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Thursday, 17 June 2021

June 17th 1981 - Marvel UK, 40 years ago this week.

Thanks to Charlie Horse 47 and Killdumpster for their sponsorship of this post, via the magic of Patreon
***

This week in 1981, London was reaching for the skies, with the Queen's formal opening of the NatWest Tower. At the time, the 600-foot structure was Britain's tallest building, although it has since been eclipsed by a multitude of others and had its name changed to Tower 42.

That ceremony was probably a nice day out for the Queen but what wasn't such a nice day out for her was that week's Trooping the Colour. It was there that teenager Marcus Sarjeant decided it was a good place to let off six blank shots in her vicinity, no doubt causing much concern to everyone except himself.

Meanwhile, on this night in that year, BBC One was showing the latest edition of Carl Sagan's Cosmos in which he educated us about the wonders of the universe. I recall one edition being dedicated to him proving that UFOs don't exist.

Oh, Carl, how little you knew...

Marvel Action #12, Thor vs the Destroyer

Thor's up against the Destroyer but it doesn't seem to be the story in which the Destroyer becomes the herald of Galactus.

Instead, it seems to involve Balder being trapped inside the antagonistic armour which is out to bump off his best mate.

Needless to say, it's all the work of Loki.

The Fantastic Four are battling the Elementals, although I'm struggling to remember who the Elementals are.

And Doctor Strange is still having his thrilling encounter with Brother Voodoo.

Spider-Man and Hulk Team-Up #432, Adam Warlock

The Tinkerer makes his deadly return.

And that leads me to conclude this is the tale in which his lackey Toy's revealed to be a robot, to the surprise of no one but Spider-Man.

The Cat's still doing things - but what things, I cannot speculate.

It also appears Spider-Man's stranded in space which is a little outside his normal beat.

But who cares?

It's a great excuse for Adam Warlock to show up and, as far as I'm concerned, anything's a great excuse for Adam Warlock to show up.

Marvel Super Adventures #7, the Black Panther

King Solomon's Frog continues to bedevil the Black Panther.

But what's that blurb say? Daredevil meets the Panther? Could it be one of those stories in which the Wakandan monarch has to pretend to be DD, in order to help preserve the man without fear's secret identity?

Whatever it is, it appears New York's finest are tearing the city apart in an attempt to find Daredevil, in the aftermath of the defeat of Starr Saxon, all brought to us by the trusty skills of Roy Thomas and Barry Smith.

Captain America #17, Baron Blood, Marvel UK

Baron Blood's about to put the bite on a mesmerised Captain America.

But fear ye not, pilgrims, because a brand new Union Jack's about to come to the rescue!

Iron Man's in Hong Kong. I've no doubt he's investigating trouble at one of Tony Stark's factories. That's usually why he shows up abroad.

But, hold on. Hong Kong? Isn't that in China? And doesn't that make it practically compulsory for the Mandarin to show up?

Elsewhere, the Dazzler's up against the Blue Shield.

And, finally, the Defenders are still on Lunatik's homeworld and about to pay a visit to the fortress of Xhoohx, in the hope that within it will be a way for them to escape to New York.

Future Tense and Valour #33

Captain Marvel's having trouble of an unspecified kind.

ROM's still having a Limbo contest with the Space Phantom.

The Star Trek gang are doing something or other, and so is Conan.

I can't help feeling this post has now just died on its backside.

26 comments:

dangermash aka The Artistic Actuary said...

Not much to say about this post, Steven apart from echoing the usual comments about Marvel U.K. and their obsession with including as much yellow as possible in the covers.

But on a separate arty subject, I've created another of my six monthly artwork polls. It only takes a couple of minutes. You see 50 pieces to scroll down and only need to highlight the ones that you like (as many as you want) and press submit. All survey responses are appreciated - I know some squad members here have responded in the past.

Link: https://poll.app.do/h1-2021-artistic-actuary-poll

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't say the post died on its arse Steve, but theres only so much you can say about early 80s Marvel UK weeklies. Its not the same without Phillip's Thursday evening run down, is it?

The Elementals were er... elementals, created by Diablo, from FF #232. I guess that issue will come up next month in your US Marvels 40 years ago post, so need to go into it here.
And we established last week that the Doc/Brother Voodoo encounter was from Dr Strange #48, which was the start of a pretty good run by Roger Stern and Marshall Rogers.
Although tbh I never really warmed to Rogers' artwork, which was interesting but somewhat stiff for my taste.

Spidey & Hulk -
The Spidey/Warlock team-up must be that one with the Stranger, in the blue area of the moon.
That was Warlock's return to the solar system after he discovered he was massive because his molecules had expanded at a faster rate in another part of space. What a dumb idea that was - it made no sense at all.

-sean


Anonymous said...

Hey dangermash, I'm not getting anywhere with your link. I actually went to your website, but nothing happened with the link there either...

-sean

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Was Marcus Sarjent, who shot the blanks, in cahoots in any way with Fagan who climbed a drainpipe and got into the Queen's bedroom a year later?

I smell a real conspiracy since the Queen was involved in both incidents!

Steve - Will you please Fagan in your column a year from now?

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Steve - none of our columns have ever fallen on their backside. Not sure about the front side but never the back side!

By the way Steve, if you were to become a Lord would you willing to be a Lord from Scotland?

Anonymous said...

Sean, I would agree that Warlock's atoms moving apart as he warped through space, thus making him look really, really big, did not make sense. That said, Marvel Team-Up #55, 1977 (where the story appeared over here) was a classic for me anyway. At nine years old it blew my mind. If there were two things I dug, it was space and Spider-Man. It had really smooth early Byrne art and was my introduction to Warlock.
M.P. is all about the cosmic, effendi.
I dunno what they're doing with the character now, and frankly, I don't wanna know. Probably the next Guardian movie is gonna change the character all around, like it did with Drax and Nebula.
The schizoid, multiple-personality-having self-hating suicidal Adam Warlock we all knew and cherished in our childhoods may be gone for good. Look what they did to Loki! He's like a game show host now!
I just googled the issue and it's going for over $120 a pop in brand new condition! Holy shmolies. Glad I already got my copy.

M.P.

Steve W. said...

Dangermash, the link works for me. I've voted for The Hoodoo Watch and Moose on the Phoenix Trail.

Sean, thanks for the Elementals info. I suppose I should have realised they were connected to Diablo, as alchemists are into elements.

Charlie, I've never heard any rumours of a connection between Marcus Sarjeant and Michael Fagan. I'm sure I shall mention Fagan when the time comes.

I suspect I might have to be from Scotland to be a lord from Scotland.

MP, I quite liked the idea of Warlock suddenly being huge, even though it was an idea that could never, realistically, go anywhere. I agree, though, that, scientifically speaking, it probably made no sense.

Anonymous said...

Maybe it does make sense, Steve. I mean, who knows what happens to a guy when he warps through outer space.
Let's be honest, Sean is a lotta things but he's no astrophysicist. I can tell ya that right away.
I don't think we should just take his word for it. He ain't no Stephen Hawking, that's for sure. Since when did the Irish have their own space program? And how did the Stranger get so big in that comic? He was pretty big.
Maybe by warping through space.
Just sayin'.

M.P.

Anonymous said...

Often Warlock ideas are Elric ideas. Warlock becoming massive, and his molecules moving further apart, is reminiscent of Elric's encounter with Balo, the cosmic jester, in 'The Weird of the White Wolf'. Balo makes Warlock massive - yet of much lower density - thus, a monster walks right through him. Eventually, Elric summons Arioch, who gobbles up Balo!

Phillip

Anonymous said...

Its not just scientifically that the super massive Warlock made no sense Steve. How come characters from near Earth like Thanos and Drax (who turned up briefly in Warlock #15) weren't tiny? Why didn't other Marvel characters expand in space?
I suspect Judo Jim Starlin just came up with it as a device for keeping "his" character away from the regular Marvel universe.

Don't know if you have to be from Scotland to be a Scottish lord - the late Herr Philip Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glucksburg was Duke of Edinburgh.
I wondered why you didn't point out to Charlie that you don't have aristocrats in the peoples republic of Sheffield, but then I remembered Lord Blunkett of Brightside and Hillsborough.

dangermash, don't know what went wrong last night, but I tried the link again and found the poll. Will take the time to vote later (fwiw at a glance I liked Long Gone).

-sean

Anonymous said...

The Captain Marvel story, on Future Tense's cover, is an outstanding one. However, with the number of titles crammed into Future Tense, you can't have had more than about 4 pages of the story. Still, including Captain Marvel, ROM & Conan - it looks a pretty strong line up!

Phillip

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Hey Everyone! The US Federal Government just declared a new holiday called June-teenth! Charlie's home all day, since Charlie works for the G, todo nothing but hang out here and write down his random thoughts!

I have seen a Marvel Weekly (courtesy of Colin Bray who used to hang out here, lol) but I can't recall if Marvel UK reached out to its readers in the equivalent of the Soap Box or Checklist?

Each week, would you have this barrage of what was happening or who was appearing in each Weekly? (What a job that would have been!)

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Any of you blokes going to watch England vs Scotland in the Euro Cup this evening? If I listen to Talk Sport and the Scottish callers it sounds like the second coming of Braveheart is in the making, LOL!

Love the pictures on the telly of London right now... 58 and raining like hell. Guys with kilts huddling behind anything that blocks the rain and wind (Would Braveheart have been afraid of wind and rain?) What kind of summer weather is that?

Mc Scotty - you got any wagers on this game?

I'm cheering for Scotland b/c I like reading Oor Wullie and the Broons! And my father's mother's mother came from Dundee about 120 years ago. Lots of emotional ties!

Anonymous said...

Charlie - In Captain America (incorporating Marvel Action) # 24, there's a Mighty Marvel checklist, but these earlier ones don't seem to have them.

During the glossy covers era, checklists were printed, occasionally, but then there were only a few titles.

As regards the weather, the technical term for it is "Dreich" - Scottish members of the blog will elaborate on this important technical word!

Phillip

Steve W. said...

Charlie, I shall be watching the game and will, no doubt, be on tenterhooks.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Hey! Today is Sir Paul's Birthday! RAM ON Sir Paul RAM ON! Lookin good at 79!

(CHarlie has heard that Sir Paul has read more than a few comic books and frequents this site!)

Anonymous said...

I'm not bothered who wins, so long as it isn't England.

-sean

dangermash aka The Artistic Actuary said...

I'm half English, half Scottish. I wouldn’t mind a Scottish win tonight.

If they do win, who's going to explain to Charlie why the whole crowd ends up singing Yes Sir I Can Boogie?

And thanks to those that have responded to the survey.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Hey! Today is Sir Paul's Birthday! RAM ON Sir Paul RAM ON! Lookin good at 79!

(CHarlie has heard that Sir Paul has read more than a few comic books and frequents this site!)

Charlie Horse 47 said...

Dangermash it looks like the Scottish fans are quite happy with that draw! I assume they are singing that song? THey are singing something, lol, but I can't make it out.

Anonymous said...

That was a boring game.
And rain has dampened post-match liveliness in the streets.

Still, if thats not enough excitement apparently today is Sir Paul's birthday, and he's looking good at 79...

-sean

Anonymous said...

Given that this is the birthday of Paul McCartney, I am reminded of a scene in the Simpsons where this slick music agent is bragging about how he talked McCartney into leaving Wings.
Homer Simpson yells at him, "You idiot! He was the best one!"

M.P.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

MP - That's some funny stuff from a guy from South Dakota!!!

Anonymous said...

Speaking of South Dakota, Charlie, we are in the midst of an epic drought. It's gone on for over a year now. The grass is yellow, and the Big Sioux River, she's a'goin' dry. You can walk across it at some points without getting your marbles wet.
Although that cooling sensation may well be welcome in this blistering heat. I've been tempted.
I swear to God, if things keep following this pattern, the Dakotas are gonna look like the Australian Outback in a hundred years.
It'll be Mad Max time, every sucker for himself. Master Blaster will be the state governor.
Fortunately, I plan to be dead well before that.
Always think ahead, that's my motto.

M.P.

Charlie Horse 47 said...

MP - Sorry to hear that buddy.

Well we know the only reason Chicago, Detroit, etc. are not selling off the Great Lakes to Cali is b/c Canada borders them as well and Canada claim it will never happen.

But the bastards keep trying. Nestle built a water bottling plant in Michigan to sell the water all over the USA / world and Canada shut it down IIRC.

You should move MP to where there is water and warmth like... Louisiana?

Anonymous said...

Is Nestle using water from the Great Lakes, Charlie?
Jesus, I hope they're doing a good job of filtering it. That ain't exactly pure mountain spring water we're talking about.
Between the chemical run-off and the floating corpses, it's not exactly pristine.

M.P.