“Have fun, that’s what it’s all about.”Writer Fred Schiller, on the goal of Codename: Strikeforce
(From the “Spectrum Spotlight” introductory essay in this issue)
Synopsis: A new generation of the Strikeforce team suffers a tragic blow during its showdown with Countessa Del Marco.
Writer: Fred Schiller
Penciler: Tom Morgan
Direct distribution opened the door for two types of comics to make it to market: Quirky, creator-driven books and not-quite-ready-for-prime-time knockoffs of the Big Two. The output of indie publisher Spectrum tended to fall into the latter category. Writer Fred Schiller struggles most with this debut; there’s a big info dump to establish the series’ premise, which means too much tell and not enough show. Artist Tom Morgan’s work is stronger – there’s a heavy Byrne influence and a touch of Sal Buscema – but his storytelling isn’t always clear. Still, Codename: Strikeforce showed promise and deserved a second issue.
Cool factor: Would have been right at home as a middle-of-the-pack Marvel from the era.
Not-so-cool factor: Weren’t there already enough middle-of-the-pack Marvels from the era? (Also, what was up with that atrocious coloring?)
Notable: Both Fred Schiller and Tom Morgan would go on to work for Marvel.
“We’re lookin’ for a rematch and we’re mad as hell!!”Pig-Iron (not to be confused with the member of Captain Carrot’s Zoo Crew)
CODENAME: STRIKEFORCE #1
Published and © by Spectrum, June 1984
Cover by Tom Morgan