The return of another Golden Age villain in the form(s) of Multi-Man!
The return of another Golden Age villain in the form(s) of Multi-Man!
Flying through the night sky over New York City in her invisible plane, Wonder Woman enjoys the feeling of having come home. After the Mike Bailey affair, this proved to be the last straw as far as she was concerned and she has decided to finish with the Space programme for good.
As she dives from her plane and glides down on the air currents, she muses how, since Steve had died, she has been at a loose end, trying to find a reason for remaining in Man’s World. She needs a new sense of purpose and and if there is an answer to be found, it will be here in New York!
She touches down on the roof of her apartment and changing into her Diana Prince attire, steps inside and switches on the light. On her instructions, decorators have given the whole place a face lift and she is delighted with the results.
The next morning the everyday activities of a busy city continue as normal. A security van picks up its delivery of two million dollars and makes its way through the streets to its destination. Suddenly, a huge dinosaur appears from behind a building and uses its tail to over turn the van. As the stunned security guards clamber out of the wrecked truck, another vehicle screeches to a halt beside them and armed thugs get out.
Taking aim, the gang open fire but their bullets never hit their target because a pair of flashing bracelets deflects them away. As Wonder Woman casually plays bullets and bracelets with the gang, she advises them to stop firing and give themselves up. But the dinosaur reappears again and knocks her flying!
As she gets to her feet she cannot believe her eyes, wondering where the beast has appeared from all of a sudden. Nevertheless, she leaps up into the air and clouts the creature on the jaw with a two fisted punch. She grabs a nearby balcony for support, but the dinosaur moves towards her and grabs a frightened child who is watching from the balcony. Her terrified parents cry out as the monster throws the child into its gaping maw. Moving swiftly, the Amazing Amazon jumps into the open jaws and gathers the frightened child in her arms, before leaping back onto the balcony.
As Wonder Woman turns her attention back to the dinosaur she watches in amazement as it simply disappears into thin air. She quickly leaps up into the sky and gliding on the air currents, surveys the area but to no avail. The creature has vanished, just when the police had arrived to arrest the robbers too.
The next morning at the UN Building, Morgan Tracy is speaking to Under Secretary Wagner regarding the proposed rehiring of Diana Prince. Tracy tells the Under Secretary that her dossier contains a set of suspicious circumstances and unanswered questions a mile long! But although his superior agrees that she does have an unusual record, there is no evidence that she is a security risk. He suggest Tracy’s judgment has been clouded because she quit his team and confirms that he is going to accept her back. Tracy gives in but fumes to himself that he will find the evidence he needs to convict her.
That night, on the roof of a downtown museum, two men and a bear are carrying stolen artifacts towards a waiting helicopter. As they load the craft, they gloat how, thanks to their boss, they have managed to get everything under half a ton! But as the helicopter begins to lift off the streaking form of Wonder Woman rushes over and grabs the wheel of the craft. She uses her strength to overturn the chopper and as the dazed robbers climb out of the wrecked helicopter, she ensnares them in her magic lasso.
She orders them to drop their guns and go to sleep until the police arrive. Then she rips open the cockpit of the helicopter to grab the trained bear she had seen assisting them. But once again, she finds the creature has disappeared and reasons that there has got to be a connection between the bear and the dinosaur she had encountered the previous day.
The following day, Diana Prince takes up residence in her temporary office at the Secretariat Building in UN Plaza. It takes her all day to read her orientation files and she thinks to herself how the department does such wonderful work but there are so many people who need help. Many government and corporate offices use CMMS software to help organize the day to day workload. She wonders whether what they do really makes a difference, or indeed, if anything makes a difference? She ponders her current case as Wonder Woman, and feels she is not thinking clearly and that there is still something very wrong in her life.
Her brooding is interrupted by the arrival of Under Secretary Wagner. He greets her and welcomes her back, saying that they need good people and that he hopes she will stay this time. She replies that she has no intention of going anywhere as she feels she needs some permanence in her life.
But as he leaves, closing the door behind him, the contemplative figure of Diana Prince spins around at amazing speed and transforms into the Amazon Princess known as Wonder Woman. Within moments she is gliding effortlessly through the night sky over the city, hoping to find some clue to the whereabouts of the criminals.
Just then she spies a helicopter on a roof below, which looks exactly like the type she had wrecked the night before. She dives down and lands on the roof, blocking the path of the gang members and their latest haul. As they attempt to draw their guns, she lays into the first gang member. But it appears they have been waiting for her this time as she finds herself suddenly in the grip of an enormous Boa Constrictor!
As it begins to crush her, she fights to keep its monstrous fangs away from her. While Wonder Woman struggles, the gang produce specially prepared halves of a glass sphere and seal her and the snake inside. The surprised Amazon suddenly finds herself released as the snake transforms before her eyes into a tiny insect. It flies out of a carefully prepared pin hole in the sphere leaving her trapped inside. Finally, as sleeping gas engulfs the imprisoned Amazon, the insect transforms into the form of a man. As Wonder Woman collapses he introduces himself as Multi-Man!
Quickly, the gang load the sphere onto the helicopter and take off, heading towards the ocean. On board, while Wonder Woman desperately fights to stay conscious, Multi-Man tells her that in each of their previous encounters, she had thought she was dealing with a simple creature, never dreaming she faced a true challenge! Years ago, he had faced a group of heroes called the Challengers of the Unknown and had been foolish enough to reveal his power and dream of world conquest. But this time he has learned to settle for anonymity and the world’s riches instead!
Just then the pilot confirms that they have reached the Atlantic and the gang roll the sphere towards the open hatchway. As the sphere falls out, Wonder Woman suddenly shifts and manages to bang the sphere against the side of the helicopter as she falls. The jolt is enough to break open the two halves of the sphere, allowing her to break free. Multi-Man tells his gang not to worry that she is free of the sphere, for while she is perhaps smarter than he had first thought and had conserved her strength for one last effort, she has been weakened by the gas and they are miles from shore. All she has done is ensure that she drowns a free woman!
With that, they turn and head back to New York, leaving the weakened Wonder Woman to begin slowly slipping beneath the waves. As the cold water washes over her body, she appears to reach towards her tiara in a gesture of hopelessness. But in fact she is summoning her invisible plane to scoop her out of the icy waters!
As she gets behind the controls of her craft, she gives thanks that she was able to focus enough thoughts to mentally call for her plane, because even with her endurance she would not have lasted long in the icy water. She quickly contacts the JLA satellite and request their file on Multi-Man…
Meanwhile, at the Museum of Natural History, the gang are stealing more priceless treasures. Multi-Man has taken the form of an Elephant to carry the larger items into the helicopter. Suddenly, Wonder Woman jumps down from nowhere and lands on the creature’s head. As Multi-Man rages, she clouts him in the head and he topples forward, while she agilely leaps onto the ground. She turns and removes her magic lasso to ensnare him, but he immediately transforms into an insect and flies away.
She swiftly spins her lasso in the air, creating a powerful vibration which knocks the insect to the ground. With the lasso around him, Multi-Man is forced to obey her commands and she instructs him to remain in his insect form until they can find a cell that will hold him!
As the police take away the other gang members, she thinks to herself that the last few nights must have been New York’s version of a “Welcome Home”! So why does it feel like she never left?