Thursday, 18 May 2017

May 18th, 1977 - Marvel UK, 40 years ago this week.

As I type these fateful words, I'm watching the original Star Trek on The Horror Channel. It's not one of the more memorable episodes. They appear to have been eaten by a giant space amoeba.

There's only one thing for it. If the entertainment of the 1960s is failing to float my starship, I'm going to have to take refuge in the escapism of the 1970s.

Marvel UK, Captain Britain #32

I don't like to nitpick but that is so blatantly an American style stadium and not a British one. That was the problem with Captain Britain. The lack of authenticity, pulling you out of the stories.

My research tells me there's nothing happening in the back-up strips that wasn't happening last week.

Super Spider-Man and the Titans #223, Nightcrawler and the Punisher

From the days when putting the Punisher on the front of a comic wasn't guaranteed to drive readers away in their droves.

It was this story that made me want my own personal cable car system. Tragically, I still don't have one. How is it possible for life to be so cruel to a man?

But how exactly are Spider-Man and Nightcrawler trapped? They're about as untrapped as any human being has ever been. They're surrounded only by the sky, which is gigantic and gives them many directions in which to flee. The Punisher, on the other hand, is trapped. He's on a tiny roof, about five hundred foot up in the air. Where's he going to run to when Spidey whips his guns off him, Nightcrawler teleports at him and then the fists start flying?

Mighty World of Marvel #242, Hulk and Planet of the Apes

The Hulk would appear to be in Jarella's world. The people from the Planet of the Apes would appear to be in The Last of the Mohicans.

Marvel UK, Fury #10

While I would never wish failure upon Marvel UK, I can't deny I'm glad this title didn't last long. It means there are only a finite number of issues about which I have to declare, "I don't have a clue what happens in this one."

As always, it has a nice cover.

Hooray! I only have about another dozen weeks of saying, "It has a nice cover," to go.

22 comments:

dangermash said...

And they didn,t even need captions on that Spider-Man cover. In the US, Marvel had long since given up on captions but when the covers were reprinted over here, Marvel UK always found the need to add them.

Steve W. said...

I always have a soft spot for speech bubbles on covers. They make me feel closer to the characters.

Tim said...

The impending demise of Fury comes with the exciting prospect of this blog matching up with the point I started to regularly collect Marvel's weekly titles. With no pocket money I was just picking up the odd title here and there but in 1977 I became old enough (8, it was a different time) to run errands for my parents to the newsagents (sugar, milk, 20 B&H) and get to keep any change, a clever kid could buy value brand varieties and snag himself a couple of comics.
I very much look forward to you failing to remember what happened within the pages of Rampage soon.

Steve W. said...

Tim, I'm very excited about it. I feel that "Rampage" and "The Complete Fantastic Four" are going to add a whole new dimension of cluelessness to my posts.

Timothy Field said...

The somewhat obscure nature of some of the Defenders enemies should provide you with a unique challenge.

Steve W. said...

Fortunately, I remember them all clearly. There was Football Head Woman, Gorilla Body Man, Nebulous, Bambi, Elf Boy, Sons of the Surplus, the Red Radar, That Bloke With the Stick, That Bloke In Russia Who Caused That Earthquake and a whole bunch more.

Eegads, I remember it all like it was yesterday.

Timothy Field said...

Truly, it is like watching Darren Brown at the height of his powers! A career in vaudeville awaits you sir.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Ahoy Mates!

Steve - maybe I asked before but my head, stuffed to the brim with useless trivia, doesn't recall...

The shape of the Spiderman and the Titans mag... was it a different size? Or did it have a wrap-around cover and you are showing the whole thing? Or?

Also, If I may, do you think D.C. Thomson's Dinah Mo (often in Dandy Annuals) was the inspiration for Frank Zappa's song Dinah Moe Humm? Just askin...

Cheers, Have a great weekend! CH-47

dangermash said...

The coves were the same size, Charlie, but with the spine along the short edge of the rectangle rather than the long edge.

So the pages inside the comic were landscape format. And each landscape page had two half-size portrait pages on it, side by side.

Anonymous said...

"Football Head Woman" made me snort! Fortunately I wasn't drinking anything.
Of course, there was also Eggman and the Envoys of Evil, Jake Scorpion and the Astrology Boys, Plantguy and the Hedgehog, the Brotherhood of the Baddudes, and the Squadron Serious.

M.P.

Steve W. said...

Charlie, I have no idea if D.C. Thomson's Dinah Mo was the inspiration for Frank Zappa's song. I suspect it was mere coincidence but I could be wrong.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

SO, was reading a comic in landscape format better/ worse than portrait? Or just different but o/wise the same? Our only real deviation in size here was the Treasury Editions. You guys get those? There's a great deal of affection towards them, from our age group. Even now, when I pick one up, it's a bit of magic.

Steve - I can't imagine D.C.T.'s Dinah Mo "Bun's up kneeling and surrendering to the feeling..." But, in Frank Z's mind, anything is possible. Wondering if you had heard.

B.t.w was there a Brit singer referred to as "Moon Martin" or something like that? My French wife was singing a song by "him" though she is not 100% on the name.

I was familiar with Moon Zappa, Frank's daughter, who did "Valley Girl." But that was the extent of my knowledge of lunar-named singers. Though, I did hear about an album that was supposedly pretty good called "Dark Side of the Moon."

Anonymous said...

You forgot Keith Moon!
"Bellboy!!"
"Always runnin' at someone's bleedin' heel...you know how I feel..."

M.P.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Ha! Good one M.P.! Well, I don't think my wife is recalling "Bellboy! Bellboy!" by Keith Moon. To think he died 40 (?) years ago now?

Anonymous said...

We all died a little that day, Charlie.

M.P.

Anonymous said...

Don't know about Dinah Mo, Charlie, but its funny you should mention Valley Girl as thats definitely connected to a comic strip.
www.hoodedutilitarian.com/2012/12/oddity-jack-kirby
Yeah, when Kirby moved to the west coast he lived near Zappa. When titans meet!
I like to think of Jack hanging out to chat with Beefheart...

-sean

dangermash said...

Re the landscape format, Charlie, it worked for me. So much more reading crammed in. These days I might struggle to read the tiny panels but back then, aged about 13, no problems.

Steve W. said...

Charlie, I can't think of any British singer with a name that even resembles, "Moon Martin." I think you're going to have to ask her what the song's called or what some of the lyrics are. That way, he might be identifiable.

Unless she means The House Martins, who were a popular band in the mid to late 1980s before the members went off to have careers of their own.

I loved the landscape format comics. You got twice as much content in each issue.

We also got the Treasury Editions in the UK. At least, we got the Marvel ones. I don't remember ever seeing their DC equivalents anywhere.

Anonymous said...

The Conan Treasuries were the business. Even with that awful 70s colour Red Nails and Black Colossus were amazing at that size.
By contrast, Jack Kirby's work on the FF definitely lost something when reduced for the landscape format. Not unlike listening to Hot Rats on a cheapo Walkman.

-sean

Joe S. Walker said...

There was a singer named Moon Martin around in the Seventies. I've never heard any of his songs.

Steve W. said...

You're right, Joe. I've just Googled him and he wrote, "Cadillac Walk," and, "Bad Case of Loving You," which were covered by Mink DeVille and Robert Palmer respectively. Apparently, he was from Oklahama.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Well, I have to chat up my wife about that song, then. She was singing it and I asked what it was... "Something when I was a kid by, I think a British singer, named Moon Martin."

Since she is from central France, and the french lived somewhat isolated from a lot of UK/US music at the time, I am now really, really intrigued that she would know a singer, possibly from Oklahoma, of all places.

I mean, I grew up and live in chicago land and never heard of him. I guess life is full of trade offs. She had barely heard of the Beatles and I haven't heard of Moon Martin.

Yeah - the smaller format of DC and Marvel "Archive" additions is a bit of nuisance for 55 year old eyes. I can't imagine reading your landscape format comics at this time. Thank the Lord that Dandy/ Beano / and Dennis are big! (One must diversify ones reading habits!)

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