|Series #1 - NOVA #3|
Cover Date: November 1976
Writer/Editor: Marv Wolfman
Artist: Sal Buscema
Inker: Tom Palmer
Letterer: Irving W.
Colorist: Michele Wolfman
Cover Artist: Sal Buscema & Frank Giacoia
Title: "The Deadly Diamondhead Is Ready To Strike!"
After destroying the Destructoid, Diamondhead reveals that, like the Condor, he is striving to become the master crimelord. He also tells us that, even as a child, he relished the role of the villain. Diamondhead was also a Golden Gloves boxing champion as a teenager. Arch Dyker (Diamondhead's real name) became a petty thief until, four months previous, he broke into the South Hampton Science Institute. As he was attempting to steal some precious gems, he tripped and fell in front of a diamond-powered laser! Arch Dyker was reborn as the deadly Diamondhead!
Back at the Rider home, Rich and his father, Charles Rider, are arguing about Rich's fighting at school. Charles disapproves of his son's fighting and send him to bed without supper. A few moments later, Rich's mom, Gloria Rider, comes in with a sandwich for him. She reveals to Rich that his father is having trouble at work. It seems that, as a school principal, Charles is being pressured to fix some unspoken problems at the school. Gloria's talk helps comfort Rich's feelings.
Later, Rich goes on patrol as Nova. His helmet picks up an emergency broadcast on the police band. It turns out to be a shootout between the police and some criminals. To his delight, Nova discovers that he is invulnerable to bullets and takes the criminals into custody.
The next day, Rich and his friends run into Mike Burley. Burley has been looking for Rich since he dumped spaghetti on him back in issue #2. He hits Rich but then finds himself on his back. Rich had punched Burley out of pure reflex. Rider realizes that he shouldn't have done it and runs. He realizes that if he stays and fights, Burley will be seriously hurt and it may reveal his new powers. Rich leaps over a building when no one is looking and Burley is left shaking his head.
Meanwhile, Diamondhead has gone on a crime spree. First, he robs the Long Island Gold Reserve. This is followed by an armored car robbery and a bank hold-up. He then surrenders to the police.
However, capture was part of Diamondhead's plan. He wanted to be in the prison where a certain box was being kept. This box had been found on Powerhouse when he was captured last issue. Diamondhead breaks into the warden's office, steals the box and breaks out of prison.
Back at the Rider home in Hempstead, Long Island, Robert and Rich are playing Monopoly when the radio announces the escape of Diamondhead. Rich ducks away to become Nova and begins to search for the villain. His helmet receives a police dispatch about Diamondhead. It is revealed by Nova that his mother is a civilian dispatcher for the police department. The super-hero rushes off to Long Island City.
As he arrives, Nova saves a man who has been thrown out of a window. It turns out to have been done by Diamondhead. Having found the criminal, Nova rushes in to stop him. A fierce battle rages across the trainyards. As they fight, Diamondhead keeps referring to The Dreaded One. Nova wonders who could cause such fear in Diamondhead and The Condor. He puts away his questions as he trades punches with his adversary.
In another part of town, Rich's friend, Roger (Caps) Cooper, has returned home. To his surprise, he finds someone waiting for him. Someone who claims that Roger tried to kill him!
Meanwhile, the battle continues between Nova and Diamondhead. The fight has taken them to the top of a speeding train. Nova warns Diamondhead that he is about to collide with a tunnel. The diamond villain ignores the warning and smashes into the top of the tunnel. Nova searches for the body but finds nothing.
As he leaves the scene, we see that Diamondhead has survived. He swears to destroy Nova and then turns to find The Condor waiting for him. The Condor offers Diamondhead a "business arrangement" that will result in the destruction of Nova and The Dreaded One. Diamondhead shakes on it and they become partners!
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