Monday, September 29, 2014

September 1965

(Continued from August 1965)

STRANGE TALES 136  /
cover by Jack Kirby & Mike Esposito and STEVE DITKO
"FIND FURY OR DIE!"
Part 2 of 7. Having set up the series last time, NICK FURY, AGENT OF SHIELD tackles another plan to assassinate him, while still having no clue as to the identity of Hydra's leader, the location of their base, or the actual plan they intend to use to gain world domination. JACK KIRBY supplies story & layouts, while JOHN SEVERIN, a veteran of countless war & western comics, comes aboard doing pencils & inks. I don't really find his rough-hewn, "organic" style a good match for a modern, "hi-tech" series like this, but before too long, he would wind up working on SGT. FURY instead. Ye "editor" supplies dialogue while stealing credit-- it's maddenning that most people still have no idea Kirby was writing all these stories.
     (2-27-2014)

Synopsis:
HYDRA agents tail Fury walking in NYC, intent on finding SHIELD's HQ, not realizing he knows he's being followed. Leading the mission is HYDRA Section Leader B, a "Hydra-Hunter", who hands over his hood to the Imperial Hydra so there will be no place to hide should he fail. Of course, he hopes to become the next Imperial Hydra when he succeeds. When a few HYDRA agents show up at the barber shop which is secretly the entrance to SHIELD's NYC HQ, they're quickly captured and hypnotized into believing the HQ is located in a warehouse some blocks away. Using a huge vehicle called a "Hydra-Ram", the warehouse is attacked-- but it's a trap! His plan failed, his men captured, Section Leader B is soon "replaced", while Fury thinks on the long road ahead.

Indexer notes:
Part 2 of 7. 1st appearance of the SHIELD barber shop, a tribute to the tailor shop secret entrance to UNCLE HQ in the TV show THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E. 1st appearance of the "Hydra-Ram", a flying saucer-type vehicle. Nick Fury, SHIELD & HYDRA turn up at Reed & Sue's wedding in FANTASTIC FOUR ANNUAL #3 (November 1965).

"WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE MASK?"
Synopsis:
Dormammu imprisons Clea, and tells her she will witness DR. STRANGE's defeat. Mordo tells Dormammu that Strange is searching for "Eternity", and cannot understand why this upsets the dark lord so. Strange continues his search, going from one practitioner of the arts to another without result, until The Aged Ghenghis tells him only he and The Ancient One know the secret. He gives him a scroll, which leads Strange to a being imprisoned in another dimension. But it turns out to be a trap, which he barely escapes. Back in Tibet, Strange tells his master's servant the only option left is to enter the mind of his master...

Indexer notes:
Part 7 of 17.


FANTASTIC FOUR 42  /
cover by Jack Kirby & Sol Brodsky
"TO SAVE YOU, WHY MUST I KILL YOU?"
Part 2 of 3 (or is it Part 5 of 6??) in which The Thing is still brainwashed and hell-bent on murdering Reed. The evil F.F. continue to gloat. JACK KIRBY supplies story & art, ye "editor" does dialogue, and Vince Colletta does inks just about as HORRIBLE as the ones from DAREDEVIL #2, 3 & 4.
     (2-27-2014)


TALES TO ASTONISH 71  /
cover by Gene Colan & Vince Colletta
"ESCAPE... TO NOWHERE!"
GENE COLAN supplies the latest SUB-MARINER story & art for Part 2 of 7 of Namor's quest to find Neptune's trident, and therefore "prove" he is really worthy to continue being the ruler of Atlantis. Ye "editor" does dialogue, and that Colletta guy does inks. Is he EVERYWHERE these days?

"LIKE A BEAST AT BAY"
JACK KIRBY supplies another HULK story & layouts, while MIKE ESPOSITO (still trying to hide the fact he was working for Marvel from his DC overlords) doing both pencils & inks, and ye "editor" does dialogue. This storyline with "The Leader" just goes on and on and on. "Soap-opera" format had really taken hold here, no doubt about it.
     (2-27-2014)


AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 28  /
cover by STEVE DITKO
Review  (coming soon)


TALES OF SUSPENSE 69  /
cover by Jack Kirby, Don Heck & Mike Esposito
"IF I MUST DIE, LET IT BE WITH HONOR!"
IRON MAN tackles one of the toughest battles of his entire career, when he faces Russia's latest follow-up to The Crimson Dynamo-- THE TITANIUM MAN!!! Jack Kirby once more supplies the world with a memorable, long-running baddie, while DON HECK supplies story & art in what is truly one of the best things he ever did in his career doing superheroes. After all these 1 or 2-episode stories, at last we have a 3-parter, and the tension is built up for all its worth. Ye "editor" does dialogue, and the by-now UBIQUITOUS Vince Colletta nearly manages to murder the entire project with his inks.

"MIDNIGHT AT GREYMOOR CASTLE"
JACK KIRBY supplies another CAPTAIN AMERICA story, but is cut back to only doing layouts. Rumor had it his "editor" was trying to find other people to take over some of the series, and wanted Kirby to "teach" them how to do things HIS way, but in the long run this has proven to be UTTER B***S***. What was REALLY going on was, said "editor" had figured out a way to get MORE STORIES out of Kirby-- as always, uncredited, UNPAID. In this case, the first pinch-hitting artist is the ever-faithful, ever-dependable DICK AYERS, who does pencils AND inks over Kirby's layouts. Ayers, of course, had been doing SGT. FURY for quite some time now, and was apparently felt to be a good fit for World War Two-era stories. Ye "editor" does dialogue as usual, while continuing to STEAL credit & pay for the stories.
     (2-27-2014)


JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY 120  /
cover by Jack Kirby & Vince Colletta
"WITH MY HAMMER IN HAND...!"
This is pathetic-- still no GCD sypnopses?? Ah well. THOR's hammer was damaged in his last battle, and he has to return to the one who made it in the first place-- A TROLL-- to have it repaired. I know how traumatic that can be, having just recently had MAJOR work done to my 23-year-old car.

JACK KIRBY does story & art, while ye "editor" does dialogue & Vince Colletta does inks.

Part 7 of 11.

"SET SAIL!"
from the GCD: "Indexer Notes: Odinsword Quest Part 3, first appearance of Volstagg's wife."

JACK KIRBY does story & art on this latest installment of "Tales Of Asgard". Ye "editor" does dialogue & Vince Colletta does inks.
     (2-27-2014)


JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY ANNUAL 1  /
cover by Jack Kirby & Sol Brodsky
"WHEN TITANS CLASH!"
from the GCD: "Synopsis: Thor and Loki come across a pair of storm giants attacking the gateway from Asgard to Olympus; During the ensuing battle, Thor is accidentally transported to the fabled land and finds himself in combat with the mighty Hercules with neither party willing to back down; After a titanic battle, Zeus stops the conflict and proclaims them both worthy allies and friends; Thor is sent back to Asgard and Zeus closes the passage forever."

Indexer Notes: "This story introduced the Marvel Universe version of Olympus and the Greek gods."

Although NOT mentioned, this is actually a special 15-page installment of "Tales Of Asgard", as it takes place not in the present day, but in the dim, distant past ("...in fact so long ago that it's damn nearly, in the year one...").

JACK KIRBY had, of course, dealt with Greek or Roman pantheons before, going back at least as far as CAPTAIN AMERICA COMICS #1, with the introduction of "Mercury", who was soon after renamed "Hurricane".

Traditionally, HERCULES tends to be portrayed as noble but flawed, while THOR tends to be a big blowhard. But, since Kirby's version of THOR is a selfless, noble hero, naturally, HERCULES is a self-centered egotistical, careless A**H***.

As always, JACK KIRBY supplies story & art, ye "editor" does dialogue & Vince Colletta does inks.

This being an ANNUAL, with a sorry tradition of mixing one new story and a bunch of reprints, said reprints this time out are from JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY #85, 93, 95 & 97.
     (2-27-2014)


THE AVENGERS 20  /
cover by Jack Kirby & Wally Wood
"VENGEANCE IS OURS!"
Although it looks like The Swordaman pushed a helpless CAP off the top of a building-in-progress, CAP actually JUMPED, trusting his TEAM would be able to wqork together to save his life. (Amazingly... he was right!) Next thing, Swordsman is teleported to the lair of THE MANDARIN, who's decided to expand his field of opponents. I guess getting beaten by IRON MAN isn't enough for him anymore, he wants to take on 4 heroes at once and REALLY be humiliated. Under a fabulous Kirby-Wood cover, DON HECK supplies story & art, ye "editor" does dialogue & WALLY WOOD does his usual STELLAR job in the inks. WOW! I wish I had an original printing of this... I'm sure it would look better than the Masterworks reprint I have.
     (2-27-2014)


SGT. FURY & HIS HOWLING CURMUDGEONS 22  /
cover by DICK AYERS
"DON'T TURN YOUR BACK ON BULL McGIVENEY!"
DICK AYERS supplies story & art, ye "editor" does dialogue, and Carl Hubbell does inks.
     (2-27-2014)


X-MEN 13  /
cover by Jack Kirby & Joe Sinnott
"WHERE WALKS THE JUGGERNAUT!"
In part 2 of 2, JACK KIRBY introduces yet another long-running villain, while doing story & layouts. Coming onboard this issue for a long haul is romance artist WERNER ROTH. I always thought Roth did very pretty artwork, especially his people, even while his storytelling wasn't all that dynamic. Teamed with Kirby's storytelling, it's not bad-- it's sort of the equivalent of having Curt Swan pencil over Jim Shooter layouts (sort of). JOE SINNOTT returns to Marvel to do inks. WOW!! I have to admit, though, I've seen really misterable inkers work over Roth, and his stuff seems INKER-PROOF. Ye "editor" does dialogue, of course.
     (2-27-2014)


(Continued in October 1965)

All Text (C) Henry R. Kujawa
Artwork (C) Marvel Comics
Restorations by Henry R. Kujawa

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