It seems like only days ago I was blathering on about it being 1972. And now here I am claiming it's 1962. Clearly a new and strange madness has claimed me.
Fortunately, it's a madness that means I now have a chance to see what our favourite Marvel heroes were up to exactly fifty years ago.
The answer is, "not much," as most of them were still no more than a gleam in the eye of the various people who claim to have created them. But, even that long ago, there were two Marvel comics that brought us the antics of super-powered cavortionists.
It's always seemed a strange cover to me. That window's far too close to the floor. Why's there no furniture? And why does that house have twenty foot high bright yellow walls? But who cares about that? What matters is that Fantastic Four #2 gives us all the Skrulls we could ever need, in the first FF tale I ever read.
Isn't this the story where Reed Richards defeats the would-be invaders by convincing them that comic book panels are photos of real-life monsters that inhabit the Earth - basically using the conceit that, to comic book characters, drawings look like photos? Why, it's positively metafictional before the word was even coined.
It's easy to forget that Marvel's second Silver Age venture into the realms of super-hero-dom featured not the Hulk nor Thor but the mighty Ant-Man.
Of course he wasn't called Ant-Man in that debut tale and had yet to get his costume, let alone the wondrous Wasp but, still, already Henry Pym had gained the power to shrink and be menaced by things that were no kind of threat to anyone else.
I'm sure, from what I can remember, that, at the end of the tale, he vows never again to meddle with such things that man was never meant to meddle with. Oh, Henry Pym, if only you'd known...
Top of the Pops: 15th December, 1977.
5 months ago