The Defenders #97

    The Defenders » The Defenders #97 - Slouching Toward Bethlehem released by Marvel on July 1981.

    Short summary describing this issue.

    Slouching Toward Bethlehem last edited by pikahyper on 11/29/18 09:21PM View full history

    Devil-Slayer confronts the Defenders with a mission to rescue his wife from a strange cult she has been following in Israel. But where did this cult come from, and who is their mysterious leader known only as the Messiah?

    After defeating the demon Fashima, Dr. Strange and the other Defenders try to root out the rest of the Six-Fingered Hand. They realize that Avarrish still has a partial hold on Hellcat, and manage to banish him.

    Devil-Slayer appears, and asks for help. He had received a letter from his wife, Cory. She has fallen in with a cult in Israel, which she believes to be the return of the Messiah, but he believes to be part of the Six-Fingered Hand. They find the touch of black magic upon her letter, so they travel to her location.

    Meanwhile, Man-Thing finds a hole in reality and walks through.

    In Israel, it is day, and Nighthawk loses his ability to stand due to the daylight. They bring him in his paralyzed form to David Kessler, the reputed Messiah, to test his supposed healing powers. Cory is glad to see Devil-Slayer and says he will be convinced by David's powers. He was originally a teacher, but had an epiphany in the desert and is now a messenger from God. They are amazed when Nighthawk is indeed healed. However, Damian says black magic can cure just as well as white, and they reveal themselves as the Defenders.

    Kessler calls down an army of angels to fight them, to protect God's word as he thinks it. The Defenders fight the angels for a long time. Then Dr. Strange realizes that Kessler is not evil himself, and has been tricked just like the rest of them. He casts a spell upon the angels to reveal their true form as demons. Kessler is crushed, and is possessed by a demon, Hyppokri. However, Kessler regains control and kills himself to save the others.

    The demons all disappear, and Cory and Devil-Slayer discuss their respective feelings about good and evil.


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