Tuesday, 7 May 2019

The Marvel Lucky Bag - May 1969.

The UK singles chart in May 1969 was not a place to go if you liked variety.

When I say, "Variety," I mean, of course, a high rate of change, not Variety acts.

Then again, it wasn't a good place to go for Variety acts either because the entire month was dominated by The Beatles whose Get Back refused to relinquish its grip on the top spot and duly saw off challenges from Fleetwood Mac, Herman's Hermits and Mary Hopkin to retain its position.

Things were a bit livelier on the LP chart, with the Number One slot being held by The Best of the Seekers, On the Threshold of a Dream by the Moody Blues and then Nashville Skyline by Bob Dylan, in that order.

Apparently, On the Threshold of a Dream was the first UK chart-topper for the Moodies and their first US Top 20 entry. Clearly, they were becoming more popular by the second.

But you know who wasn't becoming popular?

That's right.

The stars of this month's Marvel Lucky Bag for 1969.

That doesn't mean we didn't love them.

And it doesn't mean I won't be taking a look at them.

Captain Marvel #13

I don't know what happens in this one. All I know is Marvy seems to be fighting an android.

Is it my imagination or did he fight an android in virtually every issue of his comic in the 1960s?

Dr Strange #180, Eternity

It's nothing but trouble for Dr Strange, as Nightmare kidnaps Eternity - on New Year's Eve!

I vaguely remember this one, although my main memory of it is of Eternity lying around not doing anything much.

I think this story introduced me to the word, "Archetypal."

Then again, that could be a totally different story I'm thinking of.

I am, however, almost certain that Tom Wolfe puts in a guest appearance in this one.

Nick Fury #12, Barry Smith

Barry Smith does his best Jim Steranko, on the cover.

Inside, Nick Fury's arrested for being an enemy agent.

Needless to say, it's not long before he's escaped custody and is out to clear his name.

Unfortunately, that sets up a sequence of events which leads to him being arrested for murder.

Some days, you can't catch a break.

Sub-Mariner #13

Is this the one where Dorma pops her clogs? From the cover, I'm assuming it is.

I also believe this is the climax to the Serpent Crown Saga which I could claim to remember well but the truth is the only part of it I recall is the issue which featured The Thing.

Chili #1

So successful was Millie the Model for Marvel that even her rival Chili was granted a comic of her own. And here's where it started.

Thinking about it, I do wonder how big a part the Chili/Millie rivalry played in how Stan dealt with the MJ/Gwen rivalry in Spider-Man.

Then again, it might have been the other way round.

Then again, there might not have been any influence either way.


Dougie said...

Dorma didn't die here; it was a deception by Naga ( a villain influenced by Lin Carter's Dragon Kings in Thongor book 1, maybe?)
Dorma was killed about a year later by half-Lemurian villainess Llyra.

Anonymous said...

With Get Back being such a big hit, I suppose we should at least be grateful the Beatles didn't go with their original lyrics...

You might well be right about that Lee drawing on Chili/Millie for Spider-Man Steve; that makes sense as the (then) new Marvel approach to superhero comics in the 60s was a mix of the various comic book genres of the previous decade.
The FF, for instance, was as much derived from the romance, science-fiction and monster comics that Lee and particularly Kirby had worked on for years as more obvious antecedents like the Justice League or whatever.


Anonymous said...

*That last comment should read "You might well be right about Lee..." Apologies for a poor edit there.


Steve W. said...

Thanks for the Dorma demise info, Dougie.

Sean, I'm about to Google to see if anyone's ever done an in-depth analysis of parallels between Millie/Chili and MJ/Gwen.

Not that I'm sad or anything.

Anonymous said...

Not to seem like I don't have a life either Steve, but from a quick online search it would appear that insight is uniquely yours. Well done.

You'll just have to do the deeper analysis yourself...


B Smith said...

Dorma, er, popped her clogs, in Sub-Mariner #37.

Steve W. said...

Sean, trouble is that means I'm now going to have to read some Millie and Chilli comics.

B, thanks for the clog poppage info. :)

dangermash said...

If you're an artist and Stan tells you he wants a cover with the grief stricken hero holding a dead body in his arms and floating heads looking down on him, that's the opportunity of a lifetime to come up with an opus of a cover that people will be talking about for years.

Whoever did that Sub Mariner cover wasted a career defining opportunity.

Steve W. said...

I suspect that cover's by Marie Severin though I must admit it's not one of her better efforts.

Timothy Field said...

The Nick Fury cover looks like the result of an improv night where someone shouted "Kirby doing Steranko" at Barry.

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