Monday, April 18, 2005


Wow! Last week I got feedback on the blog! This is amazing, not most of it was negative and about Clyde Fans, but whatever. The email from David Kruchowski telling me he liked my blog and the 2099 reviews I did was much appreciated! So if you're reading this drop me an email or leave a comment. Now on to the reviews!

Marvel Comics Presents #31, 34-35, 37-38 (November-December 1989)
Writer: Michael Higgins (for the Excalibur bits)
Penciller: Erik Larson (for the Excalibur bits)

I bought these cause it’s one of the few Excalibur appearances I didn’t have. I’m such an Excalibur nerd. Anyway, I had two parts of this story, and found another three recently and was excited.

Anyway these are really terrible. And not like Super-Villain Team-Up terrible, just terrible. It’s yet another Arcade story and there are Loony Toon ripoffs this time around. The only halfway decent bit is in issue 37 where the first two and a half pages are a silent Lockheed and Widget detective style comic. Ridiculous, but a longer one would have been awesome.

Pretty much all the other stories in these issues are equally forgettable/stupid. I’m wondering if I’ll get the other three issues I need though…

Thor #428 (January 1991)
“Plot, pencils & words: Rom DeFalco & Ron Frenz”

I picked this up because it had an Excalibur appearance in it that I didn’t have. A rarity, how did this multipart crossover between Thor and Excalibur escape my attention? Probably because I generally ignore Thor comics.

This is a billion times better then those issues of MCP I talked about above, but it’s still not that good. It’s basically just a fight between Thor, Excalibur, the Wrecking Crew and some cops (Code Blue). Um, yeah, it’s kind of stupid, Excalibur aren’t really written in character either, and the explanation for them being in America is just stupid. Still the last couple of pages are pretty cool, and I want to read the next issue (if not the previous), if just to see more of Emperor Juggernaut.

Thor Annual 7 (1978)
Writer/Editor: Roy Thomas (Is it just me or does it seem like a bad idea for the writer and editor on a comic to be the same?)
Illustrators: Walk Simonson & Ernie Chan

Oh man, comics used to be so fun and stupid, and this annual which I found on the floor at university one day is a perfect example. This comic is an attempt at fitting Jack Kirby’s creations the Eternals, the Deviants and the Celestials into the Marvel Universe to a greater degree. To do this Thomas tells a previously unknown Thor story set a thousand years ago when Thor travelled to South America! But first we learn that just previous to this event, followers of the Norse gods and followers of the Olympian gods fought a huge battle. What?! Where there still followers of the Olympian gods at this point? (There could be, I’m not sure, but it seems sort of unlikely). And where on Earth could they have fought? Well, Turkey maybe, I heard some Vikings got there. Okay, so it’s vaguely possible for this to have occurred, but it seems pretty damn unlikely.

Anyway, Thor goes to South America and meets the Eternals. Who are helping the Aztecs, the Mayans and the Incans become civilized, because as they aren’t white they clearly couldn’t have done any of the stuff they accomplished without the Eternals telling them what to do.

Then they fight two mutates that the Deviant’s created, and a depiction of the Incan thunder god that one of the mutates made. I really sort of wish that Thor had shown up and just met all the Incan gods, that would have been so much cooler then none of them existing. Do other pantheons of gods other then the Norse and Olympic ones exist in the Marvel Universe? I know both of those are apparently just shape changing aliens or something, but did shape changing aliens become gods for anyone else?

The Eternals and Thor eventually win the fight by attacking a Deviant monster with nuclear energy. Apparently the Eternals mastered the atom, but the Deviants didn’t, so everything they made can be blown up by nuclear energy. Virako, the leader of the Eternals (I think) realizes this and attempts to kill the mutate, not by crashing their nuclear powered ship into it, but by exposing himself “to a lethal dose of nuclear energy!” and then flying into it. Okay Virako, I can see why they made you leader…

Overall this was a fun comic, there’s an essay at the end by Thomas about why Kirby is awesome and why everyone should love the characters he created. Some stuff in this combined with some stuff on the Bullpen Bulletins page kind of makes me think that back in the old days the rivalry between Marvel and DC was fierce, but also fun. It wasn’t as nasty as it can sometimes get today. Though neither of the companies was that fair to the people they employed, and for all I know I’m completely wrong. Whatever.

One other note on the Bullpen Bulletins, it’s so odd to read old Stan’s Soapbox. They’re constantly talking about the great movie and television things that are happening with Marvel characters, and while some happened, others didn’t. When I was reading, I think it was Spider-Man 2099, there were constant references to the Fantastic Four film and how it would soon be out. I wonder if Marvel knew the film would never be released?


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