New Reviews of Old Comics
Remember when Marvel used to have all of these titles that did nothing but reprint older issues of their leading titles? Marvel Tales was old Spiderman stories, Marvel’s Greatest Comics repurposed Fantastic Four yarns, Marvel Super Action regaled us with previously told Avengers tales, and I know there were others like Marvel Triple Action. Until recently I’d never heard of Marvel Super Heroes which, at least for issue 90 featured the Hulk. Oddly enough, or not, this particular issue reprints Avengers #88. I guess there weren’t any issues of the Hulk’s own title worth reprinting anymore so they had to dredge up his appearances in other titles.
“The Summons of Psyklop” was extra special because it was a story written by Harlan Ellison with script by Roy Thomas and art by Sal Buscema. It starts with Reed Richards and Charles Xavier doing some experiment on the Hulk at the behest of General Ross, and eventually the Hulk just disappears. Meanwhile the Avengers, Captain, America, Hulk, Giant Man, Thor and Falcon are tramping through the Bayou following up on a previous Cap/Falcon mission to find one of Falcon’s friends that led them to a Voodoo ritual. The Bayou contains a nasty slug looking monster that spits on the heroes, and the spit hardens to a cement like goop; sort of like Magic Shell for super heroes. Shockingly the journey leads the Avengers to the Hulk who was being held by Psyklop a super villain with one fly-like eye, which is really a whole bunch of eyes that see the same thing. Before the Hulk can be rescued Psyklop sends him to parts unknown, and shoots the Avengers back to New York City, wiping out their memories of the encounter in the process. You can read either Avengers #89 or Marvel Super Heroes #91 to find out what happens next. I’m not sure which would be easier to find.
Couple of random thoughts; I didn’t recognize Falcon with the green and orange costume. I much prefer the classic red and white costume. What’s up with Giant Man’s costume? It’s not even a half shirt, more like a 1/8th shirt with these odd looking steel straps across his shoulders which makes him look like he should be a member of the Village People.
Best Ad: An above average amount to choose from in this issue, but I have to go with the Marvel in- house ad for Fun and Games a Marvel magazine touted as “the most fun you’ll ever have with a pencil.” Here we have popular Marvel heroes saying what they do on their day off. Spidey gets tingly while doing Wordwebs, Hulk gets lost in mazes, Captain America like word games, Spider Woman gets really turned on by the “What’s Missing Page,” Iron Man loves riddles and jokes, the Thing is too stupid for puzzles so he sleeps. Are they using sex to sell Fun and Games with comments like Spidey getting all tingly and Spider Woman saying it “really turns me on”? And she has some enormous amount of hair. I’ve collected comics for a long time and I don’t remember hearing about Fun and Games before this, much less ever seen an issue. After this ad I’m not sure I’d want to see one, but I’m starting to think Spider Woman is a comic I should check out some time…