Sunday, 10 November 2019

Forty years ago today - November 1979.

The first chill of winter is upon us and all those with any sense seek out places of warmth.

But there's nothing warmer than the snug glow of Nostalgia.

So, come, come, let us fling on our Coat of Reverie and see how toasty we can become.

Avengers #189, Hawkeye

That cover definitely has too many blurbs on it.

As for the inside of the book, as far as I can recall, there's a robot living under the Avengers Mansion and it's controlled by a computer with the mind of Tony Stark's mother.

Does it ever occur to the Avengers that things like this don't happen to normal people?

But I am intrigued. Just what are the strange new problems that plague the Scarlet Witch and the Vision?

Conan the Barbarian #104, Vale of Lost Women

There's a girl. There's a monster. The monster's going to eat the girl. Conan kills it and the girl's very grateful.

I think that sums it up.

Captain America #239

It's more of that baffling story in which Cap attacks a citadel up a mountain, and everything gets a bit strange.

Daredevil #161, Bullseye

Bullseye's kidnapped the Black Widow, in an attempt to lure Daredevil into his trap.

He does lure Daredevil into his trap.

Daredevil and the Black Widow then set about beating him up.

I don't think he'd thought this plan through properly.

Fantastic Four #212, Galactus v the Sphinx

Reed Richards' brilliant masterplan of having Galactus and the Sphinx battle each other, to decide who gets to destroy the Earth, kicks up a gear as both villains prepare for the mightiest clash since Logan Paul met KSI.

Meanwhile, the FF are dying of old age, so they might not live to see who's going to get to destroy them anyway.

Spectacular Spider-Man #36, Swarm

That Spidey pose is definitely based on one from an old Steve Ditko cover, isn't it?

More importantly, one of those reckless scientists ESU employs by the dozen accidentally brings Swarm back to life, meaning the Nazi bees are on the loose once more.

Thor #289, the Destroyer

Thor wants to know why Odin's done a secret deal with the Celestials

Odin doesn't want Thor to know.

Nor does he want him to set foot on Asgard ever again.

That means our hero has to take on a whole pile of Norse gods and the Destroyer as well.

Uncanny X-Men #127, Storm v Proteus

The X-Men are still making a total Horlicks of fighting Proteus in Scotland.

Incredible Hulk #241, half Bruce Banner, half Hulk

The Hulk's still in El Dorado, and Des has revealed himself to be Tyrannus!

When I say Des, I, of course, am not referring to Dez Skinn who, as far as I know, has never ruled an underground kingdom, although he may, for all I know, have an interest in underground comics.

But it does raise the question of how Tyrannus settled on, "Des," as a pseudonym.

Unless his real name actually is Des?

Iron Man #128, Demon in a Bottle, Tony Stark - alcoholic

Tony Stark suddenly realises he's an alcoholic and that he'd better do something about it.

Amazing Spider-Man #198, Mysterio

Spidey's finally figured out who the manager of Aunt May's nursing home is and is determined to give him the smack in the fishbowl he deserves.


Charlie Horse 47 said...

Steve -

Thanks for not posting alphabetically. It keeps Charlie on his toes.

Charlie think you are mistaken about the Daredevil review. Obviously Bullseye has kicked them to their deaths off the roller coaster tracks. The covers never lie!

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Tomorrow is veteran's day in the USA. This is when tens (hundreds?) of thousands of persons who served in the military, though were never in harms way (like at the Battle of the Bulge or Convoy PQ 17), swarm like zombies to the restaurants offering freebies to vets.

For example, Starbucks has a free coffee, Denny's has a free Grandslam bkfst, etc. A simple google search reveals all the freebies.

It's to the point where Charlie lives that the vets start lining up at 10 AM, for a 11 AM start, and cops need to control traffic at the local pizzeria. Almost as crazy as Walmart when Cabbage Patch Dolls were released at Christmas, or like the current raze over the Popeye chicken sandwiches.

Anonymous said...

Charlie, if it wasn't for the veterans we'd all be run by the Germans!
Mind you, I thought being run by the Germans is why we needed Brexit, so thats a bit confusing really.

Anyhow... Pretty sure that most of that issue of Avengers was about Hawkeye working as head of security for a tech company being robbed by Deathbird or whatever her name was Steve, with some soap opera nonsense for the rest of the team.
Perhaps you were thinking of that years Avengers annual?

The Scarlet Witch's strange new problem was wanting a holiday, a bit of a break from avenging, or something like that I think.


dangermash said...

The Spidey pose doesn’t match any ASM #1-38 cover. ASM #5 comes closest. But it does look very Ditko-like and strangely familiar, so I expect it's been swiped from inside one of those comics.

Steve W. said...

Sean, thanks for the Avengers clarification. I was clearly totally confused.

Dangermash, it's going to drive me up the wall forever, trying to work out where that Spidey pose comes from.

Charlie, it is always my pleasure to avoid alphabetical order.

Anonymous said...

Don't worry Steve - I hear that South Yorkshire is likely to experience further flooding, so that should take your mind off the Spidey cover.


Killdumpster said...

That was a great month of villains/covers. I think I had most of them, except maybe the Cap issue. Unfortunately I only have vague memories of the stories.

Most of the villains presented were favorites of mine, except the Sphinx. I didnt care for him in Nova, or anywhere else. Come to think of it, I didn't think much of any of the bad guys who premiered in Nova's original series.

You'd think they would've put a little more effort into a new title that they, at one time, were trying to make it big. I liked Omega the Unknown better than that book.

Galactus should be able to clean the Sphinx's clock.

Steve, I love blurbs/banners/word balloons/etc on covers. When I see new comics with just a full close-up, characters just posing, or in some kind of movement but not engaged with a threat, I'm not enclined to buy.

Give me a cover where the hero is fighting his foe, maybe yelling at each other, with some explosive text.

I the miss the whole "THIS ONE HAS IT ALL!!" thing.

When I leaf through any of new Marvel books, it seems like there's maybe 3 pages of action and the rest of the pages are whiney soap-opera/bad sitcom.

The characters just stand around and complain, do touchy-feely yak, unfunny jokes,or eat. With really crappy downloaded backgrounds.

Anonymous said...

Charlie, I was never in combat but I'm giving serious thought to that free Grand Slam tomorrow.
For truly, they also served who were motor pool rats and pulled a lotta guard duty.
Besides, M.P. could use a good breakfast and M.P. is too lazy to make himself one.

...oh God, I'm doing the third person thing myself now...


Killdumpster said...

Well, anything that anyone does for our vets should be appreciated.

I hold those ladies & gentlemen in high regard.

Nothing worse than seeing a homeless vet begging for money in the street. Unfortunately, that started happening since the Civil War.

Our soldiers deserve more than that.

25 years ago my sister quit working at a VA hospital because how they treated the vets.

I know you folks aren't a big fan of our big orange monster, but he made it available for vets to get paid outsourced help if they couldn't get it through the VA.

Medical assistance for vets, during Barry's terms, was abominable.

Killdumpster said...

Speaking of the orange loudmouth, lots of folks said he would start WW III.

Over 3 years into his stint, no new engagements, while keeping his promise to pull our boys & girls, when he can, out of nasty places and demanding other nations to start pulling their own weight.

Killdumpster said...

On that line, I heard on the radio that the BBC is going to have continuous coverage on our pompous braggart's impeachment inquisition.

You folks in the UK already have a wacky political thing going on. You really don't need to get entrenched with our elected goofballs.

Its almost like the OJ Simpson trial, which I don't know if that was a thing your way.

Gonna be a lot of quack, protests, & baby balloons. Then all for not.

The opposing party have been fishing for the Donald before the 2016 election. The Senate will not impeach him. Total waste of time & tax-payer money.

Killdumpster said...

Sorry, oh my brothers.

Had a shot of whiskey with my beer. It can put me in "serious-mode".

How about Bullseye thinking he could take DD and the Widow at the same time? Lol!


Anonymous said...

I'm a whiskey and beer man myself, K.D., so I understand. That's what got me kicked out of astronaut training!

On, ah, another note, I agree with Steve about there having been too many "damsels in distress" in Howard's stories. (Vale of Lost Women was a Howard story. And a good possible name for a strip joint.)
You know who didn't pull any of that damsel stuff? Lovecraft!
In his stories women showed up rarely, and only mentioned in passing as having copulated with monsters at some point.
Why distract from Cosmic Horror with sex?
Which share some similarities...


Killdumpster said...

The thing about "damsels in distress", is that's still a real thing.

Nowadays, a lot of women need men who know "guy-stuff". From experience I found out some have no clue about the difference between a standard or Phillips screwdriver

While I'm a big fan of strong fictional female heroines (Aliens, Resident Evil, Wonder Woman,etc.) The real thing might possibly have started with Joan of Arc.

If anyone has other earlier female heroic history, please indulge me.

From what I know, she thought herself " envisioned by God", and was enabled to rally troops. Some scholars claim she never engaged in combat. That's debatable.

What is the truth is she got sold out.

I've met some young women (or their effeminate boyfriends) don't know how to deal with broken down cars.

They can't change a tire. I did nine on vehicles that weren't mine in the last ten years.

"Why won't it start?" Uhh, no gas. "Why is my car spitting out smoke?" Well, running 3 quarts low on oil may cause that.

It can be really disgusting, when you're changing a girl's tire, and her boyfriend stands there , just watching.

I've helped at least 25 "damsels" over the last ten years. One gave me a hug, another kissed my cheek. That's just fine.

The others just drove off without a "thank you". I'll still pull of for broken down vehicles.

Anonymous said...

The Conan story, "Vale Of Lost Women" wasn't published until 1967 - 31 years after Robert E. Howard's death. The story is controversial because parts of it seem very racist to a modern reader - Conan saves a white woman from "black pigs" etc. The woman then runs away and ends up in the Vale Of Lost Women where no man dares to tread - but the female inhabitants of the Vale intend to sacrifice the woman to a winged demon from beyond the stars. Luckily Conan turns up in time to see off said demon - that's what is happening on the Conan cover.

Anonymous said...

Should've said that only the black men shun the Vale Of Lost Women - obviously Conan fears nothing.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Colin - LMAO!

Hey Folks, Help ole Charlie out...

Why the heck did Marvel Comics entitle Captain Mar-vell as Captain Marvel? I imagine in part to protect the "Cpt Marvel" copyright they stole from sleepy DC? But then why not just call him Cpt. Marvel on the inside? To ensure us idiots would not mistake for the "Big Red Chees" after all?

Charlie Horse 47 said...

KD - That is nice of you to help people in distress. We need more love.

I do recall when Truckers were truly the "Knights of the Road" and they would stop anytime, anywhere to help someone. Truly!

Then trucking got deregulated in the 70s at it became a dog-eat-dog world for them, fighting for pennies. No more "Knights of the Road"... got to drive those miles ASAP!

As a kid going on vacation, we had a tire blow out over the Ohio River on a bigly bridge and had to pull over immediately. Two! trucks stopped... one to block one of the lane and another to change the tire with my dad.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Steve - pray tell! Are you guys flooding again???

I found that listening to UK's Talk Sport puts me to sleep ASAP! (10 PM here, 4 AM there.) But on the UK news last night, Bo Jo said something about being "bigly impressed with how strong you guys were to deal with the flooding!"

So, I have to imagine if he is talking about your area you are a very strong man indeed and that explains this blog's fortitude!!!

Steve W. said...

I think Johnson was referring to the flooding that's already happened. However, more flooding is expected this week.

Colin, yes, some of REH's writing can have noticeably "dated" social attitudes. I suspect he inherited it from reading too much Lovecraft.

Redartz said...

KD- speaking of female heroic history, did you notice in the news the past few days about the "Viking Shield Maiden"? Seems a young woman of Viking persuasion was found, along with sword and equipment. They did a facial reconstruction, including the nasty sword wound in the head which may have done her in. She looked like she could handle herself pretty well...

Hey, this was a fine week at the racks! Lots of good reading. That Avengers story had some excellent Byrne artwork. Spidey had Mysterio, which is always a good thing. Daredevil was spectacular. Think I had all of these, except Hulk (sorry HB) and Conan (who I'd given up on after issue 100).

And salutations and thanks to all out there who have served.

Anonymous said...

Thing is Redartz, that kind of thing - about the Viking woman - doesn't seem to have much impact. You can bet if a woman turned up with a horned helmet in a longboat in some action flick set in the tenth century there'd still be a load of online grumbling about feminazi SJWs or whatever.

M.P., interesting thought on Lovecraft there. Have you read the Providence or Neonomicon comics? They foreground the underlying sex - and racism - that old HP suppressed in his stories.


Anonymous said...

Yeah, there's racism in Lovecraft, and in Howard. But I prefer to look upon it as two otherwise decent human beings who fell prey to widely held, ignorant attitudes of their times.
I'm not saying that's okay, but I never heard any suggestion that either was cruel or vindictive to anybody. Quite the contrary, in fact.
And Lovecraft was married to a Jewish woman for a while.
It's kinda hard to imagine him being married, isn't it.
I think I've seen a bit of those on the internet, Sean. Cheapskate and reprobate that I am, I sometimes roll around the Interwebs reading comics for free.
Check out or just type in vlcomic. A lotta great stuff there.
Thanks for the link.


Anonymous said...

...Incidently, I just discovered there's a new movie coming out based loosely (real loosely) on Lovecraft's "Color Out of Space."
Starring Nicholas Cage and Tommy Chong. I'm not making this up.
And no, ain't about smoking dope.
Well, I assume, anyway. There's a meteorite, but I don't see why you can't have both a meteorite and weed smoking in the same movie.
They really need to bring MST3k back. We need them now more than ever.


Anonymous said...

M.P., while agreeing you shouldn't judge people from the past by the standards of the present, it does them a disservice to assume they were all racists who thought, say, anti-semitism was acceptable.
I take the view that no-one's perfect, that great writers aren't necessarily - or even often - great people, and appreciating their work is a trade-off. How far do dodgy ideas come out in their books, and does what you get from their work outweigh anything you might find to be iffy?

I'm a cheapskate too, but its definitely worth looking for a special offer or something on Providence, which was the best new comic I'd read in ages. Someone more into Lovecraft would probably get even more out of it.