Easter Marvels

Origins Of Marvel Comics Made For Easter Marvels

Ghoul Mourning Maniacs!

It’s almost Easter and I’m organizing some of my collection. I unearthed my copy of “Origins of Marvel Comics” by Stan Lee. As I touched the cover, I was immediately awash in some fun Easter memories from 1977. What’s the connection? Well, read on…

When I was a little monster, my Godmother/Aunt Mary brought me a pad of drawing paper and pastels, with a most amazing book, called “Origins of Marvel Comics” for Easter. This is the first in a series of Marvel Fireside books, which includes “Son of Marvel Origins,” “Bring on the Bad Guys,” “The Superhero Women” and more.
Easter Marvels

“Origins of Marvel Comics” was a great introduction to the first wave of Marvel heroes for a younger reader. The book includes reprints of the Silver Age debuts of The Fantastic Four, The Amazing Spider-Man, The Incredible Hulk , Doctor Strange and The Mighty Thor. Then, fast forwards to some tasty Bronze Age material.

Read with delight as the FF first gain their cosmic powers and battle Mole Man, to the issue 55 showdown between the Thing and Silver Surfer.

Can the Fantastic Four withstand the might of the Submariner?

The Hulk gets his turn in his first tale and tangle with the Gargoyle. He then goes swimming against Prince Namor, the Sub Mariner in issue 118.

Listen to the Hulk attempt to thwart an assassin!

Swing on a web to Spider-Man’s debut in “Amazing Fantasy” 15, and get a jolt from his battle with the Shocker in Amazing Spider-Man 72. Thor gets introduced in “Journey into Mystery” 83, against Stone Men from Saturn. He comes back in the Bronze Age offering of “The Mighty Thor ” 143. He teams up with Balder the Brave and Lady Sif against the Enchanters! Doctor Strange has his origin laid out for you in “Strange Tales” 115, then POOF! there he is in a strip from 155. The sorcerer didn’t get his own mag until a little later and had to share his first comic book home with Nick Fury. Wonder who the goldbrick was?

This was an “EGG-scelent ” Easter treat, and as you can see from the photo of Aunt Mary and I, I have the book in my grubby little hands! The photo was taken in front of Grandma Kaizer’s house and there are many more photos like it of my sisters and I, our cousins and more. It was an Easter family tradition to go to Grandma’s where she cooked her “Dupa”and Babushka off and fed the waves of family all day on Easter Sunday. All the Polish food you could think of. Grandpa would play jazz on the piano and smoke cigars. Then, we’d head outside and pose at that exact same spot for photos. That tradition carried on for at least three or four decades and Easter Sunday at Grandma’s was always a great time and now a great memory.

I Hope Peter Cottontail brings you chocolate and something to make you say, ” EGGcelsior!!”

(Apologies to Stan Lee).

Strange - Blu Ray

Embrace The Strange With Dr. Strange On Blu-Ray!

When it comes to the many comic book heroes and villians that Marvel Comics have produced over the years. Dr. Strange is certainly one of my favorite characters. I think that is pretty evident in the light of how many Super Blog Team-Up articles I’ve written over the years.
Strange

But what makes Dr. Strange such a personal favorite of mine? My go to answer is that he is a deeply flawed character. This is evident in the works of Steve Ditko and Stan Lee back in 1963, with the origin story in issue Strange Tales #115. Which as a matter of fact was his fourth appearance in the comic series.

Before becoming the Sorcerer Supreme, Doctor Stephen Strange was a brilliant surgeon. Earning large sums of money for his skills and combined with his equally impressive egotism – frequently turned a blind eye to the needy.
Strange

Stephen Strange learns how the other shoe fits when he loses control of his car and crashes. While his life is indeed saved, his hands are ruined and his career as a surgeon is over. Strange’s ego refuses to let himself give up on the notion his hands might be fixed. Burning through his resources, chasing down any procedure that might heal him. To no avail. Which eventually leads him to travel to Tibet where he becomes the pupil to the Ancient One.
Strange - The Ancient One

All things considered while on the negative side, Stephen can’t repair his hands. On the positive side however he does replace the Ancient One, donning the Cloak of Levitation and the Eye of Agamotto. Becoming Dr. Strange – the Sorcerer Supreme!

This origin of course is more or less covered in the excellent 2016 film adaptation of Dr. Strange. Which is available right this second on Digital HD and Disney Movies Anywhere. With the movie debuting on Blu-Ray this coming Tuesday the 28th.
Strange - Blu Ray

For Marvel Studios first foray into the magic side of the Marvel Cinematic Universe they chose their cast wisely. I mean can you truly say that Benedict Cumberbatch isn’t the perfect choice to play Dr. Strange?
Dr. Strange

Coupled with that you have the acting talents of the likes of Chiwetel Ejiofor (Serenity), Rachel McAdams (Sherlock Holmes), Tilda Swinton (Adaptation.), Benedict Wong (The Martian) and of course Mads Mikkelsen (Casino Royale)!

Dr. Strange manages to blend humor, thrills, and more importantly – delivers on the psychedelic visuals of the original comic books. All the while opening the Marvel Cinematic Universe wider – ushering in the supernatural elements present in the comics.

Of course Dr. Strange on Blu-Ray manages to pack in the bonus extras:

  • A Strange Transformation – Open your eye to a new dimension of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and see how the filmmakers brought one of comic books’ greatest characters to life.
  • Strange Company – Find out what it’s like for the cast to work on a Marvel film, and how Director Scott Derrickson engineered one of the most ambition, imaginative films ever.
  • The Fabric of Reality – Take a closer look at the movie’s extraordinary sets, meticulously crafted costumes and amazingly detailed production elements.
  • Across Time and Space – Explore the endless hours of dance and fight choreography the actors endured in preparation for their physically demanding roles.
  • The Score-cerer Supreme – Join composer Michael Giacchino and a full orchestra during live recording sessions, and experience the movie’s mind-bending music.
  • Marvel Studios Phase 3 Exclusive Look – Get an early peek at Marvel’s spectacular upcoming films, including MARVEL STUDIOS’ GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2, THOR: RAGNAROK, BLACK PANTHER and AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR.
  • Team Thor: Part 2 – See more of the hilarious partnership between Thor and his roommate Darryl in this satirical short.
  • Audio commentary with Scott Derrickson.
  • Deleted Scenes
  • And Gag Reel

[Via] Disney Movies Anywhere

So forget everything you think you know and pick up Dr. Strange on Blu-Ray this Tuesday!

[Via] Marvel Entertainment

Werewolf - Power Records

Retro Records: The Curse of The Werewolf!

I’m not sure when you were first introduced to the concept of the Werewolf. But as in fact I’ve mentioned before – I learned all about it thanks to this 1975 poster. One that at the tender age of three years old I pulled from a box of Sugar Crisp!

Images courtesy of the Classic Movie Monsters Blog.

Now I didn’t really get bit with the Werewolf bug until seeing 1941’s The Wolf Man. Starring some rather legendary actors. Like Bela Lugosi, Claude Rains, Ralph Bellamy, and of course Lon Chaney, Jr.

After catching that film on TV during the Late, Late Show I was hooked. While I was a Universal Monster fan from an early age. It would be not just The Wolf Man but anything Werewolf related that would demand my attention. Which is probably how I ended up watching 1981’s An American Werewolf in London at only nine years old!

Which naturally bring us around to our Retro Records offering for today. A 1974 Power Records 45 rpm entitled “The Curse of the Werewolf!”. In addition it features artwork by Mike Ploog and even Gene Colan. I should add that it at the very least looks like Gene Colan provided the artwork for the scenes involving Dracula.

Furthermore – this is a record that could only have come from the 70s! Like some of the others we have shared such as Kojak as well as Man-Thing. The story is rather dark to say the very least.
Werewolf

So without further ado join us on Retro Records as we listen to The Curse of the Werewolf!

[Via] Mister GrayMan

Check Out This Amazing 1973 Dr. Strange Cosplay!

There is without a doubt some talented cosplay going on in this day and age. Whether it be for popular video game, anime, or comic book characters. It’s easy to do a quick search online and find all levels of talent.

[Via] Nerd Caliber

Now if we are to go by the information provided by Wikipedia, cosplay has in fact been around for quite some time!
” A.D. Condo’s science fiction comic character Mr. Skygack, from Mars was the subject of costuming in 1908 in the United States.[42] Science fiction fans Forrest J Ackerman and Myrtle R. Douglas attended the 1939 1st World Science Fiction Convention in the Caravan Hall, New York, USA dressed in “futuristicostumes”, including green cape and breeches, based on the pulp magazine artwork of Frank R. Paul, designed and created by Douglas.”

You might happen to recall my post from last year about vintage cosplay. Featuring 1963 photos from WorldCon with the Lord of the Rings‘ Gollum. As well as John Carter of Mars‘ Tars Tarkas.

Images courtesy of the Vintage Geek Culture Tumblr.

Of course of late there has been an upswing in the amount of Dr. Strange cosplay. Thanks in no small part to the success of the 2016 film starring Benedict Cumberbatch.
Dr. Strange

But the other night I was sent a photo by one of my best friends. An image from the Los Angeles Science Fantasy Society site – a photo from 1973 taken by Dik Daniels. Showcasing an earlier cosplayer taking on the mantle of Marvel Comics’ Sorcerer Supreme, the one and only Dr. Strange!

Image courtesy of Dik Daniels – Los Angeles Science Fantasy Society.

Really an amazing bit of cosplay, I think you will agree. Be that as it may – the identity of the cosplayer is unknown. I would highly recommend you follow that link to the LASFS page. You can in fact check out a lot more photographs by Dik Daniels including this one. That is The Time Machine‘s George Pal as well as his Wife – the name of the fan is unknown.

The Incredible Hulk

Retro Records: The Incredible Hulk (The Assassin)

The Incredible Hulk was a pretty big deal in 1978. The first season of the popular CBS television series had already aired. With Bill Bixby as Dr. David Bruce Banner and Lou Ferirgno portraying the Jade Giant. As a matter of fact the live-action show spawned a syndicated newspaper comic strip. In addition the strip was at the beginning of it’s run written by Stan Lee and illustrated by Larry Lieber. Which most of you might know is in fact Lee’s younger brother!

Image courtesy of the Big Glee! Blog.

Image courtesy of the Big Glee! Blog.

With ‘Ol Jade Jaws growing popularity thanks to the TV show it of course made sense to merchandise. In this case the myriad products that The Incredible Hulk spawned included clothing, bedding, toys, and records. More importantly in the case of Retro Records it allowed Peter Pan records to produce this 1978 album. Featuring four short stories of the adventures of everyone’s favorite gamma-irradiated rage monster.

Don’t feel too bad for that particular Ursus arctos, friends. I’m sure it can…bear it. Zing! Don’t forget to tip the wait staff and I look forward to seeing you for the next show.

Ahem.

The four stories on the LP were Black Chasm, Blind Alley, Monster From the Deep, and The Assassin. Which is the story we are sharing today. In it David Banner, using the name David Benson, hitchhikes into the small town of Pine Knot. Where a political rally is underway for Bob Hyatt, a man who promises to eradicated the underhandedness and corruption of the local politician. Someone obviously disagrees with this campaign promise as an assassin tries to silence Hyatt – permanently. David finds himself in the wrong place at the wrong time and faces the brutality of Chief Dunphy. Can Banner clear his name of the wrongful accusation of being the assassin? Or will Dunphy and the town of Pine Knot face the fury of The Incredible Hulk?
Hulk

Find out for yourself as you listen to The Assassin!

[Via] Doctor Del

A big thanks to the Big Glee! blog for the newspaper strip art used at the top of the post.

Now why don’t you listen to Stan Lee talk about The Incredible Hulk TV series?

[Via] TV Legends

You still want more info on that classic television show? You are totally in luck as that is the subject matter of Episode 073 of the Retroist Podcast !
Incroyable Hulk