Thursday, 10 October 2019

October 10th, 1979 - Marvel UK, 40 years ago this week.

One of the great mysteries of life is why the Star Trek episode Who Mourns for Adonais is called that, bearing in mind Apollo's the bloke who appears in it and Adonis is nowhere in sight.

Therefore, I've no doubt that question was being asked on this night of exactly forty years ago because that very tale was being shown right there and then, on BBC One.

Actually, I know why it's called Who Mourns for Adonais. I just like to feign ignorance of 19th Century poetry, in order to maintain my image as a steel-fisted man of the streets.

Then again, for those who took their pleasure from music, rather than TV or poetry, the big news was that Britain's brand new Number One LP was Eat to the Beat by Blondie. Personally, I preferred the singles from the preceding year's album Parallel Lines but, regardless, the album went on to be certified platinum in both Britain and the United States, so it must have been doing something right.

But first, in a shock development, nothing has happened!

I did report, seven days ago, that, this week, a major event would occur in the history of humanity. Subsequent investigation has revealed I read the date of that event wrong and, consequently, I can't make the relevant announcement until next week. But that's the problem with time. It's such a ball of wibbly-wobbliness.

Star Wars Weekly #85, Darth Vader

I have spectacularly limited knowledge of the contents of this comic.

I am, though, willing to bet Darth Vader shows up in it.

I'm also willing to bet he doesn't kill Luke Skywalker.

I'm also willing to bet he makes no mention of being Luke's father.

When it comes to the Guardians of the Galaxy, I'm pretty sure Vance and Nikki are still getting up to transcendent hi-jinks together.

Star-Lord is, likely, still in an ark in space.

The Watcher is, no doubt, giving us a morality tale we should all bear in mind if we value our souls.

Hulk Comic #32, Ikaris vs the Cosmic Powered Hulk

In the main strip, the Hulk's finally finished off beating-up on The Corporation.

Elsewhere, a robot Hulk's busy beating-up on Ikaris and friends.

Ant-Man's been injected with rabies and is now stuck at ant-size because of it. I was going to say, "Just imagine all the damage a rabid Ant-Man could do," but he really couldn't do any, could he.

I think Nick Fury's still having trouble with the Hate-Monger who's drafted an unwitting pop group to be his spreaders of discord.

Captain Britain's origin continues unabated.

Spectacular Spider-Man Weekly #344, Jigsaw

Peter Parker's struggling to come to terms with Aunt May's mortality and Jigsaw's struggling to come to terms with his fear of Spider-Man.

Meanwhile, someone's stolen John Jameson's cryonically frozen body. I've no doubt this can only lead to trouble.

This is all I can say of the contents of this week's issue because this is all I know.

46 comments:

Killdumpster said...

C'mon Steve, you know using Adonis in the title of that Star Trek episode was just an allegory for the mythic gods. You're not fooling me.

Killdumpster said...

The Eternals vs the cosmic-powered robot Hulk is my favorite story in that series.

I gotta dig them out & re-read'em.

Anonymous said...

Don't worry Steve, I understand famed street fighting man Sir Michael Jagger is familiar with Shelley too, so obviously it won't do your steel-fisted reputation any harm.
And anyway, you're from the Peoples Republic of Sheffield - isn't everyone au fait with lefty poetry there?

Disagree with my esteemed colleague Mr Killdumpster, as Marvel's insistence on some sort of crossover in the Eternals derailed Kirby's ongoing storyline without serving any useful purpose other than putting the Hulk on the cover.
(I suppose that was to help sales of the US monthly, but it got cancelled soon after anyway).

-sean

Steve W. said...

I can only imagine how cheated Hulk fans felt when they read the inside of that Eternals comic and realised they'd been swizzled.

Killdumpster said...

I knew from the gitgo that it wasn't the real "Hulk", and it was a stunt to boost sales/interest in the book. I have the entire Eternals original run, having been a fan of Chariots Of The Gods (both the documentary film & the comic adaptation, also done by Kirby).

The story, to me, had a good old silver-agey feel. "Hulk" bashing Icaris just like the real thing battling our favorite heroes. Plus it was great seeing the King drawing the "Hulk" again.

Most of my pals couldn't wrap their heads around the Eternals concept, and I admit it wasn't my fav book. It was just great to see Kirby doing Greenskin-destruction again.

With Jack wanting to do only his own new books, outside of covers, this was as close to him portraying a legendary co-creation. That is until he picked up Captain America.

Killdumpster said...

The Eternals was way better than Machine Man & Devil Dinosaur. The "Hulk" thing was a delightfully lighthearted romp to take a break from the headiness of the basic plot.

It was just plain fun, in my opinion. Isn't that what comics used to be?

Killdumpster said...

I didn't know that Jagger was a knighted. Goes to show everyone, no matter how extensive their music knowledge, can learn something new everyday.

Charlie Horse 47 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Charlie Horse 47 said...

Steve - I think you gave short shrift in your review of Birken / Gainsbourg "Je t'aime Moi non plus."

I just learned that Birken was English (which is why I deleted my previous post) and figured she must be a hero or something over there?


Hope you guys can give some of your thoughts, insights, etc. on her? Granted it was a long time ago when we were we lads playing with our Conkers but still maybe you heard things from your folks or the neighbors or at school?

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Also, just curious if you know if the Beatles had any interactions with Serge or Jane? Somehow I could see John in particular being "curious" about them, their song writing, party habits, etc. though John was tied up with Yoko at that time.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Now this will rock everyone's world! Deep Purple in Chicago next Friday for their final tour!

Got to love early English metal: Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, and Led Zepp!

Anonymous said...

The first encounter between Ikaris and the Cosmic-Powered Hulk was absolutely brutal! Kirby pulled out all the stops. There was energy and Kirby Krackle and loud noises and chunks of rock and metal flying all over the place.
Yeah, it was a robot Hulk. But it was Cosmic-Powered. Even more bestial than the original. And it was a treat to see Jack draw a Hulk again.
The Eternals is underrated, I think.

Charlie, my brother and I grew up listening to that stuff. Our older sister had Deep Purple and Led Zep on 8-track and when she wasn't around we'd sneak into her room and listen to 'em on her 8-track player. She also had Cheap Trick, Thin Lizzy, Nazareth and BOC!
We had to do it on the sly, because otherwise she'd probably have charged us money, like she did for cigarettes. She's a probation officer now.
Something about the grinding ambience of "Space Trucking" on 8-track can't be replicated in today's digital world.

M.P.

Anonymous said...

Kirby's second coming at Marvel is underated in general M.P., although he seemed to have lost a bit of the mojo he had at DC. To be fair, that was peak Kirby so its not like the Eternals wasn't still pretty good.
Curious to see what the film will be like.

Charlie, Jane Birkin is generally known in the UK for Je t'aime, but she's lived in France since then so otherwise might as well not exist so far as most of the English are concerned.
Forget the Beatles, Serge was cooler than that and made some of his best records while in Jamaica interacting with the Revolutionaries at Studio One.

-sean

Anonymous said...

"Film"....?!?

Man, they're gonna screw it up. I just know they are.

M.P.

Steve W. said...

I must confess the only thing I know Jane Birkin for is that song. I know she was in a bunch of French films but they weren't exactly high profile in Britain, outside of people with a love for French cinema.

It'll be interesting to see what they're going to do with the Eternals movie. They occupy the same sort of niche as the Inhumans - and we all know what a huge success that TV show was...

Timothy Field said...

Are you sure the 'major event' didn't happen this week Steve? Numerous Facebook comic groups are posting about it today, unless this is a different major event to your major event.

Anonymous said...

Steve, quite a few of the Marvel Disney films are based on niche characters - Guardians, Black Panther - so they seem to have an efficient assembly line for blockbusters. I expect the Eternals will be like the others, a competent fx/action flick with a metropolitan elitist feminazi agenda (oh no, apparently Selma Hayek is playing Ajak - its political correctness gone mad!)

Seems likely to be based more on later versions of the Eternals than Kirby's original series, which might be considered a screw up if you have standards, but I can't really see them suddenly coming out with an epic DC Warner-type fail like Steppenwolf and the Fourth World stuff in Justice League.

-sean

Colin Jones said...

Jane Birkin also appeared in the 1978 film of Agatha Christie's Death On The Nile.

Mick has a knighthood but Keith Richards refused one, so I've heard.

Whether this week or next week, I know what the major event is but I shall say nothing until Steve reveals all :)

Steve W. said...

Tim, as far as I can make out, the event happened on the 11th and, for this feature, I always take the week to mean the seven days leading up to the post in question, rather than the seven days after it, meaning it missed out on being included, by one day.

Colin, I don't think I've ever managed to sit through a single Agatha Christie film, even though Death on the Nile and Murder on the Orient Express seem to have been on TV every Sunday afternoon for about forty years.

Sean, I await the film, with bated breath.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

I came!

I saw!

I conkered!

24 hours gents!

Steve - give me a blow by blow!

Anonymous said...

*groan* Not that old chestnut again Charlie.

-sean

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Steve - ROTF LMAO! Classic! Love it!

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Gents - Have any of you seen a show from 1969 (easy all you Gainsbourg fans) called The New People?

I came across its comic book and learnt it was actually a TV show in 69. But my youtubing only gets the pilot. Were there any additional shows on youtube or anywhere else? (NO luck at my library, lol.)

The perfume / hair spray commercials are a gas for the pilot.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

NOt sure why, but when I youtube "The New People" I keep getting lots of hits for Journey to the Unknown.

Google tells me this was a UK series from 68 - 69? You guys know it? Any good? Worth a look?

Charlie Horse 47 said...

(Boy I'm on a roll!)

I'm listening to Talk Sport this morning (your afternoon) and someone called "Dame Sally" is calling for the abolition of Burgers and Pies at soccer games as a way of stopping obesity.

Who is Dame Sally to you gents?

What is a "pie?" My 50 years of reading Beano and Dandy and Oor Wullie would suggest this is a meat pie you guys eat. But I just don't see meat pies being ideal finger food, like a burger, for a soccer game? It's a fork n knife kind of thing? Help???

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Good grief... now I understand the Youtube hits for Journey to the Unknown when searching The New People. Apparently Episode 6 is entitled "New People." How in the world did Hammer Films anticipate this 40 years ahead of time???

Steve W. said...

charlie, I must confess I've never heard of either Journey to the Unknown or The New People.

The pies eaten at football grounds are indeed meat pies. The ones eaten at sporting events are smaller than the ones Desperate Dan used to love and are therefore more portable. They are indeed not a good idea as finger food. This doesn't stop some people from eating them as finger food anyway.

Apparently, Dame Sally is Dr Sally Davies, former Chief Medical Officer for England. I can't say I've ever heard of her before now but no one seems very impressed by her ideas.

Dougie said...

Isn't Journey to the Unknown the ITV 60s spooky series with the fairground rides in darkness? The one where Dennis Waterman falls in love with a shop dummy? I vaguely remember it on tv- maybe Channel 4- in the 80s.

Sean's reference to Jagger and Adonais was well played!

Dougie said...

By the way, when I go to A Play, A Pie and a Pint in Aberdeen or Glasgow, I don't use cutlery. But then I don't pour on gravy, either.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Steve - Thanks for that. I still recall Desperate Dan eating a pie with a cow in it, lol. I have to assume then that the "football" pies are rather dry (no gravy) o/wise it would run all over your hands, clothes, etc. Though they now serve nachos at ball games here, which can make a mess as well with kids.

Dougie - I did start watching the first few minutes of the first episode of Journey to the Unknown. It does involve a man in love with a mannequin which comes back to life at times. Perhaps that is what you are recalling.

The "pilot" of The New People is worth a look on youtube. Granted the film quality is not great. But the story works well enough and the commercials are interesting on many levels.

Steve W. said...

Dougie, I'm now hoping Dennis Waterman sang the theme tune to Journey into the Unknown, like he's done with all his other shows. Hearing Dennis Waterman singing the theme tune to a horror anthology series would be a truly wondrous thing to hear.

Charlie, I've never eaten a pie at a football ground but I gather they have gravy in them but not an awful lot of meat. Football ground meat pies are notorious for being terrible value for money.

dangermash said...

Yeah. Eating a pie at a football match is a true test of a man's dexterity and ability to handle hot objects. The chicken tikka pukka pies that they used to serve up at Gillingham were a culinary treat. The problem is that it's difficult to justify quaffing a pie 3pm halfway between lunch and dinner.

Oh, and I checked out this week's SpiderMan. I was expecting it to be a filler issue with no background characters and soap element. And I was expecting the Punisher to show up. Wrong on both counts.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

You suppose they are selling pies at the World Conker Championships tomorrow?

Steve W. said...

I'm sure they are, Charlie. I'm sure they are.

dangermash said...

I'm starting to notice similarities between Charlie's romanticised view of the U.K. and the art and writing in ASM #95.

As Commissioner Gordon says in Batman The Movie, a thought strikes me so dreadful that I scarcely date give it utterance...

Anonymous said...

To be fair dm, Charlie does at least do some research - well, he asks a lot of questions to check - which judging from his comics is more than Stan Lee ever did.

-sean

Killdumpster said...

There's something called Jamaican burgers that I occasionally buy. They're basically a hand-sized pie with finely ground spicy meat (almost to paste level) inside. They're not bad, especially with some hot sauce.

In the southern US meat pies are fairly popular, mostly ground pork.

dangermash said...

Point well made, Sean.

Anonymous said...

The closest thing to a meat pie I ever had are these little frozen "pot pies" they got over here.
They used to be fairly tasty, but I think they now use something that might not be actual meat in them.
Or possibly something from a bad area of the animal.
Best not to risk it!

I'd love to try a good authentic meat or shepherds pie some day.

M.P.

Anonymous said...

Seems its SteveDoesPies here tonight, although why anyone would be curious about English food is beyond me.
M.P., you don't realize how good you have it over there - the English are struggling to free themselves from the tyrants of Brussels so they cam import your fine American cuisine with the genetically modified animal bits in it.

Being part of the metropolitan elite naturally I only eat fancy foreign muck; fortunately I live down the road from an Ital food joint that does a nice line in patties without dead animals in them at all.

-sean

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Chaps -

A lot of my UK knowledge comes from 50 years of Beano, Dandy, Oor Wullie, and The Broons. Last few years it's been upgraded with Netflix shows like Doc Martin, Father Brown, and Black Mirror. Last 6 months or so listening to Talk Sport on my way to/from work offers insights as well. So, I think I've learned all there is to learn about the UK?

But enough on the UK, let's talk about pie! Charlie and I luv eating pie. No doubt about it! Every year I make several rhubarb pies cause I grow the stuff. And I make pumpkin pies as well, organic, but I have to buy the filling.

My french wife, though she loves my pie, won't make it. She makes those french tarts with pears or strudels with apple. Unbelievably good.

I don't really enjoy eating dead animals anymore. Try to get no more than 5% of my calories from animals. I think the future of the world depends on us eating veggies... and fruit pie.




Anonymous said...

Sean, the English aren't exactly celebrated for their traditional cuisine.
I like Mexican, Italian, Chinese food, and I really love Greek, but I never wanted to eat an eel pie or blood pudding. I understand that eating well on an island is difficult. You guys do a good breakfast, though. Sausages, eggs, some tomaters and toast.
That's pretty good.

M.P.

Anonymous said...

Charlie, there's nothing better than eating a cold, left-over piece of pie outta the refrigerator in the morning for breakfast. Apple, cherry, blueberry or pumpkin.
And some hot, black coffee. That really gets yer ass going! Get's that heart rate right up there. You're ready to conquer the universe after that.

M.P.

Anonymous said...

Hey M.P., you were the one who bought up the questionable American pie.
And anyway, I'm not English. Not that Irish food is any better tbh (I blame long term British colonialism myself) but at least I've never eaten eels or black pudding.

I had a vegetarian haggis once, but I don't suppose that counts as real haggis (Dougie might be the one here to provide a ruling on that).
It wasn't the tastiest food I've ever tried.

-sean

Anonymous said...

Sean, I was under the mistaken impression that you were Scottish. I wasn't sure, and thus I was unable to give you any crap about your background.
My ex was Irish. One of 'em, anyway. That's all I'm gonna say.

M.P.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Hot black coffee and cold pie. Sounds something the winners of today's World Conkers Championships might start the day with!

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