Wednesday, July 09, 2014

My Last Marvels

A kid only had so much small change back in the day and there were so many wonderful comic books to be had so something had to go. In those days, I wasn't obsessive about having every single appearance of a character. If the stories and/or art looked like they sucked, I was perfectly willing to skip an issue or even stop buying the title for  awhile, keeping an eye on it, of course, just in case it were to get better again. Taking a look this time at only Marvels, here are the final issues I bought of my original collections of these major Marvel titles. THE AVENGERS I stuck with longest, all the way to 1971, and then I went back quickest as well, skipping only a couple of issues but then picking up on the beginnings of the Kree/Skrull war and continuing on steady for another few years.

Cap had been one of my favorites of the new 1968 titles right out of the gate and yet I continued only a little more than a year. The stories seemed repetitious and the art nowhere near the still recent glories of Kirby and Steranko!

Another favorite of the new '68 titles, DOCTOR STRANGE clearly struggled to find its way in retrospect and yet I enjoyed every bit of the storylines and the lovely Colan/Palmer art! I did tire of it a bit toward the end, though, and dropped it after this issue, not realizing there would be only one more in that run.

My favorite Marvel title. I knew who Kirby was and yet I seem to recall paying little attention to the fact that he had left the FF...until it was so obvious a couple months later that I left the FF, too. 

Honestly, HULK was my least favorite title anyway and I skipped a few issues between his debut at 102 and here. This was where I started skipping it entirely, however.

In retrospect, probably one of the better titles Marvel had at that time, but this was where I left it fro quite  awhile. I picked up about 40 issues I had missed a few years alter and read them in a Saturday afternoon marathon on my bed!

Steranko, as I said above, was a hard act to follow, but the graphic experiments of Frank Springer and  Barry Smith kept me on this title right up to the end here of its initial run.

I loved Ditko's Spidey in reprints and Romita's Spidey for a couple of years but the stories seemed bogged down in this period and I wasn't really a fan of big hulking villains like Kingpin or Marko, here. So I took a break from Spidey for a couple years.


Came back for the drug issues, the anniversary issues, the engagement to Gwen, etc...but really hated the four arms thing and the sudden switch to Thomas and Kane looked worse so I stopped here again for quite a spell.

Again, not one I was particularly consistent with anyway but I did so love Stingray's costume! 


writerguy said...

This runs very close to my own experience/timeline. I was just telling a comic book store owner about the machines that took one dime and two pennies. Loved those machines. Then I was around for a while for 15 cent comics.
I can't remember *why* I stopped reading and/or buying comics, except I'd started reading more books, like the Conan paperback novels and the Doc Savage paperback series. I always enjoy seeing the old covers. Thanks.

Al Bigley said...

I'm sure you're amazed to look back and think of the stellar work of Romita, Colan, and others, and see those periods as "jumping off" eras…

Oh, if only we could see the ever-lowering standards in comics that were still to come!

Al Bigley