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"Cold World": It's 1969, and a woman in white, Bride, and her best men have S.T.O.R.M. operative John Stone at their mercy. Flipping up a fake fingernail reveals a secret device which enables the coldly efficient agent to escape certain death, eliminate Bride'
Appearing in "Cold World"
- Elijah Snow (Flashback and main story)
- John Stone (First appearance) (Flashback and main story)
- Sherlock Holmes (First appearance) (Flashback only)
- Anaykah (Flashback only)
- The Last Shot
- Blitzen Suit
- Nautilus (Flashback only)
Synopsis for "Cold World"
It's 1969, and a woman in white, Bride, and her best men have S.T.O.R.M. operative John Stone at their mercy. Flipping up a fake fingernail reveals a secret device which enables the coldly efficient agent to escape certain death, eliminate Bride's squad of killers, and smash her operation. Still, he might not have survived the final showdown with Bride if not for the sudden appearance on the scene of a somewhat younger-looking Elijah Snow, who turns Bride into a all-too-fragile snow sculpture to avenge the death of an old girlfriend.
Thirty-one years later it's Snow who needs help, so the two men meet again in a remote bar in Kazakhstan frequented by individuals who, ironically enough, spend their final days on Earth attempting to cheat death. Over a beer, Snow tells Stone -- relatively unchanged himself over the past three decades -- about some serious gaps in his memory, a fact proved when he reveals, to the agent's surprise, that he didn't know who William Leather was when he encountered him a few months previously.
Stone reacquaints Snow with a memory of his being on the Nautilus, hiding from Leather, while Stone himself was trying to destroy it many years before. This memory opens the floodgates of Snow's brain to a broad mosaic of images from his past: a dark-haired woman who loved him, a pipe-smoking individual reminiscent of Sherlock Holmes; and (perhaps) The Four's Randall Dowling, who apparently doctored Snow's memories as "a game." Discovering these pieces of the puzzle, and perceiving there is much more beneath the surface, strengthens Snow's resolve to uncover the whole truth. Moreover, as he tells Stone, one critical piece of information has come of it all: "I know who the Fourth Man is."
- This issue is collected in Planetary Vol. 2: The Fourth Man.
- The bar, "The Last Shot", that John Stone and Elijah Snow goes to is the same bar that was first seen in StormWatch #46.
- Elijah Snow's memories of Sherlock Holmes, Anaykah, and his encounter with Randall Dowling are further elaborated in Planetary #13, Planetary #14, and Planetary #17.
- The cover of this issue evokes Jim Steranko's S.H.I.E.L.D. covers, particularly Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. #4.
- John Stone is based on popular fictional spies such as Nick Fury and James Bond. S.T.O.R.M., a precursor of StormWatch, is a nodding reference to the Marvel Comics organization S.H.I.E.L.D.. Stone's nemesis The Bride is possibly an analogue to the Marvel Comics villain Madame Hydra.
- The S.T.O.R.M. agent that was fatally shot by The Bride bears a strong similarity to Nick Fury, as indicated by the cigar, eyepatch, and stubble.
- The Nautilus in the flashback resembles to the one depicted in the Disney film adaption 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.
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