Deadman

Issue #1

Cover Date: March 1986
Subtitle: Return to Forever
Writer(s): Andrew Helfer
Artists(s): Jose Luis Garcia Lopez
Storyline: Against the wishes of Batman, Rama Kushna, and his brother Cleveland, Deadman left the sanctuary of Nanda Parbat. Deadman hopped into Batman's body as they left and departed when they arrived at the circus. When he and Cleveland arrived, the circus was being robbed. Deadman possessed one of the robbers and blew their cover. Cleve looked like a hero when the others arrived.
Still confused about the entire situation, Cleveland called his brother out. Boston possessed him and from inside his body, wrote him a letter about all that had happened - from his death to agreeing to stay on earth as a ghost. He asked Cleveland for one week of his life so that he could feel again. After he agreed, Boston visited with Tiny and Lorna.
The next day, he visited his grave; Vashnu found him. Knowing what was happening, he warned Boston that he needed to return to Nanda Parbat.
Boston needed to feel the crowd again - at his first performance in his brother's body, Boston was shot. Cleveland died. They struggled with each other in death; Boston decided to take his place in the afterlife and let Cleveland stay on with Rama Kushna. Rama warned him not to do it.
Boston returned to his own decaying body and dug himself out of his grave.


Issue #2

Cover Date: April 1986
Subtitle: This Mortal Coil
Writer(s): Andrew Helfer
Artists(s): Jose Luis Garcia Lopez
Storyline: Cleveland was able to grab Boston before he reached the end. He received his reward and Boston stayed on as Rama's balance. With Cleveland dead, Boston set out to find his killer. He saw Lotus lighting a cigarette and holding a gun outside the main tent. Deadman attempted to enter her body and turn the gun on her. She refused him. Deadman looked up to see one of the circus clowns pointing a gun at her. The two had a past in Nanda Parbat. The dwarf shot and killed Lotus.
Deadman realized the Sensei sent Lotus to destroy him. He went to Vashnu. The fortune teller clued him in that the Sensei planned a conquest of Nanda Parbat. Vashnu continued and told him the story of Rama Kushna - a deal like he'd received had been struck before - a man who was murdered agreed to stay on with Rama Kushna and root out evils. The evils he fought ived in peace in Nanda Parbat. Eventually, he tired and left. He happened upon the Society of Assassins and possessed their Sensei. Over the years, he prepared to take on Rama Kushna and return all the residents of Nanda Parbat to evil.
En route to Nanda Parbat, Deadman stopped at Hong Kong to check out the headquarters of the Society of Assassins. The Sensei sensed him and had his troops arm the psi weapons - Deadman was targeted.


Issue #3

Cover Date: May 1986
Subtitle: Breaking the Barrier
Writer(s): Andrew Helfer
Artists(s): Jose Luis Garcia Lopez
Storyline: The sensei ordered his men away so he could speak with their captured soul. The spirit inside him drifted out - Deadman could see it. The man tried to convince Deadman that Rama Kushna was a force for evil and must be overthrown. Deadman refused to join his crusade.
Days later, the man he'd possessed to attack the society attempted to make him suffer for it. Deadman provoked him, and he breached the barrier. Deadman was able to use the man as a vessel to escape. When backup arrived, Deadman caused him to shoot some of his associates. He was killed.
Vashnu and Loomis (the dwarf who'd killed Lotus) visited with Rama Kushna. Rama felt the end nearing.
Deadman approached as the citizens of Nanda Parbat left the sacred land; the Sensei and his men had arrived. Deadman entered and was promptly knocked unconscious. When he awakened, Loomis showed him they were now a part of an invasion army.


Issue #4

Cover Date: June 1986
Subtitle: Circle of Fire
Writer(s): Andrew Helfer
Artists(s): Jose Luis Garcia Lopez
Storyline: The Sensei was in the lockup with them - not the man leading the army, but the vessel he'd been using. The real "sensei" (Jonah) was now tangible like Deadman. Brand was strung up and to be shot. Vashnu pulled him down and took the bullets instead. Boston headed into the cave where Rama's spirit waited. The deity asked Deadman to carry on his legacy, but Boston had caught a bullet and was fading. He pulled himself into the pit where Rama first emerged from the Earth and returned to his ghost state.
With snow beginning to fall in Nanda Parbat, Jonah entered Rama's cave armed with the psi blasters. Deadman neared him and became tangible. He pushed Jonah into the pit where Rama destroyed him. Rama Kushna, though dying, promised Deadman he would continue on.
The temple crumbled; Loomis went in for Boston. When they neared the exit, they saw the Sensei order the troops to fire. Deadman faded away while telling Loomis to look after the children who'd been born in Nanda Parbat.
The Sensei gathered his troops and headed home, leaving the people of Nanda Parbat to the elements. When they were out of site, a hover craft landed - Deadman had possessed it's pilot. Everyone was taken away to cover.


notes

  • Cleveland in issue 1: "We both know that you were murdered months ago..."
  • Per the letter column at the end of issue 1, any Deadman story written between the original Strange Adventures tales and this (like the Aquaman backup stories collected in the hard cover) fall out of continuity.
  • Vashnu, Rama Kushna, and Jonah - the first "deadman" were all killed.
  • Return to continuity section 2.