New Reviews of Old Comics
This comic is actually a reprint of Marvel Treasury #28 from July 1981; but why quibble over 14 years, right? When I first saw this I knew it was a reprint, but thought it was the first team-up from 1976, which I’ve always been curious to read. This is kind of like Coke & Pepsi teaming up to create a massive franken-soda that brings the most popular flavors together for a limited time (because the mayor of New York shuts it down). Honestly, this particular copy looks like it was run through a soda bottling facility a few times before getting shoved into a long box and kicked like a soccer ball from Nebraska to upstate New York.
Garishly titled “The Heroes and the Holocaust!” this titanic team-up was written by Jim Shooter with Marv Wolfman, and a bevy of artists assisting the lead of John Buscema and Joe Sinnott. The real draw with this issue is bringing the Man of Steel and everyone’s favorite web-slinger together for an action packed issue. Spiderman breaks up a middle of the night bank robbery, which is only unusual in the fact that the bank is next to a construction pit and Spidey’s spider sense is tingling long after the apparent danger has passed. Hmmmm. As Peter Parker and Clark Kent both deal with professional issues at their respective newspaper employers they come together in their super-hero identities to help control the Hulk who makes an appearance by trashing most of Metropolis. Why would the Hulk be in Metropolis you ask? Why to help move Doctor Doom’s plan along by damaging the underground cell that Superman made to hold his one time foe, Parasite. Even if I hadn’t told you, Superman had it figured out within a few pages, so he pays Doom a visit and winds up outwitting a Kryptonite laced trapped. Meanwhile Clark Kent and Peter Parker have switched newspapers; Kent becomes a pain in J. Jonah Jameson’s side at the Daily Bugle, while Parker is working a dream job for the Daily Planet. Eventually Spiderman heads back to that construction site and finds a trap door. Aha! In the underground labyrinth Spiderman runs into Wonder Woman, who isn’t exactly a fan, so they have a little fight scene, which ends with Doom’s goons knocking out the Amazonian Princess and taking her away to be added to Doom’s collection alongside the Hulk. As is typical, Doom then spends a couple pages telling Parasite (most) of his new master plan to rule the world; controlling the world’s energy through a series of underground bases. About the time Superman and Spiderman crash the party Parasite is pumped up, pounding the tar out of Spidey, while Doom and more Kryptonite put Supes into a quick coma. Parasite finally figuring out Doom’s double cross is enough distraction to help Spiderman free Superman, combining Web-Head’s science brain and the Man of Steel’s might to bring about the end of another master plan to rule the world. Doom makes his escape to the Latverian embassy where he claims diplomatic immunity, which turns out to be more powerful than Kryptonite by keeping Superman away. Who knew it would be that easy? In hindsight Doom should have built his underground base below the Latverian embassy and then his master plan to rule the world would have worked. Idiot.
This story was just all right for me; nothing horrible, nothing special, with the art work being just about the same. If this wasn’t a cross company team-up this would just be a typical comic book story. Honestly, I think read the word “Bah!” more times in this comic than I have ever read in my entire life, comic book or otherwise. Who says that? Being a reprint the other thing that stands out is the image size on each page. Clearly this was originally published in a much larger format because the margins at the top and bottom of each page are way bigger than normal and the art work itself is pretty compressed, making the voluminous amount of lettering even smaller than usual. On the plus side, you do get a lot of comic reading for your money. There are no page numbers, but I would guess a good 70 pages are between these covers. I’m glad I read for the historical significance, but it wasn’t good enough to read a second time.