Sunday, 2 October 2016

Fifty years ago this month - October 1966.

Surely October 1966 must have been the most significant month in human history. Not only did the Beach Boys release Good Vibrations but Bob Moog patented the Moog synthesiser, it was the 900th anniversary of the Battle of Hastings and we saw Dr Who's first ever regeneration.

How little we suspected at the time that that regeneration was a pure one-off and we'd never see them use that trick ever again on the show.

But what of Marvel's greatest heroes? Could they possibly match such historic heights?

Avengers #33, Sons of the Serpent

The Sons of the Serpent are getting their just deserts as the Avengers teach them the importance of tolerance and peace by giving them all the punch in the face they're asking for.

Daredevil #21, the Owl

It's that spectacle none of us will ever forget, as the Owl's big metal bird takes full, featherless flight.

I must confess I've no memory at all of the volcano featured on the cover. Is it actually in the story, or is it just shown here as an act of artistic license?

Fantastic Four #55, The Thing vs the Silver Surfer

It's a tale I remember well from Origins of Marvel Comics, as the Thing learns it's not a good idea to tangle with the Silver Surfer when he's fully powered-up.

When I say, "learns," I'm pretty sure he learns nothing of the sort and doesn't hesitate to try and bash him up the next time they meet.

Amazing Spider-Man #41, the Rhino

Hooray! The Rhino makes his thick-skinned debut, giving us the first memorable villain of the Romita era.

Isn't this also the first issue in which Mary Jane features in more than just one panel?

Strange Tales #149, SHIELD, the end of AIM

Despite what it says on the cover, I suspect it's not the end of A.I.M.

I really don't have a clue what's going on on that cover, or why everyone involved is such a terrible shot. How ironic that a group called A.I.M. don't seem to be able to aim to save their lives.

Then again, Nick Fury, if it is indeed him, seems to be shooting at thin air as well.

Oh well. At least, with shooting like that, Dum Dum Dugan's flying saucer isn't in danger of getting damaged.
Tales of Suspense #82, Captain America vs the Adaptoid

Is this the first appearance of the Adaptoid, later known as the Super-Adaptoid and then later as, "That Skeleton Robot With The Big Axe"?

I seem to remember him being a bafflingly poor foe in this tale. Doesn't the Acrobat or the Tumbler or whatever he's called give him a good thrashing despite having no powers whatsoever other than the ability to do forward rolls?

Tales to Astonish #84, the Sub-Mariner

I vaguely recall there being a Subby tale where he goes to the cinema.

I'm assuming this is that tale.

Strangely, that's all I can recall about the story.

Why's he in a cinema?

I've no idea.

What causes him to burst out of it?

I've no idea.

Surely the Pearl and Dean adverts can't have been that bad.

Can they?

Thor #133, Ego, the living planet

Hooray! It's brawn vs Ego in one of my favourite Thor tales of the Lee and Kirby era.

X-Men #25, El Tigre

I know nothing of El Tigre, even though I'm sure someone's told me all about him in the past, on this very site.

Whoever he is, I'm getting a kind of Aztec vibe from him.


Anonymous said...

Like the Sub-Mariner, I've found, on the rare occasions that I attend the cinema, many reasons to burst angrily out of it on a rampage.
Unlike Subby, however, I make a point of wearing pants on these occasions.

dangermash aka The Artistic Actuary said...

Hi Steve

MJ appears in one panel in each of ASM #25, #38 and #41. #42 (the Rhino's return) is the first one where she appears in more than one panel. And seems to spend most of that issue high as a kite.

And that Avengers cover never fails to disappoint. Looks as if they picked the most boring moment in the issue and suck it on the front. And don't get me started on why the Witch is on the front when it should be the Widow.

And I mentioned my Grizzly onesie a couple of weeks ago. It's probably worth asking at this point whether the Rhino is the first marvel character to wear a onesie. Can anybody think of anyone earlier?

Steve W. said...

Thanks for the MJ info, dangermash.

Steve W. said...

Thinking about it, didn't the Fantastic Four wear onesies in their first encounter with the Mole Man, way back in FF#1?

TC said...

The volcano must have been in the Daredevil story. I remember a scene on the last page, where Daredevil and the kidnapped judge are escaping aboard that goofy giant mechanical bird thing, while the villains are fleeing in all directions. The judge thanks Daredevil for rescuing him, and DD quips something like, "It wasn't hard, your honor. I had some help from an erupting volcano."

I had Thor #132, but not #133. I finally read "The Living Planet" when it was reprinted in Marvel Spectacular or Marvel Adventure or Marvel Triple Action or whatever in the 1970's.

I remember that Avengers issue, where the white supremacists turned out to be communist agents provocateurs. The ironic twist seemed terribly clever and original when I was eight.

I'm pretty sure that Suspense issue was the first appearance of the Adaptoid. He was created by A.I.M., IIRC. He impersonated Captain America and the acrobat villain (who was basically a cheap punk) mopped the floor with him. Then the real Cap showed up and clobbered the acrobat.

dangermash aka The Artistic Actuary said...

Just checked out FF #1. They don't wear onesies. But the Moleman does. And (in contrast to the Rhino and the Grizzly) it really is a onesie rather than a one-piece skin tight costume. Jack Kirby was always a great one for showing all the folds and crease in costumes and leaves us in no doubt that Moley's got a taste for Primark loungewear.

Anonymous said...

Actually, Cap spent most of TOS #82 staggering around and having hallucinations about being back in WWII. At the end, he passed out, and the Adaptoid, who had been impersonating Jarvis the butler, took his shield. (I assume that, while disguised as the butler, he had drugged Cap.) It was in the next issue that the Adaptoid, disguised as Captain America, fought the Tumbler and lost.

The Iron Man story in #82 (and #83) was a rematch with Titanium Man.

Steve W. said...

Dangermash, TC and Anon, thanks for the info. I feel more informed than ever. :)

dangermash aka The Artistic Actuary said...

Just had a horrible thought about ASM #42, checked it out and, aaaggghhhhhh!

MJ appears in one panel in ASM #25, yes, one panel in ASM #38, yes. But in ASM #42 she appears in two panels. You see the back of her head in the penultimate panel, then the famous "Face it Tiger...” panel comes after that. But in ASM #43, she's a fully fledged supporting cast member.

Sorry everybody. I'm such a fraud.