thick layer of ice. As she unhooks her lasso ready to ensnare the fallen foe, the ice gives way and she has to dive for safety as it crashes down on top of the man, crushing him. Precious minutes have been lost and she realises that Rock and his party are no longer in sight…

Meanwhile the GI’s have arrived at a ridge overlooking the factory. The Sergeant instructs his men to take some photos of the facilities from up here while they await sunset. Then they make their move. One of his men asks whether he really thinks they can wipe out the whole factory with the small explosive capsules they have been given? He replies that they are a new kind of explosive called plastique which packs quite a punch. Just then he hears a voice behind him and turns to see German soldiers training their guns on them. Standing with them is a small, strange looking man who informs them that if they make one move they will die. Helpless, the GI’s are taken prisoner and lead into the factory.

Elsewhere, Wonder Woman has arrived at the rear of the complex and quickly disposes of a patrolling guard. She then makes her way stealthily up the side of the building and opens an upper window. She looks down upon the main control room where she sees Sergeant Rock and his men being held at gunpoint, standing next to a large metallic sphere. She also recognises the strange little man who is addressing them….Dr. Psycho! She watches as he tells Rock that he is an American, like them. Rock makes a move towards the grotesque little man, disgusted that an American is working with the Nazis, but is forced back by a guard. Psycho goes on to explain that he is collaborating because he and they share the same goal, which is the complete subjugation of Mankind, particularly of women! A woman’s treachery sent him to jail long ago for a crime he did not commit. Since that day he has sworn revenge, which he he has now gained through the manipulation of Ectoplasmic Force, the very matter of the Spirit World.

He points to one of the Germans and tells the stunned GI’s that he can use the power to alter the shape of things, or people. As he speaks the German transforms into a pretty blonde woman before their very eyes who he introduces as his medium to the Spirit World, Joan White. But as he is about to continue crowing about his powers he is cut short as a hatchway in the sphere opens and three tall, bald humanoids disembark. The lead figure informs Psycho that the missiles will arrive in 1.03 seconds. A moment later a dozen gleaming missiles suddenly materialise out of thin air on the factory floor in front of the amazed gathering. The alien asks Psycho whether these are sufficient for his plans and the little man replies that they are enough to start with. He continues that they will need more weapons however if they are to defeat the crazed killers who would destroy their dream of world unity. At this, Sergeant Rock lunges at Psycho but is felled by a rifle butt. Dr. Psycho orders his men to take Rock and the other GI’s to the debriefing building.

Crouching on a gantry above, Wonder Woman decides she has heard enough. She guesses that the three humanoids are not of this Earth and probably posses powers far beyond those of any creature she has seen since she left Paradise Island. It may even be the case that even with her strength she cannot defeat them, but she can surely destroy the missiles! She swiftly jumps down and smashes her way into the room, knocking over the guard on duty. One of the remaining humanoids raise a control device towards her as she tells him that she does not want to hurt him and that she believes he and his comrades have been misled by Psycho. But the humanoid responds by saying that she wears the costume of the “mad ones” and she must be dealt with. He fires what look like miniature lightning bolts at her which she manages to deflect with her bracelets. They ricochet back at the attacker who is felled by his own weapon! Quickly she checks on him and is pleased he is unconscious but otherwise uninjured. She picks up the weapon and crushes it in her hands. Next she turns her attention to the missiles and uses her Amazonian science to figure out how to destroy them. But she knows that preparing them for self destruct will take time…

Meanwhile in the debriefing room Dr. Psycho stands over the bound GI’s and says to Sergeant Rock that while there are traditional methods of torture, he will use his own, unique technique to break the American. As he stares at the soldier with his big, piercing eyes, he tells Rock that when is he done the Sergeant will spill whatever secrets he may possess as eagerly as a dog trying to please his master! Sergeant Rock tells him to “forget it pal!” but slowly he sees the figure of Psycho transform into Solomon, Rock’s girlfriend. He finds himself apparently laying on the grass back home having just fallen off his horse. Solomon leans over him and asks if he is all right. A slightly confused Rock tells her that he is fine but that this event had surely happened many months ago? However, as he thinks about it more and more he begins to find it harder to remember anything. The other GI’s in the room watch as Rock begins to smile and Psycho tells them that he has used his mind control technique to convince Rock that the fantasy is real and the Sergeant will now do anything to maintain the illusion.

Suddenly though, the sound of a massive explosion can be heard coming from the factory building across the way. As Psycho looks out of the window in shock, he sees Wonder Woman sprinting away from the exploding missiles with the unconscious bodies of the German soldier and humanoid she had dealt with earlier. The German commander turns to Psycho and yells that the accused ‘Fraulein’ must be here because of Psycho. The doctor calmly replies though that he is talking nonsense and that she was undoubtedly here nurse-maiding the Sergeant, as women are prone to do. He smiles and continues that this situation provides him with a way to slay the Amazon witch and by doing so, discredit the United States Army too.

Outside, Wonder Woman gently lays down the unconscious bodies of her enemy, still showing compassion even though they had attacked her. But she suddenly hears a voice and turns to find Sergeant Rock pointing a gun directly into her face. As sweat pours down his face he stammers that he must kill her and under Psycho’s influence, begins to squeeze the trigger…