Sunday, 13 December 2015

December 13th, 1975 - Marvel UK, 40 years ago this week.

What madness is this? It's 5:50 pm and Hey Jude is currently being played on Absolute Radio. This means I have an uncontrollable urge to start going, "Na na na na," a lot. And yet, on this day in 1975, the Stylistics were riding high in the UK singles chart with a song that warned us that Na Na Is The Saddest Word.

What can it all mean?

It can only mean it's time to look at what our favourite comic company was offering us in this week of forty years ago.

Marvel UK, the Super-Heroes #41, the Scarecrow

After months of giving us the likes of Giant-Man and the Cat, Marvel UK finally wheel out one of the big-hitters, with, erm, the Scarecrow.

Still, in fairness, that's a pretty good cover and it does make it look like something you'd want to read.

But are those naked people I spy on the right-hand side of the picture? If so, are they the first naked people ever to feature on the front of a Marvel UK mag?

Marvel UK, Avengers #117, Arkon

Arkon's still causing trouble, on a cover that features more super-doers than you can shake a stick at.

Marvel UK, Titans #8, Sub-Mariner

Does that cover mean this is the issue where Lady Dorma dies, becoming, I think, the first Marvel super-hero girlfriend to pop her clogs?

Marvel UK, Dracula Lives, Legion of Monsters #60

It's issue #60 and Dracula suddenly finds himself having to share top-billing with the Legion of Monsters.

Marvel UK, Planet of the Apes #60

It's issue #60 and our simian survivors suddenly find themselves having to share the cover with Ka-Zar and the Black Panther.

Given my liking for both the Panther and Ka-Zar strips, this is, to some of us, no bad thing. Especially as Planet of the Apes was the only Marvel UK mag I was getting regularly at the time, meaning it was my only weekly source of super-hero action.

Mighty World of Marvel #167, Hulk vs Fantastic Four

I don't have a clue what the story depicted here is. From looking at last week's cover, the Hulk should be fighting Zzzax, in his own strip, and I don't remember any late-era Jack Kirby Fantastic Four tales where they tangle with the Hulk,

Such concerns of course pale into insignificance next to the news that the Stiltman is back.

Spider-Man Comics Weekly #148, Spider-Slayer

It's even more exciting news than the Stiltman being back, as the Spider-Slayer makes its senses-shattering return.


Dougie said...

Never saw that Spidey comic before- usual distribution chaos.
That isn't the story where Dorma actually dies- I don't think it was ever reprinted in the UK. IIRC Namor vanished from the weeklies before we got to that storyline.

Aggy said...

Shakes stick at Avengrs cover... nope can confirm there is exactly the right number of heroes you can shake a stick at

Colin Jones said...

I have a theory as to why Dracula Lives became "Dracula Lives featuring The Legion Of Monsters" (and only the name changed - the inside of the comic was exactly the same as last week). I think Marvel UK realized that the Dracula reprints were fast catching up with the U.S. Tomb Of Dracula and they planned to drop the Dracula strip at some point in the near future and change the comic's name to The Legion Of Monsters so this alteration of the comic's name was preparing the way for that. Of course, Dracula Lives feat. TLOM merged with Planet Of The Apes at #88 but the Dracula strip was dropped just five weeks later - so for its' final 31 issues a comic called "POTA & Dracula Lives" had no Dracula strip in it at all which should have been illegal under the 1968 Trade Descriptions Act, shouldn't it ?

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