Marvel Comics will publish a 36-page special edition available only at military exchanges.

Marvel Comics will publish a 36-page special edition available only at military exchanges. (Courtesy of AAFES)

MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan — Captain America and company are at it again, this time to disarm an evil cyborg determined to steal AAFES’ annual Morale, Welfare and Recreation dividend.

The wacky plot is the story line of a second custom comic book that Marvel Comics and Army and Air Force Exchange Service plan to distribute free to U.S. troops around the world. Titled “Pot of Gold,” the 36-page comic is scheduled to hit AAFES overseas facilities, including 55 base and post exchanges at locations in support of Operations Iraqi and Enduring Freedom, in November. That’s about a month after it arrives in AAFES stores stateside, AAFES officials announced Tuesday.

“We’re going to distribute these evenly throughout the Pacific so they will become available at each of the stores at the same time, with some time in November as a target date,” said AAFES Pacific spokesman Master Sgt. Donovan Potter. “It is a second edition; it’s not a reprint of the first.”

In May, Marvel Comics distributed more than 1 million copies of its first military-themed custom comic in support of the “America Supports You” program, a Defense Department campaign that encourages private citizens, communities and business to reach out to troops and their families. Marvel officials said at the time that the initiative was in response to the huge demand Marvel was receiving from U.S. servicemembers overseas for comic books.

The latest comic will be distributed only at military exchanges.

“We know that the first one was very well-received,” Potter said. “People who collect comic books were excited to get the first edition. We expect the second one to be just as much in demand.”

Due to limited availability, AAFES’ Chief of Corporate Communications Lt. Col. Debra Pressley stated, she doesn’t expect copies of the new comic to stay for long. The book is available on a first-come, first-served basis. “When they’re gone, they’re gone,” Pressley was quoted as saying in a release.

The second installment features Marvel’s superheroes “The New Avengers,” including Captain America, Nick Fury and Luke Cage. These characters, along with some special guests, come face to face with “The Disruptor,” a cyborg armed with disruptive electronic pulse weapons determined to steal the annual dividend AAFES provides for Morale, Welfare and Recreation, according to an AAFES news release.

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Jennifer reports on the U.S. military from Kaiserslautern, Germany, where she writes about the Air Force, Army and DODEA schools. She’s had previous assignments for Stars and Stripes in Japan, reporting from Yokota and Misawa air bases. Before Stripes, she worked for daily newspapers in Wyoming and Colorado. She’s a graduate of the College of William and Mary in Virginia.

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