Tuesday, August 25, 2009

And today, we have a scan of a checklist. Thrilling!

On the "Green-skin's Grab-bag" letters page for The Incredible Hulk #252, we find a checklist for Marvel's books cover-dated October, 1980. As a kid, this was about when I was starting to branch off into other comics from Star Wars (issue #40 on this checklist, "Part II of The Empire Strikes Back!" even though I know the movie had been out for a while by then) but in looking it over, the only issue I'm positive I had back then? Spider-Woman #31, "Who is...the Hornet?" I had a subscription to Star Wars, and my sister to Spider-Woman, yeah.

But over the years, I've picked up a lot of the books on that list, some right away, some only recently. Thor #300, "Double-sized 300th anniversary spectacular!" I know I had that as a kid, and had read some of the Ring of the Nibelung issues leading up to it. I've since lost that issue, and still only have the vaguest idea what was happening. Um, Thor is playing the part of Siegfried, and the Valkyrie from the Defenders is Brunn Hilda or something; and by #300 the Celestials show up because they're opera fans? I can't decide if I really want to reread those, or if I really don't; but I'm holding out for the Essentials to get there.

Avengers #200 is a little better, but also features Ms. Marvel impregnated by Marcus from Limbo...and later writers would have to run all kinds of game around that one, and would prefer I not mention it at all. Captain America #250 is the classic, "Captain America for President!" Still a good one.

X-Men #138 (Uncanny) had Jean Grey's first funeral, and Cyclops mopes his way through the previous 137 issues history. He doesn't cover the reprints, though...it would be a good enough issue, except thanks to the 90's, every time I see something like this, I hear Boyz 2 Men "It's so hard to say goodbye to yesterday." Thank you, 90's. Thanks heaps.

Defenders #88 is noted as featuring "Lord of the Whales!" (And a different title on the cover) I probably have this one from the quarter boxes, and I want to say it's the Hulk going all Greenpeace upside some whalers' heads. As opposed to Namor doing it, but I kinda get the feeling that while Namor doesn't have any love for the surface-man, he doesn't really give a damn about the whales, either. He's not Aquaman; I don't remember Namor ever talking to whales or riding them around or anything. At first glance, I thought the title was a pun or a knock at Prince Charles, but his wedding wasn't until the next year.

I got Marvel Premiere #56 a couple of months ago: Dominic Fortune, guest-starring a young Dum Dum Dugan! Dum Dum was born with that mustache.

There are eight reprint books on this checklist, ranging from the why? Sgt. Fury #160, reprinting Captain Savage #11; to the hell yes, Fantasy Masterpieces #11, reprinting Lee and Buscema's Silver Surfer #11 and Jim Starlin's Strange Tales #181, Warlock in "1000 Clowns!"

Likewise, there are eight licensed books: Conan (celebrating its tenth anniversary) and Savage Sword, the Micronauts' regular book and an annual, Star Wars, Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica, and Rom.

And What If? #23 is a Hulk tie-in, "What if the Hulk's girlfriend Jarella Lived?" I don't think I've read that one, so I don't know if the Hulk gets a happy ending there, or if that issue is like the "What if Gwen Stacy had lived?" from around the same time, which takes the opinion that while having your girlfriend thrown off a bridge might not be a picnic, it's not the worst possible outcome. Cheery.


CalvinPitt said...

I have that Defenders issue in the Essentials format. Yeah, the Hulk had, some time earlier, come across a stranded whale, picked it up, and threw it back out in the ocean (kind of like in Hancock, only I don't think he hit a sailboat).

Then the Hulk winds up in the middle of the ocean (I forget how), and at that time, he really hates water for some reason. But the same whale comes along and gives him a ride. And then whalers show up, and it's pretty much like you figured.

As for Namor, i figure whaling falls under the category of surface dwellers mucking about on Namor's turf, like when they dump toxic waste into the water, and he's always getting mad about that. That's what I'd expect, I can't remember a specific example of it, though.

SallyP said...

Personally, I don't think that Namor gives a crap about whales or fish or anything. He's just an old crankypants.