Thursday, 8 August 2019

August 8th, 1979 - Marvel UK, 40 years ago this week.

America. It has to be the most discovered continent in the history of the world. If it's not Columbus claiming to have discovered it, it's the Vikings. If it's not them, it's the Chinese. If it's not them, it's the Welsh. Then again, there are claims that the Romans, Egyptians, Phoenicians, Indians, Indonesians, and just about everyone else who ever built a boat, discovered it.

I'm amazed to discover that I didn't discover it too.

And then, of course, there are the ancestors of the people who were living in the Americas when Columbus arrived. They definitely discovered it, or their descendants wouldn't have been there when Columbus showed up.

Thus it is that, on this night of exactly forty years ago, a BBC documentary called Adventure: The Brendan Voyage was looking into the long-standing claims that the first European to set foot in America was actually the medieval Irish monk Saint Brendan, purported to have made the trip nearly a thousand years before Columbus.

Could such a man have possibly crossed the Atlantic, in just a small leather boat?

Commonsense would say no.

Fortunately, not everyone has common sense. Some have the far more valuable trait of get up and go - and a leather boat. Therefore, in the late 1970s, three men set out to cross that  sea, in a replica of the vessel that, legend says, Brendan used to make the voyage.

Did they make it?

Yes they did.

And BBC Two was telling us how.

Star Wars Weekly #76

I have even less idea what happens in this week's issue than I do normally. Clearly, the Guardians of the Galaxy are in it and so is Adam Warlock. Beyond that, I can say nothing.

No doubt, Luke and his droids are in the deadliest of peril, though.
Hulk Comic #23, Groot

Fortunately, when it comes to this comic, I have far more idea.

Having washed Taboo down the plug hole, the Hulk's up against Groot the talking tree, with not a trace of Rocket Raccoon in sight.

Egghead's out to avenge himself upon Ant-Man by capturing the Wasp. He aims to do this by using an exhibition about wasps as bait. As Egghead himself argues, how could a woman called the Wasp possibly turn down the chance to see an exhibition about wasps?

Clearly, he doesn't know much about Janet van Dyne.

Or perhaps he does, because she does indeed go to the exhibition!

The Black Knight's still in another dimension, trying to do something or other to help bring Captain Britain back to life.

Nick Fury's still tripping.

Rick Jones is in the Negative Zone, being attacked by Annihilus and trying to turn into the Hulk, in order to fight him, in the latest instalment of What If?

The Reject is still on the loose in the Deviants' underwater city.

Spectacular Spider-Man Weekly and Marvel Comic, Carrion

And we're back to near-total ignorance because I don't know what's in this week's issue of Marvel's newest venture.

But I do know what's not in it.

And that's Conan and Dracula, who've been dropped in the great merger. Within week's, the Avengers will also be leaving, to claim a home in a new magazine.

There's no doubt about it, Marvel UK's centre of gravity's now tilting very heavily towards monthly mags, rather than weekly comics.


Anonymous said...

Of course the Irish were the first Europeans to go to America, Steve - I thought it was well known that the landing-strip St Brendan built after his arrival was the first American airport.

The monthlies definitely reflect better on the Marvel UK Revolution than the weeklies. Once Marvel Superheroes joined the line up, that really left Spidey enthusiasts as the only long-term readers to be poorly served by the SezDez era.


Charlie Horse 47 said...

HI Sean - (Carrying over from Tuesday and apologies for going off course)

Regarding "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood" I would think if you are a QT fan it's a 10/10. If you are not... hard to say. My daughter and I are not QT fans per se (not for any reason) and had the same conclusion that it is quite fun and suspenseful at times but not a lot of plot.

You just simply need to see it!

Tim Field said...

Apart from Star Wars, I don't recognise these covers. I'm wondering now if my ceasing to religiously pick up the weeklies coincided with the summer holidays before my first term in secondary school and the pressures of impending 'maturity'.

Colin Jones said...

On August 12th 1979 BBC2 celebrated Alfred Hitchcock's 80th birthday by showing Psycho - the first time I ever saw it. My father told me that Psycho was brilliant and I'd love it. Many years later he claimed that Psycho was over-rated and "If it wasn't for Psycho nobody would remember Hitchcock".

Like Tim, I only remember the Star Wars cover but I was about to enter my 3rd year of secondary school so I was already deep into maturity :D

Steve W. said...

Hello, everybody.

I don't remember any of those covers but I'm certain I read all of those comics at the time.

Anonymous said...

I suppose everyone will know whether they want to see a new Tarantino flick or not Charlie, so that was a bit of a pointless question.
But thanks for taking the time to answer anyway (;


Charlie Horse 47 said...

Seriously Steve? It's National UK Lazy Day and no commentary?

Steve W. said...

It is?

I have heard nothing of it.

I did hear, on the radio, this morning, that today's the start of some unlikely sporting event or other but I've totally forgotten what it was.

Killdumpster said...

Quentin Tarantino rules. I hope this is not his last film, as the rumors have foretold.

Anonymous said...

Kd, I believe Tarantino has said for a long time he'll only make ten films, so that means theres one more to come.
Although I suppose he could always make it a two-parter like Kill Bill; and last I read he's still in talks to do a new Star Trek flick, and has said that might not count as "A Tarantino Film"...


Anonymous said...

Tarantino has never made a movie that wasn't interesting, to say the least.
I think my favorite was Jackie Brown. I'm not sure why. It was almost low key, compared to the others. But never dull.