Sunday, 3 April 2016

April 3rd, 1976 - Marvel UK, 40 years ago this week.

On this very day in 1976, the UK won the Eurovision Song Contest, with the Brotherhood of Man's Save All Your Kisses For Me.

How we gasped.

How we cheered.

How we all noted a remarkable resemblance to Tie A Yellow Ribbon Round The Old Oak Tree and wondered how they got away with it. But, that aside, has there ever been a greater achievement in the whole of British history?

Yes there has.

Marvel UK's output in that very week.

Marvel UK, Avengers #133

It's the battle of the flying horses, as the Black Knight comes up against Arkon the Magnificent.

More importantly, Iron Fist is up against Radion.

That's Radion the super-villain. Not Radion the washing powder. I don't think many people would pay to see a man fight washing powder.

I never approved of that story because they blew up the Post Office Tower in it, which seemed quite bad mannered of them.

Marvel UK, Planet of the Apes #76

I'd love to know how he's planning to take that gorilla to the grave with him, seeing as he's unarmed.

I was always struck by the ease with which human characters in Planet of the Apes movies, TV shows and comics could beat up gorillas at will. I demand the BBC stages a fight between a man and a gorilla, to see if it really is that easy.

Marvel UK, Dracula Lives #76

Will the Prince of Darkness ever learn not to go drinking and driving?

Mighty World of Marvel #183, Hulk vs Cobalt Man

Cobalt Man's still causing trouble for our hero.

Super Spider-Man with the Super-Heroes #164, Aunt May

If it's Dr Strange's final battle with death, does that mean he'll never have another one and is therefore now immortal?

Speaking of people who never seem to get round to dying, Aunt May's showing her usual sound judgement.

Marvel UK, The Titans #24, Captain Marvel

Are we still on the Gil Kane era of Captain Marvel or has the Jim Starlin era begun?


TC said...

(American) Avengers #84's "The Well At the End of Time" was a complete-in-one-issue story. Evidently, Marvel UK's Avengers split it into two installments. #132 had the same cover as #84, and #133 appears to be the showdown between Black Knight and Arkon.

Frail, elderly Aunt May seemed to live longer than a lot of young adults in stable health. And just how old could a teenager's aunt have been, anyway?

Anonymous said...

Still Gil, Steve, but the Mar-Vell figure does seem to have a somewhat Starlinish vibe...


Dougie said...

Pretty sure it's neither Gil nor Jim but Wayne ( Superman) Boring, actually.

Anonymous said...

I just looked it up and Dougie is correct.
Mea culpa. My only defence is that I remembered Mynde from the original US cover, which IS by the mighty Gil Kane.
But I forgot the Boring artwork inside (see what I did there?)

-sean- I

Anonymous said...

I'm glad Spiderman took the time to think that Aunt May thinks Doc Ock is innocent, and is is likely to shoot him instead, because I did't pick that up from the cover at all. Actually, I think I prefer this landscape version to the original (AS #115). I recall it's a modified version of a panel within the story.


Anonymous said...

Mr. Mynde (who I think was a cyborg of some kind) was an inside joke, or tribute to Mr. Mind, a talking, evil-genius caterpillar who was a major foe of Fawcett's Captain Marvel (Shazam!) I think Marvel Comics had a Dr. Sivana in there too, who I think was killed, impersonated, and possibly eaten by the Super-Skrull.

It's clear that Aunt may needs to be institutionalized. Also, I'm disappointed with Dracula for his blatant disregard for the safety of motorists. Wait till he gets home and parks the car before you bite him, Drac! I could be coming from the other direction in my car taking my nephew to his parole officer.

Colin Jones said...

Aunt May must have been one of the most irritating characters in all Marveldom - if she wasn't fainting or having heart attacks then she was was whining about "that awful Spider-Man". Peter should have slipped some arsenic in her bedtime cocoa. But the modern Aunt May is a lot cooler...

Steve W. said...

Poor old Aunt May.

Still we do have Marisa Tomei to look forward to.

Anonymous said...

The Mr Mind reference didn't occur to me at all, so after the Gil thing I feel even more dim.
But still not dim enough to fall for "taking the nephew".


Anonymous said...

Oops - maybe should have made clear that reply was aimed at MP.


Anonymous said...

My nephew's a good kid, Sean, but when I thought he was gonna grow up to be president, I was wrong.
I think the Rick Jones/Mar-vell relationship where they switch atoms is also a reference to the Billy Batson/Captain Marvel (Shazam!) relationship.
Was nothing sacred at Marvel Comics? Nope!

Dougie said...

Yes, the whole "cute" Shazam parody continues up until Starlin & Friedrich start their first Avengers/Thanos/Metamorphosis storyline. I really got into the Mar-Vell series when MWOM merged with POTA.

Speaking of MWOM, I think the FF story is the finale of the (second)"Ben Goes Bad" storyline where Thor, DD and Spidey turn up.

Steve W. said...

I think my first exposure to the Starlin Captain Marvel stories was in The Titans. It was that story where the Thing and Captain Marvel team-up and someone (the Super-Skrull?) gets turned to stone.

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