Thursday, 21 November 2019

November 21st, 1979 - Marvel UK, 40 years ago this week.

On this night in 1979, BBC One was broadcasting The Trouble With Tribbles, that dreadful warning about why you should never ever feed your pets.

Clearly, with such terror on the loose, I was going to have to take refuge in my record player but that meant I'd need an intimate knowledge of what was happening on the singles chart at the time.

What was happening was that Dr Hook were still Number One with When You're in Love With a Beautiful Woman but challenging hard were Queen, at Number Two, with Crazy Little Thing Called Love while the Jam were reigning supreme at Number Three with Eton Rifles.

What chance did we have against a tie and a crest?

None whatsoever.

And we may have, likewise, been no match for their untamed wit but were we a good match for Marvel UK's comics of that week?

Star Wars Weekly #91

I'm not sure what's going on with Darth Vader's eyes on this cover. I can only assume he's been taking some of Rick Jones' vitamin C tablets.

However, it's all drama as Domina Tagge tricks Vader and Luke Skywalker into having a duel in a location which guarantees both their deaths.

Despite this, I suspect they both survive to duel another day.

I suspect Domina Tagge may not prove to be quite so fortunate.

Upon the doings of the Guardians of the Galaxy and the Watcher, I can shed no light but I do know Deathlok's busy being crucified by his creators, for the crime of having a will of his own.

Needless to say, it's not long before he exerts that free will by smashing in their skulls.

I'm also aware that this issue's back cover features an add for that most majestic of all synthesizers the Stylophone.

Hulk Comic #38, Machine Man

The Hulk's still trying to rescues Trish Starr from Machine Man, even though Machine Man doesn't have her.

Ant-Man and the Wasp are now both stuck at insect size and at the mercy of the Whirlwind. Some scientists they turned out to be.

We're still getting the origins of both the Black Knight and the Silver Surfer.

Meanwhile, the Defenders are up against the terror of the Cobalt Man, as Egghead continues his attempts to get his hands on some jewel or other.

Spectacular Spider-Man #350, the Cat

Spidey and the Black Cat are getting randy again.

Elsewhere, Aunt May's recovered from the death that so threatened to disrupt her comic book career.

My knowledge of the back-up strips is patchy but I do know Iron Man's up against the Super-Adaptoid who's shown up at the Avengers Mansion for some reason.



Doctor Who Weekly #6

Hooray! We get the chance to win some of those fancy futuristic digital watches that are all the rage.

Not only that but we get a feature about the universe's deadliest potatoes, the Sontarans.

Elsewhere, the Iron Legion are still causing trouble for our hero and, no doubt, the entire planet Earth.

We also get an adaptation of the First Doctor's adventure Marco Polo.

The War of the Worlds adaptation rumbles on and that Cyberman's still investigating the thing humans know as, "Emotion."

41 comments:

Killdumpster said...

Still trying to assimilate how you UK folks only got approximately 4 or so pages of American comics in each issue of your books.

My brother Charlie may have been able to put it in context, but I find they procedure possibly maddening.

I loved the story and art on the Defenders/Egghead arc. Rhino, Solarr & Cobalt Man made fore a great batch of villains. For the life of me, I can't remember why Egghead had such a "Jones" for the Defenders.

The Iron Man issue with the Adaptoid was fragging great. I think his intent to go to the mansion was to finish off Cap. Excellent battle issue. Tuska was right on, with a HOT Gil Kane cover.

I was able to get that book at the same time as the X-Men vs Adaptoid reprint. Probably helped making him/it one of my favorite villains.

My only peeve was him/it boasting about which Avenger power he was utilizing every other panel. Once or twice in the book for new readers is enough, methinks.

Quite a few years ago I picked a a Hulk book that had the Adaptoid controlled by someone, and he didn't speak. He gave Hulk a run for his money.

As far as 'bots & Hulk,again, I wish he would have vaporized Machine Man. He's like a whiney Inspector Gadget.

Steve, I don't know if you've done it before, but some time maybe a discussion of top 5 best/worst robot/cyborg/android-themed heroes/villians could prove interesting.

Maybe sometime when you're a little tight on time, and can't do research.

I apologize about changing the topic in your last post, but I did find it fun.

Killdumpster said...

Like we never do that anyway. Lol.

Anonymous said...

Majestic indeed Steve - I believe Bowie used a stylophone on the original of Space Oddity.
And of course the mighty Kraftwerk used one too -
www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZt64_XOflk

-sean

Anonymous said...

PS Stylophone for metalheads -
www.youtube.com/watch?v=h-XVbX5EE6U

-sean

Killdumpster said...

Sean,
While I concur with you that Bowie & Kraftwerk were musical pioneers, I still listen to Bowie today. I haven't listened to Kraftwerk in about 10-15 yrs.

I've heard Throbbing Gristle over that time period more often, as an audio-attack. Lol.

Killdumpster said...

I was exposed to Rammstein, and though I didn't understand the lyrics, I dug their sound.

I went through a industrial stage in the early 90's. Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, etc.

Killdumpster said...

KFMDM was another favorite.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

KD - The UK's method of reprinting the Marvel comics I assume "evolved" into something hard for US to wrap our head around.

I have two copies: one from 1973 and one from 1977.

Mighty World of Marvel 48 from 1973 is a reprint of two 1963 comics - Avengers #3 (23 pages worth - the whole story) and the last half of FF #31 (Mole Man). Though there is only 1/2 of the FF story, it's enough to digest and enjoy. There is no way to know which issues these are, though, only the mention of 1963 being helpful. Also it's black and white.

But fast forward to 1977 and something called 'Super Spider Man and Titans" #219. That thing is all over the map...Spider Man, Avengers, Thor, Iron Man, Cap America (last 10 pages of #118), and the Invaders. Roughly 10 pages of story, 2 pages of story per each side page of paper.

Some observations about this...
- Iron Man and Avengers are Don Heck (1960s?). Invaders by Fr@nk R@bb!ns. That's a lot of tough art to digest. BUT - b/c it is black and white, well, it is not so unbearable. Indeed the R@bb!ns art looks positively 1940s in black and white. Truly it is 100% better IMHO.

I have to assume Steve has reviewed these issues already? Steve - can you provide some linkage?

Killdumpster said...

Sorry guys. I meant KMFDM, in referring to the German industrial/electronic band.

Anonymous said...

Charlie, Gene Colan's work on Dr Strange and Dracula looked even better in b&w, at a larger page size.

-sean

Steve W. said...

Charlie, I haven't yet got round to covering MWOM #48, as I only started doing the Marvel UK mags with the 1974 issues. The post that includes Super Spider-Man #219 can be found here - https://stevedoescomics.blogspot.com/2017/04/april-20th-1977-marvel-uk-40-years-ago.html - although it contains little information about the book's contents.

Steve W. said...

Sean, thanks for the Stylophone links.

KD, I shall see what I can do about the robot/cyborg post.

Colin Jones said...

Charlie didn't mention that 'Super Spider-Man & The Titans' was printed sideways in "landscape" mode. This brief experiment lasted from October 1975 to June 1977.

It's also the 40th anniversary of Paul McCartney's "Wonderful Christmastime" - yes, Macca's much-loved (?) festive classic was released in November 1979 and is now 40 years old :D

Steve W. said...

That reminds me. I've already played Slade's Merry Xmas, Everbody this year, even though it's still only November. I feel suitably guilty.

Steve W. said...

That won't stop me doing it again, of course.

Anonymous said...

Gawd, its that time of year again already, when SteveDoesComics discusses festive hits.

-sean

Steve W. said...

Will Slade top my list again, I wonder?

Anonymous said...

What are the odds, Steve?

-sean

Steve W. said...

You never know. There might be a great new Christmas song comes out this year and takes its crown.

Anonymous said...

Fair point. If you think about it, we never really know about most things that haven't actually happened yet...

-sean

Anonymous said...

I'm only somewhat familiar with Doctor Who, but I was unaware that he would resort to physically choking out aliens. How pedestrian! I thought him rather more urbane and circumspect than that...

I've always liked the Super Adaptoid. But who came first, him or Amazo? I'm guessing Amazo.
Kinda like the whole Swamp Thing/Man Thing quagmire. Which is about two walking quagmires.
Like how many licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop, the world may never know.

M.P.

Steve W. said...

The Doctor generally avoids fisticuffs but the third Doctor was never averse to a bit of rough and tumble. There's at least a couple of stories where he starts beating up gangs of monsters. The man had the fighting skills of Bruce Lee.

Dougie said...

There are two Xmas trees- fully lit- in houses on the street where my school stands and the Xmas lights go on here in the town centre this afternoon. I have a sizable collection of decorations at home but I always think November is too soon. I am bored with it all by the time the actual day comes round. As you may know, Scotland didn't observe a public holiday on December 25th until 1958 anyway so maybe it's a kind of race memory.

I appreciated the reference to Rick Jones's Vit C. To quote Phoenix Nights, the lad was eight miles high. Gangster trippin.

Killdumpster said...

Now that I'm middle-aged, childless, and single, the holidays have been reduced to just getting a couple days off.

Christmas music hasn't been much of a thing for me since puberty. Actually I find it a little annoying after hearing it nonstop everywhere for a month.

Whirlwind was a great villain. It was amazing that it took Hank forever that he was Jan's chauffer. So much for his high-falluting IQ.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

W.t.h... Harpo has Chico in a choke hold on the Dr. Who cover?

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Steve - I feel for you... wondering as you are about Xmas songs. But remember, each and everyone of us is trapped between the future and the past.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

All- The Super Adaptoid story in Iron Man was one of my favorites. (Around issue 50ish?.)

But according to whatever I read (probably an interview with Conway in one of Roy Thomas's ongoing monthlies), Stan killed the storyline right then and there, after SA tore up Iron Man.

Conway was shocked and angry, he thought it was a great storyline, as did Charlie, but that's what Stan wanted.

It was one of those issues that this kid Charlie really, really got into. ANd then, the next issue, when you think it'd continue... POOF!... total change in story line.

And no one really knows what got up Stan's ass to have him change things...

Anonymous said...

I believe thats what is known as the present, Charlie.
In the case of the festive season, I suppose it would be a Christmas present.
(Er, I'll get my coat...)

-sean

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Super Adaptoid, SUper Skrull...

Heck I recall an XMen cover of a bulky (beast-like) white dude in shorts with wings on his back! He was called the "super mutie."

Indeed super mutie was billed on the cover as "even worse than a mutant" which really sounds like the Marvel Bullpen were a bunch of anti-mutie bigots.

That was sort of a common trope...

Anonymous said...

Bollocks. Charlie got another comment so my reply didn't follow on too well.
Its annoying when that happens.

-sean

dangermash said...

From what I remember of the third doctor, he could down any sontaran with a good donkey punch.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Sean - Good one! LOL!

Killdumpster said...

Charlie, your "Super-Mutie"s appearance sounds like the Mimic. He was a bit of an ass, but vindicated himself at the end of the X-Men vs Adaptoid issue.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

KD - You are spot on! I was indeed thinking of XMen 19 wherein they fight the Mimic. I don't recall much... Love the cover blurb, "Is Mimic a mutant... or something far worse?"

And the cover is lame Werner Roth... I mean, it's really stale.

Lord help me... I can't take being stuck between the past and the future!

Sean - I swiped that line from the show on youtube your turned us on to, "Synth Britannia!" in which is describes my beloved Sheffield as "a city caught between the past and the future."

Charlie Horse 47 said...

If I may ask the UK contingent... Is this really a big deal wot's happening to Prince Andrew a.k.a. Randy Andy???

Anonymous said...

The Randy Andy thing is certainly in the news, but as a republican* I find it hard to work out quite how big a deal it is (or isn't).
Seems like people object more to the idiocy of his interview more than anything he might have done, which may be a sign of latent sense of resentment at his status. But that kind of thing doesn't seem to spread to the institution of the monarchy itself.

*Obviously not in the starting-with-a-capital-R American sense, but rather the wise-up-its-the-bleedin'-twenty-first-century meaning of term.

-sean

Anonymous said...

PS Well done the people of Sheffield for giving Boris Johnson a hard time on the tv last night.

-sean

Steve W. said...

Dougie and KD, normally, for me, Christmas season doesn't start till the 1st of December but, for some reason, this year, I've been feeling oddly Christmassy since October.

Charlie and Dangermash, the 3rd Doctor's mastery of Venusian Aikido was a sight to behold.

Charlie, the Prince Andrew thing is indeed a big deal over here. It was trending at Number One on UK Twitter for days on end. It's that ideal scandal for the British, one that allows them to both resent and mock its subject in equal measures.

Anonymous said...

Centuries of selective inbreeding have made the royals a mixed bag.
You don't know what yer gonna get.
I have a lot of respect for Elizabeth, though. I think the royal family really came through for their country during the war. They stayed put and conducted themselves very well.

As far as the X-Men and mutants go, I just could never get into it. It's like a soap opera, Beverly Hills 90whatever in spandex.
And that damn Claremont...yeesh. All the characters constantly talking about what tortured badasses they are all the time. Is that good writing?

M.P.

Anonymous said...

The royal family hedged their bets in the war M.P.
www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_VIII#Second_World_War

-sean

Killdumpster said...

I think it's weirdly disgusting and amusing at the same time, concerning Prince Andrew.

If an average person has sex with a 17 yr old girl, whether consensual or forced, they would face 5-20 years in prison. Plus be branded as a sex offender/predator

I know he hasn't been convicted, but he hasn't even been picked up for suspicion.

As far as I know, the hardest thing that's happened to him is he lost "sponsors", and doesn't get to have a birthday party.

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