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The Amazing Spider-Man Annual #21
Jan 18th, 2016 by Rusty

The Amazing Spider-Man Annual #21 cover

The Amazing Spider-Man Annual #21

Date: 1987
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $1.25
Stats: 43 color pages plus ads
Writers: Jim Shooter, David Michelinie
Artists: Paul Ryan, Vince Colletta, Rick Parker and Bob Sharen
Notable Notes: Peter and MJ get married!

Cold Feet?

Hey, I’ll admit that my feet started to get cold before my wedding. It was a big commitment, and as the day got closer and closer I got more and more nervous. Luckily I had some good friends that helped me stay the course, and now I have been married for nearly 20 years! But I never thought of how a super hero would get nervous before his or her wedding – at least until I read this issue. It gives me a new kind of respect for those that are married. This issue deals with a lot of concerns that Spider-man has going into his marriage – and he ends up handling them pretty well I think!

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The Amazing Spider-Man #292
Jan 11th, 2016 by Rusty

The Amazing Spider-Man #292 cover

The Amazing Spider-Man #292

Date: September 1987
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: 75¢
Stats: 23 color pages plus ads and Bullpen Bulletins
Writer: David Michelinie
Artists: Alex Saviuk, Vince Colletta, Rick Parker and George Roussos
Notable Notes: Spidey goes to Pittsburgh!

A New City!

I like to travel to new cities and places I’ve never seen before. And even though I’ve never been to Pittsburgh, it was fun to virtually visit that city as Peter and Mary Jane made their way past many of its sites! I think it is fun to see super heroes go to different places – as long as they don’t permanently stay there (I’m looking at you Daredevil in San Francisco!)

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The Amazing Spider-Man #291
Jan 4th, 2016 by Rusty

The Amazing Spider-Man #291 cover

The Amazing Spider-Man #291

Date: August 1987
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: 75¢
Stats: 24 color pages plus ads
Writer: David Michelinie
Artists: John Romita, Jr., Vince Colletta, Rick Parker and George Roussos
Notable Notes: MJ in Pittsburgh and the Spider-Slayer in New York!

What is this?!

For the most part I love older comics from the 1970s and 1980s. But I gotta admit that there are some really stupid ideas in some of them! This issue is a case in point, what with the stupid elongating robot and the stereo-typical angry villain. Oh well, I guess you gotta take the bad in order to appreciate the good, right? Right?!

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The Amazing Spider-Man #290
Dec 28th, 2015 by Rusty

The Amazing Spider-Man #290 cover

The Amazing Spider-Man #290

Date: July 1987
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: 75¢
Stats: 22 color pages plus ads and Bullpen Bulletins
Writer: David Michelinie
Artists: John Romita, Jr., Vince Colletta, Rick Parker and Bob Sharen
Notable Notes: Peter proposes to MJ!

Eternal love… or a ball-and-chain?

There are many ways to view marriage in the real world, but I’m not so convinced that it is such a good thing in the lives of comic book super heroes. It seems like the only married couple that has gone over well is the Fantastic Four’s Sue Storm and Reed Richards. Yes, I know it has been almost 30 years since Peter and MJ tied the knot, and I didn’t follow their marital events at all, but does anybody think it was a good idea for them to get married? Maybe. I decided to look at the beginning of that comic event and see how I really felt about it.

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Kickers, Inc. #1
Oct 3rd, 2015 by Rusty

Kickers, Inc. #1 cover

Kickers, Inc. #1

Date: November 1986
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: 75¢
2015 NM Price: $3
Stats: 23 color pages plus Universe News and ads.
Creators: Tom DeFalco, Ron Frenz, Sal Buscema, Phil Felix and George Roussos

The New Universe

The summer of 1986 was one of those times when I was really into comics. I was 15 years old and reading everything I could get my hands on. Marvel was celebrating its 25th anniversary, and started several new comic series set in an all new universe. This universe was supposed to be less magical, less fantastic and more realistic. I never really got into the titles, but the longest one only ended up running for 3 years. I guess people didn’t really want books that were more realistic. The fun part was getting to be there at the beginning, and seeing all the new origin stories!

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Kurt Busiek’s Astro City #1
Jul 13th, 2015 by Rusty

Astro City #1 coverKurt Busiek’s Astro City #1

Date: August 1995
Publisher: Image Comics
Cover Price: $2.25
2015 NM Price: $12
Stats: 24 color pages plus pullout poster, “Greetings from Astro City” and house ads
Creators: Kurt Busiek, Brent Anderson, Richard Starkings, Steve Buccellato and Alex Ross

Dreams of Flying

When I was a kid I had many dreams where I could fly – heck, I still have them! Wouldn’t that be something – to just take off like Superman and fly away? Those were always the dreams where I was totally upset once I woke up and realized it wasn’t real. But still, it’s fun to dream isn’t it? Apparently we normal humans aren’t the only ones who dream of flying – this issue shows us that superheroes have those dreams too… even when they really can fly!

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Thor #347
Jul 8th, 2015 by Rusty

Thor #347 cover

Thor #347

Date: September 1984
Publisher: Marvel Comics Group
Cover Price: 60¢
2015 NM Price: $4.00
Stats: 22 color pages plus ads, Bullpen Bulletins and “The Hammer Strikes” letters page
Story & Art: Walter Simonson
Other Artists: John Workman, Jr., Christie Scheele

It’s About Time!

It has been several months since my last comic book review. Not that I stopped reading comics – oh no – I was just a little bit swamped with other things in life. In that intervening time, however, I was finally able to watch Thor: The Dark World. I thought it was OK, but not superb. How do I know this? Because even now, just months after watching it, I had to look up a plot summary to remember exactly what happened! That’s definitely not the sign of a great movie. Anyway, I did like the parts about the evil dark elf Malekith. Just the other day I got to thinking that I have the comics where he makes his first appearance, so I thought I’d continue my pseudo-streak of reviewing older Thor comics. Lucky you!

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Captain America #14 (Vol. 3)
Feb 27th, 2015 by Rusty

Captain America #14 cover

Captain America #14 (Vol. 3)

Date: February 1999
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $1.99
Stats: 20 gray and color pages plus ads
Storytellers: Mark Waid, Andy Kubert, Jesse Delperdang, Chris Sotomayoor, Todd Klein

Like A Movie

This issue of Captain America has some similarities to the movie Schindler’s List. Most noticeable are the black and white (or gray tone) images, with splashes of red here and there. The red, in this case, being the Red Skull’s big, ugly head! Also, this is a story about WWII – in a round-about sort of way. Here we get to see an alternate life of one of Cap’s biggest foes – and it isn’t pretty!

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Silver Surfer #5
Feb 20th, 2015 by Rusty

Silver Surfer #5 cover

Silver Surfer #5

Date: October 2014
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
Stats: 21 color pages plus ads
Storytellers: Dan Slott, Michael Allred, Laura Allred, Clayton Cowles

Nightmares

Do you ever have bad dreams? I do, and sometimes they are the really scary ones where I start awake and my heart is beating 100 miles per hour! I often find that I have the same dreams / nightmares over and over too – whatever that means. You know – the one where you can’t run, or you can’t help somebody or something like that. Sheesh – maybe I need to see somebody about that huh? Anyway, this issue of Silver Surfer involves the king of bad dreams – Nightmare himself. And a sinister plot is afoot that may allow him to rule over the Earth forever! Gasp!

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Akiko #10
Nov 22nd, 2014 by Rusty

Akiko #10 cover

Akiko #10

Date: January 1997
Publisher: Sirius Entertainment
Cover Price: $2.50
2014 NM Price: $3.00
Stats: 20 black & white pages plus “Letters to Akiko” and 2 page back-up story
Story & Art: Mark Crilley
Notable Notes: The gang surmounts the Great Wall of Trudd.

Hang Gliding?

There is a popular hang gliding mountain near where I live in Utah. Although I have never been, every time I pass it on the freeway I see loads of gliders lazily circling their way down from the top – and I get a hankerin’ to join in! I imagine it to be fun, a little bit scary and a bit relaxing too. Maybe some day I’ll get the nerve, time and energy to do it. In this issue of Akiko the gang makes use of a giant flag to do some hang gliding of their own – and it turns out to be pretty useful too!

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Thor #346
Oct 19th, 2014 by Rusty

Thor 346 cover

Thor #346

Date: August 1984
Publisher: Marvel Comics Group
Cover Price: 60¢
2014 NM Price: $4.00
Stats: 22 color pages plus ads, Bullpen Bulletins and “The Hammer Strikes” letters page.
Story & Art: Walter Simonson
Other Artists: John Workman, Jr., Christie Scheele
Notable Notes: Everyone is racing to find the Casket of Ancient Winters!

A Weakness For Cookies?

I love me a good cookie – especially if it has chocolate chips in it! I’ll readily admit that I have a weakness for cookies, but do you think any of the Marvel superheroes do too? Well, apparently Thor does! The hands-down lamest part of this issue is when the Son of Odin is duped by a police-officer who offers him laced cookies! C’mon! Oh well, I guess it’s good to know that our heroes have some weaknesses just like us… right?

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Daredevil #28 (Vol. 3)
Oct 12th, 2014 by Rusty

Daredevil #28 cover

Daredevil #28 (Vol. 3)

Date: September 2013
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
Stats: 21 color pages plus ads
Writer: Mark Waid
Artists: Javier Rodriguez, Joe Caramagna and Chris Samnee
Notable Notes: A bully from Matt’s past shows up!

A Haunted Past?

Have you ever had someone from your childhood show up in your adult life? I have a few times, but it has never been someone that I really disliked or hated. I think that would be kind of hard to handle. In this issue we get to see Matt deal with that very thing as a bully from his childhood comes looking for his help. How would you react? Well, there is a reason Matt is a superhero – and it doesn’t always have to do with his physical abilities either!

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Doc Savage #1
Sep 6th, 2014 by Rusty

Doc Savage #1 cover

Doc Savage #1

Date: October 1972
Publisher: Marvel Comics Group
Cover Price: 20¢
2014 Price Range: $3.00 – $42.00
Stats: 20 color pages plus ads, Marvel Bullpen Bulletins and “Meet Doc Savage” page
Writers Roy Thomas and Steve Englehart
Artists: Ross Andru, Jim Mooney and John Costanza
Notable Notes: 1st issue – based on the pulp fiction story “The Man of Bronze”

The First Superhero?

OK, I’ll admit it – this was the first Doc Savage story I have ever read! Of course I’d heard of him, and being the big SF fan that I am you’d think I would have read one of the many novels about him – but no. So after reading this cool comic book that was given to me by my sister several years ago, I looked up some information about this classic character. It turns out he started in story form back in the 1930s, and has been featured in a variety of media since: magazines, novels, comics and even movies. He has quite the interesting history and a cool gang of side-kicks. I think I’ll have to delve more into some of the Doc Savage stories. See – comics are still a great medium for introducing people to new characters and properties!
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Walt Disney’s Donald Duck #249
Aug 9th, 2014 by Rusty

Donald Duck #249 cover

Walt Disney’s Donald Duck #249

Date: January 1987
Publisher: Gladstone Publishing
Cover Price: 75¢
2014 Price Range: $2.00 – $16.00
Stats: 29 color pages plus house ads and “The Quacker Box” letters page
Writers Volker Reiche, Geoffrey Blum, Carl Barks and Marty Greim
Artists: Daan Jippes, Volker Reiche, Carl Barks and Marty Greim
Notable Notes: Donald is a scientist, a goblin and a monster hunter!

A Scientist

I have always liked the idea of being a scientist. I used to play at it when I was a kid, and I very much enjoyed science classes in school. During the last few years I have been taking some serious social science classes at the university where I work, and have quite enjoyed them. I still like the idea of being a scientist, and am slowly moving towards that goal. In this issue we get to see Donald fantasize about the same thing – only here he actually starts mixing chemicals in a lab and disastrous results follow! C’mon – what would a Donald Duck story be without funny mayhem?

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G.I. Joe, A Real American Hero #19
Jul 21st, 2014 by Rusty

G.I. Joe #19 cover

G.I. Joe, A Real American Hero #19

Date: January 1984
Publisher: Marvel Comics Group
Cover Price: 60¢
2014 Price Range: $2.00 – $18.00
Stats: 22 color pages plus ads, “Postbox: The Pit!” letters page and Bullpen Bulletins
Writer: Larry Hama
Artists: Mike Vosburg, Jon D’Agostino, Rick Parker, George Roussos
Notable Notes: The Joes trick Cobra into attacking a fake base!
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