Unlimited Access #1
Marvel/DC Comics (December, 1997)“No Time Like The Present!” WRITER: Karl Kesel PENCILER: Pat Olliffe INKER: Al Williamson COLORIST: Greg Wright LETTERER: Jim Novak CONSULTING EDITOR: Mike Carlin EDITOR: Tom Brevoort GUIDING SPIRIT: Mark Gruenwald
Trying to mend things with Ming, Axel tells her all about his duties as Access. He even admits to his fling with Fitz but says that Ming is the only girl he keeps coming back to; she’s his anchor and he doesn’t know what he’d do if he lost her. As if on cue, Mantis appears from the DC Universe to attack her for some reason. Spider-Man steps in and after getting Ming to safety brings in Wonder Woman to stop him and the Juggernaut, while someone watches from the shadows. When he brings Wonder Woman back to the DCU he learns she doesn’t remember him and that pre-smart Hulk is loose in the DC Universe, in a fight with Hal Jordan (who should have been dead at the time). Access eventually realizes he has also been traveling in time and gets Hulk home. Attempting to return to his time he ends up further in the past, meeting Jonah Hex and the Two-Gun Kid, whom he has to return to the Marvel Universe. He then saves Hex from a sneak attack but ends up losing him in time and space before arriving in the “Days Of Futures Past” period where he’s saved from a Sentinel by the Legion Of Super-Heroes.
What they got right: In theory I do like the idea of using time travel to invoke further crossovers. I also like seeing Axel and Ming back together because I think they make a good couple. There’s also a reference to Batman & Spider-Man, showing that he’s still involved with the crossover events, as well as referencing a cameo in the pages of Green Lantern I have yet to review.
What they got wrong: This just makes his absence during JLA/Avengers more confusing and makes me wish he could have been worked into the updated script. I’m also concerned that having Access being given time-travel powers may be making him a bit too powerful and I would think dimension swaps like Two-Gun Kid would have been handled by Access’s predecessors like the old bum that unlocked his powers in the first place.
Recommendation: This is starting out to be an interesting story, so it’s worth a look to see where things go from here.