Thursday, 5 June 2014

Forty years ago this month - June 1974.

According to the internet, June 1974 saw the birth of a very special man.

That man was TV survivalist Bear Grylls.

From Bear Grylls, I learned that, when trapped in the desert at night, one should cut open a dead camel and climb inside it.

What for? There's not even a bed in there.

No. Far better to check into the nearest hotel and leave Bear Grylls to it.

But what exactly were the survival chances of our favourite Marvel heroes in that very month?

With not a dead camel in sight, I fancy they were none too good.

Fantastic Four #147, The Sub-Mariner

Camels may have humps but it's whole other kind of humping that Prince Namor has on his mind.

As we saw the other day; exactly fifty years ago, Subby was trying to get his leg-over with Sue Richards.

Ten years later, and he's still trying.

You have to give him credit. He's persistent, if nothing else.
Amazing Spider-Man #133, the Molten Man

The Molten Man's still in a bad mood.
Avengers #124, the Star-Stalker

The Avengers find themselves up against the Star-Stalker, as the Celestial Madonna Saga rumbles on.
Captain America and the Falcon #174, the Secret Empire

If this is the Secret Empire storyline, does that mean the man in the silly looking hood is Nixon?

I do always wonder why Nixon didn't do his political broadcasts wearing a hood. It would have given him a certain something that other politicians lacked.
Conan the Barbarian #39

This tale was reprinted in Marvel UK's 1977 Avengers Annual and I can confirm the cover accurately depicts what happens inside.
Daredevil and the Black Widow #110

I have no memory at all of what happens in this issue. Is, "The Master," really the Mandrill in disguise?
Incredible Hulk #176, the Man-Beast, Counter-Earth

The Hulk's on Counter-Earth and having a barney with the President and his horde of beast-men.
Iron Man #68, Sunfire and the Unicorn

Does one detect a Jim Starlin cover?

Only days ago, I confidently declared that the June 1964 issue of Tales of Suspense was the only time a comic had ever dared to try and use the hero's new mask as a marketing ploy.

It shows how much I know, because, exactly ten years later, they're doing it again - with exactly the same character.

On other matters, I take it that Sunfire manages to be very annoying from start to finish?
Thor #224, Hercules and the Destroyer

The Destroyer's back - and causing all kinds of mischief.
X-men #88, the Frankenstein Monster

If anyone wants to know why the original X-Men rarely grabbed me, they only have to read this tale, as our merry Marvel mutants go after Mary Shelley's most famous creation, and it all gets a bit juvenile.


Colin Jones said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lew Stringer said...

Ah the summer of '74, when no Marvel Comics were distributed to UK newsagents for some reason. Problems with the distributor presumably. Issues cover dated May to July were nowhere to be found, but they returned in a big way with August '74 cover dates, and a price rise from 6p to 7p.

Paul McScotty -Muir said...

I never liked the original X-men either (except when Neal Adams had a shot at them) Interesting to read Lews comments I wasn't aware that Marvel didn't reach the UK IN the summer of 74 (although as a regular reader of Capt America and Conan at this time I don't recall these books / covers so that could be the reason)

The masked villain in the Daredevil issue was indeed the Mandrill - The Iron Man cover was indeed by Starlin and Dave Cockrum

Doug said...

These books rest on the cusp of my regular comics buying. I have almost all of them in one format or another now.

It's really too bad that I don't have the same sort of excitement about comics of today that I get just in viewing these 40-year old covers.


Dougie said...

That X-Men story is a huge favourite of mine, purely because of its appearance in the last Fantastic annual (1970). I was desperate to see Factor Three...then they turned out to be the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants and some Don Heck weirdos.

Russ said...

Nixon didn't have to wear the hood because he WAS the hood. It's a very zen Steve Englehart thing.

david_b said...

Yessir, this was one of the very-best months in my original collecting phase. Spidey was still great, Swordy was still alive (and Mantis was still a mystery...), LOVED the Secret Empire story arc (CA&F was all anti-climatic since..).

Loved that Ironman issue, and the Mandrill/Negra storyline was always so cool that I invested in the brief, earlier Gerber-written Shanna series which introduced 'em both just last year. Nearly all my fav titles had the most memorable storylines, not forgettin' the Reed-Sue breakup at all.

"ah... the best of times.."

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