Atlas (Seaboard); April 1975
Cover by Larry Lieber

Title: “Deathgrip!”
Synopsis: The Destructor heads to New Mexico in pursuit of a mob boss, but ends up battling Deathgrip instead.

Writer: Archie Goodwin
Penciler: Steve Ditko
Inker: Wally Wood

Review: One of the better creative teams of the Atlas (Seaboard) era follows up a strong debut with another above-average outing. Archie Goodwin’s script offers enticing shades of gray, and a protagonist with a harder edge than the Spider-Man template he’s based on. Artists Steve Ditko and Wally Wood continue to complement each other well: Ditko brings a kinetic energy while Wood offers polish and a dash of trademark sexiness. Add in a scary new villain and the beginnings of a supporting cast and this series seemed on its way to contention.

Grade: B+

Cool factor: Goodwin! Ditko! Wood! ’Nuff said.
Not-so-cool factor: One of the bigger “coulda beens” of Atlas (Seaboard)’s brief publishing history.

Character quotable: “Subtlety can hardly be the stock-in-trade of anyone called DEATHGRIP!” – Deathgrip, monologist

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