Thursday, 27 July 2017

July 27th, 1977 - Marvel UK, 40 years ago this week.

In this week of 1977, Donna Summer was at Number One on the UK singles chart, with I Feel Love. I don't really have any great comment to make about this fact but, given the record's significance in the fields of both Disco and Synth-Pop, it seems like the sort of fact whose existence should be acknowledged.

But there are other things that should also be acknowledged.

Things with fists and tight clothing.

Those things are super-heroes.

And here's where we prove it.

Super Spider-Man and Captain Britain #233, Light-Master

Al Milgrom gives us a noticeably Steve Ditkoesque cover, as the Light-Master makes his dazzling debut.

I don't know too much about the Light-Master. In fact, I know nothing but I'd like to think he's related to the View-Master.

Granted, he probably isn't, as the View-Master was an inanimate object for watching slides in 3D and the Light-Master would appear not to be. Still, one can always dream.

Apparently, Captain Britain is this week fighting, "The Monster From The Murk." I have no idea at all what that means, as I don't recall him ever fighting any such beast. I mostly remember him fighting giant vampire bats in this stage of his career but that could simply be me misremembering his later adventures.

The FF are still battling the Mole Man, in a story that seems determined to outlast the Hundred Years War.

Elsewhere, the Defenders and Avengers are still fighting each other via the medium of Thor and the Hulk. I believe this is the issue in which the two teams finally realise they need to unite against a common foe.

Mighty World of Marvel #252, Hulk and Dracula

Crypto-Man is still causing trouble for our hero, and Dracula is still doing things with Satanists.

I believe this may be the issue in which Jarella pops her clogs. I must confess that I don't remember being as moved by the death of Jarella as I was by the death of Gwen Stacy.

I genuinely believe it was because Gwen Stacy wore an Alice band. Somehow, death seems more tragic if you're wearing an Alice band.

Marvel UK, Fury #20

Speaking of untimely demises, just five more weeks to go before this comic becomes as deceased as Jarella. I have no doubt that Nick will indeed be furious.

30 comments:

Anonymous said...

"Monster from the Murk" is a bit misleading, Steve, as rather than the Man-Thing-type creature implied, CB was up against our old favourite the Loch Ness monster.
Which I think turned out to be an alien spaceship disguised as a monster, but don't quote me on that.

I only really recall the first part of the story - Brian Braddock turns up in Scotland as part of a team of scientists investigating reports of a monster.
Not sure why that was a job for a physicist, but I suppose that's the Marvel universe for you, where being a rocket scientist makes Reed Richards an expert in the effect of cosmic rays on human DNA.
Following on from the Highwayman's "diamond geezer, guv'nor" dialogue previously, this time out we were treated to a bit of "Och aye the noo"...

-sean

Anonymous said...

You guys had Viewmasters? I thought that was strictly an American thing, proof of how we led the world in viewing technology. I had one set of, whadyacallem, picture wheels of Capatain America fighting the Red Skull.
And one of Disneyland, which I guess was the next best thing to actually going there.

M.P.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

I had view masters too. It was essential for visiting my Hungarian grandmother since I did not speak Hungarian.

You know... that Hulk cover is really violent? I mean getting hit in the throat with a big glass street lamp? I'd rather see him get hit over the head with the metal pole?

Also, why is Jarella (?) also wearing purplish clothes? Is it mandatory green people wear purple?

And again... Nick Fury uses his fist to take out a German! That guy really is economical when it comes to war. He didn't need a bullet, gun, grenade, machine gun... NOTHING but his wits and a fist! Compare that to what it cost Tom Hanks to rescue Private Ryan! Ridiculous! They should have sent Nick to rescue Ryan!

Steve W. said...

Sean, I've just done a Google image search for, "Captain Britain Loch Ness Monster," and found some panels from the story in question. Tragically, the panels don't ring any bells for me at all. I think it says it all about how much interest I was taking in the good Captain by that point in his career. The story does sound noticeably similar to the Doctor Who story, "Terror of the Zygons," though.

MP, we did indeed have View-Masters. Apart from the sample discs that came with mine, the only disc I ever had was, "The Aristocats." I don't think that anyone I knew ever had more than one disc. I think they were a bit on the expensive side.

Steve W. said...

Charlie, If I ever turn green, I am definitely going to wear nothing but purple.

It does raise the question though as to why Killgrave the Purple Man didn't wear green.

dangermash said...

Yeah, the only view master discs I ever bought were Star Trek (The Omega Glory) and Bedknobs and Broomsticks. I reckon the vast majority of viewmaster owners never got further than the sample discs (which were all individual discs from incomplete three-disc sets). Oh,the hours we must have spent looking at slides showing pictures of coastal towns between Dover and Felixstowe. Bit of a naff present really.

Steve W. said...

I wish I could remember what was on my sample discs. I have a feeling they might have had some sort of puppets on them or something.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

I had Dinosaur disks, for sure, b/c I looked at em over and over. Can't remember the others. They were a good time but I think they may have been sensitive to heat and perhaps I melted some in the car?

Regarding Purple Man, since he was fighting DD when I read about him, and DD was blind, perhaps he didn't need to make a fashion statement with DD by wearing green?

Anonymous said...

Green and purple are bad guy colors---Green Goblin, Mysterio, Diablo, Kang, and to some extent characters who are ambiguous---Impossible Man, the Hulk.
Primary colors like red, blue and yellow are usually good guys, like Iron Man, Thor, spider-man. The Shocker is kind of an exception.
Gray always means bad---Rhino, Gray Gargoyle, Blastarr.
Green and gray, bad--Doctor Doom. Orange is bad---Ulik, Hitman, that guy with a pumpkin on his head.
I think black can go either way...

M.P.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Well, I have to admit two of my fav characters are green: The Green Captain Marvel from Marvel and the Green Llama. I would give my left eyeball to see Colan drawing a Green Marvel again! ANd Mac Raboy's Green Llama was exquisite!

Anonymous said...

Yeah, its a testament to Gene Colan that theres a fair bit of love for the original Mar-Vell, because the stories were terrible.
He was dated from the start. In a good way - besides the green and white colour scheme there was something pleasingly retro about the art deco helmet and ringed planet symbol.

If you haven't seen it Charlie, theres a great pic of him at
www.nealadams.tumblr.com/post/32658851150/thefandomzone-captain-marvel-by-neal-adams

Anonymous said...

No, Charlie, I'm saying green and purple together are bad colors, generally.
I'm a big fan of Green Arrow, so green by itself can be a good guy color.

M.P.

Anonymous said...

Bad in a good way though, right? C'mon MP - Drax the Destroyer was cool.
And the Mekon really rocked that green and purple combo.

-sean

Anonymous said...

Yeah, Sean, Drax was pretty cool! I admit it.

M.P.

Dougie said...

I had completely forgotten about having a Viewmaster copy of The Omega Glory, which is Roddenberry at his jingoistic worst.

Zygons was the first thing I thought of, reading about Cappy and Nessie. Even my love for Captain Britain has its limits.

I didn't know what retro was, when I first saw Captain Mar-Vell, but there's too much Buck Rogers in the Colan version really.

Steve W. said...

Is, "The Omega Glory," the one with the American Flag and the Yangs or whatever they were called? If so, I do remember it not being Star Trek's finest forty five minutes.

dangermash said...

That's the one Steve. Strange episode to pick out for the viewmaster when there were so many better ones they could have chosen.

Steve W. said...

When it comes to Star Trek, I'm hardcore. If it doesn't have the Gorn in it, I wouldn't want to see it in 3D.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Dougie - Them's fightin' words, LOL! Green Mar-vell is simply great, no ifs ands, buts, or coconuts.

MP - Green and Purple are indeed, bad guy colors, generally. No denying it. Green generally good guy. I'm sure you'll agree that Green and White are perhaps the best good guy colors you'll ever see - as in Mar-vell???

I just checked out ebay and viewmaster reels, vintage, are cheap as heck. Like $2 for three. I'm almost tempted to buy some? Who's with me? Anyone? Anyone? (Bueller? Bueller? Bueller?)

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Ahoy!

The vintage viewmasters reels led me to see if my memory was correct and there was one for
Thunderbirds.

Then I come to learn this was a UK production. Did you guys watch Thunderbirds growing up? I sure did! (There is one scene of a t-bone car crash that is burned into my head. So well done for "puppets" and "models" or however this is described!)

Steve W. said...

Charlie, everyone in Britain watched Thunderbirds growing up. The show's pretty much a national institution. Even nowadays, if you go into a toy shop, you can find zillions of Thunderbird toys. It's like the beast that refuses to die.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Now that's awesome! You guys have some of the greatest legacies: Thunderbirds, D.C. Thomson, Conkers...!

Colin Jones said...

Steve, did you ever see Clive Anderson's hilarious impersonation of a Thunderbirds puppet ?

Steve W. said...

I can't say I did, Colin. I could be cruel and say I remember Noel Gallagher's brilliant impersonation of a Thunderbirds puppet but, in fairness, he wasn't actually trying to do an impersonation. He just sort of naturally looked like one.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Just watched a T-bird on Youtube of just vehicles taking off. That show was light years ahead of the Japanese stuff.

I always thought David Hedison the Captain on "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea" looked like a Thunderbird puppet. At the young age of around 6 - 7, I probably assumed they were one and the same, LOL.

I would say between THuderbirds and the UK Robin Hood TV series in the 50s, you guys must have given "Hollywood" a run for its money! May I assume you watched RH growing up, too? Love that show!

Steve W. said...

I have some very vague memories of The old Robin Hood TV show but I don't think it was on very often. All I can remember of it is the opening fanfare.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

I forget how I found RH. Perhaps some TV Channel running reruns from the 50s? Anyhow, I ended up getting all the DVDs for each season. Quite enjoyable and seemed much more realistic than something hollywood would cook up. I mean the serfs homes, hideouts dugout into the side of an embankment, and stuff like that just seemed more true to life.

Colin Jones said...

The worse thing about Robin Hood is the totally false portrayal of King Richard "The Lionheart" who is always made out to be so good and noble when he was really a religious fundamentalist and an anti-semite.

Steve W. said...

And only spent six months in England during the whole of his reign.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Well, being over here in Chicago-land, I never thought twice if King Richard was a bad guy. If RH thought he should be king, that was good enough for me, LOL!

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