Hooray! It's Valentine's Day! And that can only mean one thing.
Son of Origins of Marvel Comics.
Son of Origins of Marvel Comics always had my favourite cover of the first three Marvel Origins books, even though, looking at it now, I'm not sure why the Scarlet Witch is on it, seeing as how to my recollection there's no sign of her inside the thing.
Of course, her old gang the Avengers did appear, having their first ever adventure as they tried to deal with both the Hulk and then Loki.
But, as if such excitement wasn't enough for us, we also got the origins of the X-Men, Iron Man, Daredevil, Agent of SHIELD, the Watcher and the Silver Surfer. Still no origin of Ant-Man and, more oddly, still no origin of Captain America.
Still, what we did get was more than enough to make up for such absences.
Even though I never liked the original X-Men, I did always enjoy their debut outing. It featured a charming naivety to it and an appealing minimalism to their costumes. Iron Man's origin's always been one of my favourites. And, though I've never been a fan of Nick Fury, the origin of SHIELD was OK and did at least feature a flying car. The Watcher's origin gave us a stark morality tale I've always born in mind before interfering in the affairs of other worlds.
But the highlight for me at the time was the origin of the Silver Surfer, mostly because I'd not read it before. Plus,at a million pages long, and featuring Galactus, it had a certain epic quality.
Unlike the first Origins book, we didn't get a later tale from the career of each of our heroes but did get later stories for Iron Man and Daredevil. The Daredevil story was a perfect selection but the Iron Man tale, featuring the Maggia and Whiplash was Part One of a multi-part story and therefore ended just as it got exciting.
Overall, I recall it as a less focused book than the first - and featuring the Watcher rather than Captain America does, in hindsight, seem plain perverse - but, as I sat there on the Christmas Day of what I believe to be 1976, reading my brand new present, none of that mattered. All that mattered was my heroes were once more saving the day and I had a brand new cover to try and draw a copy of.
Top of the Pops: 15th December, 1977.
5 months ago