Nick Fury Vs S.H.I.E.L.D. #1- 6
Writer Bob Harras
Penciler: Paul Neary
Inker Kim DeMulder
Colorist: Bernie Jaye
Letterer: Janice Chiang
Cover Artist Book 1: Jim Steranko
Cover Artist Book 2: Bill Sienkiewicz
Cover Artist Book 3: M.D. Bright
Cover Artist Book 4: Joe Jusko
Cover Artist Book 5: Kevin Nowlan
Cover Artist Book 6: Tom Palmer

In the wake of the crash of the helicarrier, Fury leads a taskforce to recover its powercore. However a surprise HYDRA attack leaves S.H.I.E.L.D. sans the core and very nearly one of its senior agents, Clay Quartermain. Fury is quickly called away from the scene to depths of a Roxxon Oil facilty where he finds stolen S.H.I.E.L.D. files.Fury is stripped of command after he brings details of the Roxxon investigation to the board of directors, forcing him to go rogue.

On the run, Fury attempts to contact Val, but is betrayed by her as Dum Dum and Gabe investigate strange behavior and goings-on amoungst the agency, including the new director; Jasper Sitwell. Fury raids a S.H.I.E.L.D. installation and drafts sleeper agent Alexander Goodwin Pierce to help him find out what is going on in S.H.I.E.L.D.

Run-ins with dead and oddly aged agents leads Fury to believe LMDs are involved and he calls on Tony Stark for help. Meanwhile Agent John Allen, former head of the ESPer division and CIA agent Al MacKenzie run afoul of the conspiracry that is forming amoung S.H.I.E.L.D., Roxxon Oil,and HYDRA, and are captured. A raid by Fury frees Mackenzie and he teams up with Fury and Pierce as they travel to Hong Kong for more information.

The strange cult/conspricay linking S.H.I.E.L.D. and Roxxon, now lead by repeatedly aging clones of Jimmy Woo and Jasper Sitwell learn that Fury's DNA, enhanced by the Infinity Formula, holds the ket to stabilizing thier ranks of next-generation Deltite LMDs. As Fury and company discover a HYDRA connection in Asia, Val goes undercover into the Delta project as Gabe and Dum Dum invstigate Roxxon.

Fury forces the new Madame Hydra to lead him and his team to the heart of the conspricacy, bringing them to the S.H.I.E.L.D. satalite where the final stage of the cult/conspricacy that is the Deltite Affair begins.

  • Continuity Notes
  • First appearance of Alexander Pierce, Al Mackenzie, and Kate Neville
  • The helicarrier's crash took place in the She Hulk Graphic Novel
  • The events of the 1996 Fury oneshot dispute events in this story
  • Issue 3 dispute events in Iron Man #118-119, 129 and 174-175
  • Steranko later illustrated the cover for the miniseries trade paperback
  • Bill Sienkiewick was cover artist for the 2001/02 MAX: Fury miniseries
  • Joe Jusko illustrated the cover for the first Nick Fury novel, Empyre
  • Kim DeMulder later served as the regular inker for the first fourteen issues of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2)
  • Reprinted in Nick Fury VS S.H.I.E.L.D. (1991) and S.H.I.E.L.D.: Nick Fury Vs S.H.I.E.L.D.
  • For more, check out our interview with Kim DeMulder
  • For more, check out our interview with Paul Neary
  • For more, check out our interview with editor Gregory Wright

Milestone miniseries still holds up as one of the best stories in Nick Fury's canon and one of the most influential in terms of continuity, directly impacting the whole of the second volume of Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.. Not wholley original in its premise, previous comics establishing something amiss with S.H.I.E.L.D. help add to the impact of the story and Fury's disallusion with his agency crumbling around him is made all the more potent.

The plot builds on the legacy of the old Strange Tales with Fury facing a vast organization lead by one strong leader and taps into the revelation of the Infinity Formula from Marvel Spotlight, making the story truely unique to Nick Fury himself. Although the final twist in the story, wherein Fury's biology is needed, takes the character away from his unique "everyman" hero status in the Marvel Universe. The conspiracy itself is little much if you ask me, but in retrospect does seem to like an honest attempt to explain away some of the more unsavory S.H.I.E.L.D. elements that had popped up during the 1970's.

The supporting cast is given excellent spotlight, espcecially Dum Dum and Jones, a hallmark match-up unseen since the days of Stan Lee on Strange Tales. The generational aspect of the cast and thier actions is perhaps the most insightful of Harras story; the uncompromising loyalty of the Howlers, the unwavering loyalty of the S.H.I.E.L.D. cast, but bound to thier duty to the agency, and of course the introduction of the new crop of agents that would see light in the subsequent S.H.I.E.L.D. series. Makenzie and Pierce make for the breakout characters here, sadly the former not living up to the wonderful promise seen in here. Neville is practically a throwaway character (ironic considering how she ended up) and the unnamed agent who would become 'Red' tends to get lost amidst the cast. Even with six good-sized books, the story suffers from too much of a busy cast. Admirable, though it is, the story maybe could have done with less characters (or maybe more books?).

Sadly much of the daring of the story was undone in less then three year's time. The new cast established is all but forgotten by Marvel editorial (or killed at the end of S.H.I.E.L.D. v.2), those dead at the end of this were found alive, and even the conspiracy itself was deemed too contrived by the "powers that be" as written by editor Ralph Maccio in his intro to the retconning fiasco that was the Fury 1994 oneshot.

Of course this wouldn't be a classic if the art wasn't up to the same standards as the story and surely it is. The team of Paul Neary, Kim DeMulder, Bernie Jaye, and Janice Chiang are the first team to work on an original Fury series since the 1960's and they do an excellent ob of updating Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. for the time. Especially in the final issue set aboard the S.H.I.E.L.D. satalite wherein the action becomes quite kinetic, various special FX are used that help maintain the visual tradition of the old Steranko tales.

In these Nu-Marvel days of loose continuty (if continuity at all) its hard to say if this miniseries happened at all, but its still a damm fine read and an essential part of any Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. fan..