Mantlo and Golden bring the Micronauts to Earth and begin to develop characterisation. In an interview in BEM #24, Mantlo explained how he established the characters:
“The personalities of the characters partially arose from their visual appearance as toys. Not knowing Mego’s conception of their own toys at the time, I decided that their Space Glider looked like a commander of a starship, that Biotron looked like an obsolete, semi-human robaid, that Microtron looked like he was a funny little guy, that Acroyear looked tough, and Acroyear II and Baron Karza evil. Time Traveller looked ethereal. Force Commander suggested not so much the ultimate force for good, but an emissary for good. There were no female toys—-I’m told the Japanese female toy characters are considered sexually gross to American toy-buyers, firing projectiles from their breasts and pubic areas, etc—so I created Marionette, the Princess Mari. MegoTs Galactic Warrior I made insect-like, and gave the name Bug, but Megors disowned Bug and now he’saMarvel-owned character. Slug, Captain Universe, Jasmine, Cilicia and other characters who will be making appearances sooner or later are all my, or my and Michael’s, creations.“
Micronauts vol 1 #2
Bill Mantlo, Michael Golden (credited as “storytellers”) and Joe Rubenstein
Golden’s cover shows the Micronauts being threatened by… a lawnmower. Such a difference from the cosmic cover of the first issue.
PAGES 1-4 (1-3, 6): The Endeavour has breached the Spacewall and crashes out of the Fringes.
- Brief recap of the first issue: “The Microverse – a subatomic solar system ruled by the tyrannical Baron Karza! Aboard the starship Endeavor, six intrepid fugitives flee the despot’s Photon Patrol by warping through Spacewall, a barrier on the fringe of the Microverse… A barrier never before broken!”
- We get head shots of the Micronauts (in an old-school style). Bug is credited as GALACTIC WARRIOR.
- Time Traveler appears once more, showing that the Enigma Force can come and go whenever required by the plot. In this case, it’s to explain that one the Spacewall has been breached, other craft can follow. (This doesn’t quite make sense because the Endeavour breached the Spacewall and the three patrol craft following them were destroyed. Now a GALACTIC CRUISER follows.)
- Biotron activates the VISI-SCREEN so that they can see the gigantic vegetation of the world they’ve crashed into.
- Bug says that the trees on his world are red.
- There’s a little Han Solo/Princess Leia romantic tension played out in the exchanges between Rann and Marionette. It’s an opportunity for Marionette, Bug and Acroyear to provide new readers with a recap about Karza, body banks and the colonisation of alien planets in the Microverse.
- Rann believes that he has TELEPATHIC DATA locked in his brain that frightens Karza. Biotron thinks a RETRIEVAL PROGRAM could reveal the information.
PAGES 5-6 (7, 10): The Micronauts leave Endeavour to explore and are attacked by… a giant cocker spaniel.
- It seems Endeavour is solar-powered (the ship can’t right itself until the SOLAR RESERVES are recharged).
- The first non-organic object the Micronauts discover is a child’s swing. While Acroyear ponders the religious significance of the swing (which tells us something about his character) while Rann realises the immense size (telling us he’s quick-witted and practical).
- Microtron refers to Dallan and Sepsis as gods, continuing last issue’s mention that Rann’s parents have been deified by the Underground.
PAGES 7-8 (11-14): On Homeworld Karza visits Argon in the body banks.
- Homeworld has an ochre-coloured sky. The ENDLESS PIT revealed the atomic fires of Homeworld’s core.
- Karza’s HQ is the TOWER STRONGHOLD, “the most feared – and most revered structure on Homeworld!” We get a glimpse of the body banks in operation: what looks like a regeneration of a woman. A medic is shown along with a shadow priest.
- On page eight we get a glimpse of Karza at work in the body banks, overseeing the “preoperative treatments” of Prince Argon. It’s a hellish scene: Argon is stretched across some form of lighted operating table surrounded by shadow priests and computer displays (it reminds me most of Disney’s The Black Hole, released later in 1979). Karza is going to use Argon for “breeding purposes”. This is the best page of Karza we’ve seen: nightmarishly sadistic and menacing.
PAGES 9-11 (15-17): The Micronauts overcome a (giant-sized) dog and garden mower.
- Rann uses his GLIDER-PAC for the first time to rescue Marionette from the dog.
- Biotron refers to itself as 6000- SERIES BIOTRON MOBILE UNIT. Biotron is strong enough to fight the (giant) dog. Though it looks like the dog gets hit by some sort of energy.
- Acroyear is strong enough to hold the blade of the garden mower before flipping it over.
PAGES 11-17 (17, 22-23, 26-27, 30-31) The Micronauts meet a teenage boy called Steve Coffin who explains they are in Daytona Beach. Two galactic cruisers break through the Spacewall and battle the Micronauts.
- The GALACTIC CRUISERS encounter the debris of the destroyed Thorian Orbitor destroyed in #1. Shaitan commands the cruisers. Once more, he refers to his blood-feud with his brother who he acknowledges as the rightful leader of the Acroyears. The blood feud is to the death.
- Microtron acts as an INTERLINGUAL TRANSLATOR, enabling the Micronauts to communicate with Steve Coffin, the teenage human boy.
- Rann introduces himself as a Micronaut.
- The Micronauts have landed in a backyard in Daytona Beach, Florida.
- Shaitan’s primary objective is to kill his bother.
- The space cruisers can break into sections, much like the toys. One of the parts is described as a FIGHTER POD. Steve is able to easily destroy it by swatting it into a tree. Another one is described as a WING SCOUT (how Rann, who’s been in suspended animation for a millennium, knows what this craft isn’t addressed). The wing scout uses PHASER FLARES.
- Bug’s lance is equipped with ROCKET-DRIVE. He uses is to fly at one of the attacking craft, causing it to crash into the swing.
- The first panel on page 16 is drawn upside-down to emphasise that Endeavour is still not the right way up.
- Endeavour has DEFLECTOR SCREENS.
- Presumably the teleportation that Shaitan claims the Endeavour has carried out is the ship’s warp engines. When Steve Coffin attacks S
- Steve Coffin uses alliteration in the truest Marvel style: “I’ve been bombed, burnt and battered”.
- Fast-paced and dramatic issue that brings the Micronauts together as a team and readers learn a little more about their characters.
- This is, as we’ll learn from future issues, Earth-616, the main Marvel superhero universe.
- On Earth, the Micronauts are the size of the MEGO toys. When you think about this it doesn’t make much sense as the Micronauts come from an atomic-sized Microverse and would have changed size anyhow. Perhaps this will be explained in a future issue.