Thursday, July 19, 2012

Journey into Mystery # 122

Issue: Journey into Mystery # 122
Writer: Stan Lee
Artist: Jack Kirby
Publication Date: November 1965

Brief Summary:


Journey into Mystery # 122


Commentary:


Absorbing Man and Thor take up where they left off in combat, and Loki watches all while plotting and scheming.  You see, Absorbing Man works for Loki, which may seem like a good deal on paper, but actually kind of blows.  Loki is promising Absorbing Man a seat as his right hand man when he, you know, takes over the universe.  Dude doesn't seem to grasp the concept of baby steps.

And in the backup tale, Thor is still on a boat...or something.  I probably shouldn't have taken a three four month hiatus from reading these and then expect to know what's going on.  Better luck next issue!

Favorite Panel:

Thor's thoughts on the paparazzi.

Next: Sgt. Fury # 24

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Fantastic Four # 44

Issue: Fantastic Four # 44
Writer: Stan Lee
Artist: Jack Kirby
Publication Date: November 1965

Brief Summary:


http://marvel.wikia.com/Fantastic_Four_Vol_1_44


Commentary:

We start delving into the strange origins of Madame Medusa.  She's on the run from a dude called Gorgon.  On top of that, Dragon Man (last seen here) shows up to cause a little trouble.

The arrival of Gorgon is the second appearance of a member of the race called the Inhumans, with Madame Medusa being the first, of course.  Unfortunately, Gorgon isn't exactly the coolest Inhuman around, as his power mostly qualifies him to participate in the broadway show Stomp.

The issue ends in the chaos of a three way battle, and we'll have to wait until next time to learn more about the Inhumans.

Quick Hits:
  • Reed invents an automated dish-washer mechanism; it's no ultimate nullifier, but I'll take it!
  • Lyndon B. Johnson is referenced
  • Torch considers not enrolling in college a "boner"; I don't think me means it that way
  • Reed compliments the Hulk's "phenomenal leg muscles"; there is no reference to a boner


Favorite Panel:

Like many women before and since, Madame Medusa has a soft spot in her heart for Johnny Storm

Next: Journey into Mystery # 122

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Avengers # 22

Issue: Avengers # 22
Writer: Stan Lee
Artist: Don Heck
Publication Date: November 1965

Brief Summary:


http://marvel.wikia.com/Avengers_Vol_1_22


Commentary:

When last we saw our heroes, they'd been framed by Power Man and the Enchantress.  This of course leads to a little bit of in-fighting, as Cap struggles to keep the Avengers quartet from tearing apart.  He fails, and the team wanders off into a few less than successful side projects.

Seems like a good opportunity for the Ringmaster (last seen here) and his Circus of Crime to strike, right?  Wrong.  There is no good time for the Ringmaster and his Circus of Crime to strike.  If anything, they help to bring the Avengers back together.  Whoops.

Power Man and Enchantress are defeated, and even though the Avengers defeat them together, Cap seems to want to keep the team broken up when this ish wraps.  More next time.

Quick Hits:
  • Quicksilver catches Cap's shield in mid flight(!)
  • Hawkeye tries to get on the Ed Sullivan show
  • Scarlet Witch allegedly can't use her hex powers when her eyes are closed

Favorite Panel:

May this panel serve as a lesson to all those who ever wondered what it would be like to watch Super Mario transform into Captain America.

Next: Fantastic Four # 44

Monday, July 16, 2012

Amazing Spider-Man # 30

Issue: Amazing Spider-Man # 30
Writer: Stan Lee
Artist: Steve Ditko
Publication Date: November 1965

Brief Summary:


http://marvel.wikia.com/Amazing_Spider-Man_Vol_1_30


Commentary:

And we move into November of 1965 (feels like it was just yesterday, right kiddies?) with the latest issue of Amazing Spider-Man.

So, a common thief steals all of J. Jonah Jameson's valuable documents.  Jameson blunders on this front, because he offers a $1,000 reward to anyone who returns the items to him.  So guess who lines up to cash in on that prize?  



In the romance department, Ned Nederlander (that's his name, right?) proposes to Spidey's squeeze Betty Brant!  Alas, Spidey isn't able to resolve his situation with Betty, as she claims to want a dependable kind of man who isn't always rushing off into trouble.  Our boy Peter Parker doesn't quite fit that mold, even though Betty loves him.

Oh, and Spidey fails to earn the reward money for the capture of the Cat Burglar to boot!  Life is hard, folks.  Life is hard.

Quick Hits:
  • Liz Allen has taken up a job since graduation
  • There's a solid Sophia Loren reference; that's not dated at all

Favorite Panel:

Spidey snaps a few photographs for the Daily Bugle

Next: Avengers # 22

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Tales to Astonish # 72

Issue: Tales to Astonish # 72
Writer: Stan Lee
Artist: Gene Colan and Jack Kirby
Publication Date: October 1965
Brief Summary:

http://marvel.wikia.com/Tales_to_Astonish_Vol_1_72


Commentary:

Well, from the way the issue kicks off, it seems that Namor was in a bit of a mess when I left him last.  Of course, he's in the midst of combat with the Seaweed Man, so maybe that explains why I wasn't in quite so much of a rush to get back to him.

At one point Namor decides to continue on with his quest as opposed to rescuing Dorma, the woman he loves (who isn't Sue Storm).  Not sure I love the call there, but how it all plays out will have to wait until next issue.

In Hulk world, Bruce is wanted by the government, he's captured by the Leader, and he can't change back into human form because he'll die from the bullet lodged in his brain.  Times are tough.

Stan has really committed to telling ongoing stories, especially in the two tale per issue books like Tales of Suspense and Tales to Astonish.

Quick Hits:
  • The "Adam Austin" said to have drawn the Namor story is actually Gene Colan working under a pseudonym
  • Apparently you can't call a cage made of plastic a plastic cage; it's a plasti-cage!
  • Mickey Demeo provides the finishes to Jack Kirby's layouts for the Hulk story

Favorite Panel:

Even a Hulk needs his rest

Next: Amazing Spider-Man # 30