Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Marvel History Post 32: Strange Tales # 104

Issue: Strange Tales # 104
Writer: Stan Lee/Larry Lieber
Artist: Jack Kirby
Publication Date: January 1963

 Brief Summary:

 Johnny Storm is at a bank when it's robbed by a goofus with the largest glue gun you've ever. Said goofus, also called Paste-Pot Pete (you know he's legit because of the dash in his name), successfully robs the bank. Johnny doesn't want to reveal his identity to the onlookers, so he makes a small flame replica of himself to follow big Paste-Pot. Then, he manages to sneak off and flame on to follow him himself. Meanwhile, Pete is attacking a military base after his successful bank robbery to steal a missile and sell it to the highest bidder. Torch catches up and attacks Pete as he's riding off the base with the missile, but his time limit as Torch runs out. Pete pastes Johnny to the missile, which then accidentally takes off Torch manages to control his flame to disarm the missile, then catches back up to Pete, who then uses his paste to hitch a ride on a passing plane. Pete manages to escape with the help of a partner, but fortunately the missile and the money from the bank robbery are recovered. Commentary: Paste-Pot Pete is not exactly Stan's most successful villain, nor the smartest. Hot off the heels of his bank robbery he goes and attacks the government. For a man with a glue gun, he's got high hopes. With some of these early stories, I'm seeing a number of villains that I do not recognize as being a big part of the current Marvel Universe. I'm wondering if we've seen the last of a guy like Paste-Pot Pete, or if Stan brings him back for more hot glue gun fun.

 Quick Thoughts:
  • Too bad Stan doesn't use Thunderbolt Ross when he involves the government in some of these other stories set in the MU.
  • The town of Glenville (hometown to the Human Torch and Invisible Girl) is a pretty eventful spot for small town America.
  • The name Paste-Pot does not exactly strike fear into the hearts of anyone.
Favorite Panel: Not sure if we've seen it before in any of the earlier issues, but this was a nice shot of Human Torch uttering his famous "Flame On!" slogan. I'm still waiting for "It's Clobbering Time!" from his buddy Thing. Next: Tales to Astonish # 39