The Tomb of Dracula was published by Marvel Comics from April 1972 to August 1979. The 70-issue series featured a group of vampire hunters who fought Count Dracula and other supernatural menaces. On rare occasions, Dracula would work with these vampire hunters against a common threat or battle other supernatural threats on his own, but more often than not, he was the antagonist rather than protagonist. In addition to his supernatural battles in this series, Marvel’s Dracula often served as a supervillain to other characters in the Marvel Universe, battling the likes of Blade, Spider-Man, Werewolf by Night, the X-Men, and the licensed Robert E. Howard character Solomon Kane.
Man-Thing’s solo title ran 22 issues (Jan. 1974 – Oct. 1975). Following Morrow, the main series’ primary pencillers were, successively, Val Mayerik, Mike Ploog, John Buscema, and Jim Mooney. A sister publication was the larger, quarterly Giant-Size Man-Thing #1-5 (August 1974 – August 1975), which featured 1950s horror-fantasy and 1960s science fiction/monster reprints as back-up stories, with a Howard the Duck feature added in the final two issues. The unintentional double entendre in the sister series’ title became a joke among comics readers.
John Byrne revitalized the slumping title with his run. Originally, Byrne was slated to write with Sienkiewicz providing the art. Sienkiewicz left to do Moon Knight, and Byrne subsequently became writer, artist, and inker. Various editors were assigned to the comic; eventually Bob Budiansky became the regular editor. Byrne told Jim Shooter that he could not work with Budiansky, although they ultimately continued to work together. In 2006, Byrne said “that’s my paranoia. I look back and I think that was Shooter trying to force me off the book”. Byrne left following issue #293 (Aug. 1986) in the middle of a story arc, explaining he could not recapture the fun he had previously had on the series. One of Byrne’s changes was making the Invisible Girl into the Invisible Woman: assertive and confident. During this period, fans came to recognize that she was quite powerful, whereas previously, she had been primarily seen as a superpowered mother and wife in the tradition of television moms like those played by Donna Reed and Florence Henderson.
Although there were other attempts to adapt Battlestar Galactica into a comic book format, the Marvel series is considered by many to have been the most successful in terms of run, sales, and content.
This was accomplished against some notable odds. Although Roger McKenzie was most often the writer, and Walt Simonson the most regular artist, the book also had a heavy rotation of guest writers and artists.
Marvel Comics’ began its adaptation of Battlestar Galactica with Marvel Super Special #8, a magazine format comic written by Roger McKenzie and drawn by Ernie Colón which was released as a tie-in to the start of the series. Based on an early script of the three hour series premiere “Saga of a Star World”, this adaptation, which gave a relatively short treatment to the third hour, was also released in a tabloid format and then later as a paperback as well. The tabloid version was also printed by Whitman Comics. Its success led Marvel to print a regular monthly comic depicting the adventures of the ragtag fleet.
Jennifer Walters, the cousin of Bruce Banner (Hulk), is the small and somewhat shy daughter of Los Angeles County Sheriff William Morris Walters and Elaine (née Banner) Walters (who died in a car crash when Jennifer was seventeen). Operatives of Nicholas Trask, a crime boss who had crossed paths with her father, shot and seriously wounded her on a day that Bruce Banner happened to be in town for a visit. Since no other donors with her blood type were available, Banner provided his own blood for a transfusion; as they already shared the same blood type and DNA, his radioactive blood, combined with her anger transformed Jennifer into the green-skinned She-Hulk when the mobsters tried to finish her off at the hospital.
During the summer of 1973, Englehart and artists Bob Brown and Sal Buscema produced “The Avengers-Defenders Clash” storyline which crossed over between the two team titles. “The Celestial Madonna” arc linked Mantis’ origins to the very beginnings of the Kree-Skrull conflict in a time-spanning adventure involving Kang the Conqueror, and Immortus, who were past and future versions of each other. Mantis was revealed to be the Celestial Madonna, who was destined to give birth to a being that would save the universe. It was revealed that the Vision’s body had only been appropriated, and not created by Ultron, and that it originally belonged to the 1940s Human Torch. With his origins clear to him, the Vision proposed to the Scarlet Witch. The “Celestial Madonna” saga ended with their wedding, presided over by Immortus. The Beast and Moondragon joined the team soon after. George Pérez became the title’s artist with issue #141 (Nov. 1975) which saw the start of a seven-part story featuring the Squadron Supreme and the Serpent Crown. In 2010, Comics Bulletin ranked Englehart’s run on The Avengers eighth on its list of the “Top 10 1970s Marvels”.
The first Wolverine series was a limited series written by Chris Claremont with pencils by Frank Miller, inks by Joe Rubinstein, letters by Tom Orzechowski, and colors by Glynis Wein. Marvel Comics published the series from September to December 1982. This story arc covers the events leading up to Wolverine’s engagement to Mariko Yashida.
Vampire Tales ran 11 issues cover-dated 1973 to June 1975. With sister titles including Dracula Lives, Monsters Unleashed and Tales of the Zombie, it was published by Marvel Comics‘ parent company, Magazine Management, and related corporations, under the brand emblem Marvel Monster Group. Published b-monthly, the magazine cost 75 cents.
The magazine starred Morbius the Living Vampire, in a feature written primarily by Don McGregor, with pencilers including Pablo Marcos, Rich Buckler, Tom Sutton, and Mike Vosburg, and later by writer Doug Moench, with artist Sonny Trinidad. The vampire hunter Blade starred in two stories by writer Marv Wolfman and artist Tony DeZuniga, in issues #8-9 (Dec. 1974 – Feb. 1975). Steve Gerber contributed a Morbius story to issue #1 (Aug. 1973) and a story starring Lilith, Dracula’s daughter, to issue #6 (Aug. 1974).
Issue #2 (Oct. 1973) introduced Satana, the Devil’s Daughter, in a four-page teaser by writer-editor Roy Thomas and artist John Romita Sr.; and detective Hodiah Twist and his assistant Conrad Jeavons, created by Don McGregor and penciler Carlos Garzon.
The Werewolf by Night character first appeared in Marvel Spotlight #2 (Feb. 1972) and was based on an idea by Roy Thomas. The series name was suggested by Stan Lee and the debut story was crafted by Gerry Conway and Mike Ploog. The character made additional appearances in Marvel Spotlight #3 and #4 and then graduated to his own eponymous series in September 1972. Werewolf by Night was published for 43 issues and ran through March 1977. Issue #32 contains the first appearance of Moon Knight. Jack Russell co-starred with Tigra in Giant Size Creatures #1 (July 1974), which was the first appearance of Greer Grant as Tigra instead of the Cat. That series was retitled Giant-Size Werewolf with its second issue.
In volume 2, Spector abandons his Moon Knight, Grant and Lockley identities after the effects of Russell’s bite (lunar cycle-based strength) fade away, and functions as an independently wealthy man opening art galleries around the world, with the help of art historian Spence. Spector’s estranged relationship with Marlene ends when she finally leaves him for her ex-husband when he becomes Moon Knight again.
The cult of Khonshu telepathically summons Spector to Egypt and supplies him with a new arsenal of moon-themed projectile weaponry, originally designed by a time-traveling Hawkeye in ancient Egypt. Khonshu himself appears to Spector and enters his body, giving him the same lunar abilities he previously had.